The Tiny Bathroom Is Decorated

Now you realize that this is not a designer/updated bathroom. It is a tiny bathroom in a patio apartment that was built in the 1960's. I know many of you were not even born. 

This small bathroom was every bit as hard to do something with as the kitchen was. And I nearly pulled my hair out on that one. 

It all started with this lined buffalo checked shower curtain I've had for some time, purchased at a quilt shop online. And their prices are very good. The tie-backs came with them.

TIP: If you're using several fabrics in a small space, try to stay with the same pattern so the look is not overly busy.

What on earth do you do with a builder-grade mirror that extends from the wall to the tub? I didn't like it, but they wouldn't let me take it down. So what was I to do with this huge horizontal expanse of mirror? 

All I could think to do was minimize it the best way I could. So that's what I did. Curtains matching the shower curtain are on each side. 

And the empty black frame is one I found half-price. I thought I was going to hang it vertically, so I had them put the hangers that way. I didn't like that, come to find out, so I took them out and screwed them in horizontally. 

Now I was getting somewhere.

I wanted the black frame to give the illusion of a smaller mirror, and thus bring the look inward.

TIP: Bring in a pretty teacup and saucer to put a votive candle in. Lends a bit of elegance, I think.

You cannot believe how hard it was to get photos in this tiny room. But I did the best I could. 

You probably don't remember the S-E-A letters I got some time ago. I painted them periwinkle blue.

You can have frames that are different shades of the same color family. That is cohesive enough without matching.

I have had the framed For Sale Here sign for over 35 years.

I have the vintage temperature gauge sign intricately placed, as well as the box of towels. There was a very crooked towel rod here that nearly drove me crazy looking at it. 

Not only that, but whoever put it up made a complete mess and then sloppily patched it. Didn't even attempt to smooth out where it was patched, so it was hideous.

I took it down. When I did, I could see they'd stuffed things in there to hold the screws. Let's just say on either side where the rod was, now has a hole of about 3 x 4 inches. I covered it in white scrapbook paper and tape. I'll worry about that another day.

Why is it people don't use a level and hang things straight???

TIP: When you live in a small space, it is wise to carry the same colors throughout the entire space. 

It brings a cohesive look to the rooms and makes them flow, as the eye naturally drifts from one room to another.

This is a tiny vanity. I hate overhead light. And in this case it is those awful Hollywood-type bulbs over the mirror. So I just don't turn them on. I prefer lamp light. 

This lamp is a three-way that goes up to 150 watts. Had it for years. If you look at the bottom, you can see a switch. If you only turn it on, you then have a soft light inside the glass. Wonderful as a night light.

TIP: It brings a cozy look to a bathroom to have a lamp. So if you have space for one, it is a very nice addition. 

I have the cord raised off the counter and tucked along the wall
with small nails so it doesn't come in contact with water.

TIP: Just because this is a bathroom does not mean you can't have a pretty glass from your kitchen

I happened to have five of these red glasses, so it worked out that one could come in here and I was left with four in the kitchen cabinet.

I love homemade soap. I don't make it, but the last batch I ordered from Cranberry Morning's Etsy shop. Delightful soaps smelling of herbs and mints. Invigorates your body and your senses.

I cannot get a full picture of this. But it is what I use in lieu of a medicine cabinet. I bought it in Jenks for $22 at my favorite antique mall months ago. It sits on a black bench. I forgot to take a pic of the before.

This week I painted it the periwinkle blue. Without meaning to be, it was white and looked very "shabby chic" if you like splotchy paint. I don't. I really don't care much for the very trendy "distressed look." 

Sonny of 155 Dream Lane would say: "It isn't just distressed. It's destroyed." She cracks me up.

The hardware was a scratched up gold. I spray-painted the hardware black, to tie in with the black picture frame. 

Yesterday I decoupaged it with two pieces of striped scrapbook paper. Where the seams showed, I decoupaged a strip of blue scrapbook paper across the middle. 

I am using boxes for wall storage on this wall. I put a red votive in a blue chicken egg cup. 

TIP: Think outside the box. An egg cup does not have to hold eggs.

I have always had a love of vintage boxes. So versatile to stack up or use for storage in some capacity.

TIP: Try hanging old boxes for storage

So that's my tiny bathroom. The hardest part was the mirror. If you rent and can't take it down, use your imagination and find a way to make it work. Love it while you rent it, of course, is my mantra.

Sharing at French Country CottageThe Charm Of Home, & House Of Hipsters Found & Foraged.


  1. i absolutely adore your bif! and your idea for the construction-grade mirror, the cafe curtains and the frame - fantastic!

