The Secret Design Weapon Your Boring Bathroom Needs

published Aug 31, 2015
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(Image credit: Bethany Nauert)

For many of us, bathrooms are a blank slate. And sometimes a blank, boring slate. While color and pattern are great tools for adding interest, they’re not the only way to create a little excitement in a bathroom. This design element is often used in living rooms and bedrooms but in a bathroom it’s the design secret weapon you didn’t know your bathroom needed.

It’s texture!

Here’s how to transform your bathroom with texture:

Work with the texture you might already have

Though many people think about texture in terms of a textile or some woven fabric, tiles can be a great texture (particularly the smaller they are). And if you’ve got some tiles in your bathroom already, you might be able to really make the texture pop by doing what you can to highlight your existing tile. That could mean cleaning it really well so it shines. Choosing a complementary wall paint color for the wall that borders the tile. Or just choosing art that brings out the color of the tile. If you’ve got tile, you’ve already got some texture, so consider maximizing it.

Consider a DIY texture accent wall

Because the bathroom is (usually) a small space, you can do a lot more in a little bit of a space without having to spend a lot of money. There are ideas out there for DIY accent walls using wood and other materials — you could use one in your own bathroom to add texture to a whole surface.

(Image credit: Jacqueline Marque)

Consider your mirror’s frame

If you’ve decided to upgrade your existing bathroom mirror with a framed mirror that’s a little bit more visually substantial, take that opportunity to add texture, either with a store-bought textured frame or a frame you use a little DIY magic on.

Fluffy floor mats add texture

And of course, you can use the floor as a great surface for adding texture (even if your floor doesn’t come with an already great tile). Just go for ’70s and bohemian style floor mats and small rugs that really have a great, thick, varied texture. Natural fibers always have great textures, but remember many natural fibers don’t like getting wet.

(Image credit: Shay Spaniola)

Don’t forget about towels

Like shower curtains, towels can come in a whole array of colors and patterns. But they also come in lots of fun textures, too. Choose towels where texture is the most important aspect first, and you’ll find that placing them in key spots in your bathroom (or clustering them all folded or rolled in one spot) will definitely help add texture to your bathroom.

Go for textured or layered shower curtains rather than pattern or color

Though a bold color on a shower curtain is a way to add excitement (as is lots of pattern), if you want to bring more texture into your bathroom, don’t neglect this big surface area.

(Image credit: Lindsey Kay Averill)

Plants, baskets and other texture-y accessories work well in the bathroom, too

Of course, what works in other rooms — bringing in leafy plants, rough baskets and other great textures in small form — can transform a bathroom, as well, especially since this is usually a smaller room and will be affected by textured additions more. As with other rooms, go for big items or clusters of smaller items for the biggest visual impact.