Wallpapering a Powder Room: Small on Space, Big on Style

Apr, 29, 2017

I’m always telling my clients that powder rooms are the perfect place to have a little fun when it comes to color and design. It’s a small intimate space that is seen by most of your visitors. But often when building or renovating making design selections can be overwhelming. When we renovated our home 10 years ago the last thing I thought about was what I was going to do to the walls in the powder room. So why wasn’t I taking my own advice?  I decided to wallpaper my powder room creating a bathroom small on space but big on style.

Small Space, Big Style Powder Room

Being a decorative artist I’ve always tackled pattern and color by hand with a paintbrush and paint. Believe it or not I’ve never used wallpaper in one of my own homes.  We’ve taken down our share of wallpaper during our past home renovations but, finally after all these years I now took the plunge and wallpapered our tiny powder room off the front entry.

Home Decor Misfits

I chose a black-and-white checkerboard floor, a black vanity with white porcelain countertop, chrome fixtures, pluming and bath accessories and a beveled mirror. The room was painted a deep red but shortly after painting, I found it too claustrophobic with a dark color. A few years into the red room a client gave me an extra can of Sherwin-Williams Rainwashed SW 6211. It was one of my favorite colors and I immediately painted over the dark walls. Later on, I added a large medicine cabinet with shelf. One day after returning from a weekend at the cottage I found the entire unit was in a million pieces on the floor. I added a large Keith Haring print to cover up the anchor holes and a black & white valance hoping to jazz things up but it always seemed to be the room of home decor misfits.

A Catalyst for Change

Through an Instagram blogger friend Sara from Sincerely, Sara D I discovered Clairebella Studio.  Sara used the Bloom Blush wallpaper in her daughter Lena’s bedroom and I fell in love! It reminded me of the roses that I used to paint on my furniture and home decor. I had to see more…

Choosing the right wallpaper

Clairebellla Studios, is an Atlanta-based company spearheaded by Kathy Story. Kathy also believes in color and pattern. She creates beautiful functional products that are warm inviting and that make you feel like “there’s no place like home.” If you’d like to learn more about Clairebella Studios click here to read Kathy’s story. Kathy is giving a 20% off your paper order  . Just add MEMEHILL to your checkout.

A Work In Progress

Wallpaper in a book or on the website looks completely different than what it looks on a larger scale once hung. Making the decision was difficult. Kathy’s site had so many selections in a variety of “drop dead gorgeous” patterns and styles. After hours on her site I decided to go Green. Rhaphsody Green that is. I consider myself a pretty visual person but I had no idea how gorgeous the Rhapsody green wallpaper would look in my tiny  27 sq. foot powder room. It’s organic design evokes a natural look of a woodcut. Here’s my view as I came home midday while my paper hanger Tim just finished the back wall. I gasped with excitement and nearly made Tim fall off the ladder.

Mixing Old and New

When we renovated our home ten years ago we chose to keep the solid wood doors. I dressed the door with a French Salle des Baines metal sign.

Dressing Her Up

Last week I was shopping at HomeGoods and came across this oversized graphic tulip print. It was perfect for the space above the toilet where the medicine cabinet used to be. I made sure that I measured twice before putting any nails in the paper.  One item is never enough while shopping at HomeGoods. I also picked up a hand soap and owl candle to add to the rooms decor.  I have a things with owls!

Fresh and Faux Greenery

I placed a navy blue polka dotted vase with a fresh crocus and hyacinth on toilet along with a bright yellow butterfly glass tray topped with a faux succulent garden hedgehog found at Michael’s. I love the little pops of yellow and blue. It gets me excited for Spring!

Leveling the Scales

When decorating a room, big or small it’s all about the scale. Since the pattern on the wallpaper was on the smaller size I chose a large scale print to balance it out. It breaks up the busyness and gives a place for the eye to rest. The thick white frame mimics the clean white trim, wood blinds, and porcelain countertop & sink.

A green garden ceramic garden stool tucked in the corner is the ideal spot for reading material.

Creating a Cohesive Home

Here’s the view from our front hall. A green chest of drawers and yellow matted pen and ink bird prints invites you in to see more. The color theme in each room may be different but the black and white throughout our home creates a cohesive look.  Accenting with bold colors and patterns are scattered everywhere so theres always something interesting to see.

Going Green

Our powder room is now the most colorful room in our home and gets the most compliments. Remarkably the bold graphic patterns of the Clairebella Studio wallpaper make it seem larger than it really is!  I also added wallpaper to my daughter Chloe’s bathroom and the space looks so much bigger and brighter! Greenery happens to be Pantone’s 2017 Color of the Year. Try adding this vibrant energizing color to your home this year to bring the colors of the outdoors in.  Do you have any plans to give your bathrooms a mini makeover? I’d love to hear all about your projects! Now I’m off to paint the master bedroom. Stay tuned Friends.

xox Amie


  1. Reply


    May 1, 2017

    So stunning, Amie! I love the bright, happy punch of color in the bathroom. And you’ve accessorized it perfectly!

    And I especially love how the chest outside the bathroom picks up on the green as well.

    Beautiful as always, my friend!



    • Reply


      May 2, 2017

      Thank yo uKathleen! This was a fun room to makeover. I had to have that green chest of drawers when I saw it! Have a great day! xo

  2. Reply

    Paula Newlands

    May 4, 2017

    You make it look so easy to decorate and accessorize! I love the bold choices.

    • Reply


      May 5, 2017

      Thank you Paula! Looking forward to seeing your new house. Amie

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Amie Freling

"Life's too short for white walls .." Amie Freling-Brown, a Rochester, NY-based designer and artist who transforms ho-hum spaces into works of art. Her creative designs can be found in many fine homes, restaurants and businesses. Her work has been featured in national magazines, on HGTV and has been sold through retailers nationwide from True Value Hardware to Nordstroms. She proudly offers such professional services as design, staging, color consultations and fine art.

Amie Ferling Real Estate

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