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Beautiful Bathrooms Can be Places of Refuge

The bathroom is the room where most of us begin and end the day. We talk with spouses and family members as we get ready, answer phone calls, make shopping lists, daydream, pamper ourselves, and face the harsh realities the mirror tells us.

The bathroom has become a place to indulge ourselves and/or find peace and refuge. If this sounds familiar, why not make it a place of beauty, support, and healing?

Today, many new homes have the closet and bathroom together, creating a dressing room. It makes access to clothing more convenient and combines all our personal needs in one area.

Bath areas have an abundance of tiles to select from - which come in an array of colors, textures and beautiful and interesting designs. Combining tile and carpet adds warmth to the all-tile look and feel.

Mixing lighting is a smart way to support the many different needs in the space. A ceiling light that is fluorescent will not add to the heat of the room and is right for the makeup and shaving area if a natural daylight bulb is used. This can be combined with a wall sconce to balance the appropriate light for colors when applying makeup.

A heat lamp placed when you are dressing after a shower or bath provides warmth. Mood lighting can be joined with the functional lighting and put on rheostats. Lamps give a cozy and warm feel to the hard and cold materials used. And don't forget the romantic and healing effects of candles.

Plants add charm and a feeling of the outdoors. They should survive due to the moisture, but be sure they have enough light. The containers you place them in are like accessories and can add color and interest.

All the items above can be incorporated in smaller spaces, too. The best and most effective one is the use of mirrors. Mirrors expand the area and can give the bathroom an elegant look. Not only does a mirror make the space appear larger, it eliminates the need for paint, wallpaper, additional tile and pictures.

Luxury and elegance are the words for bathrooms today. And, they are still a place to hide away with your dreams, relieve stress and indulge yourself. In this most personal space, display your favorite lotions, perfumes, and candles. Use soft towels and floor mats that caress your skin - and most of all select colors that soothe you.

Seating can be added for lounging as well as making the space more inviting. The fabric used for the seating adds warmth, sound absorption and color. Rugs can also be used for the same purposes.

And for those who can, some master baths are starting to resemble mini health clubs. They have steam or sauna areas and rooms with mirrored walls, and they're large enough for exercise equipment. They may even include a whirlpool bath in front of a fireplace. Incredibly, the master suite is so large in some homes that it represents one-fourth to one-third of the total square footage of the house. They may even contain entertainment systems to be viewed and used from the tub.

Remember, rooms have no feelings, you do!

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