Before and After: This Bath Has a Smart Alternative to Expensive Marble Tile

This powder room was described by the homeowner as “pretty much the smallest bathroom I have ever come across,” and this photo makes it look like at least half of it was taken up with various pipes. How does one go about making big changes in such a small space?

Here’s the full-length view, which reveals that the bathroom has its own window, which is a major plus in a small powder room. The giant mirror helps the space feel larger, but it might overwhelm the space a bit. And while pipes are just a part of life in bathrooms, the fact that the vanity legs are basically made of pipes is a little busy. But that sink has a fun futuristic flair, the oversize basket is a smart way to add storage, and that’s a pretty paint color.

But now the powder room looks so amazing! This renovation was created by Erica Van Slyke of Designing Vibes with a bit of help from her husband, who built the floating vanity. That vanity is wonderful! It’s like a satisfyingly thick shelf, a nice change from the more furniture-like vanities that we often see.

The black, white, gold, and wood/wicker palette is timeless, and it works especially well in such a small space. If Erica ever wants to add more color, the baskets, mirror, and plant pot can be easily swapped out, and a colorful hand towel and work of art could be added. In the meantime, this is beautiful simplicity. The “Carrara marble” wallpaper evokes classic bathroom tiles (for a lot less $$), while the faucet and light fixture add just the right amount of glitz to the petite space.

But the glam doesn’t stop there—look at this beautiful pipe! Here’s the backstory:

In terms of the exposed plumbing, I was determined to use a bottle trap versus the standard P-trap as I felt the bottle trap looked more modern. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any affordable options in gold . . . So, I purchased a cheap chrome variety (which you can buy here) and spray painted it gold.

That bottle trap (so glad to finally learn the right term!) looks like it costs a fortune—I never would have guessed that it was only $22.99 + a can of spray paint.

This photo reveals that there are two storage baskets, perhaps one for extra toilet paper and one for hand towels and/or other essentials. Whatever they contain, they look great. Continuing the wallpaper down to the floor was also a good design choice, as it emphasizes the verticality of the room.

All in all, this DIY makeover is highly successful, modern, and inviting. It makes the most of the limited space, and turns a totally utilitarian room into a place of beauty.

Thank you, Erica Van Slyke and Designing Vibes!

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