Designer Bathrooms, Real-World Prices

Make your bathroom look like the pages of a magazine with these simple -- and affordable -- ideas. Whether you love bold color or understated style, we have a budget-friendly look you'll love.

By Becky Mollenkamp


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egypatian cotton bath towels
1/10
Color It Soft

    Bring the lush colors of spring into your bathroom with Egyptian cotton towels in citrus colors. These bright hues are sure to make a big splash.

    -- Add color to any bathroom for less by selecting towels in bright colors. Towels will give the bathroom a new look without the cost of replacing the shower curtain or hardware.

    -- Keep walls and other bathroom accessories neutral to let colorful towels take center stage.

    -- Add solid-color towels to patterned towels for a mix-and-match set.

2/10
Pick Colorful Leaves

    A boldly patterned shower curtain is all that's needed to perk up a basic bathroom. With its big red and green leaves, this cloth curtain is like artwork for the bath.

    -- Painting the walls the same color as the curtain's background allows the colorful leaves to really pop.
    -- For a designer flourish, pick accessories that coordinate with your shower curtain, like the leafy artwork and actual palm leaf in this bathroom.
    -- Avoid a mismatched room by sticking to one metal tone in a room; here, all the accents are shiny silver.

3/10
Mix and Match

    Avoid a case of the "beige blahs" by creating a color-filled bathroom. Start with a multicolor curtain and then partner it with stacks of vibrant towels in several shades.

    -- Select towels to match each color in your curtain for a lively and unexpected mix.
    -- Put your rainbow of towels on display atop a small glass table in a corner of the bathroom.
    -- With so much color in the curtain and towels, stick to neutral tones on the walls and accents, like decorative soaps.

4/10
Select a Subtle Palette

    Create a sense of calm in the bathroom with a blue-and-brown color palette inspired by the ocean and sand. This pretty striped curtain features lovely embroidered designs and a striking band of contrast fabric and trim.

    -- Like peace and quiet in the morning? Take a cue from spas, which typically feature subtle hues and fluffy towels.
    -- When working with neutral tones, have some fun by choosing a patterned shower curtain and towels and decorative curtain rings.
    -- Control splashes and give your feet a soft spot to stand with a fluffy bath mat that matches your bathroom's color scheme.

5/10
Get the Blues

    In a shared bathroom, choose a shower curtain that's equal parts masculine and feminine. This curtain has a multi-blue buffalo plaid that's sure to please him, but it's made out of a beautifully woven taffeta she'll love.

    In a shared bathroom, choose a shower curtain that's equal parts masculine and feminine. This curtain has a multi-blue buffalo plaid that's sure to please him, but it's made out of a beautifully woven taffeta she'll love.

6/10
Take a Tropical Turn

    Go on a mini-vacation every time you take a shower by decking out your bathroom in a tropical theme. The look starts with a thematic pattern, like the one featured on the Palm Leaf shower curtain from the Better Homes & Gardens collection, available at Wal-mart.

    -- When recreating a tropical getaway, stick to the shades found in a nature, like leafy green and sky blue.
    -- Vacations should be relaxing, so don't fuss up the bathroom with lots of colors. Choose towels that match the curtain for a calm, cohesive look.
    -- Put a smile on your face in the morning by putting fresh flowers on display.

7/10
Have Fun with Florals

    There's nothing more feminine or lovely than a bouquet of flowers. Recreate that look with a classic floral-print curtain and a pretty pastel color scheme.

    -- Pair a busy shower curtain with toned-down pastel tones on walls and accessories.
    -- A sheer fabric Roman shade is a great way to provide privacy in the bathroom without blocking out the light.
    -- Repeat the floral motif with decorative hand towels designed to match the shower curtain.

8/10
Start the Morning Right

    Fresh flowers are an easy way to add color and life to any space, including the bathroom. Save big money by using buds picked from the garden.

    -- For the biggest impact, select big-bloom flowers, like these sweet and feminine peonies.
    -- Elegant glass accessories add instant style to any space.
    -- Wainscot is easy to install and gives a bathroom instant architectural detail.

9/10
Be Bold with Blue

    Make a big statement with a shower curtain dripping in designer touches. Save money by choosing this embroidered curtain with decorative valance from the Better Homes & Gardens collection, available at Wal-mart.

    -- Fabric shower curtains are a smart choice because they are machine-washable and can last for years.
    -- Keep plenty of towels on hand by storing extras below a pedestal sink.
    -- Pair a patterned dish with a framed print for custom artwork worthy of a designer shower curtain.

10/10
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