As someone who loves luxury, you try to incorporate its essence into all aspects of your life. NYC is the spot for fashion and hot trends. So, naturally, your lifestyle will follow. But what do you do when you live in an apartment with a drab bathroom? You've designed every area of your space to fit your tastes, but the bathroom may leave you scratching your head. And if your landlord doesn't allow major renovations, you may feel like you'll be staring at dingy porcelain and fluorescent lighting forever.
In actuality, you have many options available. So don't let go of your dreams of a luxurious bathroom. Check out these five pieces of advice on how to liven up your bathroom and feel like you're living large.
1. Experiment With Color
Color speaks to your personality — your inner thoughts and feelings. The color scheme you choose for your bathroom will dictate the atmosphere it exudes. Do you want to be energized in the mornings with an orange glow or soothed during nighttime baths with a light blue scene? It all depends on your desires. Keep in mind how the color scheme will make your guests feel, too.
If you want your bathroom to feel open and spacious, stick with light color schemes. Dark hues can box a room in and make it feel smaller than it already is. If your landlord allows it, paint the walls a lively shade or paint a single accent wall. If you can't use paint, introduce color in other ways. Try bringing some decorations into the bathroom and coordinate them with your bath, hand and face towels.
2. Change Up the Lighting
Good lighting is another excellent way to create an illusion of space. You should preferably have two lights on either side of your mirror and one above. Most bathrooms already have the vanity light, but if you need two more, you can place small, stylish lamps on both sides of your sink. Match all three light sources by switching out the vanity bulb to match the bulbs of the new lights. If you favor something grander, you can hang up a chandelier if possible.
You can also change the vanity sconces and store the old ones away until you move out.
3. Add Cabinetry and Shelves
Create storage space and keep the luxurious look and feel of your bathroom by adding floating shelves. They free up room on your floor for more storage or other decorative elements, plus they look elegant and minimalistic.
Replace knobs on existing cabinets with ones that match your revamped aesthetic. Make sure they still coordinate with the style of the wood, though. You don't want to create a color scheme like lime green knobs with dark mahogany cabinets. But do try out unique options for knobs and door pulls, such as glass or leather.
If your bathroom is large enough, you can add an extra cabinet for more storage. Custom-made cabinets cost more, so buy a stock cabinet if you're saving money. Shallow cabinets are best for preserving space.
4. Include Artwork
Artwork in the bathroom isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but if done right, it can enhance the room's atmosphere greatly. A durable glass will protect any paintings you hang up, but you must ensure the frame is properly sealed so water doesn't sneak in. A good glass covering keeps your artwork dry while avoiding contact with the paint. You can also try canvases instead of framed art.
The simplest alternative, however, is sculpture. Elegant metal or wooden figurines and statues fit nicely into any luxury bathroom. The medium you choose is essential, though. You want to make your bathroom feel comfortable and homey, since you spend a decent amount of time here.
5. Add Wallpaper and Shower Curtains
Put wallpaper up to add striking designs to your bathroom. Use temporary or peel and stick wallpaper — these leave no mess behind and come off easily when it's time to move. Want more exciting tiles but can't remove them? You can also use this wallpaper on the floor to create attractive flooring.
If you can't put up wallpaper, make your shower curtain the accent piece of your bathroom. It's one of the first and largest things you see when you walk in, so create a view worth remembering.
Enjoy the Finer Things in Life
Bring the luxury of NYC into your apartment without the hustle and bustle of the streets and subways. Wind down from the day's events in your dream bathroom by creating a stylish source of relaxation.
Holly Welles is a real estate blogger covering design, finance and market trends for apartment dwellers. You can find more of her work on her blog, The Estate Update.