Anatomy of a room

At M.Swabb Decor + Style we love doing everything from entire house remodels to the finishing touches on last minute rooms. In fact, sometimes it's those last few accessories that can be the most challenging for a client, whether it's a bedroom, bathroom, or lounge area. When changing the style of a room in your house, it's important to know how far you want to take it. This of course depends largely on your budget, but there are a few easy ways to refresh a room without breaking the bank. One of our favorite remodels we did was this bathroom at a beautiful house in North County, San Diego. In this case, the bathroom was a complete remodel, but you can see how a few finishing touches can change the whole feel of the room.

A. You don't have to update such expensive things like countertops, sinks, and vanities, but it will make a huge difference in your bathroom to change out fittings and hardware to more modern and streamlined versions, like this beautiful rainfall shower head from Signature Hardware or their Rotunda bathroom faucet and handles.

Another easy hardware update that can really change the feel of the room is your towel rack. Throw out your Mad Men 50s one and start impressing your guests with a modern multi-rack one or really push the boat out and treat yourself to a heated towel warmer. Your guests will never want to leave (on second thought, maybe don't do this...)!

(from The Bath Outlet)

B. As you can see in our bathroom above, we went with a modern rectangular tile in shades of grey, silver, and white in keeping with the contemporary chrome of the hardware. Tile can have a big impact on whether your bathroom is brought into the modern world or left behind in the past with Blockbuster and dial-up internet connections, so make sure it's an area you really spend time on.

C. My favorite part of this bathroom is the lighting, because we really made a statement here, but we still kept it simple. Lighting is a huge part of a bathroom, so it's a good place to spend your money and put a lot of thought into. Would this bathroom have looked as good without updated lighting? Sure! But does the lighting just push it into a whole new level of gorgeousness? Heck yes! How about these beautiful pendant lights from Lightology?

D. A lot of people forget about one of the most important things in the bathroom – the mirror! You don't have to keep your same old mirror, nor do you have to stick to a standard rectangular one. A great way to play into the theme of your bathroom, whether it be rustic, modern, or industrial, is finding a mirror that reflects (how about that pun?) this theme! A statement-making mirror like this one from Pottery Barn Kids can take a dull, uninspired bathroom to a whole new level.

E. Bath towels, wash towels, and hand towels – crisp clean ones or patterned to complement your tile. You can save money here or go luxurious!

F. Hand soap! Simple right? But using a beautiful hand soap and lotion can really finish off the look of a bathroom and let friends know that you've got your life together! You're a person who has nice soap! And who doesn't love Savon de Marseille's line? We know Gwyneth Paltrow does!

G. Okay, we can't stress enough just how much we love layering plant life in homes. Adding a living thing to your room (literally) brings it life and vitality! And an orchid just automatically makes you feel like you're living in the pages of House Beautiful. Kill every plant you so much as look at? No excuse! There are great low maintenance options out there like air plants or bamboo.

F. Finally, there are just those little accessories that add depth to a room, and each room's accessories will be different. Here we included a beautiful wooden sink tray, which added a layer of warmth to the modern chrome and glass of this bathroom. Our favorite word at M.Swabb is layering, and whether you're renovating your house from start to finish or hours away from hosting the biggest party of your social career, “layering” will be your go-to word! Layer elements A through F together and watch your bathroom join you in the 21st century.

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