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My Spa-Like Bathroom Reveal

This month’s A Year of Details challenge has been to create a spa-like feeling in your bathroom. I’m so excited to share with you what I have done to turn my boring and cold bathroom into a pampering paradise.

First let me show you a few before pictures of our family bathroom. This room is floor to ceiling tiles and that fact has always left me feeling stuck in terms of decorating. Without tearing out the tiles I felt like I couldn’t make much of an impact. I couldn’t add a wall of paint or hang beautiful art work on the walls. Without these options, I unwittingly chose to ignore this room and simply used it as a utilitarian space. Because of this I NEVER took baths, which is something I actually love to do. The room in its previous state simply didn’t inspire relaxation and pampering.


Drum roll, please……….Ta-Da!


I challenged myself this month to push past my feeling of being stuck and think about what I could do to change the atmosphere in here. I’m so happy with the results. My feeling entering this room has completely changed. I have already had my first (hour-long!) soak in the tub and it was pure bliss.

Here’s my formula for creating a spa-like feeling in your bathroom at home…

Remove Clutter

One of the most important parts of my transformation was removing all clutter. I decluttered all my towels and cleared out and decluttered both of my storage cupboards. I was able to make room for nearly everything that had previously been sitting out on the windowsill and the near the bathtub inside the cupboards. Then I decided that the only things that would be on display had to be attractively presented.

Using these dispensers in the shower has been a game changer for the feel of the bathroom. We previously had all types of bottles of shampoos, body washes, etc. and it looked like a mess. Limiting myself to these two bottles (plus just two more discreetly residing in the corners on the bottom of the shower) has made a world of difference to the look and feel of this room.

Mix in Nature

I have plants all over my home so it’s a bit strange that I didn’t add any to this bathroom sooner. As I said before, I felt blocked and simply ignored this room. Well I’ve now added four plants in here and it has it made a huge difference. Spider plants do extremely well in bathrooms, as do ferns, orchids and snake plants. The green is a wonderful contrast to the tile.

Surround Yourself With Softness

Speaking of contrasting the hard and cold tiles, adding in soft textiles has created a cozy ambience. There are now two layered bathmats in cream and charcoal (found here and here). The rectangle matt was the inspiration for the look of the room.

This image from HK Living was my inspiration.

Add Wood

The third matt in front of the shower is teak. It has the look of a spa matt and the wood is yet another warming addition to break up the cold tiles on the floor and walls. In addition to the teak matt, I added a wooden bath tray, and a ladder towel rack and hamper, and a small wooden holder for toothpaste. They all compliment the wood cupboard that was already in the bathroom. I had considered replacing this old Ikea linen cabinet, but found that it actually worked just fine and fit seamlessly into my new design scheme.

Don’t Forget Calming Scents

I love to use essential oils in the bath water or diffuse a stress-free blend while I’m doing beauty treatments. Scented candles are also favorites, not only to burn but they have such a calming affect even to look at so I have included multiple decorative candles into my design.

Prepare for Pampering:

The pampering caddy is perhaps my favorite addition to the room. I have filled, but not cluttered, it with all my beloved products for bathing including sea salts, face masks and foaming bath milk. The handle on top makes it extremely convenient to move around. I was afraid it might get in the way if I left it next tho the bath and shower. So far it hasn’t, but I can always move it if it does. And when I take a bath I can move it right next to where I’m sitting for easy access to all my treats.

Display Art 

Art is a wonderful way to personalize a bathroom and make it feel less utilitarian and sterile. Decluttering the top of my linen cupboard and the windowsill led me to seeing new spaces to display artwork. Art doesn’t have to be hung on the walls. Look for spaces for frames or canvases to lean – no nails necessary.

Lighting & Dimmer Switches

We all need bright and crisp light in the bathroom for seeing ourselves properly in the mirror, but we also want to turn those lights down and soften the atmosphere when it’s time for pampering and a long hot soak in the tub. A dimmer switch is ideal, but if that’s not an option consider alternatives. Candles create soft lighting and so do lamps. Typical of German bathrooms, mine only has one outlet so plugging in a lamp isn’t easy. I have this portable LED battery lamp from Kartell which I bring in during a bath and set it on my wooden tray. It creates the most beautiful soft lighting.

I hope my bathroom transformation has given you a little inspiration. This project has re-ignited my belief that it’s all in the details (just like my blog is called!). Even a boring bathroom with floor to ceiling tiles can be transformed into a spa-like retreat with the right accessories and the perfect combination of design elements.

I’ll see you back here next month for the June Year of Details Challenge: Outside Spaces!



Comments: 2

  • Claire

    May 19, 2020

    Nicole this is my favourite of all your posts. I just love how your bathroom has turned out 🙂

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