Small Space - Big Impact Half Bath

Although I've done several changes over the years to our common areas in our townhome, one space that worked through it all was our half bath. Since it's adjacent to the living room and dining room, I had used the same accent color from those rooms in it from Ralph Lauren: Vintage Masters Lifestyle Collection: Aluminum. Before painting out the space, we had removed the builder installed ceramic towel bar. By doing this, it opened up the wall to add a statement to the wall. At first, I had simply made a grid of some abstract canvas art I spotted on clearance at West Elm. Since it was only $6 for the set of three, I had picked up three sets.

It worked for a while, but I did have an over sized b&w image of New York, I use to have up in my old apartment, and I really wanted to use it here in our townhome. I did try it up in the dining room, but I just wasn't feeling it. By a simple switch of removing the grid to use separately elsewhere in the townhouse, I was able to use the over sized image in the half bath.

I had spotted this image in a window display at The Gap in the mall where I worked. I went and asked them if after they removed it, could I have it and they said yes. When I went to pick it up, they gave me all three from their windows (yay! freebies!). Keeping in mind the thought of three, I thought this would be a way to frame the image since it was so large. I could have bought molding and cut it to size, but I didn't want to spend any money, so I re-used frames I already had in the garage.

Since the one image didn't fit exactly in the three frames, I planned to trim the edges, keeping the boarder the same in each frame. For the matting, I simply used the back of existing prints already in the frames. To unite the three finishes of the frames, I just sprayed them silver, which really made it pop off the aluminum grey walls. A simple shag rug from Pier One gave the space some texture. My mirrored accessories worked in the small space to give it a little sparkle & shine. I even got to use one of the three candle panels I had used in the dining room for holiday (back in 2008). I already added mirror tile squares to the panel, so it tied in with the mirror accessories.

To tie in the look with the rest of downstairs, I only had to switch towels or what I put in the corner vase: white flowers for Spring, faux palm fronds for Summer, branches with leaves for Fall and remove the leaves to switch for a few glittery snowflakes for holiday. Without any major reno, we had changed out the white plastic hardware to chrome (to match existing faucet) and switched out the Hollywood light bar for a simple small track. Yes, there are plenty of other upgrades or updates that could have been done in this space (or the other bathrooms), but these small changes worked and without costing much money or time to do.

Abstracts relocated from half bathroom...

... worked in other areas, but helped to use in the stairway
when de-personalizing to sell...

The B&W image of NYC also worked with the "Memory Wall" I had put up also back in 2007. I had found the two espresso window-pane frames on clearance at JCPenney. I printed architectural images from our honeymoon in Italy, and used two clocks above to show the two location times. Under the clocks I used some scrapbook letters saying "NYC" and "Rome". Another simple detail we had done when we first moved in was to change out all the door handles from brass knobs to nickle levers. All closet pulls and bathroom cabinet handles were also switched to nickle. Small changes that can make a big difference without spending a lot of money, especially in today's housing market.

Someone recently wrote and asked if I would and I am -  in the process of pulling together photos of the changes that have happened here through the years. Labeling and pulling together side-by-side shots is going to take a little time to do, but it will be a great way to reflect back on the years we've lived here, as well as share a few money or time saving ideas with you for your home. A representative from the relocation / moving company just surveyed our home and thinks we'll need 115 cartons for wall art alone, and two days to pack. I'm going to start a little "pre-packing" - like unload the attic and pack up holiday decor "strays", to have them staged in the garage.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Lynda, I have always admired your style and your neutral color pallet that allows changing the look with accent colors. Your color scheme inspired me to paint my walls with RL Urban Loft collection Natural Brown, Cobble Stone & Greenwich... all are in the gray/brown family, and go with everything!
    Are you going to use the same pallet that you have in FL in your new home in AZ, or are you looking for something different?

  2. Wow... Thanks Lisa! Sounds like a wonderful combo. I'd like for us to stay in the GRAY family of colors... Hubs & I both liked it so much (it was inspired from an image of a west coast cliff & ocean) ... And even though I don't think I'll be changing it "as much" out there, it will still remain versatile if I'm inspired for a change... plus it already works with our furnishings of black & espresso....

    Thanks for stopping by!
    xo Lynda

  3. I'm such a sucker for black and white! I love both the before and after! Good luck house hunting in AZ!!!



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