Spa-Like Touches for the Bath

In the middle of winter, there’s nothing better than coming in from the cold to enjoy a leisurely soak in the tub or a hot shower. Elevate the experience even more by adding one or two (or more) of these small, spa-like touches to your bathroom. Once you do, you may never want to leave!

Emily Henderson

Whitespace. Give your bathroom a fresh start by clearing out all the clutter and giving the space a thorough scrubbing. If the walls are looking dingy, consider adding a fresh coat of paint in crisp white or a soothing hue like silvery blue.

Candles. Who can resist the soft glow of candlelight while soaking in the tub? No one.

Artwork. I’m a big fan of hanging artwork you love in the bathroom, with a caveat — it shouldn’t be priceless. The humidity and unstable temperature of the bathroom can damage artwork over time. But if you have a well-ventilated room and the art didn’t cost a fortune, go for it!

Design Sponge

Living plants. Fresh green plants lift our mood, clean the air, and breathe life into what can sometimes be a bland, sterile room. Plus, many plants do well in the humid conditions of the bathroom. Try ferns, palms, or even orchids.

A bath tray. If you’re lucky enough to have a real, honest-to-goodness bathtub to soak in, make the experience even better with the addition of a bath tray. This wooden tray that sits across the tub can hold your book and a mug of tea safely out of the water, or simply offer a spot to stash that fancy bar of soap you’ve been saving.

Amber Interiors

Good towels. If your towels are looking a little worse for the wear, splurging on a great set of new towels can really make a difference in how your bathroom looks and feels. A stack of pretty white waffle weave towels exudes that luxury spa vibe, while the striped-and-fringed versions seen here will give your bath a more eclectic Moroccan mood.

Organizing tools. Don’t skimp on good organizational tools! The right tools can make your bath products easier to find, and give your shelving and drawers a neater, more polished look. Try clear glass apothecary jars for decanted supplies (like cotton balls), and baskets and trays for everything else.

Emily Henderson

Fixture upgrade. Upgrade your shower head, replace the mirror above the sink, repaint the cabinets, or swap a regular door for a salvaged barn door on sliders. Get creative and see what you can change!

A pretty rug. Look down: if your bathroom floor is still sporting a furry synthetic bath mat, consider swapping it for a more modern option. For practical purposes, I love a good flat-woven cotton rug that you can toss in the wash regularly — see below for some great options.

Rug Shopping Guide: (Flat-woven 100% cotton rugs, clockwise from top left) Safavieh Montauk in ivory and gray; Rizzy Home Flip Top Circle Stripes in gray and orange; Safavieh Rag Rug in ivory; Safavieh Montauk in ivory, blue, and black.

For more inspiration from Laura, follow along with her at!

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Part VII: Rug + Room

via Design Milk + Surya Harput

You know those times when a room looks incredible, but one little thing is missing that you can’t put your finger on? Sometimes that thing is a rug. And it doesn’t matter whether you’re a legit interior designer or someone who likes to play at being one in their spare time, facts are facts. Rooms need texture and defined spaces to look and feel complete. Let’s check out five rug-less spaces that could go up a livability level with the addition of a little something underfoot.

First up, this Scandinavian-inspired kitchen and dining area that could use a little space delineation. By bringing in a rectangular rug in colors that already exist in the room’s palette you can already breathe easier. The traditional pattern gives a nod to a Scandi farmhouse vibe, while the colors within it stay muted and in the background so as not to overwhelm the simplicity of the space.


Don’t you just want to crawl under that massive pile of bedcovers and hibernate? I definitely do, but I’d also like something nice to set foot on once I wake up from my long winter’s nap. I’d pull this artsy and abstract rug into the space in a large size that would fit under the bed with space to spare on both sides for an extra layer of warmth.


I’m all about interiors that make a space feel light and airy, but without a rug in this entry it feels a bit empty. This is another case of relying on the existing color palette to avoid overwhelming an area with a rug that immediately draws your eye downward and keeps it there. The creams, whites, and greys translate perfectly to this round beauty that will help give the entryway an open yet welcoming vibe.

Cement floors can be incredibly chic, but without some distinction in this space they just feel cold. (And with that beauty of a fireplace it should be anything but!) I’d add this graphic floor rug under and in front of the couch to bring some pattern into the picture and cozy up the sitting area without distracting from what’s obviously a gorgeous view outside those massive windows.

