I have almost finished redecorating our home and it really suits my husband and me – we both like classic decor. The last room to be addressed is our main floor powder room. Since my husband seldom uses that room, I want it to be more feminine and pretty. I just don’t know how to do this without using ornate chandeliers and fussy curtains. Can you help?
– J.C., Oakville, Ontario
A powder room is the perfect space to experiment when redecorating your home. It’s a small commitment – however you decide to decorate – so if you grow tired of the look down the road, it’s no big deal to change it up again.
Since your powder room has a small footprint (as most do), there is no need to change the configuration of the fixtures. I’m suggesting, however, that we switch out the built-in vanity for a better scaled, petite option, from Kohler (shown). Required storage in a powder room is usually minimal, so the small drawer at the bottom of the piece should suffice. The toilet is another opportunity to add some classic aesthetic with a fun design twist. This fixture, from Ginger’s, has a tank lid with a slightly retro feel (shown). It’s subtle, but noticed.
Add a bit of lightness and sparkle with this vintage mirror, from 1stdibs (shown). The shape is definitely feminine and doesn’t compete with the straight lines of the vanity. Lighting can make or break a space – and your powder room seems a little underlit. To brighten the room, install a slender ceiling pendant in a brushed nickel finish for good overall light and flank the mirror with delicate sconces for perfect makeup checks! (both shown, from Ginger’s).
While shutters can be lovely in many spaces, they have quite a darkening effect on your powder room and also make it feel slightly cramped (especially when they swing open!). Adding a lightly-lined roman shade will allow for privacy without the bulk of the shutters. Choosing a style that is tight and tailored will ensure that the room doesn’t veer too closely to the “girly” or juvenile.
The flooring is a 12” X 24” polished travertine from Creekside Tile (shown). It has the perfect combination of warm beiges and greys with veins of dark grey and light gold. The large format will require fewer grout lines, resulting in a cleaner, simpler look.
Finally, the piece de resistance, the wallpaper. Framed artwork in a powder room can be tricky because the pieces are often “floating” on the walls, not anchored by any furniture. Wallpaper can solve this problem because it can directly integrates art into your wall treatment. I suggest adding some fun with this eye-catching wallcovering from Graham & Brown (shown). Depicting vintage illustrations of French housewives with poodles and flowers, this paper is a whimsical, unexpected addition. It brings a feminine feel and fresh colour palette to your beautiful, new and classic powder room.
Photo Credits: pendant, Ginger’s; mirror, 1stdibs; roman shade trim, Robert Allen; roman shade fabric, Threadcount; sconce, Ginger’s; toilet, Ginger’s; sink, Kohler; wallpaper, Graham & Brown; tile, Creekside Tile; vanity, Kohler; faucet, Ginger’s