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RISMEDIA, February 4, 2010—With a few clever tricks and relying on some tried-and-true decorating secrets from the Creative Ideas design team, these homeowners turned their second full bath into a modern, family-friendly retreat. Now, the charming space can easily accommodate their two children and guests.

To achieve maximum impact on a minimal budget, follow this young couple’s lead: Tackle the big problems first, save where you can and limit yourself to one splurge.

Challenge #1
The black-and-white color scheme and tiled walls did not reflect the family’s personality. They wanted a cozier, more natural overall look and feel.
Solution: The new tortoiseshell-inspired color palette of earthy brown, linen and white transforms this into a casual, yet sophisticated room.

Challenge #2
Before, the large vanity was the room’s focal point and made the space feel cramped. With an existing linen closet already in the bath, the family didn’t need the vanity’s storage area.
Solution: Replacing the vanity with a pedestal sink increases floor space and makes the room look larger.

Easy Budget Ideas
Warm the Walls

To add a cottage detail to the room, the homeowners installed pine wood paneling on the walls. To save money, they covered the wall’s existing tile rather than removing it.

Tailored Look
To customize the space, the couple framed the walls with crown and base moulding. They also added a moulding ledge above the pine paneling.

Power of Paint
For maximum impact with minimum cost, use paint to update a space. Here, the dark brown warms up the room.

Natural Fabric
Two linen curtain panels were chosen instead of a traditional shower curtain. Paired with a simple plastic shower liner, the curtains frame the bathtub and contrast with the dark walls.

Finishing Touches
Rustic accents, including the bamboo shades, wooden mirror and shelf, mix well with classic elements, such as the tall faucet and vanity light, to give the bath a blended look.

Easy Organizing
To tame an unruly linen closet, the couple organizes storage with woven baskets.

Challenge #3
The homeowners craved something more unique than the existing black-and-white tiled floor, but they still wanted to keep the look clean.
The Solution: Distinctive glass pebble flooring became the perfect solution. The tile, inspired by white river rock, continues the natural feel of the room. RE

Visit for step-by-step instructions and an illustration on covering the wall tile with pine paneling and adding the moulding ledge.

© Lowe’s Creative Ideas magazine.