Ah the powder room. The one space in the home where you can go buck wild with your design scheme. It’s usually isolated enough from the rest of the house’s principal spaces, either tucked into a nook or at the end of the hallway, and is often light-locked without any windows. This small bathroom is just begging for some wallpaper or a snazzy vanity, so it took me months to narrow down my options and finally decide on how to jazz up my own.
Those who know me are well aware I have an affinity for leopard, cheetah, ocelot and even tiger prints. Basically any exotic cat is fair game for me when it comes to choosing patterns for interiors or fashion, so that’s why I chose Thiabut’s Tanzania for my wallpaper, which is a decorator classic.
It was a very close call though with another wallpaper pattern: Hermès’ Equateur, which has a leopard at the centre but also a host of other wild creatures, including a SLOTH! Of course being Hermès, it is a small fortune, so I considered installing the same wainscoting profile as in the foyer so I’d need less yardage, but in the end I still couldn’t swing it so Tanzania it was! I also considered Fornasetti tiles at one point, which also are not exactly budget-friendly, but that’s another story for another post…
Because the powder room is guest-oriented and only has to function as a simple two-piece, you have the luxury of a vanity that follows form more than function. I have always loved the washstand look which is high on style but low on storage, so the powder room seemed to be the perfect place to install one. I wanted it to feel retro and glamorous, so I went with a polished brass version from Canaroma with elegant tapered feet.
For a sleek look, I chose the rectangular Kathryn undermount sink from Kohler, which complements the clean lines of the vanity legs. Because the underside of the vanity is exposed, I needed a sink with a glazed bottom and this elegant model fit the bill.
I wanted a feature faucet in the same warm metal finish as the vanity, so I chose the geometric Hexis by Rubinet. It has an edgy glam vibe that I love, which is also repeated in the coordinating paper holder. I went with Rubinet because they also sell brass and gold decorative p-traps and the other pretty exposed plumbing elements you need with a washstand vanity, so I was happy to know the vanity would look beautiful and finished from all angles.
Speaking of TP, you may or may not be wondering where I have extra rolls stashed for guest considering there is nowhere to hide it in the vanity… Well can you imagine that a polished brass basket actually exists for such things? I know there are plenty of toilet paper holders with storage underneath out there, but because I already had a wall-mounted paper holder, all I needed was the extra roll storage, so I was pleased to find a brass one actually existed.
The star attraction of the powder room is Vivian, the malachite mirror from Made Goods. It’s a simple rectangular frame, but the emerald tones of the real malachite stone shimmer and pop against the neutral wallpaper in such a magical way. It borders on ridiculous how gorgeous it is in person and it coordinates perfectly with my art deco malachite glass vase from my grandmother and malachite dish I bought in South Africa a few years ago.
The vintage lightning bolt sconces were another obsession of mine that I admired over a two-year period every time I visited Residential Lighting. I loved their wacky mid-century style so after wavering over them for two years, I bit the bullet and made them mine. The ceiling height is very low in the powder room, so I needed to find a knockout flushmount and I liked how the Sophia from Circa Lighting added to the celestial vibe of the sconces. I even painted the ceiling in Selectone Paint’s black deco to make it feel like a star shining in the night sky. The black ceiling also mirrors the black nero assoluto floor tiles from Marble Granite Depot.
Last but not least, no powder room is complete without luxurious guest towels, so while in Palm Beach last spring, I ordered a pair of custom Leopard embroidered towels from Kassatly’s on Worth. It was so much fun selecting the thread colours to match my scheme (I of course picked malachite-coloured thread for the grass) and they are such a special finishing touch.