A Cottage Crisp Guest Bathroom for My Sister

My sister and her husband just bought their first house!! Woo to the quadruple hoo! We were together for Mother’s Day and she mentioned that the new guest bathroom was in dire need of a makeover and more storage. She asked me if I had any ideas?!?! Can you believe she would even have to ask?! I certainly could not. Ideas? I have plenty.

The new house is on the beach and she likes a crisp feeling, but more cottage crisp than modern crisp. She would like to use this bathroom to get ready in the morning, while her husband readies himself in the master bathroom. The bathroom has a pedestal sink, with (obviously) no storage underneath. And there is no room to add more furniture, except for shelving above the toilet. She was nervous it might be difficult to find above-the-toilet-storage that didn’t look like it was intended for a college student. “Pish posh, applesauce,” I said, “we can do it!”

I had the best time making a mood board for her because “cottage crisp” is not my usual style and it was fun to try something new. I promised to try again if I missed the mark. But until she says those words, I present to you, a cottage crisp guest bathroom:


First and foremost, the shower curtain, bath mat and towels dictate the color theme and will serve as my serene backdrop. I chose a blue towel to offset the mint and add a matching, yet different color. I contemplated a bolder color, but wasn’t sure that was “cottage crisp.”

This shelving can be mounted to the wall over the toilet and won’t look at all like college. Mission accomplished! She can fill these baskets with make-up and other necessities (toilet paper) and place them on the shelf. The pretty green, glass jars can also be filled with q-tips, cotton balls and the like and also be placed on the shelf. Both will provide great contrast and colors through the glass door of the cabinet, while still looking crisp and pulled together. The white bowls are meant to be a serving platter, but would look great on the open shelf and can serve as a catch-all for hair ties, bobby pins and the like. “And the like” is apparently my favorite catch-all term for those bathroom products we need not mention (cough) zit cream (cough).

The bamboo bath accessories will be scattered throughout the bathroom. The waste basket will go on the floor near the sink. The soap holder will go on the shelf in the shower. The tray will go on the back of the toilet along with the lotion pump, toothbrush holder and the tree-like ring holder.

The art prints are the finishing touch and are my vision of cottage crisp.

And you? Have you ever designed a room for a sibling? Do you think this is “cottage crisp?” And would you define “cottage crisp” as having bolder accent colors or is monochromatic the way to go?

Until next time!



  1. I assume there is window.
    What are your thoughts on the window treatments?
    I ask because I am on the hunt for something. Preferably not a mini blind…

    • Hi Marc!!

      Have you considered frosted windows? My understanding from Young House Love is that it’s relatively simple. Note: I read about home improvement projects, but stick to decorating and crafts. Stuff of this sort is not up my alley, so I have not tried it myself. I like to read about it, but not do it. That’s a full disclaimer, yes? But I did find the link to the blog Young House Love wrote on it for you: http://www.younghouselove.com/2012/04/frosting-tanking-sucking-it-up/

      Looks easy enough?!?! You tell me!


      • That could work! Good thinking!
        Looks like it would be easy enough. Except for potential bubbles. I’ve never been that good in those types of situations…

        • Hi Marc,

          Oooo! Well, now you’ve entered the crafty zone and I can help. If it is anything like lamination paper, the key is to just go slowly and use a credit card! And whoa-la… easy peasy. Let me know if you try it. Share pics!

          Happy weekend!


  2. It looks great Stacey, well chosen for your sister!! And I’m sure she will like it, it does look cottage crisp. :-) I especially love the fact you tried to stay in the same color combo of soft tones with green accents. Especially the green glass jars look really beautiful! Not too modern and not too cottage-y.
    Congratulations to your sister and her husband as well for buying a house!! I’d love to stay at a beach house as well – someday… Oh well, a girl can dream! 😉
    Have fun on your trip and take care Stacey!!
    Inge x

    • Hi Inge!

      Thanks so much! I thought/was hoping the green color was a bit reminiscent of sea glass. Maybe? On a good day? :)

      I’ll pass on your congratulations to my sister and brother-in-law, it will mean a lot to them. Thank you!

      And I’m dreaming of a beach house, too! One day!

      Hope you’re having a great start to the week!


  3. I love all of your picks Stacey! I have the Nate Berkus baskets and love them:) I also love the idea of using the serving bowls to hold bathroom items. Great job! You have me dreaming of my wish for a beach house one day.

    • Hi Dawn!

      Thanks so much!! I’ve only seen the Nate Berkus baskets on the website, but they look gorgeous! I love the shape and the leather handles. And I’m so glad you liked the idea of the serving bowls, too. That was my favorite find of the bunch! All my favorite things in my own apartment are items that were meant to have slightly different uses, but have found a home in a new spot.

      Meanwhile…you should dream up some “beach house” mood boards for your blog! Would love to see what you pick!


  4. It’s look great, love the white bowl idea! I’m assuming you’ll be using it too some time soon?
    Adri • adrisworld.com

    • Hi Adri!

      I think I just might! I love those bowls! Is it bad to “share” an idea I was giving my sister? 😉


  5. Super fun! Love those bamboo accessories – very cottage-y

  6. I love it! I think it’s definite cottage crisp!

    • Yay! Thanks so much!! I guess it’s bathroom styling time, huh? The bathroom you planned on your blog is gorgeous, too!


  7. What a beautiful, serene color palette!

  8. I love the bamboo accessories – mine are a bronze that went with my old bathroom and don’t at all go with the new one! but it seems silly to get a whole new set when I don’t NEED one… boo :(

    • Hi Betsy!

      That always seems to happen when I move… the old stuff doens’t always look just right in the new house. Boo, indeed! Maybe when it’s your birthday, you’ll get a gift certificate to some amazing homegoods store and then you won’t feel badly replacing it when you don’t NEED to? At least…that’s what I would be hoping for!!

      Happy long weekend!



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