Country Bathroom Ideas

Modern country bathroom ideas for a cosy, rustic retreat

From clawfoot tubs to luxe layering, an expert shares her insider tips on styling a contemporary haven.
Modern country bathroom with clawfoot bathtub and vintage style curtains.Photography: Elle May Watson

With interior design embracing a more natural aesthetic, it’s no wonder modern country bathrooms are taking over with their use of organic materials, vintage accents and earthy tones, blending the best of contemporary design with classic country charm.

While country bathrooms can have a timeless appeal, it’s all too easy to overdecorate with rustic pieces, making the style look unpolished rather than carefully curated. Expert designer and stylist Fiona Gould of House of Rohl, shares her tips on creating the perfect modern country bathroom while avoiding common styling pitfalls.

1. Use vintage furniture in your bathroom for a charming feel

Vintage furniture is often the special touch that gives country bathrooms their cosy, worn-in vibe, but it can take time and patience to find the right pieces to balance both old and new.

“Pulling off a look like this is often a matter of slow curation. Spend time looking for the perfect vintage pieces to pair with more modern forms for a really unique eclectic mix,” Fiona says.

“A vintage milking stool next to a bath, a twisted rope mirror, interesting wall sconces, an upcycled wall shelf, a vintage rug – it’s these special details that make a farmhouse bathroom feel authentic.”

All white bathroom in a cottage with a claw foot cast iron tub.
A cast-iron tub along with a white vintage vanity is a chic addition to this modern rustic cottage just outside of Melbourne. (Photographer: Derek Swalwell. Styling: Jo McComiskey)

2. Choose earthy tones as your bathroom’s base colour

As we say goodbye to grey and white colour schemes, a wave of earthy tones has become the neutral base for modern country bathrooms, using browns and pinks inspired by nature for a soothing atmosphere.

“Think varying shades of brown as the core palette with pops of dusty pink, black and blue or green if you prefer a little more colour,” Fiona says. “Modern country farmhouse spaces are all about celebrating classic charm while still feeling fresh.”

Modern country style wooden basin and sink.
Warm neutrals paired with timber accents create a soft contrast without overwhelming the space. (Photography: Elle May Watson)

3. Add timber to your bathroom – but sparingly

Opting for a natural material palette is a given for country-style bathrooms with timber an enduring choice that always stays in style. But Fiona suggests going easy on wood tones for a modern update to avoid your bathroom looking too rustic.

“Aim for only one timber element in the bathroom and steer clear of anything with too much of an urban industrial vibe. Instead, look for vintage pieces with a slightly more elegant feel,” Fiona says.

Hero pieces such as a timber vanity creates an interesting focal point that when paired with other luxe details gives a fresh feel to the country look while keeping things grounded.

Freestanding bathtub in country homestead owned by Edwina Bartholomew
For a subtle take, use painted timber to match a contemporary neutral colour scheme. (Photography: Marnie Hawson. Styling: Hannah Brady)

4. Tap into brass bathroom fixtures

Brass is by far the go-to finish in bathrooms, fitting almost any design scheme, mixing durability with elegance in both brushed and polished brass. To get a more country feel, Fiona recommends going for ‘living’ brass, where the metal is unlacquered so it patinas over time for a naturally aged finish.

“Taps and fixtures with a ‘living’ brass finish is a must. The finish will develop a unique patina as it reacts with the environment and daily use – perfect for a vintage look. Also, look for forms with a classic charm. The Georgian Collection from Perrin & Rowe is a good example,” Fiona says.

But like timber, it’s easy to go overboard with patinaed brass fixtures.

“Stick to just one or two moments of aged patina in the bathroom to avoid stepping into too much of a rustic look. I like to keep the focus on brass tapware and hardware with a patina as it allows you to have cohesive pops of it throughout the space.”

country style bathroom with brass tapware
Faucet Strommen ‘Cascade’ tapware from Bathroom Collective adds a hard-wearing, vintage feel. (Photography: Simon Whitbread. Styling: Heliconia)

5. Add texture and layering to your bathroom

Textures and layering are having a major moment in bathrooms, particularly in white neutral schemes that can feel flat without added dimension and depth.

“Venetian plaster walls are having a huge moment and are perfect for this look,” Fiona says. “Layered bathrooms are also on the rise. Think vintage rugs as floor mats, wall art, shelves displaying ceramics, and small furniture like stools and armchairs making more of an appearance.”

Modern country bathroom with wooden basin and clawfoot bathtub.
A few carefully chosen art pieces are an easy way to add texture and colour to modern farmhouse bathrooms. (Photography: Elle May Watson)

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