Modern minimalists in finding home design inspiration tend to be fluent in Instagram from Sarah Sherman Samuel. Designer and influencer pages are awash with flashy scenes that stand out in the internet’s sea of homogenous home decor. Samuel’s style may seem simple at first, but the careful layering of colors and patterns creates something truly unique. And while the designer typically uses soothing natural colors, Samuel recently debuted a boldly renovated guest bathroom at his Michigan home that takes his effortless look to Parisian levels.
The goal: a guest bathroom that could take visitors to the boutique hotel, a plan that also allowed Samuel to have a little fun. We are talking about a space with a striking checkerboard pattern with equipment finished in Champagne bronze (warm, but not too blingy). However, the undeniable focal point is Allied Maker candle holder oversized surrounded by marble — not even freestanding bathtub can compete.
This project also offers Samuel the opportunity to finally join own line of doors and drawer fronts with semi handmade. They make semi-custom door fronts for IKEA cabinets and are likely the common denominator behind your favorite kitchen inspiration on Pinterest (the company has worked on previous projects with Karlie Kloss, Emily Henderson, Athena Calderone, and Justina Blakeney).
We spoke with Samuel about the design process, the inspiration behind his bold choice, and advice for aspiring bathroom remodelingists who want to make their space attractive, but not overly so.
You mentioned wanting the guest bathroom to have a boutique hotel feel. Is there a destination that inspires you?
Sarah Sherman Samuel: I was inspired by my trip to Paris — special touches in Parisian cafes and classic motifs plaid pattern.
Allied Maker’s oversized score is incredible. Do you have a favorite feature about space?
The wood finish of the chandelier is gorgeous, and the marble accents around the chandelier make that focal point my favorite feature.
What items do you always make sure to have in the guest bathroom when visitors are done?
I like to leave a bottle of filtered water with a drinking glass, a freshly washed towel and bath salts to soak in.
I love how bold the colors are. For those who want to try something beyond neutral, would you recommend designing a guest bathroom?
I wanted to highlight the Desert Gray color of my semihandmade collection (this is the first time I’ve used my own Quarterline collection), and I matched it to color for paint and used it on ceilings, doors, and trim to get really bold. By becoming a guest room — because it’s not a room you use every day — you can be a little more adventurous and have some fun with the design.
Any words of wisdom for those trying to have a little fun with their own guest bathroom designs?
Build around a central focal point for an attractive but not overwhelming room.
Describe the aesthetics of the room in three simple adjectives: Bold, wise, attractive.