10 simple ways to make your bathroom decor more stylish

Bathroom looking a little tired? Try these tips for an instant refresh.
White bathroom with wooden elementsPhotography: Brigid Arnott / Styling: Lisa Hilton

Transforming your bathroom from ‘meh’ to ‘yeah!’ doesn’t have to involve an extensive renovation. With some styling know-how and intel on the latest bathroom decor and trends, a ho-hum space can become a source of pride. Read on as we offer ideas on how to give your bathroom a refresh and three style authorities reveal how to add flair to one of the most important rooms in your home.

How can I make my bathroom stylish?

Bathroom trends are constantly coming and going so choose a style that you feel good in. You might love the minimalistic timbers and calming tones of Japandi that can be seen in a recent renovation by Steph and Gian from The Block, or the more eclectic Urban Aunt style that recently gained traction on TikTok. Once you’ve found a look that speaks to you, make it your own. Avoid being matchy-matchy. For example, if you love the feeling of a country bathroom, don’t make every item look ‘country’. There might be some key elements like a rustic wooden stool or timber-framed mirror that evoke the feeling of being in the country but then add in other contrasting elements, like a modern lack bottle of hand wash. True style is achieved when you introduce elements that are a little unexpected.

How do you accessorise a bathroom on a budget?

Bathrooms don’t need many accessories, to be completely honest. As it gets wet and steamy in there you want to avoid having a whole lot of items that can get damaged or need to be dried. Keep it simple and work within your budget. You might source a simple glass vase and fill it with flowers from your garden. Or choose a beautiful bottle of hand wash at the supermarket to elevate the space. Even just switching on old towel for a fresh new hand towel can make a world of difference. For more easy ideas, read on.

(Photography: Simon Whitbread / Styling: Ashley Pratt )

1. Clear out the clutter

Before you begin curating, get your bathroom organised. “There is nothing that distracts from a beautiful bathroom more than clutter!” says Catherine Heraghty of interior design and styling studio, The Stables. “Ensure you have sufficient storage for all of your bits and pieces that you don’t want on display … then focus on adding the styling elements.”

2. Elevate your towels

Replace your faded, limp towels with fresh new styles for an instant bathroom facelift. “They don’t have to be matching, but keep them within the same colour family for a cohesive look,” interior stylist and product designer Fiona Gould explains. Soft styles with a textured weave or fringing are a must-have. “I particularly love towels with tassels for that extra special detail when hung from the rail,” she says.

Country style bathroom with wooden mirror
(Photography: Brigid Arnott / Styling: Lisa Hilton)

3. Introduce curves

Bathrooms are filled with hard surfaces and straight lines, so Fiona proposes bringing in some curviness to help balance and soften the space. “Think along the lines of adding a round mirror or a shapely basin, round sconces and floor mats, or even door pulls and drawer hardware with a circular shape.”

4. Hang artworks

“Art isn’t normally something people think of when decorating their bathroom, but the right piece can look at home on a bare wall, bringing some colour and personality to the room,” says Fiona. Artworks and moisture aren’t great companions, so choose inexpensive pieces and canvas prints.

5. Go for greenery

Plants are a home decorating staple, especially in humid areas such as the bathroom. “They inject such a beautiful sense of freshness,” Fiona muses, listing devil’s ivy and cacti as her top picks. “Sit them on a windowsill or vanity, add a large pot in the corner or hang one from the ceiling,” she says. Catherine adds: “Do your research and find greenery that thrives in damp, indoor conditions and ensure they are in a beautiful pot or vase. We can’t resist a good trailing plant, such as a pothos.”

Rustic bathroom with freestanding tub and plant on stool
(Photography: Warren Heath)

6. Upgrade your floormat

There’s a major trend washing over bathrooms, and it’s all happening underfoot. “My favourite bathroom styling trick at the moment is using a vintage doormat as a bath mat to bring much-needed character to the space,” says Fiona. Look for worn-in Turkish and Persian rugs that match the scale of your bathroom. Runners are a perfect match for a long double vanity.

7. Style with timber

Timber tones can combat the coldness associated with the bathroom’s hard, reflective surfaces. “Introduce some warmth with timber styling elements, such as an oak timber tray to pop your hand wash and plant life on,” Catherine offers.

8. Place pretty products

“Create a focal point of styling elements on your vanity to make the space feel addressed and considered,” says Catherine. Start with a beautiful hand wash and moisturiser and then add a vase of flowers. These are the types if things guests always notice. Catherine recommends the Australian hand and body brand al.ive body for its range of eco-friendly products packaged in on-trend colours.

Bathroom Lighting Wall Lights Photography by Anson Smart for Greg Natale
(Photography: Anson Smart / Designer: Greg Natale)

9. Add a spot to sit

If space permits, adding a compact chest of drawers or a statement cabinet will enhance the function of a storage-starved bathroom, while a chair can imbue a new sense of purpose and repose. “Some of the most beautiful bathrooms I’ve enjoyed around the world have included seating spaces, like an armchair or a window seat,” says Sarah Andrews, a stylist known for creating breathtaking holiday homes.

10. Use a stool

Nestled up to a freestanding bathtub, a stool or side table offers a dual purpose. “It can be a beautiful addition, both to style and to use,” offers Sarah. Fiona suggests adding a candle, greenery and pretty bath salts or a selection of soaps to create a lush spa-worthy vignette.

Bathroom Lighting Pendant Above Bath Photography by Anson Smart for Greg Natale (3)
(Photography: Anson Smart / Designer: Greg Natale)

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