Wait Until You See This Dream Bathroom Design!



Spring is in full-swing here in New York and it feels so wonderful. For those of you living in temperate climates who think you miss all four seasons… well… I’ll gladly trade you… Ahh… us humans; we’re never satisfied with what we have.

Now that we’re out of hibernation, I was at the big Bronxville house the other day. These are only cell phone shots and taken very quickly. But, I couldn’t wait to share them now that the bathroom is completely finished!

Everything, and I mean everything is new. We gutted the entire room to create a dream bathroom!

We created a master dream bathroom spa-retreat with a classical French/Swedish feeling. The previous bathroom was a heavy, ornate Italianate style. S never liked it (I hated it) and it was all wrong for this neo-classical Mediterranean Architectural gem built circa 1910. We chose Carrera Bianco as our white marble. I designed the Greek Key border, but S wanted something more, so we added the hexagon field in the center. I think it adds a lovely dimension and is just enough. S wanted a couple of chairs and I found these at Europe To You when I was at Americasmart last summer. The shades are lined linen gauze, mounted just below the x windows so that we can see the design!

Please also note the fabulous job that Stuart Newsome did with the radiator covers! Just gorgeous! The grilles came from Architectural Grilles. They have a large selection, but I thought this pattern and size would do the trick. We also added flat paneled wainscoting around on the walls.

dream-bathroom-gustavian-cabinet (1)

On the wall is our fabulous grisaille wallpaper from Cole and Son at Lee Jofa. And the gorgeous Gustavian-style wardrobe from Chelsea Textiles. And yes, folks, that IS a ginormous crack in the door. I seem to have the worst luck with these armoire doors.

Not to worry, she’s getting a whole new piece in a few weeks.

S didn’t want a bathtub, but there’s a beautiful tiled shower.


I looked high and low for the perfect Venetian Mirrors in both size and style to go over each sink. Finally I found a perfect one! Love the nickel faucets from Perrin and Rowe.


The vanity design is based on a French buffet piece I found.


Everything has a story.

There are two of these sweet chandeliers in the room. They sat in their boxes for weeks before they were opened. When that day arrived, one of them was smashed beyond repair. I contacted the vendor and they were wonderful about it. They told me that we could have a refund, however, they didn’t have another one like the other one as they are “discontinued.”

I figured there was a chance that I could find another one like the one that wasn’t broken.

Here’s a helpful hint on what to do if you ever find yourself in a similar situation.

You take the SKU (Stock Keeping Unit) number and put it in your google search box. Do a search and then hit images.


I contacted the vendor. Very nice. She said she would see if they still had this one available. She wasn’t sure. She called me back an hour later and said that she did! Hooray.

Please pack it like it’s going on the outside of the space shuttle. Okay?


The marble floor again with its Greek Key pattern. LURV! And the bottom of our piece de resistance built-in beauty with X doors. Some of you may recall that we had some inspiration kitchens for our kitchen.


I fell in love with those mirrored x doors in this fabulous kitchen by O’Brien-Harris.  It didn’t work out for our kitchen but then it came to me that we could design the built-in cabinet in the bathroom with similar doors.  Somewhere in the design process I realized that the mirror behind the X would’ve been too much. So, we kept the X as an overlay over wood. I think it was a great decision. This is a good reason not to rush things!


Well, there it is… Well, most of it. There are some other parts I haven’t photographed yet.



7th edition rolodex-post-graphic - November 2020 - A unique shopping guide with hundreds of sources created by Laurel Bern

  • Teri - August 16, 2015 - 9:37 PM

    Laurel, do you ever spec that bianco carrara on the actual shower floor? I have had problems with that. The tile is so transparent that it appears to darken when wet and stays that way. I was going to have the contractor rectify it with a darker gray hex marble, but as time goes by, it is becoming more uniform and looks like a variation in the marble rather than a drainage problem (which it isn’t). I did some research on this and found out that I am not alone. Just wondering what your experience with it has been like.ReplyCancel

  • Diane - August 16, 2015 - 12:28 AM

    This bathroom is perfection!! I am saving all of your wonderful ideas for they day I can bomb my 80’s master bathroom and start over!! You are so talented and your blog is so inspiring. Love it!ReplyCancel

