Before & After: A Sleek, Modern Update to a Tiny Bathroom — Sweeten


When Maria and Eric bought their two-bedroom apartment in Queens, they knew the bathroom would need an overhaul. Moldering tile and aging, mismatched features meant the bathroom’s aesthetics weren’t great, but the real issue in this small space was a serious lack of storage. So they set about turning a decrepit space that had seen better days into a bright, modern bathroom — and added a few clever storage solutions along the way.

From a drab, cramped space, the bathroom has been transformed into a sleek, modern room with a feeling of spaciousness that belies its tiny footprint. Contributing to the airy atmosphere are the bright white wall tile, minimal lighting, and frameless mirror. Maria and Eric opted for a wall-mounted sink over a vanity, which really helps to open up the space. The new sink, unlike the old one, offers a little space on top for soap, and maybe for the toothpaste while you’re brushing your teeth (although I have to admit that I kind of miss the art deco style of that fluted pedestal sink, which I hope they donated).

The old medicine cabinet projected a few inches into the room, so instead of a new medicine cabinet, the couple chose a different kind of storage — a shelf, recessed between the studs behind the door, that makes up for the medicine cabinet storage and then some. The wall-mounted towel warmer is a little luxury that is, I imagine, very welcome on frosty winter days, and hooks on the back of the door provide storage for even more towels.

This little bathroom is also big on style, with black fixtures that provide a beautiful contrast to the room’s all-white walls. The black herringbone floor tile was a bit of a splurge, but more than worth it. It helps to ground the space and adds a bit of pattern — the perfect finishing touch to a very efficient and very good-looking little bathroom.

Maria and Eric found their contractor on Sweeten, a free service matching homeowners with local general contractors. You can read more about the project, see more photos, and find sources on the Sweeten blog.

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