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Before & After: A Small Suburban Bathroom Goes from Taupe to Timeless

updated May 3, 2019
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(Image credit: Diana Liang)

After living in New York for 11 years, Diana Marsh was ready to move back to her home state of Michigan and design a beautiful nest. As the proprietor of the downtown Ann Arbor store Thistle and Bess, Diana stocks up and offers one-of-a-kind treasures for those seeking a luxurious lifestyle. And not surprisingly, she was looking to create a luxurious lifestyle in the 1890s house she bought. A fan of history and elegant English estates, the house’s architecture was right up her design alley. The taupe bathroom was not.

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(Image credit: Diana Liang)

The transformation of this small space is nothing short of stunning. The taupe walls are gone, instead replaced with a classic toile wallpaper pattern, with a twist:

“I have admired this wallpaper by Flavor Paper for years. It is screen printed in my old neighborhood in Brooklyn. After a long renovation process, I thought I was going to have to hold off on some design elements, like wallpaper, and add them later. In the end, I ended up splurging and installing this wallpaper now. It is one of my favorite parts of the house. From afar it looks like traditional French toile, but upon a closer look, you find scenes of Brooklyn, including The Notorious B.I.G. and Nathan’s Famous Coney Island.” says homeowner Diana.

The bathroom’s dark slate-like tiles were replaced with a black and white mosaic tile pattern that mimics a vintage look. The dated shower tiles were replaced with classic white subway tiles with a thin, elegant black trim.

(Image credit: Diana Liang)

Diana was able to really up the elegance of the space by adding a lot of brass metallic finishes. Gone are the standard stainless steel shower fixtures; Diana replaced them with sophisticated brass ones. She also updated the vanity area and added a vintage-style brass pivot mirror and extending wall-mounted brass shaving mirror, both of which add to the classic look.

Though no major walls were knocked down or any large element moved, the whole room has a completely new look. It’s brighter, more polished and most of all, has a timeless style that will look great for years.

Thank you, Diana!