Rethinking Apartment Bathrooms

in Small Space Ideas on by

Colorful children bathroom with toilet

You are not alone if you want to make your bathroom more than a quick stop-in closet. I mean, we all need to use a bathroom for our morning and evening ablutions, and periodically throughout the day to keep the internal piping moving along, but we ALSO consider it a spa of sorts, don’t we?

That’s why we pick up a basket of dried flowers and cinnamon; not just to absorb odor, but to engage our senses. We want a scent that LINGERS…perhaps a resplendent combination of heady vanilla and bracing pine – one that invites us into this getaway realm.

Why not spice up our commode’s surroundings in other ways, as well?

We’re assuming you don’t have the most humongous bathroom area, but that’s a plus. Why? Compact is jazzier. There’s more energy behind what you can do wall-to-floor-to-opposite-wall if the items you decorate with literally play off each other.

For instance, a lily white cloth–-try linen—shower curtain edged in nostalgic florals around an old-fashioned tub with lion’s claws will offset the fresh greenery of hanging plants.

Similarly, placing a wooden crate on its side-–maybe splash a ribbon of color on it-–at the head of the tub gives it a sweetly SoHo look.

Here are a few more ideas to play around with:

Forget the idea of one theme. Mix and match a couple of concepts. This will perk up the feel of the bathroom. Why not try rustic and recycled with sleek and shiny? A couple of Art Deco prints-–keep them on the smallish side—and a sophisticated swinging-top garbage can or laundry bin will offset a hand-me-down wooden chair, weathered cabinets and brass wall lamps.

Try a Little Whimsy – Rather than a regular door, find a folding wood panel in funky varnished tan. Put ladies’ pastel straw hats on the walls.

Little Things Matter – When picking out slippers and towels, don’t forget to draw the theme out a bit (just don’t overdo it). If you have pistachio-colored wallpaper, go for those two items in the same color. If you can get a small knick-knack or two in that tone, place it on the edge of your tub or on the cabinet—or even on the sink.

Rugs With Personality That Add The Look of Space – Try a vintage mirror with a frame in a deep brown and place a plant-fiber rug with tassels under the mirror. Find a rug with a single handcrafted design…nothing too busy. This will add the clean feel of roomy space.

Create an Original Under-Sink Space – Replace the standard under-sink cabinet with a sliding cloth or open space. Buy a few attractively spacious rattan or basket-weave storage boxes and store your cosmetics and other bathroom essentials in full view.

Paneling Makes A Subdued Statement – Can you get some lightly tinted paneling in your bathroom? The texture will show up any chrome, tile, wood…and even concrete.

Pamper Yourself Vintage-Style – Get a turn-of-the-century water pitcher to place at the head of your tub. Find an old full-bristle lathering brush and a wooden back scrubber and place them on a wooden stand.

Surrender Your Drab Floor – Go bold and paint your floor whatever color chills you out. Or create a design-in-squares look that’s vivacious but coolly soothing.

Sinks That Add Zing – Why not consider turning your sink into a heavy wooden counter top with painted pipes visible underneath? Too, rather than a sink that goes flush against the wall, opt for a huge white porcelain bowl. Don’t forget the farmhouse look of a worn-looking cabinet and a natural fabric rug. Add a bud vase with a single rose and some baby’s breath.

You get the idea, right? Brainstorm and think outside of the box. There are no set rules here. Throw in some textile fabrics, if you like brocade or muslin. Get artsy and make your bathroom a cocoon of time-out bliss.


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