Making Over My Parlor Bathroom

It didn’t take more than a few minutes of standing in my original parlor bathroom to know this was going to be the most dramatic room transformation in the house. It could have easily doubled for a horror movie set!


Even without its mysterious wall smears and Pepto-pink tiles, the room had some issues. Namely its complete lack of natural light, which is always a challenge when selecting a color scheme. We were also “stealing” a few feet from the room to give to the kitchen next door so it was going to feel even more closed in.


I was inspired by the old tile work found in New York City’s most notorious subterranean spaces—its subways—and went from there. Starting with a claw foot tub from another bathroom and pairing that with new white fixtures, Carrara marble tiles and polished nickel hardware for a little sparkle. Finally it was time for paint. The room was small and dark so what color would work best? A clean white would have been too sterile but something too dark might have made it seem too dank. After a bit of testing, I went with soft green gray that added a tiny accent color to the gray and white scheme without being overwhelming. It created just the tone for the room that I was dreaming of.