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3 ways to add French Cottage charm to your bathroom in 5 minutes

5 minute decorating... one of my favorites and one of your favorites.
Because, we all want that gorgeous, well thought out, designed and styled look... 

but in 5 minutes. 

And today, it is about the bathroom. 
You know, bathrooms are one of the most overlooked rooms in the house when it comes to decor.
And yet, you spend a bit of time in them getting ready for the day or an evening out.
 And when guests come over- you know that guest bathroom is going to be used- so why not decorate it just like you would any other space? 

There was a time that bathrooms were all about wallpaper. (I do love that look.)
Or no wallpaper and just plain walls. (It works)
And then we got into wood planks and shiplap everything. 
Side note:
 I have a confession.
 I have not been able to get on the shiplap trend- though I like the look.
I do have wood walls in my house-  but they are knotty pine running top to bottom.
Then there is the marble... ahhh, yes, I have jumped into both feet forward- 
and I love marble in the bathroom, the kitchen, the floor- everywhere.  

But that is something that takes more than an afternoon of planning, diy work and more. 
That is a JOB. And a big one at that.

So what can you do in a bathroom that isn't going to require a bank loan, a demo and overhaul and isn't going to take more than about 5 or 10 minutes? 
Good question. haha.

Well, the answer is- you focus on decor. 

You think about fabrics, accents and pretty little details that can change the look of your room in a snap. And likely - you have them right now in your home.
I recently spruced up the bathroom a bit 
with nothing more than my robe and nightgown, tub board changes and a mirror change.  
Let's take a look.

#1. Mirror mirror on the wall

You might recognize this mirror. It is a fav vintage find. I picked it up in San Diego- along with a twin mirror and they seriously are some of my absolute favorites. 

One of them was on the mantel- and one in the other bathroom.
And then one wasn't. 
It was on the wall behind the tub.

I chose the more distressed mirror for my bathroom and love how it brings that old vintage charm to this mostly newly redesigned space. 
And yes, that mottled reflecting glass is my favorite part.
So first tip- move a mirror or artwork or something else to your bathroom
to give it a fresh look.

#2. Florals and fluff

I am a big time girlie girl kind of girl when it comes to robes and pajamas.
Bring me all the silky pajama pants and shorts with little tank tops, comfy warm slippers and an oversized robe to wrap up in and I am a happy girl at bedtime.
In the bathroom, I have a hook on the wall in between the shower and tub
 that is kind of like my own personal bath hook.
Actually, now since the kids have all moved out- the bathroom is kind of my own personal bathroom since my husband has taken over the kids bathroom.
So it really IS my own personal bath hook now.

So for something pretty to look at while doing double duty,
 I decided to add a pretty nightgown to that hook. One that is all covered in vintage floral print. 
I am going to date myself here- but do you remember those flannel nightgowns covered in itty bitty florals?
I used to wear those  when I was growing up- and this version of  a vintage nightgown
 reminded me of those but in a grown up version.
I think it adds such a huge amount of subtle charm to the bathroom just by being there.

And on the bathtub- a bit of fluff.
Normally this fluff would be hanging next to that floral nightgown as well- and a towel would be on the tub- which you can see in one of the previous photos.
 But think floral and fluff on hooks and the tub for a charming cottage look.

#3. On the tub

This is such an easy one- and I have shared it before but a couple changes.
This tub is a deep soaker.
 Fill it up and it takes the entire hot water tank kind of tub.
And so when you are soaking- you want candles, music, maybe some bath salts and a scrubby brush
because you might be there awhile.
I have the reproduction wood stool in here that holds a lot of stuff while looking charming-
 and I have this simple little bath board.

It is a fancy schmancy board that lays across the tub where I can set things like candles and those lavender bath salts I got for Christmas.
 One that you might find in a Restoration Hardware type catalog.
But do you know where I found it? 

The wood pile. 

It is a simple old, weathered board that I cut to size and set across the tub
 to do some heavy lifting work while looking good.   

So for this simple quick change charm in the bathroom:
 I shopped the house
 shopped my closet 
and shopped the wood pile.
5 minute already on hand decorating is a good thing, right? 

Something else just arrived (that was not on hand obviously since it just arrived)
but that will be going into the bathroom in just a bit as well and 
I will share that next.

Happy 5 minute decorating everyone.


  1. So beautiful! We just moved into our new home and I have just begun the decorating process. Thank you for the inspiration!

  2. I am thinking back to all the icky rentals I lived in when I was young. No point in trying to fix them up, and yet, how to make them charming? Candles. Nice towels. Pretty pots for holding stuff. Some plants.
    Since we got into the AirBnB biz, we focused on beautiful tiles, lots of light and gorgeous mirrors (all bought second-hand...quasi-antiques). So much easier, cheaper and greener than buying new fake-old stuff.

    1. Absolutely!! It doesn't always require a renovation to make it charming.
      Love your ideas!! Thank you for stopping by!

  3. You had me at five minutes until I saw your floors!!!! I love them.....however, I do appreciate the pretty five minute projects you shared, and I think I need a cute little stool near my tub. LOVE it!

  4. Thanks for the bath board idea. We are days away from starting master bath remodel. New bath includes addition of a vintage clawfoot tub. I have lots of wood piles! Sure to find a bath board in one of them.

  5. I love love your bathroom and all the little details make a might beautiful statement

  6. Love the ideas. Thanks for sharing. Would you please share some ideas for updating knotty
    pine walls?

  7. Love this post, Courtney. I have a little stool in our bathroom that was actually a milking stool from my grandparents farm. It is wonderful with old chippy white paint - but it is special for the memories. Love, love your marble!

  8. Love your marble pretty! But my favorite is how you added the board from your wood pile...perfect. =)

  9. ohh yeas! I have knotty pine walls and ceiling in our master bedroom but can't quite get into the cabin look...