  2. Once again, so many great ideas, Brenda! I love your use of color and all your creative touches.

  3. You're amazing. I love everything!

  4. I don't think I've ever seen curtains hanging by a huge mirror. What a great idea. As usual, you are a decorating genius! I've pondered getting rid of my sliding shower door and using a shower curtain, but then I wouldn't have a place to hang my bath towels. I have a small bthrm, like you, so wonder what you do with your towels.

  5. Of course the bathroom could only be COZY!! Love the curtains, and I, too, have a dainty teacup filled with lavender infused wax, which I have yet to light - too pretty!


  6. Looks really nice. You did a great job with the little space that you have. When I rented apartments the bathrooms were always plain and white so I hung colorful towels and shower curtains to offset it, just as you did. Once I got pretty molding at Home Depot and surrounded the huge mirror with it. It was still huge, but at least had framing around it. As to why people don't use a level to hang things, it's just lazyness. I can eyeball a lot of things but a towel rod - is essential to use a level.

  7. I love your idea on how to cover one of those huge big 1950's mirrors in the bathroom, on a budget. I have one big mirror in the main BR and it is square with those little rosettes holding it on the wall. I hate it, but without spending a fortune to redo all the tile around it, and all the walls, you have shown me a cleaver idea!! I am going to follow in your footsteps and get goin on the make over. I would have never thought of curtins. I was thinking about framing it in with wood molding and square corner pieces. Your bathroom in darling.

  8. what cute builder basic bathroom!
    You have done a wonderful job with it! Making it homey and making it suit you! I love it Brenda!

  9. I had a feeling your bathroom re-do would be special. It really is a treat. The painting above the yellow shelf really ties everything together. You always seem to get a perfect balance of the colors and textures.

    (By the way, you do wonders with yellow, red and blue, but one of these days, I would love for someone to turn you loose in a room with some different colors, like purples, greens, and tans, and see what you come up with. I bet it would be lovely.)

  10. Brenda, GREAT job on this bathroom. Both of my bathrooms are small, the hall one being really little. My bathroom off my bedroom is a bit bigger and I've been working on redoing it. I'll be ready to show it soon I hope. Love the boxes hung on the wall...great idea!

  11. Another great decorated space!! Love the checkered curtains!!! I love vintage boxes too,

    Enjoy, Janie

  12. It's precious and cozy. Love the red checks Brenda.

  13. You did a beautiful job, Brenda...made the most of a small space...and I love the feeling a vanity lamp gives off in a room!

  14. So cute, Brenda. You have the best ideas - so creative! A crooked towel bar would drive me crazy too!!

  15. Brenda- What a fantastic job on a small builder's grade bathroom. You have really made the most of it and I like the idea of the curtains on the mirror and the red/white checks are perfect for in there. You really do have a cohesive color pattern through your whole house. GREAT job. xo Diana
    ps LOVE the For Sale Here sign!

  16. Oh, the magic you do! You never disappoint!!!

  17. Another thing... you have a great picture of the cabinet is reflected in your mirror picture!

  18. You've created a happy spot to start your day, Brenda! I like your solution for the large mirror! I've been dragging my feet with our small bathroom. There's not much to do except to remove the "sponge painted" look wallpaper, but I know what's underneath....cracked plaster. ugh
    Enjoy all your hard work!

  19. Wonderful, cheerful update! I love how you made the mirror look smaller. I have the same red glasses. My mom gave them to me a long time ago - I believe they were my grandmother's.

  20. danke für die tollen bilder und inspirationen, eine schöne woche wünscht angie aus deutschland

  21. I'm going to be very interested in all your ideas on tiny home decorating, Brenda. This post will help me a lot as we move into a 600 sq. ft. apt for awhile. Deb

  22. This is flows perfectly with all of the color and whimsy in the rest of your home. I love the red check...I'm seeing a lot of check and I think it's perfect in here. So many great ideas, Brenda!

    Jane xx

  23. Hi Brenda! Oh, your bathroom is darling! I love the red/white buffalo check and I ordered some curtains for our den like this. I had looked for a table cloth, thinking it would cost less. I thought your black frame was a smaller mirror - you've very clever! You do such a great job in your decorating. Love the sweet little lamp and that cute lampshade which I'm sure you embellished! :) Thanks for popping in to see me.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  24. I think your bathroom is cozy and cute. You did a great job in a small space! Thank you for all the tips.

  25. You have created a personal and peaceful space out of something that was very difficult. Way to go! I love what you have done.


  26. Small bathroom here too Brenda..I definitely need to add some color..I like your colorful painting and the old boxes..Thanks for some good ideas!

