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How to Decorate a Half Bath or Bathroom

Updated on June 4, 2012
Powder room with lilac wallpaper. You can copy this look with a stencil.
Powder room with lilac wallpaper. You can copy this look with a stencil. | Source
Make cheap half bath decorations by framing your arty photos, greeting cards or calendar art.
Make cheap half bath decorations by framing your arty photos, greeting cards or calendar art. | Source


Redecorating a half bath or powder room can be a great way to start renewing your entire home. Since the half bath is small, you can do the job quickly and inexpensively.

Here are a few tips for decorating your powder room on a budget.

1. Paint the Powder Room

Painting is one of the cheapest ways to update a room’s style and help it feel fresh. For powder rooms, it’s best to use a semi-glossy paint that can be easily cleaned. Also choose a paint that resists mold.

What color should you paint the bathroom? Light colors can help make a small room appear more spacious. On the other hand, darker colors such as burgundy, dusky rose, mustard and plum can be very attractive if the lighting’s right. The options are endless.

Tips:

  • Look at a feng shui map. It will suggest a color for each area of your home.
  • Use wall stencils or a sea sponge to get special effects.

2. Deck the Walls

Small powder room walls can be decorated easily. A thrift shop might have just what you need. For example, you could repaint an old spice rack and use it to display vintage perfume bottles or pretty soaps and lotions.

You can also find or make art for little money. Buy picture frames at a thrift shop and paint them if needed. To fill the frames, add your own creative black & white photos, your kids' artwork, or pictures from greeting cards and calendars.

3. Use Good-Looking Bathroom Fixtures

Since powder rooms are open to guests, they’re typically more elegant than the other bathrooms in a home. Show your guests a bit of class by installing a few attractive elements. Of all the things you’ll add to decorate the powder room, probably the faucet and the mirror should be the most costly. You might be able to find very cheap yet attractive vintage lighting, mirrors and other basics at a thrift store or on eBay.

Unique lightswitch covers can also make a big difference. These only cost a bit more than standard plastic covers and add instant character.

Tip: You can get a coupon for home redecorating items at Home Depot. Just pick up an address change packet from the post office. Mhm :-).

Stained glass window film. It's repositionable and easy to apply. Cut it to any shape! $19 through the Amazon link.
Stained glass window film. It's repositionable and easy to apply. Cut it to any shape! $19 through the Amazon link.

4. Provide Light from the Sides

Place a soft light, possibly with a pink or amber hue, at either side of the bathroom mirror. Bright lights from above can create shadows and unflattering glare. Use low-watt bulbs and add a dimmer switch if possible.

5. Hide from the Neighbors

Hang blinds or airy drapes to cover your bathroom window. You could also apply a faux stained glass adhesive. This repositionable contact paper looks remarkably good! It's available in a variety of designs and can be trimmed for different window dimensions.

6. Decorate with Linens

Tie together your half bath redecoration with coordinated towels and a bath mat. You can get great deals on these at stores like Ross and TJ Maxx.

Candles add color and a fresh scent to half baths
Candles add color and a fresh scent to half baths

7. Finish with Candles

Scented candles help keep air fresh while adding aesthetic appeal to a powder room. Obviously, candles should be used away from towels and other flammable items.

Tip: You can redecorate your bathroom inexpensively with pretty candle holders from a dollar store.

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    • SantaCruz profile imageAUTHOR

      SantaCruz 

      6 years ago from Santa Cruz, CA

      Ionizer, sorry we can't offer specific decorating advice without seeing your bathroom... Don't tell me you've tried all the tips here ;-).

    • Ionizer2012 profile image

      Ionizer2012 

      6 years ago from Kirkland, WA

      Seems so easy, but why does my bathroom still look uninspired?

    • SantaCruz profile imageAUTHOR

      SantaCruz 

      6 years ago from Santa Cruz, CA

      Definitely! And I can think of two other fun ways to make candles with kids. One is to use a sand mold on the beach (or in a sandbox). Use a bucket, bowl or whatever to scoop a hole in the desired shape and then pour wax in.

      The other way makes candlesticks. You just keep dipping a wick into wax to build up a candle. Obviously, be sure that the little kid is protected from hot wax.

      Probably though, the ones you make with container molds will look best :).

    • EyesStraightAhead profile image

      Shell Vera 

      6 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      I will check out the hub on making my own candles. I have a four-year-old who is very crafty, so that would be a fun project to do together.

    • Deco-Ambientes profile image

      Deco-Ambientes 

      6 years ago

      Great hub!, love the pics.Greetings from Argentina.

    • SantaCruz profile imageAUTHOR

      SantaCruz 

      6 years ago from Santa Cruz, CA

      Thanks for the comment, Eyes! Agreed, the sock monkeys are pretty darn cute. Nautical themes can also work well in bathrooms.

      Candles are a great way to add color & essential oil fragrances :). I don't know how much PartyLite candles cost. If you're at all crafty I'd try making them yourself! I posted a hub about making them with Pringles canisters. Lots of stuff that goes into the recycling bin can be used as candle molds.

    • EyesStraightAhead profile image

      Shell Vera 

      6 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      Wonderful! I love this hub. I especially love the Sock Monkey bathroom. How fun! I am looking to redo my bathroom in about a month and will definitely be referring to this. In the meantime, it may be time for a PartyLite party at my home, as the candle idea was a great "cheap" alternative to redoing everything.

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