An oft-overlooked space in the home, your bathroom deserves an inspired redesign to ring in the new year. If 2018 was about using bold color palettes to add an edge to your space, 2019 is about finding balance. Design experts alike are thinking ahead about how color can reflect and impact the way we live.
As our daily lives become more immersed in the digital realm, design trends tend towards either electric shades that mimic this engagement, or those that allow us to escape from it, acting as a grounding reminder of life beyond the screen. Earthy tones are mindful and allow a more nature-based approach to design, while vibrant, eclectic colors are playful and invigorating.
No matter your mood or lifestyle, take this dichotomy as a cue to give your bathroom a refresh with some of the new year’s best hues.
For this trend, think early morning fog or the color of Paris in the rain. Misty, soft blues are calming and encourage feelings of serenity, allowing you to transform your bathroom into a space that promotes tranquility. Select hues along the gray spectrum to keep it cool, or add hints of purple to produce a digitally-inspired glow. You can also bypass paint entirely and evoke the look with concrete design details, like sink basins, instead.
Take a cue from Pantone’s Color of the Year for 2019 and paint your bathroom in Living Coral. Warm but lively, coral tones are chameleons of the color scale, invoking different moods depending on how they’re used. Evocative of the sublimity of deep-sea coral reefs, the shade is dynamic and invites lightheartedness. If you’re not ready to take the plunge with painted walls, introduce splashes of coral through design details like textiles or reimagined tilework—coral lives harmoniously with more neutral tones like sand or olive.
If it’s serenity you seek, neutral shades of cloud white, cream, and sand bring a quiet calmness to any bathroom. Far from boring, neutrals are ideal for reinvigorating neglected bathrooms, bringing a sense of freshness to the space.
Complement cream tones with organic textures like woven baskets and plants, and install copper hardware for a minimal, industrial aesthetic. Cream and white shades are often chosen for their simplicity as well as their ability to play well with other colors—don’t hesitate to use this opportunity to introduce small design elements in bolder, brighter shades.
An easy way to bring the feeling of the outdoors in, shades of forest green and emerald add an element of high drama to neglected bathroom walls. Without going overly arboreal, deep green shades are moody and elegant, pairing well with the porcelain details of sinks and bathtubs. Speaking to urban sophistication while staying rooted in nature, the shade is endlessly versatile, working well as a wall color or as an accent shade.
Your bathroom becomes a space for creative expression with the use of pastels like lavender or dusty mauve. Nothing says “it’s time for a change” like color employed in an unexpected way, and pastels have the ability to feel fresh and timeless at once. Used alongside neutral detailing like cream textiles or sleek, modern hardware, pastel hues can feel contemporary and polished.
Inspired by the desert, baked clay pottery, and well-worn leather, earthy shades of terra-cotta speak to those with naturalist tendencies. The hue plays well with mid-century modern design styles, as well as Southwestern elements like chevron-patterned detailing. Refined and warm, terra-cotta makes a handsome pairing with shades like sage green or dusty blue.
Let your bathroom lead the way into a new, exciting year full of inspired design and transformed spaces. Keep rooted and grounded with earthy tones or dip into the unknown with unexpected washes of color—either way, you won’t be looking back.
Previously published in Sotheby’s International Realty
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