It’s great fun to perk up a powder room, and it’s important, too, as your powder room not only serves a utilitarian purpose but is also capable of providing a powerful design message. After all, your guests are likely to spend at least a couple of minutes alone in the space, having a look around. When someone goes into your powder room, you want it to be a really special space—more than just a little shotgun with a toilet at one end and a sink at the other. Instead, take this small space and make it an opportunity to make a big impact. And because the space is small, you have more leeway to invest in materials like wallpaper or tile (or marble!) that may be too expensive to use in another room in your home. Now, let's get to dreaming:
1) Do a wood accent wall.
2) Tile an entire wall. Our powder rooms tend to have hardwood floors, just because I don’t like interrupting the house with tile and because it makes our houses feel bigger, since a lot of our floorplans are small square footage. But it’s neat to me sometimes to go in, even if the floor’s hardwood, and put tile on the wall behind the toilet, all the way to the ceiling.
3) Wallpaper a wall or a ceiling: Try a big graphic wallpaper on the wall or even on the ceiling.
4) Goldleaf a ceiling. Instant glamour that’s not over the top.
5) Choose lighting wisely. The customary thing to do in a bath is to sandwich a mirror between two sconces. This is certainly not a bad setup, and we do it ourselves quite often, but I like to remind myself that people aren’t usually actually powdering their faces or applying makeup in a powder room. That means you’re off the hook when it comes to providing bright lighting and can play more with mood lighting. Some ideas: hang a pendant in front of the mirror or be considerate enough to put just a pinspot of light above the toilet; the truth is some reading make take place here from time to time.
6) Get the mirror right. Rather than just picking out the best of the worst from the hardware store, find a mirror that you love.
7) Get the sink right. I like pedestal sinks and I like trough sinks that slope with a drain at the back, but I'm not a fan of vessel sinks. (Maybe those were a trend that’s disappearing?) There are a lot of different, really fabulous pedestal sinks to chooser from; by the way, pedestal doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s a bowl and a base that are both glazed white. A pedestal sink could be a furniture piece or a vanity with a sink mounted in it. One word of warning: Before you invest in a fancy-schmancy sink, make sure you’re not getting a sink that’s prone to splattering. If the sink’s at a funny angle to the faucet, it’ll splatter, and your guests won’t be happy to emerge from your powder room with a wet lap.
8) Get nichey. Have your contractor build little niches into your powder room, where you can put toiletries, magazines, towels, or decorative accessories.
9) Mount faucets on the wall, instead of on the sink. Powder rooms are a really important place to spend more money on plumbing. A high-drama installation can easily elevate the space.
10) Accessorize! Towels, hardware, storage baskets, soap dishes, chippy old ladders: In a small space it doesn't take much to capture the imagination. Looking for something amazing to set your bathroom apart? Come shop with us at D. Luxe Home.
Nashville, TN, licensed general contractor, interior designer, home designer and builder, collector, photographer, traveler