There are a lot of factors that go into deciding what direction to take a major remodel, especially in a bathroom. Bathrooms, along with kitchens, are the most important design spaces in the home – they’re the most used, and have the most permanent fixtures (so the distinct design will stay even after you’ve moved out your stuff). So, if you have a very architecturally distinct home, choosing a bathroom decor and especially a bathroom vanity that matches it is incredibly important to the overall look and feel of your home. But with so many bathroom vanities out there to choose from, what’s the best way to go about finding one that fits?
Really, that depends a lot on what kind of home you have. Some styles are more obvious – and, therefore, easier to match – than others. Ranch or cabin style homes that strongly feature natural wood both inside and out demand rustic bathroom vanities to match. Most large bathroom fixtures (i.e. bathtubs, showers, and toilets) are typically fairly decor-neutral, so distinctive bathroom vanities are especially important in setting the overall mood of the space. In this case, something like this Burlington Vanity from Sierra Copper has a perfect rough, unfinished look to match a rustic interior, and give your bathroom a rugged feel without taking away any modern conveniences.
Cape cod style homes or older cottage style homes are another perfect example. As ranch and cabin homes use wood on every available inch, country cottage and seaside style homes are all about repeating patterns. If you’ve got white siding and shuttered windows outside, and crown molding and beadboard wainscotting inside, you probably need a white bathroom vanity. And not just any white bathroom vanity, but one, preferably, that features some kind of beadboarding as well, like this Beverly Vanity from Avanity.
Really, more than any other type of architecture, cottage style homes demand a very specific sort of bathroom decor (and by extension, specific bathroom vanities). In part, that’s because most cottage homes tend toward the smaller side; cottage bathrooms are nothing if not practical and space-saving. But also because these homes tend to be older or vintage designed, which means you can actually raise the value of your home by opting for traditional materials and fixtures. Honeycomb floor tile, subway wall tile, and a simple white vanity like this Cottage Retreat Vanity from Sagehill Designs (again with the beadboard) make your bathroom “fit” in your home… and in the eyes of potential buyers.
The more distinct your architecture, the easier it is to find bathroom vanities that will help unify your interior decor. Take cast iron architecture. Whether you live in an industrial big-city apartment building or a sprawling French-inspired southern manse, ornate wrought iron balconies, windows, and even interior supports are a main facet of your home’s design. So why not pull the look into your bathroom as well? This Napa Vanity is a perfect fit for a smaller, urban loft, with just enough metal detailing to really make your space shine.
Something larger, like this Morgan Vanity from Soci would be a better fit for a larger, plantation style home. The white finish is the perfect pair for a whitewashed exterior, and gives an authentic, antique design to your bathroom. The slightly antiqued paint, on the other hand, plays nicely with the signature decadent decay of lavish, swamp-surrounded southern mansions.
Of course not all homes have such an obvious design or theme, and coordinating requires a slightly more subtle touch. That said, there are plenty of subtle ways to use bathroom vanities to aesthetically link your bathroom to the rest of your home. If you have an older home, especially one with a lot of prominent woodwork (floors, pillars, room dividers, bannisters, door and window frames, etc.), you want to try to find a wood bathroom vanity in a finish that’s as close as possible to your existing decor. Bathrooms aren’t a big place for wood other than bathroom vanities, so installing something like this Light Walnut Vanity from Bellaterra Home will go a long way toward helping to unify your decor.
If you want to go a step further, look for bathroom vanities that not only match your wood tone, but also some of the woodwork elsewhere in your home. This is a purely visual trick, and one that can take a little effort to pull off, but it’s absolutely worth it. First, you want to go through your home looking for shapes – columns, stair rails, and the like – and try to match the silhouette to open shelf bathroom vanities like this Antique Vanity from Legion Furniture. The closer you can get the better, but the end result is the same – a subtle trick to make your whole home seem unified.
Even if there really isn’t anything architecturally astounding about your home, that doesn’t mean you can’t use the body of your home and your bathroom vanities to help unify your aesthetic. You just have to love up the little details. This Islander Vanity from Xylem, for example, is an excellent addition to a home with white wood shutters on the windows. It’s really as simple as that – find a small detail that you love, then find ways to replicate it throughout your home.
Do you have any details in your home you’d love to carry through the bathroom? Have a specific architectural style I haven’t mentioned here? Let me know in the comments – I’ might be able to help!