  • Rhea - May 2, 2015 - 5:57 AM

    Beyond beautiful!!
    This bathroom is exactly why I love this blog! Never get enough of your work! I read every blog and than read again. And thank you so much for the wealth of information.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - May 2, 2015 - 10:34 AM

      Hi Rhea, I was incredibly fortunate with this job to have both a fabulous old home and a client with a handsome budget! Thank you so much!ReplyCancel

  • Terri Davis - May 2, 2015 - 5:06 AM

    So very , very beautiful! Well done! Congratulations! Love your style!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - May 2, 2015 - 10:32 AM

      Thanks so much Terri and for your sharing too! Much appreciated!ReplyCancel

  • Sandy - May 1, 2015 - 7:48 PM

    WOW. I have a feeling we’ll be seeing this in some major shelter publications and a lot of web slideshows (“10 gorgeous bathrooms” ) in the years to come! It’s one of those iconic rooms that people save in their wish/inspiration files forever!
    Every detail is perfect–such a beautiful balance between classic/romantic and masculine/feminine. The strong lines of the cabinetry and geometric Greek key pattern against the ephemeral wallpaper pattern and curvy Venetian mirrors — mixed with those hinting-at-organic-contemporary chandeliers– is truly inspired. The effect is quiet luxury but modern at the same time. Maybe modern because even though almost every element in the room is traditional, it’s a fresh (and masterful) mix!

    Aside from the inspiration (because it is SO ridiculously close to the vision I have for my own circa 1912 MBR…someday :)) , I love how you always share all of the snags and glitches that are so inevitable with any project–the cracked cabinet door (although it didn’t bother me–I assumed it was distressed/vintage/antique with a backstory, like the Liberty Bell?), the shattered chandelier (and it being discontinued–SUCH a familiar issue–and great advice on your part. It may only be available from a 3rd party on eBay, but if you’re looking for it and it’s out there, Google will find it!)
    As for the mirror wholesalers, this is an issue close to my heart–there are still some to-the-trade suppliers who have the store-stockist/minimum order mentality, but most have come around to the fact that independent B&M stores are disappearing fast and if they want to survive they need to be designer-friendly!
    The one detail you didn’t mention in this post that I’m really curious about is the doorknob. It’s clearly either vintage or reproduction but either way I can’t place the period-could be anything from victorian era to 1970’s baroque.
    Whatever it is, I love it!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - May 1, 2015 - 8:34 PM

      How kind you are Sandy! Actually, the doorknob is the only thing that was there already. I don’t know where she got it. The original architecture in this home is so astonishing and one can tell that the architect put his heart and soul into this design. One of the most amazing facets is that the home is actually built into a huge granite hill. In the back of the house, you have to climb up four stories, just to get to the front door!ReplyCancel

  • Demytrik Woodfork - April 30, 2015 - 2:04 PM

    This bathroom is OMG STUNNING! Sorry to yell at you, Lauren. It is just that beautiful. I love your blog!!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 3:10 PM


  • Vee Evans - April 30, 2015 - 1:33 PM

    Oh my! Laurel, it’s beyond beautiful! You’re so talented. And the homeowner is soooo lucky. What a beautiful room. Put in a wine fridge, a comfy chair for reading along with surround sound and I’d never leave this room. Bravo!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 3:13 PM

      Thanks so much Vee! You’d think that there would be surround sound, but the client just wanted a little niche for her Bose. So that’s what the contractor did. It’s by the toilet; you really don’t see it.ReplyCancel

  • Chris - April 30, 2015 - 11:14 AM

    These beautiful cabinets have a hint of f grey going on, on my monitor at least. Could it be White Dove?ReplyCancel

  • Linda Knopsnyder - April 30, 2015 - 9:47 AM

    Stunning! I can’t wait to see more pics of this beautiful bathroom. Will you post before pics as well?ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 12:21 PM

