Free Shipping | Questions? Call Us 866-352-4522

You have

#2 Bath Restyle 101: Getting Started Tranforming Your Bathroom Into a Luxury Spa


Getting Inspired, Setting Your Budget, and Playing with Paint Colors

Welcome back to Bath Restyle 101. In this series, I will show you how to style your bathroom like a luxury spa. With all my experience as the lead on the Fine Linen and Bath design team, I’m here to help you start your restyle project with some important considerations and good advice for mapping out a manageable style plan.

Get Inspired! 

This is the most fun part of my job. While I am not an interior designer, I have a wealth of knowledge built on years of working with clients and helping them create their “dream spaces” in bed and bath. With the easy access of the Internet and digital communication, I’ve become expert at advising clients in “real time” as they plan their spaces. As with those projects, I firmly believe that restyling your bathroom space with a spa-like vibe should be a fun and engaging process. Always keep in mind that you are creating a room meant to be your happy place, a personal space for retreat and renewal. Take time to ideate how you want that room to look and -- most importantly -- how you want it to make you feel. 

If you’re visiting a hotel or spa and like what you see, take photographs if it is allowed. If you’re at a private home, ask the host questions; while it may seem intrusive, I can speak from personal experience that most people you ask are quite flattered to share their style tips.

Colors, styles, accessories, and more should all play a part in inspiration gathering. This is a time to let your imagination roam free. No matter your budget (and we’ll get to that in a moment) you should have a well-articulated idea of what you want to achieve. You may choose to scroll an online store like Fine Linen and Bath (be sure to check out our blog for inspiration) or a collaborative site like Pinterest to collect your ideas digitally. I personally love to sit with a cup of coffee and a stack of magazines like House Beautiful, Veranda, and Architectural Digest and tear out pages that inspire me. It may sound old-school, but I keep these “tear sheets” in folders to save and refer to (a binder would also work!).

Setting a Budget for your Bathroom Restyle

Setting Your Budget

This is one of the most important aspects of project planning, and I want you to approach it carefully. After you determine how much to spend, I recommend building in a cushion of 10 to 20 percent; this is a rough guideline, but should be sufficient to allow you some wiggle room to deal with price variations and changes you make along the way. If you want to spend $500, set a budget of $450 at most. You can also invest in some items now, and add to your room later; I’ll discuss this in greater detail below.

Identify Your Priorities

This is related to your setting budget, but not quite the same. You know how much you are willing and able to spend, but here you’re going to determine where, how, and when you’ll spend it. This really comes down to thinking about what you value most and what will give you the most pleasure in setting up your spa-style bathroom. For example, soft, heavy, spa-like towels may be a top priority for a spa-inspired restyle project; indeed, a heavyweight towel does provide a luxurious feel that is beyond compare (check out these blogs comparing mid- and heavy-weight towels from luxury brands Matouk, Abyss, and Graccioza). While luxury towels are more costly, I firmly believe that high-quality towels are always a wonderful investment. With that said, you may choose to purchase just a few pieces to begin and add to your collection later. 

Alternatively, if you’re in a small space, you may need to invest in storage solutions like baskets, wall shelves, or even a small piece of furniture. If you love the look of designer soaps and lotions but don’t want to pay a premium price, consider buying lower-cost, attractive containers that can be refilled. Some of my clients always begin with choosing their color scheme because that is what matters most to them; all other decisions flow from that. The point of this step is to decide what you want to splurge on, what you want to save on, and what you are willing to purchase over time.

Play with Paint

Since this is a restyle, not a renovation, you won’t be swapping out plumbing or lighting fixtures. But -- assuming you are able to change your paint -- this is where you’ll enjoy high impact for a very low cost. And choosing a paint color in the store is next to impossible; it needs to be seen on your walls! (This is also why we offer complementary swatch samples when you're shopping for home linen). Here are a few of my favorite tips to make sure you’re evaluating the color properly:

  • Put the paint samples directly on the walls (not boards)
  • Use two coats (and a primer if the color is heavy) to get an accurate look
  • If you’re choosing among colors, paint them side by side in multiple locations around the room
  • Check the paint at different times of day to see how natural light affects the color in each spot
  • Choose a mold-resistant paint in at minimum eggshell or, preferably, satin finish. A steamy bathroom will do better with satin paint which is better at repelling moisture.
  • If you’re confused–phone a friend! While you may not want to conduct a wide survey, another set of eyes is generally a good idea when evaluating paint.

Choosing paint color is a matter of personal preference, but for a spa-like feel, start with “natural” shades of gray, white, and taupe/beige. Don’t be afraid to experiment with color. You can always paint over it!

Thanks for joining me. Watch for my next installment, where I will discuss creating a serene space with natural materials, textures and elements.


Mary Babinski
Founder and Lead Designer, Fine Linen and Bath


< Prev    Next >