The Cottage Bath

Lately, we've received numerous requests for photos of the Cottage bath. While the room is actually larger than you might think, it's designed in a way that makes it tough to photograph, meaning we have very few images available:

I'm often asked how we keep the bathroom organized and uncluttered, given its small size. Here are some of my top tips:

  1. Only buy what you REALLY need:
    • I know this sounds basic, and it is. But controlling what you bring into your home is the best way to avoid accumulating clutter and wasting your money. We have ONE shampoo dispenser. ONE pet wash. ONE body wash. Etc. You don't have to come up with creative storage solutions when you don't have too much to store in the first place!
  2. Upcycle:
    • I keep my makeup in an old metal hardware drawer set that I found on ETSY (reference: photo #7). I spray-painted the box, applied liners to the base of each drawer, and used the original metal hardware organizers within the drawers to keep my palettes and tools separated and easy to find.  
  3. Functional decor:
    • If you have limited cabinet space, try organizing your must-have items (such as spare toilet paper, extra cotton, etc.) in containers that fit with your style-- that way you can keep them out on display as functional decor.  For example, we stash our extra bath goods in a white metal mop bucket from West Elm.
  4. Save counter space:
    • Limited surface space? Try organizing your jewelry in slim hardware drawers. They come in varying sizes and depths, and are easy to stash in cabinets and next to sink U-bends. I purchased one like this years ago, which I keep in the vanity in front of our spare towels and travel pouches. It not only saves us counter space, but it also saves us time. This organizer helps me expedite my out-the-door routine on a daily basis, as I rarely have to untangle chains, and I don't have to sift through pouches to find the item(s) I'm looking for.
  5. Purge:
    • Don't let expired bottles, nearly-empty beauty products, and samples you've never used clutter up your limited space. Routinely clean out your medicine cabinet and drawers. Donate extra products to your local community housing corp or homeless shelter. 
  6. DIY:
    • Save money and get creative! Try making your own racks and/or curtain rods. Instead of buying a standard metal towel rack, I opted to craft one of my own. All it required was jute twine, S hooks (to hang towels and accessories), screw eyes (to secure the unit into the ceiling), and a wooden branch I found at my sister's wedding in Idaho. My good friend Lindsay over at Casa Joshua Tree did the same thing while renovating her house in the desert, and look at how great it turned out:

Our bathroom is a little too long for a standard bathmat to cover the necessary floor space, but it's definitely too small for two throws or a larger area rug. I searched Etsy and easily found alternatives to typical bathmats that have all worked beautifully over the years.

Lastly, for some strange reason, there is a recent story circulating that claims the Cottage is a converted garage or guest unit. That is inaccurate. While our home has been updated over the decades, it has always been its own free-standing house, consisting of a main room (including a kitchen), a bedroom, and a bathroom. So no-- we did not have to add the bathroom to our home. The Cottage was one of four identical, neighboring houses built in the 1920s. Three of those four are still standing today. 

Photos by Whitney Leigh Morris & Monica Wang Photo