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Most high-end homes today feature two sizeable bathrooms with plenty of space for two. These bathrooms might also include luxurious amenities like double vanities, a separate shower and oversize bathtub and an enclosed toilet.
These larger rooms offer a great opportunity to add a touch of panache to your home. An elegant bathroom is a feast for the eyes and a joy to the soul. But a sophisticated look doesn’t have to be over-the-top; understated elegance can be achieved in a myriad of ways.
Elegant Bathroom Décor
To start, choose darker colors for the walls then add marble surfaces and gilded fixtures. How much further you want to take your elegant bathroom design starts from there. Simple touches like crown molding and elegant lighting can transform any bathroom.
Ornate custom cabinetry, elaborate window treatments and luxurious wallpaper take the look a step further.
Finally, luxury options like an oversize soaking tub, featuring an array of bath salts and bubbles, complete the elegant picture.
Elegant Bathroom Color Scheme
White and brown can be the essence of the elegant bathroom’s color palette. Surface materials like the cool white of a Carrara marble sink deck and a warm white in an oval bathtub, are interesting variations on white.
Dark brown tones as found in knotty hickory floors, hickory-stained window trims, and cherry vanity tops perfectly balance the lighter side of this color palette. Gilt accents would complete this color scheme.
Elegant Bathroom Materials
Achieve a time-honored ambiance with luxurious materials, fabrics and wallpaper. Woods like cherry and mahogany interject warmth, while marble or limestone afford texture. These materials are perfect for the elegant bathroom scheme:
Knotted Hickory – The size and frequency of the knots in this hard wood influence how formal it looks. A satin trim on the window would match a hickory floor.
Carrara Marble – Polished crystallized limestone from this Italian city comes in many hues including blue, green, purple, and white.
Cherry – The vanity cabinetry could be made from the dark, hard wood of cherry trees, which belong to the rose family.
If you have a passion for texture, in the elegant bathroom design you should indulge in it. Choreograph the décor of your bathroom using a wealth of rich patterns and materials layered over different surfaces.
A stimulating variety of textures in the bathroom wakes up and delights the body, the eye, and the mind. The trick is to bring the smooth surfaces and the silkiness of water into harmony with a range of other complementary or contrasting textures. To help your imagination, these are broken up into categories of ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ here:
Soft Materials and Fabrics
Loop Cotton – Naturally absorbent cotton rugs come in a range of surface textures, including loop, cut-loop, and velvet. The may need a pad underneath for stability.
Polyester – A sturdy synthetic fiber, polyester is often blended with wool or cotton to increase the durability of rugs. Polyester is water-resistant and washable.
Elegant Bathroom Flooring
Ceramic Tile – Made of fired clay, ceramic tile comes in a range of shapes, colors, patterns, and sizes. Tile is installed with sanded grout, which also comes in various colors and increases traction.
Stone – Alabaster, granite, marble and slate are beautiful and traditional, but they can be slick. Tumbled, honed, and hewn finishes can help increase traction.
Cotton Twill – A tight diagonal weave makes twill a hardwearing and easy-care option for the bathroom.
Terry Cloth – The classic bathroom textile, cotton terry has a soft and highly absorbent uncut looped weave.
Linen – Woven from the fibers of the flax plant, linen is more absorbant and stronger than cotton. It has a pleasingly soothing touch.
Hard Furnishings and Fixtures
Wood – Whether painted or natural, sealed wood is a durable option for bathroom cabinetry and furniture.
Porcelain – The classic material for bathtubs, sinks, and toilets, nonporous ceramic adds sheen and is easy to clean.
Chrome – A hard metallic element that takes a high polish, chrome plating is used to prevent corrosion.
Elegant Bathroom Fixtures
Furnish your bathroom with handsome pieces. Transform a gracious piece of furniture into a vanity by hollowing out a spot for the sink and proper plumbing. Or if you need more counter space, look for a vanity with room for two that has distinctive furniture-like details. Finish off the look with attractive hardware.
Elegant Bathroom Lighting
Lighting will set the mood in your elegant bathroom design. Some bathrooms are equipped with large or numerous windows that flood their interiors with lots of daylight. If your bathroom isn’t quite so generous, try adding dramatic romantic lighting. Intriguing light fixtures draw attention and create luminous points of interest. They also give a space more presence.
Find bulbs that approximate the intensity and color of the light at your favorite time of day, and then use them with dimmers so that you can increase or decrease the level of light. Experiment by using bulbs of different wattages to create lighting contrast. Lower-watt bulbs produce a softer cast of light than brighter, high-wattage bulbs.
Be creative with the light fixtures. Just by changing the number of watts, the color, or the wash of light in a bathroom, you can create a variety of moods.
Elegant Bathroom Lighting Tips
- Try different lampshades for different qualities of light: colored silk softens and tints light; paper and linen provide a gentle, milky glow.
- Create a radiant atmosphere around the bathtub with candlelight hung low overhead and mixed with fairy lights at one side.
- Interject romance with an antique or reproduction chandelier.
- Candelabra on the floor, below the level of the face, cast light upward for a glamorous effect.
Finishing Touches on your Elegant Bathroom Design
These little tips will help you complete your recipe for elegance:
- Be decadent. Add plenty of mirrors, perhaps ones with ornate gold frames.
- Use antique crystal and silver perfume bottles, mix with contemporary containers and a silver vanity set.
- Faceted glass votive holders add sparkle to your bathroom’s warm glow.
- Framed artwork and soft light from a table lamp and draperies over the bathtub are all unexpected touches of elegance in the bathroom.
Final Elegant Bathroom Design Tip
Go Mad for Moldings! Every interior decorator knows that adding decorative molding and trim gives a bathroom a finished and polished look.
However, placing beautiful wood moldings in high humidity spots like bathrooms is usually avoided because heat and water can cause wood to decay.
Now there is a solution; Urethane millwork moldings are resistant to wood’s common problems such as decay, termites and sun damage.
Choose from more than 300 molding designs, including Neoclassical and a Victoria-inspired version.
Moldings can be used to great effect in the bathroom around windows, shower stalls and baths or as center rails to break up walls.
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