Use Color and Pattern for a Bold Powder Room Design

Want to add some “wow” to a small space? Dare to step away from safe neutrals and try something unconventional. Let this New Jersey home’s powder room, created by East Coast designer Mona Ross Berman, show you how to use vivid colors and bold patterns to make your powder room design go from bland to brilliant.

Photo: Bill Horin Photography

Try Something New

In a seaside house filled with sunny reds, oranges and golds, Philadelphia-based designer Mona Ross Berman wanted to give her New Jersey clients a powder room that was soothing and cool, yet unique from the rest of the “Surfer Chic” home. “A small space is the best place in your house to take a chance and be risky with color, textures and décor,” Mona explains. Departing from the rest of the home’s style, the 1960’s Cali-inspired geometric designs bring ocean vibrancy to the little room with eye-popping color and a surfer aesthetic.

“Often people don’t know what to hang on wallpaper,” Mona says. “This simple shelf can be used to store small items like soaps, hand towels or even a small collection, while still highlighting the artwork of the walls with its open design.” (Photo: Bill Horin Photography)

Give the Illusion of More Space

The décor Mona chose for the powder room design not only gives it a unique flair, but also makes it appear bigger than it is. The repeating wallpaper pattern elongates the bath with its bold, eye-catching design and bright, surf-kissed color. The soft sconces give off a subdued light, enhancing the open feeling that the large, rectangular mirror and open shelf create. Never taking away from the artwork of the wallpaper, the mirror and shelf are truly functional pieces and actually give the impression of a long, open room. While the pedestal sink does not permit much storage, it gives the illusion of more space. Mona keeps the patterns in sync with the rectangular edges, which are coordinated with the walls, shelf, sink and mirror.

Orange accessories—the Jonathan Adler soap dispenser, towel and wastebasket—add a contrasting hue to the room, providing a burst of color reminiscent of the rest of the house’s palette (Photo: Bill Horin Photography).

Choose Your Accessories Wisely

The earthy, geometric accessories bring the powder room design together and add some dimension to the small space. For instance, the octagonal towel holder stays in step with the geometric theme and combines function with whimsy, while the simplicity of the Roman shade allows for a flood of natural light. Even though this powder room is tiny, Mona’s daring use of sea-inspired colors, bright accessories and distinctive patterns makes it feel much larger than it actually is, making the most of every nook and cranny. “In a tight place, everything counts,” Mona says, “so make everything special.”

For more design advice from Mona Ross Berman, click here.


by Kristin Webb-Hollering



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