      Oh gosh Linda. I thought I took before pics, but I have no idea where they are. I must get better about that. I think my client has them but I don’t want to bug her too much about that. I can describe it though. It was a dark walnut (I think) vanity, heavily carved with cabriole legs on top of the cabriole legs and serpentine front. Gawdy and awkward. There was a mirror BETWEEN the 2 sinks. hmmmm… then, a vanity where the built in is with corner open shelves. The floor was a one foot square checkerboard marble, a light gold with a terracotta yucky color. Some people would’ve loved it— I guess. ;]ReplyCancel

  • Karen Savage - April 30, 2015 - 8:40 AM

    Just gorgeous Laurel! You are so talented (and funny 2)!! Thanks for sharing with us!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 12:13 PM

      Thanks Karen! Yeah… I was always the class clown! One thing about writing is it gives me a chance to filter (a little bit at least) my big mouth! haha!ReplyCancel

  • Janet - April 30, 2015 - 8:25 AM

    I flipped for the wallpaper! So subtle, so perfect.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 12:10 PM

      I know… I just wrote on another comment how it was brand new! So lucky on that one! Thanks for stopping by Janet!ReplyCancel

  • Kristie Barnett, TheDecorologist - April 30, 2015 - 8:06 AM

    Your bathroom design is incredibly gorgeous!!! It’s like heaven in there 🙂ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 12:09 PM

      Hi Kristie! Thanks for stopping by! I can’t believe all the comments today! It warms my heart. I was incredibly lucky to get this job. Homes like this don’t come around very often!ReplyCancel

  • Veronica - April 30, 2015 - 7:43 AM

    Oh no! I just read back my comment after posting it and every word is misspelt. Lol. Please feel free to edit. I am commenting from a new phone that apparently doesn’t autocorrect like my old one did.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 12:00 PM

      haha! Thanks Veronica. I’ve been there. I hate typoes and missspelt werds lol. The wallpaper was actually my client’s idea. The directive was just “I want wallpaper.” I’m thinking hmmm… REALLY? There is wallpaper everywhere which was a challenge, but I think we pulled it off. I knew it had to be something grisaille but there really wasn’t anything except something for $10k+! Then, this paper from Cole and Son was just coming out in England. They didn’t even have it here yet! I only had seen it online. So, I had to call England for a sample. By the time we were ready for it, they had started stocking it here, but JUST.ReplyCancel

  • Veronica - April 30, 2015 - 7:37 AM

    Such a beautiful bathroom! I’m so glad you didn’t do mirrored doors as the x overlayed on wood looks gorgeous! Love the wallpaper and chandeliers! Awesome job.ReplyCancel

  • Cathy Dickson - April 30, 2015 - 7:36 AM

    Congratulations Laurel! It’s my ideal perfect bathroom. I love every detail; the Xs, Perrin and Rowe, the marble. Sigh. Thanks for sharing, CathyReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 11:52 AM

      I’m sighing right along with you Cathy! This was an opportunity that I’ve never had before! And while the vision was mine, I had some amazing craftsmen who brought it all to fruition! Most of my clients don’t have the means for something like this, so I feel most fortunate. Still, you can throw money at a room and it can be pretty horrid! Right?ReplyCancel

  • Gina - April 30, 2015 - 6:54 AM

    Beautiful!!!! You have such a passion for this kind of detail and it’s fabulous! You mentioned she “S” didn’t want a bathtub. What are people doing in master baths that have the space for a big tub and shower? I realize this is an older home so there likely wasn’t room for both in this instance, but are you finding many people not wanting the big jetted tubs? We have one now and rarely use it. Thoughts??ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 11:38 AM

      Hi Gina, Thanks for the lovely comment. Actually, there was plenty of room for a bath. It would’ve gone where the free-standing cabinet is. It’s quite a large bathroom. Years ago the homeowners removed a closet and added it to the bathroom. It was where the built in is. I’ve never had a client that wanted a big jetted tub. Or at least they didn’t have me do it!ReplyCancel

  • Emilia - April 30, 2015 - 5:59 AM

    Truly beautiful, creative yet classic. Just lovely. Could you tell us the name of the paint colors used on the walls and woodwork? Is that a solid white quartz countertop? Could you tell us the brand. Thanks much. Such perfection in choice of all details. Like an orchestra playing perfectly.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 11:34 AM

      Hi Emilia,

      Thank you so much! The paint color is Benjamin Moore White Dove oc-17. All of the marble except for the inlay darker color is Carrera Bianco which is whiter than the typical Carrera.ReplyCancel

  • Nancy - April 30, 2015 - 5:56 AM

    Soooo, what kind of paint and what color did you use on that beautiful cabinetry and woodwork?

