How do I decorate my small bathroom?

Hello! :) I have a bit of a task here – a little bathroom that is “cold”, old and perhaps a bit scary. I want to put some kind of decorations in there to make it more warm and fresh, but it’s not like there is plenty of space. Do you have small things or changes that could transform a bathroom into a nice place?

Hello! great question, bathrooms are challenging but fun spaces to decorate because they are so small – a little goes a long way! you want to create some embellishments in your bathroom to make it feel less utilitarian and more homey, warm and “decorated” – think of it like the jewelry for your bathroom!

(rug, towel, basket hamper, grass shower curtain)

some opportunities for sprucing are:

  • bath mat or shall i say bath rug: because don’t get a bathmat! get a cool rug that can be washed from time to time – bath mats are baaaarf ugly and just look temporary and cheap. get a rug in a cloth or natural fiber that can be washed and hung to dry. i like the colorful woven rugs made from fabric scraps that you can get at places like World Market – like the one above.
  • shower curtains: if your bathroom has a shower curtain this is a great opportunity for sprucing – there are some gorgeous or fun and funky shower curtains out there (see above and below). if you get a cloth curtain just make sure you have an inner vinyl lining curtain to protect the cloth from the shower moisture – they sell the vinyl linings at stores like Target, Kmart, Bed Bath & Beyond, etc.
  • towels: get colorful towels or fluffy luxurious towels to make your bathroom feel luxurious – after all you are wiping them on your naked body so they should be special and beautiful! if you want save some cash, just get two full size towels and two hand towels to match (or compliment) and use those to display on your towel rack for color and pizazz. then just use whatever old ratty towel you’re attached to to wipe your wet bod.
  • art: hang some framed art or posters to make the bathroom feel like a room! just make sure they’re framed by glass and it’s not a sentimental photograph because the moisture from the shower could warp it. that’s why i like framing cheap posters or prints – see more on that here!
  • hampers or storage baskets: i love bringing in a natural basket to a bathroom, it makes it feel less clinical if there are some natural fibers around. bring in a big natural wicker hamper or storage baskets to house your rolled up towels, cosmetics, toilet reading, etc.
  • mirror: if you can remove the vanity mirror above your sink, try replacing it with a pretty ornate mirror or a reclaimed wood mirror like the one below.
  • purposeful accessories: i don’t like matchy matchy in a bathroom – my advice is to steer clear of the matching soap dish, tissue box and toothbrush holder and instead create a more custom look with some unique accessories like fun jars for cotton balls, candles and maybe a vase with a tree branch for some height. use a fun glass for your toothbrushes and a vintage dish for your soap. don’t over clutter, just a couple doo dads to set the tone, depending on how much counter space you have. tip: if you don’t have a counter sink, try accenting a window sill or the back of the toilet!

my bathroom, in my rental apartment is all white tile and white walls, i chose not to paint in there and instead brought color and ‘life’ in through accessories, a rug made out of colorful fabric scraps (similar to the one above) and framed cat art on the wall (which i blogged more about here). here is my bathroom counter…

i framed the ‘Bert’s Bath’ poster in a store bought frame from Cost Plus World Market (also where i got my rug). i added further personality with decorative embellishments like a silver box to hold my cotton swabs and cotton balls, candles, brass statue of monkeys, old bath salt jars that i filled with sea glass and use as tea light holders and a vase with some of my old rock collection and a dried manzanita branch (which you can get at craft stores or florist shops). see more on displaying rocks, seashells and sea glass here.

if you want a rustic girly look, try getting a pretty fabric shower curtain like the gorgeous ‘sculpted mums’ one above from Anthropologie (or this ruffle one from UO)and accenting with a similar rug (Urban Outfitters) in a different color and maybe some reclaimed wood accents in a frame or mirror.

other tips…

jute rugs are a great natural fiber to use as a bathroom rug. see how they have very purposeful accessories as well and the towels are decorative themselves because they bring in color!

a wooden ladder can be used as a towel rack and notice the natural basket holding the extra towels. see other toilet paper holder ideas here.

if you have a window for sufficient light, plants can be fun to use in a bathroom. also notice the braided rag rug for color, the fun mirror over the sink and the natural basket for storage. i also love the little flag garland for decor!

if you have enough room, a colorful chair is a really cute way to add style and a functional surface! i like how they used the natural baskets in contrast with the pop-of-color chair.

notice how the cluster of framed art brings a very decorated look to an otherwise simple and stark bathroom. i think this is a more masculine look with the earth-toned art. love it!

i hope these tips help you turn your scary bathroom into a room you love!



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photos via pinterest