Wallpaper in Bathrooms? Yes, Please!

Refined or graphic, wallcoverings can change the feel of a space in an instant

Bathroom sink with leafy wallpaper

Wallpaper in bathrooms is the ideal place to try out a bold print. The smaller square footage would be less overwhelming than a larger one. Choose a graphic pattern to add drama to a neutral space. Alternatively, a subtle design can add just the right amount of interest.

Understandably, the moisture issue is often what causes renovators to hesitate. Whether a powder room or a full bath, wallpaper in bathrooms is now often made to withstand water conditions, thanks to improved adhesives. Plus, there are vinyl, waterproof wallpaper options. Even many non-vinyl wallpapers are washable (in case of soap or toothpaste stains), water-resistant, and scrubbable.

Most bathrooms have some kind of ventilation—either an exhaust connected to your heating/cooling system or a window. As long as there isn’t lingering humidity in the room, you shouldn’t have a problem. Here, Sweeten showcases 12 renovations with expressive walls.

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Wallpaper in bathrooms with bold looks

wallpaper in bathrooms with green florals and yellow painted ceiling
Blue powder room with pedestal sink and patterned wallpaper after renovation
Herringbone wallpaper and slate looking tiles
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(1st slide) Artist Katy Garry channeled interior designer Dorothy Draper, known for her use of exuberant color and pattern, for her first-floor bathroom. She loved the surprise of opening the door to Dorothy Draper’s Brazilliance Grove Stripe Green wallpaper and a chartreuse-painted ceiling. Katy joked to her husband “that splurgy wallpaper was more important than running water.”

(2nd slide) With no need for a bathtub on the parlor floor of this Tudor townhouse, interior designer Meredith converted a full bath into a half bath. (The remaining space was used for a pantry). The new powder room was perfectly charming: a Brooklyn Toile on the walls designed by Beastie Boys’ Mike D for Flavor Paper offset geometric floor tiles in the same color scheme.

(3rd slide) Living in their home during the renovation, Alicia and Ed realized their master bathroom needed a facelift. To stay within their budget, the couple kept the bathtub, flooring, and toilet and instead focused on key cosmetic details. Case in point? Their herringbone wallpaper by Ferm Living fit right in with the clean, calm vibe.

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Wallpaper in bathrooms with floral patterns

Bathroom with gold hardware
powder room with floral wallpaper orange door blue and white floor tile
bathroom with blue, yellow, pink floral wallpaper
bathroom with leaf wallpaper black wall tile and orange floor tile
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(1st slide) Inspired by Instagram, Allison tried out a bold wallpaper to balance the neutral tile in her family’s bathroom. It was also windowless so the pop of color was welcomed. She wasn’t sure how she felt about the pattern so she purchased it as a peel-and-stick. It turns out it started to peel every time the shower was turned on. At that point, she loved the wallpaper pattern designed by Rifle Paper Co. and had the traditional paste version installed. Allison reported no issues with moisture! 

(2nd slide) “Powder rooms should be wacky,” insisted Sweeten renovator Nazli. She practiced what she preached by choosing a bright red-orange door that opens to a tiny but lushly Cole & Sons wallpapered half bath that is located next to their dining room. Add brass fixtures and a Moroccan-inspired tile pattern to the floor, and the result is one-of-a-kind!

(3rd slide) It took two years for Brooke and Sam to find the right home for their family. And when they did, they had fun using wallpaper to give her daughter’s bathroom personality. Thinking ahead, sophisticated gray and white tiles were the permanent elements that a future buyer would appreciate. However, the blue, pink, and yellow floral wallpaper from Chasing Paper was the decorative item that brought the space to life.

(4th slide) Alex and Tom were initially planning to just tackle a kitchen reno, but ultimately decided the bathroom deserved a redo, too. They brought in details to align with the earthy scheme throughout the home with a large-scale leaf wallpaper from Calico, a walnut vanity, and vertically-laid black tiles.

When you’re ready to get started on your bathroom or home remodel, work with Sweeten to renovate with the best contractors.

Wallpaper in bathrooms with whimsical designs

wallpaper in bathrooms with black hexagon tiles in a small bathroom with brown floating vanity and white bathtub after renovation
wallpaper in bathrooms with wood shelf and walk in shower
powder room with graphic wallpaper and round vanity mirror
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(1st slide) Bellamy and Zack’s first-floor bath featured a peel-and-stick wallcovering called Speckle Dot. Luckily, the space was an easy update, thanks to its already functional layout. After a rip-and-replace of the fixtures, the couple tested out their DIY skills and added this jaunty black-and-white paper.

(2nd slide) Brett and Terri stuck with a monochrome white-and-gray palette to make their bathroom feel bigger and brighter. To break up the floor-to-ceiling subway tile, Terri found a subtle aquatic-themed wallpaper from Hygge and West, Underwater World, that adds a whimsical touch to the guest bath.

(3rd slide) Sweeten homeowners Kirsty and David didn’t want to sell the home they had lived in for 12 years. Their 1924 house would be renovated to live in for the long-term and gut renovated down to the framing. 

The couple opened up the interiors and modernized the exterior architecture. Design-wise,  they sought a Scandinavian-modern look with Mid-Century and industrial touches. It extended into a powder room that was a small space. It received a compact sink and vanity. The size was just right for this Drop It wallpaper with a pattern—graphic yet pacifying. “I wanted all eyes to be on the geometric wallpaper,” said Kirsty.

Bonus: Two bathrooms with feature walls

Two bonus bathrooms that feature wallpaper designs that complement other features of the renovation, in this case, tile.

Bathroom with floral lemon print light blue yellow wallpaper

This powder room features tile that compliments the wallpaper perfectly. This homeowner kept scrolling through Pinterest until they found a pattern and color that they couldn’t live without. 


palm leaf print wallpaper

Sweeten handpicks the best general contractors to match each project’s location, budget, and scope, helping until project completion. Follow the blog for renovation ideas and inspiration and when you’re ready to renovate, start your renovation on Sweeten.

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