    That is seriously one gorgeous bathroom!


    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 11:31 AM

      Thanks so much Nance! That is Benjamin Moore White Dove oc-17ReplyCancel

      • Nanc - April 30, 2015 - 12:41 PM

        I have Cloud White on my woodwork but am thinking about going to White Dove–I think it’s a bit creamier.

        Do your painters use the BM Advance paint? Satin Impervo is getting so expensive and hard to find!ReplyCancel

        • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 1:35 PM

          I prefer the Advance to Satin Impervo but as always a skilled painter is very important. Yes, WD is slightly creamier.

  • Chris - April 30, 2015 - 1:48 AM

    After drooling over your bathroom above, I moved on to your post on fun ways to decorate your bathroom/loo…and I ran into something you wrote that made me hyperventilate…you wrote NEVER use water- based poly, and you hate the new oil-based too! On MONDAY, my floor team is doing my new floor, almost the whole house, with water-base in low sheen!!! Gads, my weekend is shot. Quick story, the house had lots of maple floor, so I had to go with maple to do the rest of the house….my contractor said this poly will not make the maple go yellow or orange as oil-base does… but will retain the whiteness of the raw maple! Is he selling me a bill of goods? What should it do? I hate to ask off topic, I really do, but if you have it in your heart, just give me one word on what to do…and I will be your slave for the next 8 months.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 2:10 AM

      Why only 8? hahaha! sorry to make light when you are suffering here, Chris. But rest easy. Maple is another animal. Around these parts, wood floors are 95% oak and after that comes pine or walnut. However, he is right. If you want to retain the pale whiteness of maple, then a clear water-based poly is the way to go. Same holds true for a bleached white painted floor.

      The issue with water-based poly is that it just doesn’t hold up nearly as well as oil based. So, just bear that in mind and maybe not wear hard soled shoes in the house. Chain all pets outside and give your children away.

      Oh, and thank you for the kind, kind words about THE bathroom. It truly was a labor of love!ReplyCancel

      • Chris - April 30, 2015 - 11:09 AM

        I just shot out of bed like a kid on Christmas morning to see if there was an answer here after posting late last night. Oh, thanks Lauren, you are the best! That is a big relief knowing the Maple floors will stay realatively white and neutral with water-based poly. They look gorgeous now, just being sanded with nothing on them, wish I could keep them like that, but know that would never work, oh the dreck! Yes, I will chain my two fur monster babies outside on a big stake, with their 9″ claws (kidding:). Should you ever come to my little island in the Pacific North-west, I will be your indentured servant forever!ReplyCancel

        • Laurel Bern - April 30, 2015 - 12:25 PM

          Hi Chris, Happy to help! I love wood floors just sanded too! I wonder if there’s a way to keep that look and keep the wood protected as well. Oh, it must be so beautiful where you live!

          Really, all I want is a hot gay guy (thong optional) to rub my aching feet!

  • Chris - April 30, 2015 - 1:44 AM

    This is off topic, but after drooling over your bathroom above, I moved on to your post on fun ways to decorate your bathroom/loo…and I ran into something you wrote that made me hyperventilate…you wrote NEVER use water- based poly, and you hate the new oil-based too! On MONDAY, my floor team is doing my new floor, almost the whole house, with water-base in low sheen!!! Gads, my weekend is shot. Quick story, the house had lots of maple floor, so I had to go with maple to do the rest of the house….my contractor said this poly will not make the maple go yellow or orange as oil-base does… but will retain the whiteness of the raw maple! Is he selling me a bill of goods? What should it do? I hate to ask off topic, I really do, but if you have it in your heart, just give me one word on what to do…and I will be your slave for the next 8 months.ReplyCancel

  • Chris - April 30, 2015 - 1:08 AM

    Laurel, this is friggin bloody perfection! E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G! You have singlehandedly just raised the bar for bathrooms worldwide.ReplyCancel