The hall bathroom in our old house was very… narrow. It was bland and uninspired. It also served as a guest bathroom and a kid’s bathroom, which is generally not a good combo, most especially where toilets are concerned. It needed a spruce-up in a big way, but it also needed to cost the least amount of money possible.
When I need a room to drastically change in my house, I have a go-to solution: very dark paint! The darker the better! I’ve always heard the standard advice of painting small or narrow spaces a white or a very light color so that it might appear bigger and more open, but my experience has led me to prefer the exact opposite. Darker wall colors are always more dramatic. They are always cozier. And they always make a drab and dull room become instantly more interesting!
This was the state of our bathroom before our budget bathroom makeover:
Isn’t it just about the very last place on earth you'd like to be? Haha. It was a hodge-podge of blandy blandness. Without being able to completely revamp the layout and structure of the entire bathroom, we needed to get creative.
The first thing to go were the light colored walls. We landed on a paint called ‘Pencil Point’ by Behr, which in different lights can feel like a dark gray or a navy. Next we removed the existing towel bar and the hand towel holder. I wanted to free up space by the mirror since it was the first thing you saw when you walked into the bathroom. I wanted something more than a dirty towel hanging there to catch my guest’s attention! After that, all the room needed was a few decorative items that would help create a depth to the space that it didn’t actually possess.
I added a large piece of art that I found at a thrift store and also some high contrast decorative pieces that would draw the eye to the sink and mirror to the left. The towel hooks created some texture and depth to the long flat wall to the right, making the room seem a little less like an empty shoebox.
We also added a high floating shelf way up above the towel hooks in order to give the room more layers of height. The last thing we needed to add was a bathroom rug that had lots of visual contrast to it as well so that it would break up the long, narrow floor space and give the room the feeling of two separate areas.
I’m also a big fan of countertop lamps in small or narrow bathrooms. The warm, contained light creates shadows that add to the depth illusion, and it also takes away any harsh, glaring overhead light that might expose too much of the space at once.
We were so happy with our bathroom makeover, and it was very budget friendly! If you have a small, drab space that needs some sprucing up, consider some dramatic paint, soft light, and an eye-catching decorative piece or two! It’s amazing what these things can do for a room that needs a bit of a budget-friendly facelift.
Project Cost Breakdown:
- Paint, 2 gallons – $70
- Painting tools/supplies – $40
- Thrifted art and tall vase- $40
- Bathroom Rug, from Target – $25
- Ikea Shelf – $15
- Total Cost: $190