Take Your Builder Bathroom from Basic to Breathtaking: Glam Powder Room Makeover

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Don’t settle for basic with your builder grade bathroom. Get inspired to transform your space with this glam powder room makeover.

glam powder room

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Your main bathroom is one of the most frequently used rooms in your home, and yet it’s also one of the least loved. This room takes a daily beating from your kids who constantly run in and out to wash their muddy hands, conveniently forget to flush the toilet, or gasp, seem to always miss when aiming. If you’re a parent of little boys, then you know exactly what I’m talking about on this last point.

But here’s the thing, just because you have kids, doesn’t mean you can’t also have nice things (most of the time). And that’s exactly what James and Lily decided when they asked me to consult with them on their powder room makeover.

Lily mentioned it all started with the kids’ repeated abuse of the toilet paper roll to the point where it fell out of the wall, to send her on a mission to update her basic builder bathroom. She wanted a bathroom she could feel proud of and one that showcased her personality but wasn’t sure how to achieve this to fit their family’s needs.

Inspiration for a glam powder room

She was in awe of this gorgeous crystal chandelier I installed in another client’s dining room. The glam vibe it gave off really inspired her to go in a completely different direction with her powder room, and away from the basic builder bathroom you see in practically every home (including my own).

glam powder room

I immediately came up with a plan for her space that I knew she would love. The powder room had great bones and already functioned pretty well for their family. It also had the added bonus of natural light from a smaller side window, so I knew it could withstand a touch of drama without feeling too overwhelming.

glam powder room

The Plan

Smaller rooms, like Lily’s powder room, can tend to feel a bit claustrophobic at times, especially when the door is closed. Which, let’s face it, is pretty much all the time when you’re using the bathroom. Although, if you’ve got really little ones, maybe not.

glam powder room

Still, these rooms can benefit from some added architectural detail to help trick the eye into appearing larger than they actually are. I suggested installing some trim work similar to wainscoting that would serve a dual purpose for their family.

This would break up the wall to help the space feel more open, and also serve as protection against the kids should they splash, touch or misdirect their aim at the walls. How can it do this? By incorporating a different color on the bottom section of the wall, and using a high sheen paint, you create separation and a very easily wipeable surface. A total bonus when you have little hands leaving paw prints on the walls.

glam powder room

Check out the difference this made in the space from just a little paint and trim. It’s so much brighter!

Add some Drama

The thought of using wallpaper in her powder room hadn’t even occurred to Lily, but I knew the perfect way to give her the glam feel that inspired her, would be to use a metallic pattern on the top half of the wall. And boy did it ever add drama. Take a look at this gorgeous peel and stick champagne and grey wallpaper we chose to install. It truly is jaw-dropping in person and the main theme that drove all of the remaining design choices.

glam powder room

Installing wallpaper isn’t for the faint of heart, and this peel and stick option definitely came with its own set of challenges. Imagine for a minute that you’re installing the world’s largest iPhone screen protector. Apply. Remove. Adjust placement. Reapply. Bubbles! Oh, the bubbles! Squeegee. Repeat.

glam powder room

See what I mean? This is such a terrific option if you don’t want to permanently commit to wallpaper, just do yourself a favor and mentally prepare for the headache the comes with installing it. Drama achieved in more than one way on this project, but we still had fun with it.

glam powder room

Glam it up

Lily had no trouble at all settling on a lighting decision once she set her eyes on this pretty number. Arguably the epitome of glam right here. This light fixture bounces reflections off the crystals beautifully, and the matte gold finish could not have matched the new faucet any better.

glam powder room

Timeless and classic with a touch of glam and just the look we were going for. This light and faucet combo are definitely the showstoppers in this room, but this gorgeous glass and gold hurricane candleholder can’t be ignored either. I seriously loved this piece so much I had to go back to Homegoods to find a matching set for my own home. I have no idea where I’ll put it, but I’m sure it’ll give me some inspiration for another project.

glam powder room

We carried the gold tones throughout the powder room makeover installing the remaining toilet paper, hand towel and toilet lever fixtures in the same finish as the faucet, but in a slightly less modern style. These fixtures detailed some added curves that paired well against the clean lines of the new faucet. While I wish I could say this was intentional, it definitely wasn’t…

glam powder room

Mix and Match

After Lily researched the reviews on the matching fixture line, she discovered some manufacturing flaws she didn’t think she could be comfortable with. Rather than go back to the drawing board on design selections, we worked around the faucet that she just had to have. Lucky for us, Delta had some great alternatives in the exact same matte gold finish. Crisis averted.

glam powder room

But, this did get me thinking about how often we strive to match things within our own homes. Did you know you can mix metals in a bathroom? I wrote a whole post about how to do this and still make it look cohesive. Give it a try! You won’t be disappointed and it will look less like the builder bathroom you started with.

glam powder room

Finishing Touches for a glam powder room

We topped off this glam powder room makeover using the Queen of trim work – Crown molding of course! This trim adds a refined feel to any room and tends to naturally draw the eye up to the ceiling. Which in this case is exactly what we wanted to do to showcase the beautiful two-toned ceiling.

glam powder room

The glossy white trimmed capped off the stunning wallpaper and has a nice clean transition to the cool grey painted ceiling. If you read my post about how to create a stunning statement ceiling, then you’ll know that all too often the ceilings in our homes are an afterthought when it comes to design plans.

glam powder room

So take your next opportunity to turn a blank white ceiling into something beautiful, and remember to cap it off with some crown molding to avoid the dreaded “busy” look with too many different colors joining at the walls and ceiling.

Get Inspired

I hope this post helps you envision the possibility of transforming your own basic builder bathroom into something unique and beautiful to help you love the home you have.

glam powder room

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5 Comments

    1. Thanks Nan! We used Sherwin Williams Mindful Gray in an eggshell finish for the ceiling and a white semi gloss on the board and batten.

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