Don’t let good taste go down the drain in the bath­room

The Hamilton Spectator - - STYLE - JURA KONCIUS The Washington Post

Whether your bath­room is your own per­sonal spa or a tiny space shared with three room­mates, it should be a place of order, fresh­ness and calm.

Take a good, hard look around, says de­signer Shaz­a­lynn Cavin-Win­frey of SCW In­te­ri­ors in Alexan­dria, Virginia.

“The per­fect look and feel of a bath­room is one that meets the end users’ needs,” she says. “It’s dif­fer­ent for ev­ery­one, but I think that a space that is func­tional and flex­i­ble is key. And your bath­room should be the clean­est room in your home.”

Cavin-Win­frey says she is amazed at how many things peo­ple leave scat­tered on bath­room van­i­ties, shelves and floors.

“I think a bath­room should al­ways be un­clut­tered. The av­er­age hu­man makes so many choices and scans so much in­for­ma­tion in a given day — your daily rit­u­als at home should be easy to main­tain and not re­quire any ex­tra work to find things you need.”

Al­ways keep­ing the bath­room tidy has its ben­e­fits, in­clud­ing be­ing ready for guests at all times, she says: “That can help make en­ter­tain­ing stress-free.”

Whether you have a ded­i­cated pow­der room for guests or ev­ery­one must share one bath­room in your home, these dos and don’ts might help you clean up your act.

Don’t put a rug in your bath­room

A bath­room is not a place for wall-towall car­pet­ing or area rugs. These can­not be prop­erly cleaned in this en­vi­ron­ment. Think of the germs on a bath­room floor and how a damp rug or mat could be a mag­net for mould. Cavin-Win­frey sug­gests pro­vid­ing a ma­chine-wash­able bath mat (with or without rub­ber back­ing) for use right af­ter a shower or bath. Then let this dry on the side of the tub or shower when not in use. She uses the no-slip CB2 lat­eral teak bath mat ($40, cb2.com).

Do stock both bar and liq­uid soap

In a pow­der room, Cavin-Win­frey prefers a pump bot­tle so there is no gooey soap bar left in a pool of wa­ter by a pre­vi­ous guest. She would choose El­iz­a­beth W’s Ve­tiver hand wash ($22, eliz­a­bethw.com). If you have a guest stay­ing the night, it’s a nice wel­com­ing ges­ture to leave a fresh bar of soap atop a stack of clean tow­els on the bed. She likes Crab­tree & Eve­lyn goat milk soap ($8, crab­tree-eve­lyn.com).

Don’t think of toi­let pa­per as an ac­ces­sory

Stack­ing a Costco-size tower of toi­let pa­per rolls next to the toi­let is not nec­es­sary or at­trac­tive. Why not re­duce clut­ter and store your roll stock­pile in a linen closet or in the garage? If you like to keep a roll or two nearby, use a small holder that fits nicely on the tank or dis­creetly on the floor.

So many of her clients needed an at­trac­tive TP or­ga­nizer, Cavin-Win­frey now sells this Mata­hari woven rat­tan two-roll model ($72.50, scwin­te­ri­ors.com). Also, it’s thought­ful to have a box of tis­sues around so guests won’t have to rip off a piece of toi­let pa­per to blow their nose or ad­just makeup. Ex­tra points for a tis­sue box cover, such as the one in white lac­quer from the Con­tainer Store ($13, con­tain­er­store.com).

Do min­i­mize prod­ucts

Your shower, bath­tub ledges and coun­ter­tops should not look like you are a tester for a sham­poo or beauty com­pany. Elim­i­nate the ex­cess and store items not used daily else­where.

“I my­self am a prod­uct junkie but find unique ways to con­tain clut­ter with small trays around the tub or the van­ity,” Cavin Win­frey says. “If your shower doesn’t have an in­te­grated niche, con­sider wire bas­kets to mount on the tile.”

She prefers the WEBI 12½-inch rec­tan­gu­lar stain­less-steel wire caddy ($29, ama­zon.com), which should be fixed to the wall. As for pre­scrip­tion drugs, med­i­ca­tions or per­sonal-hy­giene prod­ucts, tuck them in­side a cab­i­net or drawer.

Don’t use plas­tic bags to line bath­room trash cans

Do you want to take your style tips from mo­tels? Hope­fully not, so don’t use your Tar­get bag as a trash liner, Cavin-Win­frey says, or buy rolls of mini trash-can lin­ers. It seems wrong for the planet to be buy­ing small plas­tic bags to cor­ral trash in your teeny-tiny waste­bas­ket, she says. In­stead, buy good-look­ing metal or re­cy­cled plas­tic waste­bas­kets that can be eas­ily and fre­quently wiped out and san­i­tized.

Do use hooks for bath tow­els, not bars

How many peo­ple neatly fold their large tow­els when they hang them up over a bar? Do you re­ally ex­pect guests to do that? Hang­ing tow­els on an over­size hook makes them dry faster and looks less messy, Cavin-Win­frey says. She of­ten uses the large Restora­tion Hard­ware Spritz hook ($39, restora­tionhard­ware.com) in her projects. Us­ing a bar is fine for hand tow­els, though.

ANGIE SECKINGER, THE WASHINGTON POST

Take ad­van­tage of the vertical space in a small bath­room, says de­signer Shaz­a­lynn Cavin-Win­frey. A tall cab­i­net or a medicine cab­i­net over the toi­let can make a big dif­fer­ence.

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