Basic and boring. Those are two of the terms that John and Susan Gauch relayed to interior designer Andrea Cornwell, ASID, when describing the master bathroom suite in their recently purchased Fayetteville home. Though the house was less than a decade old, the room’s beige walls and brown woodwork felt lackluster to the Gauches, and they sought Cornwell’s help in personalizing the space. “Making it lighter and airier, feminine but not fussy, were top priorities,” notes Susan, who sought a more soothing and inspiring retreat.
Cornwell assessed the suite’s strengths—a large window, a durable porcelain tile floor, plus a spacious floor plan with his-and-her vanity areas separated by a walk-in shower—and devised a plan for keeping those elements intact while updating the space with color, texture and spa-like fixtures. “We chose a subtle color palette of blue, beige and amber,” says Cornwell, “using relaxing shades that lighten the room.”
Soft, textural Venetian plaster with a pale blue tint was applied to the walls, complementing both the dark wood trim and the cream-colored tile floors. The vanities were replaced, achieving a more-modern style with increased storage areas and a warmer finish. Light-reflecting glass mosaic tiles in iridescent amber were used as a counter-to-ceiling backsplash behind the vanities, a move that Susan particularly applauds as a means of brightening the space. Handmade amber glass vessel sinks mounted on top of new marble slab countertops provided additional shimmering accents, as did pivoting mirrors and sconces with glass shades inset above the vanities.
On Susan’s side of the suite, a large built-in bathtub overpowered the space and proved to be uncomfortably roomy. Cornwell replaced it with a freestanding soaking tub, and further enhanced the area by dressing the window with a valance that incorporates the room’s color scheme. Above the tub, she added an organically shaped crystal chandelier as a focal point for the retreat.
“It gave the space the added sense of light that the homeowners wanted and helped Susan’s area feel a bit more feminine,” says Cornwell. “Both sections feel lighter and brighter, more personal, and still non-fussy.”
Builder Hug Radler, Fayetteville
Interior design iSpace Interior Design, Fayetteville
Art Jennifer Libby Fay, Fayetteville
Bathtub, fixtures, sink Ferguson, Springdale
Countertops Midwest Tile Marble & Granite, Springdale
Vanity Kitchen Distributors, Fayetteville
Wall finish Faux Nteriors by Nicole, Fayetteville
Window treatment Interior Fabrics and Design, Fayetteville