Seeing Spots: The Bathroom

The downstairs bathroom is probably one of our most completed rooms at this point. The before wasn’t horrible, just very beige and sterile.

I knew that I could really have some fun in the space because it was so small. Coming up with the vision was easy -- Convincing demanding Josh to let me paint it cheetah print was the hard part. I mean, I can’t really blame him—he’s not exactly as enthusiastic about animal prints as I am.

I thought about wallpaper, but decided against it for the cost and the permanence (I’m considering remodeling the downstairs in a few years, I didn’t want to deal with all the stripping etc.) I had seen different bloggers using this stencil from Royal Designs stencils and loved the results. I’ve never stenciled a wall before, but figured I could give it a shot.

Painting small spaces, like the bathroom, can be tricky because there aren’t huge stretches of walls and you have to navigate around all the fixtures, etc. I painted the base coat with Sherwin Williams Alabaster White. The same white is carried throughout the other rooms of the house so it helps each room flow.

Once the base paint was dry, I got to work on stenciling. With my Mac Miller Pandora channel playing, I got started. After getting one sheet done, I realized this wasn’t going to be a day long project. It wasn’t hard, just time consuming. I spent probably 3 weekends at 6 hours a pop to complete the painting. I think it might be like childbirth—while I was doing it, it was terrible, but the end results were so worth it.

While the cheetah print is definitely the focal point, I knew the details were what would make the space feel fun and sophisticated and not safari themed. I wanted to add some character to the vanity, so I painted it a kelly green and added these druzy pulls from Anthropologie to up the glam factor.

I pulled the same green into the painting behind the toilet for repetition (I just love that print!) We switched up the light fixture to a more updated chrome and bubble glass fixture. I replaced the heavy wood mirror with a contemporary beveled edge. The lucite towel rack, toilet paper holder, and tray are modern and fun, but keep the cheetah print as the star. Also, a sucker for our new monogram, I was just looking for an excuse to order these customized hand towels from Etsy. Here are some pictures.


The finishing touch was the velvet curtain with geode tie back. I ended up making the tie back myself after scouring the internet for hours looking for a modern tie back (most of them were too traditional for the space). The curtain probably seems like a strange choice. The door is a pocket door and we knew before buying the house (our inspector was the best) that the door was likely going to jam. It did. We got a quote to fix it and it’s out of our price range right now (would have to knock down a wall to get it back on track, and again, if we remodel, that would be the first thing to go, so not worth spending the money there now). SO. The curtain was the next best thing. It works just fine for us now, especially with two full bathrooms upstairs.

In the end, I am so happy with the space. Everyone who comes over comments on how fun it is and it really does feel like a little surprise nestled in the back of the house. If you’re thinking about adding some interest to your space, I would definitely recommend checking out Royal Design stencils. You won’t believe how many styles they have! It’s definitely a time investment, but worth it.