Inspiration: Small Bathrooms

Finding inspiration for a small bathroom seems much easier than for a small kitchen. Even large homes have guest bathrooms or powder rooms that share about the same square footage as the one-and-only bathroom in many New York apartments. These rooms are great inspirations for small primary bathrooms because the homeowner is generally willing to take a risk– use a dark or bright color or a finish she would probably not use in her own (neutral) bathroom. Unfortunately, powder rooms are generally minimally functional, at best. The homeowner is assuming that she will very rarely use or even see this bathroom, so necessities like storage go out the window.

[Bold Striped Bathroom via Lonny Mag]

I’ve been hunting trying to find functional, beautiful small bathrooms (or ones that could be easily reinterpreted into small bathrooms) and here’s what I’ve found–

[Cottage Chic Bathroom via DecorPad]

A great small bathroom, like any other small room, finds a balance between form and function. When I see a room with a pedestal sink and a wall-mounted mirror, the first thing I think is “where do you keep your toothbrush?” I personally am a huge advocate for both medicine cabinets and over-toilet etageres. Most small bathrooms have empty space above the toilet for a simple piece of furniture– if you can find a wall-mounted one, it won’t even use any floor space at all. The above photo is a great example! Even though it’s not small, I absolutely love the colors and openness of the space, plus there’s a beautiful louvred etagere and tons of storage space in the bins under the sink.

[Blue and White Marble Bathroom via DecorPad]

I love the blue wall tiles and the clear glass shower enclosure– a great idea for making a small bathroom look larger!

[Calypso Blue Bathroom via Lonny via House of Turquoise]

Although lacking a vanity (or mirror of any kind), this color (Benjamin Moore Calypso Blue) is fantastic and such a great contrast to the bright white wainscoting. I also love the tiny corner vanity.

[Gold and Gray Bathroom, lost my source! Oops, please message me if you know who this belongs to!]

So, clearly, I had a lot of fun browsing, but I was still completely stuck about what my new bathroom was going to be. I love the idea of dark slate mosaic tiles (a la cooltiles.com) but didn’t think our tiny, window-less bathroom could stand up to such a dark color. The only thing I was sure on was this vanity from Restoration Hardware. The color and style are incredible, and I think it’s unexpected for a small bathroom to have anything but a white vanity or pedestal sink.

Then I found this bathroom. It is so playful and adorable, I wish I could just move right in.

[Whimsical Bathroom by Paper Dolls for Boys via Flickr]

I recognized the wallpaper immediately– Woods by Cole and Son, and then I saw that it also comes in a beautiful Taupe/neutral color that would look great with my dream vanity. I did this little mock-up/inspiration board… don’t make fun of the Photoshop skills. The bluish line is where the shower door will be. The current bathroom has a tub but we’re removing it and making it a huge spa shower instead. A bit risky, but I’m excited about it!

So that’s where I’m at. Looks like the reno will be starting in the next few weeks… eeek. Comments are appreciated, as always! Cheers!

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