Design Lesson: Powder Room Prowess

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Design Lesson: Powder Room Prowess

The design details that pack the biggest punch in the smallest room in the home

By Beka Knight • Photography By Colin Perry

The powder room can be one of the most exciting rooms for designers to work on during a project. It can be an opportunity to have fun with materials and colours, be creative, and let the design speak for itself without anything unnecessary cluttering the space.

The tall vertical mirror adds loftiness and sophistication to the modern design.

The powder room is an important part of any home design because, while it is often one of the smallest rooms in a home, it is also one of the most used. What makes a powder room unique is that it is primarily a place for guests, but much like any room in your home, it must blend both form and function. The design of the powder room can be show-stopping, or it can be a place for guests to feel calm and relaxed. Fortunately, either way, it can be beautiful.

Guidelines for Designing a Powder Room


If you are working with a small space, think vertically. In our projects, we look for tall mirrors or long, elegant lighting to draw the eye up and give the illusion of more space.

The floating vanity and a statement vessel sink are the design features we love for a modern powder room. The smooth softness of a backpainted glass top, next to the textural character of natural stone in the sink, creates a harmonious contrast in this bathroom.


Continuing with the theme of small powder rooms, we often consider doing away with a bulky vanity in a small space. A lesser need for storage means we have more creative options like a floating countertop or sink, perhaps even a pedestal sink or wall-mounted faucet and fixtures.

Because the powder room does not require very many elements, we like to go bold with the sink. A beautifully crafted sink can be a work of art that will delight your guests. Consider using a vessel sink, even if you haven’t in your other bathrooms. A wall-mounted faucet system is another creative idea and a modern and elegant way to save space, and add a luxurious feel to a powder room.

These two powder rooms are both small in scale, but in each design we go big with colour and print. We utilized small vanities and long, elegant mirrors to create height and we allow the wallpaper to make the statement, keeping all of the other details simple and tasteful.


In a powder room where we want to create impact, we love using bold colour or statement wallpaper. It’s amazing how effective bold wallpaper can be at creating conversation, and the small size of the powder room is the perfect place to wow your guests. A print that may seem overwhelming in a living or dining room can be perfect in a powder room. We encourage you to keep the rest of the design details simple and elegant when going for a show-stopping wallpaper or colour.


Another great design feature that works so well in powder rooms is textured wall panels or 3D tiles. This is a feature we like to use in a more modern, subdued space. A textured wall can take the place of art and the repetitive pattern creates a soothing and relaxing atmosphere for your guests.

This powder room is from a luxury project where we utilized beautiful textured stone tiles on the walls, softening the modern space and adding a creative element to the room without the addition of artwork. We were also able to float a bright-white vanity in order to keep the room airy and sophisticated. The
glass-vessel sink is a piece of art itself, which creates harmony and balance in the room by adding texture, reminiscent of water.


Sometimes, all a powder room needs to be truly exceptional are beautifully chosen fixtures and finishes. We recommend that you pay special attention to the lighting in a powder room, and if the space allows it, consider a pendant or other specialty lighting to create luxury and elegance in the room.

The powder room can have a unique style or it can blend seamlessly into the rest of the design. It can be a chance to use an unexpected colour, material or fixture, and it can be one of the most creative rooms to design. Just remember that the design of your powder room requires just as much care and attention as the rest of your home. Do that and it is sure to have your guests feeling pampered and delighted.

With over 20 years design experience, Negar Reihani is known for her elegant and simple approach to high-end, polished interiors that celebrate the tastes and lifestyle of her clients. spaceharmony.ca


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