I painted over the Masonite with a really good primer and then I decoupaged tissue paper in vivid colors over it — indigo blue, sunny yellow, even some silver tissue paper. It looks luminous, freckled, almost like water. Above the shower stall, I did much brighter colors and I sealed it all with a water-based polyurethane." While Cy applied his decoupage directly to the wall, his "simple French" look would work just as well applied to foam core or poster board, framed or not, and then hung on a bathroom wall for a splash of color you could change out whenever you want. "Paint the walls, or if they're mostly tile, paint the ceiling!" says Cy. "If the color doesn't work, you can paint it something else." And should you need to sell the house later, and believe the accepted wisdom that only white walls are appropriate in "For Sale" bathrooms, you can spend an afternoon painting it back. Or for just a minimal change, paint a frame and hang it on the bathroom mirror with Velcro.
Planning your bathroom's layout Your bathroom's layout will in part be determined by what storage and bathroom furniture you need. Start by thinking about how you use your bathroom. What do you need space for and how much will you require? How regularly will you use different things and how easily will you need to access them? How much do you want to hide away or have out on display? Answering these questions will give you a good idea of how much storage you'll need so you can better plan what bathroom furniture you should get. Now you can think about the different types of furniture and storage options available to you. You can get built-in cabinets – for example, bathroom vanities that sit around the basin, which will make use of wasted space – or freestanding ones that give you flexibility to move it around.
Although many designers like to test paint right on the walls, color consultant Paulette Diamond, ASID, vice president of the International Association of Color Consultants - North America, suggests buying 8" x 10" flat canvas boards from an art supply store and painting one in each of the colors you are considering. "This system allows you to move the paint color samples around the room easily," she says, "while eliminating the mess and confusion of having several different colors painted on the wall." Finally, once you are pretty certain you have found the best color for your bathroom, "Just go for it," Joan says. "Remember, it's only paint. If you aren't happy with it you can change it very easily.
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