Go bold or go home are words to live by — but not all the time (at least when it comes to interiors). While we should give our eyes and our brains some moments of rest in calm spaces like our bedrooms, we can let loose and instill excitement in small areas like powder rooms and closets. One of our favorite spaces for a high-impact treatment is the bathroom.
Patterned wallpaper can work wonders for a bathroom, instantly elevating it from a functional space to a fabulous one. That said, steam causes most wallpapers to peel eventually, so wallpaper is best used in powder rooms or in spaces that are separated from the shower or bath. There are steam-resistant wallpapers on the market, but they can be hard to find — and with our luck, it won’t be available in that one print you fall hard for. Want to add pattern without the looming threat of peeling paper? Try painting stripes.
|Fornasetti Malachite, $198/roll,
|Palm Jungle Blues, $123/roll,
|Harem Tulips, $51/roll,
Graham & Brown
Durable and waterproof, tile is more sensible way to add drama to your bathroom. The only question is, how bold should you go? It’s up to you! A bathroom drenched in floor-to-ceiling tile can make a major, dizzying statement, but sometimes just a busy, colorful pattern on the floor or the wall behind your vanity is just enough. If you have a bigger budget, consider a luxurious marble for your floors and your walls.
|Pollen Field Tile in Orange Blue, from $24/sq. ft., Ann Sacks||Paul Schatz Castilla Tile, price upon request, New Ravenna||Backgammon Azure Tile, $161 for 14, Marrakech Designs|
The mirror is usually of the focal point of the bathroom, so take the opportunity to inject some whimsy in the space. Consider mirrors with an unusual shape, such as a teardrop, or look for embellishments like rope or prismic facets. Even the most basic wooden or metal mirror can make a statement when reimagined in a bright, bold hue.
|Stipple Mirror, $379, Wisteria||Framed Prism Mirror, $698, Zinc Door||Palm Beach Mirror, $395, Serena & Lily|
Don’t settle for your existing bathroom lighting. Go bold with a dramatic, oversized chandelier and add sophistication with handsome, shapely sconces. Given that you and your guests may be getting ready in your bathroom, it’s also important to make sure your bathroom lighting is flattering and bright (but not glaring). Sometimes a change of a bulb can highlight beautiful existing details that aren’t getting enough attention.
|Hibiscus Chandelier, $6600, ShopMACK||Bowline Wall Sconce, $450, Layla Grayce||Sophia Flush Mount, $496, Circa Lighting|
Want more bathroom inspiration? Visit our Bathrooms Pinterest board.
Photographs: Andrew Arthur for Domaine (1 and 2), Cuff Home, Sean Fennessy for The Design Files, Douglas Friedman, New Ravenna Mosaics, Nate Berkus, Keith Scott Morton for Cottages & Gardens, Trent Bailey for Rue, Patrick Kooiman for Interiorator, John Ellis for LA Times, Lonny, Kelly Wearstler, Architectural Digest Russia via Sukio, Douglas Friedman