Aquatic Bathroom Themes: Classic Style Or Design Cliché?

Boats, beaches, fish, and shells – they’re all classic bathroom motifs, but they can become cliché or overdone quickly. Still, that doesn’t mean that you have to avoid these themes altogether. No, if you want to decorate your bathroom with traditional aquatic elements, the key is to find style-forward, innovative approaches to these classic looks.

Start With Unconventional Colors

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Nautical- or beach-themed bathrooms typically rely on colors like sea foam green, light blue, and coral as the foundation for their overall look, but not only are these colors a bored stereotype, they’re also terribly retro. Instead, swap out the pastels for a bolder blue or green accent wall, while keeping the rest of the room white. This styling lets your accents do the talking and makes the room look more modern.

Choose Counter Materials Carefully

Did you know that many building materials naturally contain bits of shell or fossil? It’s true – and these materials are readily available. By opting for a luxury countertop material, particularly marble or river rock tile, you can maintain that beachside aesthetic without pushing it too far.

Consider Atypical Accents

A lot of aquatic and nautical bathrooms lean heavily on baskets of shells, anchors, and photos of ships to decorate the space, but these are precisely the sorts of décor elements that are overdone. They can even seem childish, compared to more sophisticated accent pieces. For an upscale approach to a beachside bathroom, consider buying a real fish fossil to display in your bathroom. A fossil isn’t just a natural piece of art – it’s an investment in your space and one that signals a deeper engagement with your bathroom’s theme.

Make Your Mirror Matter

Statement mirrors are all the rage right now and every bathroom needs at least one great mirror. Rather than just installing a standard medicine chest mirror, then, opt for a mirror that’s also a piece of art. Subtle, wave-like framing or a large mirror with one that features a mermaid, like those traditionally found on the bow of a ship, are not only functional but they’re also unconventional, which is exactly what you need when working within a common theme.

Always Opt For Less

Whether you’re working with a popular bathroom theme like the beach or under the sea, or decorating an eclectic living room, a good rule of thumb is to keep things understated. You don’t need a shower curtain covered in fish, a shell shaped soap dish, and sea foam walls. No, like Coco Chanel’s fashion rule – that before you walk out the door, you should take one thing off – great design demands a little subtlety. Broadening how you think of your theme can help too because selecting more eclectic decorations your space won’t feel “matchy-matchy.” Those are the themed bathrooms that make stylists cringe.

Cutesy décor and over-coordination makes a home look cheap, but the same themes executed with careful styling can look sophisticated and expensive. Even if you’re decorating on a budget, these simple rules can help you turn cliché into classy.

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