  27. Hey there, I found you via the NaBloPoMo blogroll.

    I love the eggcup idea. :) I too brought some of my "good" kitchen cups to the bathroom recently. And I love the smell of Yankee Candles! I can finally get these fairly easily in Australia, though they do cost a little more than they did in the US.

    As part of NaBloPoMo I try to comment on as many participating blogs as I can, and I add participating blogs to my feed reader.

    So I'm just dropping by to let you know I've added your blog to my feedreader, I'm reading you loud and clear, I have a link up going at my place so my readers can find participating blogs which you are more than welcome to add your blog link to.

    Looking forward to seeing your posts, and you'll likely see me drop by again during November.

    Happy NaBloPoMo to you!

  28. Oh my your bathroom is adorable! I can so relate to small bathroom cause the charmer has really small ones. I love the red/white check curtains, and your bathroom surely reflects you! The lamp is so cute, I have a small lamp in our bathroom too....and adds such charm. I also love that cabinet!!!!!!

  29. It's adorable! Love the idea of curtains on the mirror and then all of the pretty little touches.

    As to the distressed look...haha my kids have done that to anything I owned since they were born

  30. you did GREAT~! love love that idea about covering up some of the mirror.. you are soooooooooooooo smart and innovative.
    the mirror in my bath is 10 feet long.. ugggg I'm seriously considering having a 5 foot cabinet put right in the middle of it. what are these builders thinking~!
    holding you in loving and healing light for your surgery tommorrow.

  31. It's adorable Brenda and so very you with lots of color. I love your little blue bird. Ties in perfectly with my post today :)

  32. The bathroom is just as cozy as the rest of the apartment. You have done an amazing job. Now when are you coming to do my house?

  33. Love love love what you were able to do in your little bathroom. I also have a wall to wall mirror in mine and do not know how to remove it, so it will stay for now. I was curious how you attached the curtain and frame to the mirror. Could you please explain?

  34. This comment has been removed by the author.

  35. So adorable and colorful. It is you. I love the black mirror. How did you attach that? I want to remove my tacky medicine cabinet and just have a mirror there. Lord, once I get an idea in my head....I also love your boxes for storage.

    1. It isn't a mirror. The black is just a frame.

  36. Love the red check. Haven't been able to find any will keep looking. Thanks for continually encouraging us to do with less. You may not realize that that is what you are doing but at least for me it is. Prayers for your upcoming surgery and for your friend Judy & her husband.

  37. It's super cute, love everything about it! Buffalo checks especially red pull it all together you did a fantastic job! Lisa@ Sweet Tea N' Salty Air

  38. Very creative using the curtain and frame solutions on the large mirror. It looks like you, Brenda. Very colorful. I have always loved that painting/print of the house on the hillside. Do you remember where you found it?

  39. You made it look so "you", it's perfect. The way you "downsized" the huge mirror is genius. We can actually see the black bench under your medicine cabinet in the mirror. Now I think I really need a lamp in my bathroom. I'm going to ask the electrician to add a plug...

  40. Gorgeous! And...gave me many ideas. Fantastic job once again.

    Cate <><

  41. What a beautiful job you did with your bathroom. Love it, especially the boxes for storage!

  42. It looks gorgeous! Love the red and white check fabric and the wonderful wall storage boxes. And well done on getting lovely photos in such a small space! Your cosy little bathroom is charming, Brenda!
    Helen xox

  43. Oh Brenda, there is so much charm packed into this bathroom. I love the red checks, and what a clever idea to use curtains on either side of the mirror and hang a smaller mirror over the big one. There are so many special touches in this bathroom, and I love all of them. laurie

  44. Fabulous, Brenda! I would never have thought of the clever ways you've disguised that big mirror. There is so much eye candy in that little space. Love it!

  45. I agree, the mirror treatment is so original! I have a huge mirror in my bathroom, too, got my wheels turning about how I could do something similar. I have a lace shower curtain, so it shouldn't be too hard to find something to match! Thanks for the inspiration!

  46. So many great ideas in one little room. Nice job.

  47. It looks so cozy and snug Brenda!! I love the little lamp in the bathroom, I agree it is nice to have one there.

  48. Aw, sweet little bathroom redo! So glad you linked it up at our Found & Foraged linky party. Hope to see you there next week!

  49. I love the shower curtain- so cute!! So great to see you at Found & Foraged!

  50. Brenda! Thank you so much for linking up at Found & Foraged! PINNED! And thank you so much for your post on blogging tips. You had some great advice to offer! Hope to see you again this Saturday night at 8PM at

  51. What an adorable and cheerful bathroom, Brenda!


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