Twenty years ago, we DIYed these little shelves into an alcove in our master bathroom.
And for the next nineteen and a half years, they drove me insane.
Well. That's not fair. I can only blame myself for the ongoing tides of flotsam and jetsam that drifted across their unsuspecting pine planks.
Too easily did I just stash ordinary things here, neglecting to bring beauty to this space.
Too long did I make other areas of the house a priority and ignored this private corner of the house rarely seen by anyone outside the immediate family.
Too many times did I use the excuse of money to deny myself some much-needed change.
A few months back, I finally snapped.
My inner stylist demanded that we stop the madness and do this space up right.
My inner therapist insisted that I should do this for myself, even if no one else saw it.
My inner financier siphoned a hundred bucks out of the grocery account and felt no shame.
Then we all got busy and here's what we came up with.
I used to jam bath towels onto these slim shelves, but I finally realized that hand towels were a much better fit. I spoiled myself with two new sets.
Every busy woman on the planet fantasizes about ending the day with a long, leisurely bubble bath surrounded by glowing candles. Well. I am not a fan of soaking myself but I love me a candlelit shower. And on the nights when I forget to light a candle, I just enjoy seeing them sitting their on their shelf, all white and clean and fresh.
Let's be honest. My little philodendron hates his life in this shadowy corner, and much prefers when I take him on holiday to a sunnier room. He comes back now and then to visit his friends on the shelf, but we've all come to accept that his time here is limited.
I used to tell myself that trays are essential organizers and I need them for functional purposes. That, however, is a bald faced lie. I will now proudly admit that I buy trays because I like the way they look, even though I could just as easily set my bottle and jars directly on the shelf.
I'm obsessed with metal geometric sculptures and they pop up all over my house. I'm also obsessed with spray painting them on a whim, and this one's recent reincarnation in white makes me happy.
Polka Dot Dish
It's white. And square. And just the right amount of little. And covered with gold polka dots, too? When my eyes fell on this gem, I knew I had to buy it and was forced to invent a use for it on the spot. Hair bands and bobby pins deserve a home of their own and I feel no remorse whatsoever,
A Word About Labels
Call me neurotic, but after purifying my soul with these newly styled shelves, I was not about to pollute my creation with brightly colored, text-saturated plastic bottles and jars. But my inner realist scoffed at the idea of repackaging my toiletries into generic containers; I may wish I had the discipline to squirt my new bottles of lotion into a silvery dispenser, but I know perfectly well that I do not. So I've come up with a compromise: I buy products in white or clear packaging, and peel off the labels, leaving me with satisfactorily neutral containers to live on my shelves.
* * * * *
It's been five months since my shelves transformed and I'm happier than ever with how the project turned out.
I love this little corner of calming white.
I smile to myself every morning as I stumble into the bathroom to start my day.
And I'm pretty sure that no one even noticed the budget meals I slid onto the table during the pay period of my purchases.
In fact, my only regret about styling up my bathroom shelves is that it took me two decades to get round to making it happen.
plant | home depot
plant container | ikea
chevron towels | cost plus world market
plain towels | target
candles | target
marble tray | bed, bath & beyond
white tray | nate berkus for target
geometric sculpture | hobby lobby, painted white
polka dot dish (similar) | hobby lobby