Rugs in the kitchen can be controversial, but I’m all for them! Pretreating and spot removal are no big deal, and I always feel like a floor rug makes the space that everyone naturally gravitates toward that much more welcoming. The clean lines in this kitchen, paired with touches like that lovely chalkboard, are asking for a little something extra. This rug holds true to the aesthetic that’s already been outlined and manages to make me want to spend hours chatting there even more.

For more inspiration from Kelly, follow along with her at Design Crush!

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6 Ways to Add Texture to Your Bedroom

AVE Styles

I’m in all-out nesting mode for autumn – the house is decorated for Halloween, all of the plants have been brought indoors until spring, and I’m making a few changes in each room to add that cozy factor. You know what I’m talking about, that thing that makes you sigh with relief when you walk into your home and just feel good. My biggest focus is on the bedroom because it really is the ultimate nest and I tend to spend a little more time in their when it’s chilly outside. (You, too?) And the thing that makes the biggest difference is adding texture in droves.

#1 Bring in the plants
Maybe you’re a crazy plant lady and have a ton or maybe one large one will do just fine. Some plants – like lavender, ivy, spider plants, and snake plants – are even proven to help you get a better sleep! That bright green color is also sure to add some much-needed energy come cold winter mornings.


#2 Bountiful blankets
It’s common sense to add an extra blanket or two to your bed come this time of year, but think beyond that. Mix different patterns and textures together to get those dive-right-in vibes. Choose something with a heavy knit or some fluff that begs to be touched to take things over the top.

Urban Outfitters

#3 The Headboard
If you don’t have a headboard consider adding (or making) one. Something like the tufted one above that simply hangs on the wall would make the perfect cushion to lean against while reading at night or enjoying a weekend breakfast in bed.

Sarah Sherman Samuel

#4 Purposeful baskets
Add some texture and practical storage at the same time by bringing in a few woven baskets. Put them up high on a wardrobe, under a nightstand, or at the foot of the bed. You could even use one to hide the pot of that big plant you’re going to bring in!

Urban Outfitters-1

#5 Change up the curtains
Maybe you have boring blinds (hello, renters!) or prefer no window coverings at all, but adding – or changing up – curtains for the cooler months has a money-saving benefit as well as aesthetic. Cover your windows to help keep the heat inside! The heavier the material you choose, the more of a barrier between the glass and your heating bill.

The Jungalow

#6 Add it to the walls
A piece of fiber art can add a pop of artistic interest to your walls or even double as a headboard. Consider stepping outside the box and getting really creative with a shaggy, patterned rug instead. This way you can always relegate back to the floor when you want to change things up or spring arrives, whichever comes first!


For more inspiration from Kelly, follow along with her at Design Crush!

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Back in Black: Black Interior Inspiration

Francesco Lagnese
Francesco Lagnese

I’m all about white walls. They set off art incredibly well, they make any space feel instantly larger, and they generally create a canvas for whatever you put within their bounds. But lately I’ve been paying much more attention to the dark side, that is to say, black walls and accents. I love the moodiness they bring with them and appreciate their altogether different type of sophistication.

This being October, and with colder weather slowly creeping up on us, my first inclination would be to paint a bedroom a medium black from floor to ceiling. A cozy, cave-like atmosphere surely awaits at the bottom of that paint bucket.

Suburban B's

You don’t need intricate woodwork or even wainscoting or a chair rail for this classic half and half look. In act, if you’re nervous about going too dark in a room or have one without much sunlight, this might be the answer. This dining room is my favorite example because of its unexpected twist – going dark on the top half rather than the bottom and painting the ceiling as well. You might expect it to feel heavy, but I find it to feel quite the opposite.

Blair Harris

Painting walls is generally easy, painting cabinets a little more involved but well worth the effort. Not only is black a great way to update older cabinets, it also makes them feel uber chic when paired with those brass pulls. One of the beauties of black is that it goes with just about everything so your backsplash will probably feel refreshed as well.

Marie-Lyne Quirion

This look is really interesting to me, it’s called shou sugi ban and it’s a Japanese technique that involves burning the surface of a certain type of wood to give them a rich black finish. Traditionally the technique is used on home exteriors because it protects them from the elements, but it’s slowly making its way indoors as well. I love it for the naturally black finish it can add to any space.

le Fashion

Okay, so maybe you’re not ready to add this much black to your home. I get it. But black furniture can add its own brand of appeal, making any room look more expensive through its presence. Whether you want to update a piece you already own or are on the hunt for something new keep black in mind as a worthy option. Of course, you can always add a rug as well…

Black rugs

For more inspiration from Kelly, follow along with her at Design Crush!

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