Design Inspiration from a Toilet Roll Holder

Many everyday items can inspire interior design, from artwork to furniture. Interestingly, I am finishing a project with a client who asked me to design their powder room around a toilet roll holder. Yes, it’s true! Now that’s a first! Of course, there is nothing I enjoy more than an unusual challenge.

antique-style cast iron toilet roll holder
Design Inspiration – Toilet Roll Holder

As you can see in the photo above, the inspiration is a heavy, decorative, cast iron piece. Personally, I am not a fan of industrial style because I feel it’s overused and no longer original. Therefore, my goal was to create a unique and fun space with a mix of industrial and contemporary styles while still blending with the rest of the house. One thing I know to be true in design is that the space will have a cohesive feel by repeating a colour, element, and/or finish three times in a room or throughout a home.

Function then Beauty

Because I always consider function before beauty (that’s the professional organizing aspect of my business), I chose the vanity first. Finding a vanity 20 inches wide (or less) with adequate storage and space for a soap pump on the top was not easy! I tried every local supplier but ended up buying one online. The drawback of online ordering is that you can never know what you will get. On the computer screen, the cabinet appeared to be a shade of grey. However, when it was delivered, it had a green undertone, which my client did not like at all. So, we sent it for custom refinishing.

Although this might have been considered something that “went wrong” with the project, it ended up being a huge blessing. Because we sent the vanity for custom finishing, we could also send the mirror and rustic boards (to make shelves) that I found at a local building supply store. The custom stain tied them together perfectly with the toilet roll holder.

We also needed to repeat the black iron element to tie the design together. We used iron plumbing pipe for shelf supports, a matte black hand towel rail, and an antique bronze waterfall faucet and changed the knob and handle on the vanity.

antique style faucet
Cassidy® Single Handle Channel Bathroom Faucet in Venetian Bronze by Delta.

Finishing Touches

I sourced the fabulous, patterned floor tile and the shiplap accent wall to give the space something unique. Of course, one of the most important elements that make any space sing is lighting. We chose a fixture with an “olde bronze” finish and clear glass with vintage bulbs – the perfect jewellery for the space.

two-bulb vanity light
Kichler Brinley 2-Light Olde Bronze Vanity Light with Clear Glass.

Here is the email I received from my client when the space was complete:

Just a note to say how amazing the bathroom looks. I couldn’t be more thrilled with the design and how it came to life. You really did build a beautiful bathroom around that toilet paper holder. Thank you!”

It makes all the searching, thinking, and planning worthwhile!

If you’re ready for a home redesign or renovation, consider embracing unexpected sources of inspiration, like the humble toilet roll holder. Seeing the design potential in ordinary objects can add unique, functional, and stylish touches to your space. If you’re ready to transform your home, feel free to reach out and discuss your ideas.

4 thoughts on “Design Inspiration from a Toilet Roll Holder”

    • The powder room is so small it was hard to photograph everything. I am going to post the photo of the toilet roll holder on the new blue wall on my Facebook page. Thanks for reading.


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