When we looked at Amy’s vintage 1964 aqua bathroom recently, I promised I’d make some additional decorating suggestions. One thing reader Sara suggested was playing up the tub/shower at the end of the room with a great shower curtain. Excellent suggestion!

I’ve always been a fan of Calico Corners – so asked their PR department to suggest some fabrics that would work well for a shower curtain and window valence. The came up with some great patterns that would work beautifully in Amy’s bathroom – and which would allow her to keep the vintage aqua tile while still bringing the bathroom into the present with modern-day textiles. Interestingly: Jan Jessup of Calico Corners points out right off the top that turquoise is in!

Jan Jessup from Calico Corners writes:



“I took a look at the vintage bathrooms — and would you believe, that shade of turquoise is in style again!  I think you need a fabric that is as assertive as the tile, in order to carry off the look.  I have three patterns to suggest, and they all happen to come from the same designer, Thomas Paul, who has a very distinctive hand.  Here are links to the fabrics:
  • DAHLIA, color Aegean (use this if you want to bring in some additional colors) – $20.99/yard. [Pam adds: My favorite of the bunch – I think bringing in additional colors would make Amy happy. You could match the rugs to the taupe leaves…and for sure add an accent to play off the chartreuse. I also think the taupe and chartreuse harmonize with the gold of your fabulous liner tile.]
  • SILHOUETTE, color Turquoise (an unusual stylized pattern, very graphic) – $23.99/yard. Note: SILHOUETTE has three other colors that could work, if you wanted to downplay the turquoise: Ebony, Amethyst and Kiwi–they can also be viewed at this same link.
  • AVIARY, color Robin (flowers with stylized birds, also very graphic) – $23.99/yard. Note: there is also an Earth (brown) color of AVIARY that would tie into the accent tile, if the owners want to downplay the aqua color.
….All of these fabrics are in our store in Louisville (not Lexington, I’m sorry)–or we can send small 6″ swatches for a quick color check.  Homeowners can also purchase a large 18″ x 27″ sample, if desired, at a discounted price once they narrow down the candidates, before stepping up to cut yardage. If none of the above fabrics appeal to the homeowners, there are three other patterns on our website that may be candidates.  These are all more multi-colored.  You can type the following into the Search box at the top right and go right to them:
LAMBADA in Robin’s Egg – $18.99/yard  (tropical floral)
ROWLILY in Palm Beach – $25.99/yard    (tropical floral)
PROMENADE in Blue Sky – $27.99/yard  (multi-color stripe)
Hope this is helpful…
Thanks, Jan! I want to especially what Jan said about “assertiveness” in decorating. If you are working with strong colors, you must take that into account with your complementary and accent colors – be careful, if you go too namby pamby with the soft pastels, they will just fade into nothingness. Blah. Amy actually is right on the mark with strong-ish brown rugs to counter the assertiveness of the tiles – that is certainly a viable direction – as also evidenced by Jan’s suggestion for brown AVIARY as another choice for the shower curtain.

  1. Mooski says:

    I like the Daliah, it’s more ‘period’–hoever, I’d like to see something less sweet. like

    http://www.housefabric.com/ProductDetail.asp?ProductID=4183 (hope the link works)

    A strong brown/aqua stripe would widen the tiny tub and make it look bigger. And dd a few scraps to guest towels would tie it in nicely. Also on the page is the pink/brown stripe, nice accent. Polkadots–a bit much, don’t you think?

    Oh, by the way, I’m mooski, live in a 15 year old house and miss my mom and grandmother’s houses like you wouldn’t believe. My tastes run prewar for the most part. 1910-35. Love my oak table and my hoosier cabinet.

    Great site, thanks

  2. Kristin says:

    OK, I am not a fan of fabric curtains in the bath, so in my 50’s bath that has a vertical rectangular window with a deep sill in the bathtub wall, I got 4 glass bricks and stacked them halfway, so anyone in the tub cannot be viewed unless a giant person gets in the backyard and looks down into the tub.
    It is a nice, unobtrusive trick that doesn’t muck up the lines of a small modern with fabric.

    Just a suggestion!

  3. sumacsue says:

    I think I would go with the Dahlia too, to bring in some other colors. That chartreuse color in the flower is really interesting. A wallpaper with a touch of coral would be nice too. Turquoise is quite the thing right now. I even received a Christmas card done in chocolate and turquoise.

  4. Sara says:

    I like the 1st one with the dahlias for sure! Do you think the wall color (not trim) needs to match the background color of this fabric? I do. Like the taupe rug idea too. So nice to see a bathroom that is not like everyone else’s! (And I just order Fiestaware in turquoise! 🙂

  5. lara says:

    I love the Dahlia… And I love this bathroom!! Mine is a similar color, but wallpaper! It’s crazy – who would put wallpaper in a bathroom… I wish it was this tile!

  6. Sara says:

    Check out the fabrics on tonicliving.com. There are so many great fabrics; I could look for hours. Lots of turquoise and fabrics from 50s, 60s, and 70s. cute!!! I like the Dahlia but there is just something about that background color I’m not sure about. does it look kinda dingy?

  7. Mid Mod Pam says:

    Hey Lara, I LOVE wallpaper in a bathroom. Have it in all three. Totally makes the room. Exhaust fans make it possible. Never fear, I will suck you into the vortex, dearie.

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