10 Pieces of Decor Every Bathroom Needs
Ensure your bathroom makes a good first impression.
No matter what size or style bathroom you have, there are a few decor essentials that every bathroom needs to make a good first impression. Here are our 10 bathroom styling go-tos.
Brian Patrick Flynn
If you don’t currently have any art in your bathroom, this is usually an easy one to start with. You can really bring some personality and color into your space by adding a pretty piece of artwork or two. Depending on how much wall space you have, you can even try bringing in a bunch of pieces and doing a gallery wall. Just make sure any artwork you hang in your bathroom is properly framed under glass so that the steam from your shower won’t mess it up.
Brian Patrick Flynn
A plant is another easy must-have decor piece for your bathroom. If you happen to have a windowsill in your shower, that’s always a great spot for a plant. And even if you don’t have enough counter space to add a plant, consider putting a small succulent on a shelf or on top of your toilet. (You could even add a hanging plant in an open corner.)
A candle is a great way to keep things smelling fresh and clean in your bathroom. They’re also a lovely touch to add around a bathtub. When you find one you love that’s in a pretty glass container, you know you have a great candidate for your bathroom decor. I always like to keep three or four of my favorite candles on hand so I know I’ll never run out. And don’t forget to make sure you have some matches nearby for guests!
4: Hand Soap Dispenser
Kelly and Co. Design
Sometimes hand soap comes in not-so-pretty bottles. Purchase a nice dispenser and transfer your liquid hand soap inside. Make sure that whatever you have sitting on your sink looks snazzy enough that you’ll be proud to show it off to your guests.
5: Basket for TP + Extra Towels
Slipper Tub Surrounded by Marble in an Elegant, Traditional Bathroom
This gorgeous traditional bathroom turns a dormer window into a striking architectural detail by covering the barrel walls in Calacatta marble tile. A slipper tub nestled in the nook is a sunny spot to enjoy a long soak.
There’s nothing worse than being in a guest bathroom and not knowing where the extra towels or toilet paper are. I always like to make sure that extras of everything are easily available in a pretty basket or container. But don’t be afraid to get creative with these! I use a big glass vase to store extra rolls of toilet paper and a large planter bust with an open head to store extra towels. (Isn't she pretty?)
6: Storage Containers
Another way to add a bit of design style to your bathroom is by taking some of your essentials and putting them into pretty storage containers. Cotton balls and cotton swabs look great in glass containers, makeup can be stored in acrylic boxes and hand soaps can be stored in jars. You could even use unusual items like cake stands to hold everything.
7: Fab Hand Towels
Brian Patrick Flynn
This is another super easy way to amp up the style game in your bathroom: add some colorful hand towels. If you’re not a big fan of color, choose some fun, patterned towels. Try to add something to your space with a bit of texture and interest. And don’t forget to get three or four extras when you find something you love.
8: Laundry Solution
Speaking of laundry, it’s a good idea to have an attractive solution in your bathroom to deal with the inevitable piles of laundry. Beautiful baskets are always a great option, and they work with so many different design styles. I like baskets with covers so you’re always able to keep your "dirty laundry" under wraps.
A tray is a great piece to add to your bathroom to help things feel a bit more pulled together. They come in various sizes, styles and shapes, so you can really make them work no matter how big or small your space is. You can collect things such as candles, toothbrushes, soap or other necessities inside. A small arrangement of flowers is another nice addition for a chic tray.
10: Quirky Item
Modern Master Bathroom with Floral Floor Pattern
This master bathroom has a high window allowing light and privacy and a contrast of modern cabinetry with classic subway and decorative concrete tile. A floral floor pattern brings life into the all white modern design.
Hugh Jefferson Randolph Architects
I always like to add one or two small quirky items to mix things up. This small "men's" room sign is a fun accessory that doesn’t take away from the overall design of the space. Other ideas include an old postcard, vintage magazines or an old bathroom key (like the ones we had in elementary school).
Break the Rules
"Powder rooms are usually where I really go all out, break all the rules and use materials that might look 'over the top' in larger spaces," says interior designer Melissa Miranda. Dark colors or bold patterns, like this graphic lattice wallpaper, add dimension and a bit of fun. Design by Jennifer Jones
An advantage of small bathrooms? Smaller prices. "Since the space is usually so small, you can get away with using higher priced materials as you need so little of them," says interior designer Melissa Miranda. Designer Shelly Reihl David paired a hand-carved marble sink with a modern metallic damask wall covering, gold gilded mirror and amber crystal wall sconces to create this impactful space.
Kick Up the Color
As this 6-foot-by-7-foot Atlanta bathroom demonstrates, sometimes bold color is all you need to make a big statement. Although this space receives no natural light, the bold kelly green walls give it fresh personality. The ultra-white floor and wainscoting counterbalance the green's intensity.
Indulge Your Vanity
The vanity is typically the only piece of furniture in a small bath so it should make a big impact. Furniture-style vanities have been popular for quite a while and this timeless look is still going strong. There are many pre-made versions available or you can make your own with basic woodworking skills and an old buffet or dresser. Our step-by-step instructions will show you how.
Go for a Saturated Shade
Small bathrooms or powder rooms are a great place to try ultra-dark shades you might be scared to use elsewhere. "I had a lot of natural light in the powder room so I didn't hesitate in choosing black as the main color," says designer Melissa Miranda. Miranda chose ceiling-reaching "Woods" wallpaper from Cole & Sons to emphasize the height of the room.
Add Floating Storage
In this small bathroom designed by Jordan Iverson, a floating vanity takes up less visual space without compromising style. A pocket door, instead of a standard swinging door, lends privacy to the bathroom while freeing up floor space.
Make Organizing Fun
Make stashing your stuff a little more fun by adding an unexpected splash of color to the inside of your vanity using paint or just a brightly colored adhesive paper.
DIY Your Way to a Fresh Look
No matter how small your bath, gutting and replacing fixtures is an expensive undertaking. Save money by updating what you can yourself. Here, design blogger Layla Palmer gave a builder-basic vanity a trendy cottage-style update with a quart of gray paint and a little distressing with sandpaper.
Add Color With Accessories
Even a minimal splash of color in a small space will add a big dose of fun. Stick to a soft neutral or white color palette for the walls and fixtures to maximize light then mix in just the right amount of color with the shower curtain, towels or accessories.
Put It on a Pedestal
In this bright and cheery basement bathroom, designed by Sarah Richardson, a classic pedestal sink creates the illusion of extra square footage while a bright-white palette keeps the teeny-tiny space from feeling cramped.
Skirt the Issue
Pedestal sinks are ideal for tight spaces but often show exposed plumbing and offer no hidden storage. An easy-to-sew sink skirt will solve both problems, providing style and function to a bathroom. Learn how to whip one up with our step-by-step instructions.
Change the Floor Plan
A cramped floor plan and outdated finishes prompted the remodel of this small master bathroom. Relocating the toilet to the rear wall and adding a wall-mounted sink maximizes the space. The glass mosaic tile feature wall adds movement and draws attention to the high ceilings and skylight. Design by Jennifer Jones