July 17, 2023
The homeowners embarked on this DIY bathroom redo with high hopes and the best of intentions. They had purchased the toilet, sinks and tub, as well as a modern blue vanity that would be the anchor for the project, and they were looking to instill a calming atmosphere in the room. However, once they tried to select the finish materials, they were quickly overwhelmed by the choices. Not only couldn’t they achieve the look they had in their heads, they also realized that they didn’t really know what that look should be.
Following up on a recommendation by a family member, the couple contacted Anne-Marie Brunet, CMKBD, CAPS, of Ontario-based Sheridan Interiors to complete the remodeling. “The vanity color was definitely a bold choice, but as the clients had fallen in love with it, that became the jumping off point for the project,” she said.
At the first post-lockdown in-person consultation, Brunet took a deep discovery dive into the clients’ objectives. In the course of this discussion, one of the couple was obviously quite anxious about experiencing lots of high contrast color and pattern in the tiled surfaces. Recognizing an opportunity to introduce a wellness component into the space through an intentional choice of quietly-colored finishes, the designer began the process of creating a materials palette.
For the floor, she selected a 36-inch by 36-inch porcelain tile with a very low-contrast marble look. The large format eliminates distracting grout lines, contributing to the soothing feeling in the small space, and it is the right shade of white to support the vanity. The vanity had originally come with a white quartz countertop and a 3-inch backsplash.
“I immediately knew that the short backsplash would create a distracting visual line between the vanity and mirrored cabinets and would be difficult to deal with when planning the electrical outlets,” said Brunet. “We ordered a new full-height backsplash to eliminate any visual distraction. This small detail contributed to the calm, clean look the clients wanted.”
Behind the tub, a tiled feature wall showcases the fixture while creating a focal point that is soft in color and subdued in pattern. The grout color was key in keeping the level of contrast low while still adding style to the design. A lighter grout would have created the very distracting element the designer was trying to eliminate, while a darker grout would have washed out the shape of the tile.
The turning point in the design process was Brunet’s skilled client interviews. Once she was able to help them articulate their vision, she was able to create a cohesive primary bath that exceeded their expectations.
—By Leslie Clagett, KBB Managing Editor
Designer: Anne-Marie Brunet, CMKBD, CAPS
Photography: Jordann Brown Imaging
Cabinet Hardware, Medicine Cabinet, Mirror, Wallcoverings, Vanity: Vanico Maronyx
Faucets, Shower Fittings, Tub Filler: Moen
Flooring: Revigres Statuario White
Tile: Mariner Rialto Sky
Toilet, Tub: American Standard