Tailored Bathroom Style in Our Wallpapered Main Bathroom

We’re fortunate in our house to have four full bathrooms in our house; three not counting the basement. Truly unheard of in a non-gargantuan Hill house. And this means we have four bathrooms to decorate. The basement will be classic and vintage-inspired. On our first floor, we plan on going dark and sultry. The second floor is Adam’s bathroom to run with. That will get a (small) soaking tub and dramatic tile. He’s going for boutique hotel vibes. On the third floor, I’m going with super classic and tailored.

The Plan for a Tailored Bathroom Design

First, let’s talk about the layout. Our bathrooms are small. There’s no room to move anything around or get fancy with layout. But, hey, that takes half the thinking out of it, right?! What we have is a bathroom where you walk in, there’s a full-size (thankfully!) shower to your left. Currently, there’s a non-supporting wall on the end of it that makes the bathroom appear to shrink on itself. We’re turning that into a half glass shower wall. Then, there’s the toilet, perfectly hidden by the shower wall. There will be a few open shelves above the toilet (yes, I’m ready for people to come at me for open shelves above the toilet — for the record, I do not care). Across from the toilet is a tiny vanity. And, on the same wall as the vanity, will be three hooks for towels.

Overall, I want the look to feel light, fresh, and calming. I don’t love a primary bathroom that feels overly colorful or loud. I want serene colors. I want a clean look. It can be designed, but it shouldn’t veer too far into making a statement. For me, I want timeless and tailored in kitchens and bathrooms.

Initially, that meant looking for marble-inspired porcelain tile (Adam’s one request is no marble tile due to the maintenance and staining, though I still dream of my marble bathroom in my Dupont studio). Unfortunately, I quickly realized that marble look tile doesn’t exactly look like marble. It was actually a few hotel stays that sealed that decision for me, as I realized that porcelain marble tile can quickly veer into cheap territory.

That brought me back to a classic bistro tile on the floor and subway tile on the walls (if only I’d arrived at the decision faster!). Rather than a black and white, we’re going with gray and white, which still feels timeless, but lighter and fresher, and better than all white, which seems to show every hair.

The next decision was the vanity. I had to find a tiny vanity, and this one fit the bill. I went with it in the gray, which is more of a periwinkle than gray. That led to the wallpaper (I wasn’t originally thinking of wallpaper!), and love this one from Rifle Paper. Our contractor advised against wallpapering the entire wall in a bathroom, so, instead, we decided to install a classic beadboard up four feet.

Then, when it came to the fixtures, I choose classic chrome, including a shower set from Signature Hardware. We’re going to install the shower as a rain shower from the ceiling rather than the wall to add a little spa effect.

The Items in Our Design

Here are the exact items we’re using in our tailored bathroom design. This tile is possibly the most cost-effective tile on earth, and it looks so classic now and ten years from now. We’ll see how the wallpaper holds up but, thankfully, in such a small space, we only need two rolls. The internet tells me it’ll be fine — I’ll keep you posted.


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