Trading pink for pink. / by Bonnie Achariyakosol

Light and bright with hints of period specific charm.

Vintage tile in East Dallas …. to keep or not to keep? Polarizing question as new home owners modernize and refresh. For me the answer is clear: Keep it if it’s still in great shape and you love it. If it’s in disrepair then you have to decide if you want to take on a really difficult rehab or decide to move on. In the case of this refresh there was just no salvaging the pink tile in the hallway bath. A drainage problem on the lot created a foundation shifting situation that in turn created a breaking tile situation that there was just no coming back from. So to honor the heritage of the cottage style house we kept true to the classic details but with some exciting modern design elements. The end result is a crisp space perfect for dinner and overnight guests alike.

This couple had already furnished their home in a youthful, fresh style and had definitive ideas of how they wanted this space to turn out. What they needed from me was guidance to pull all of the wish list items into a cohesive design and to spearhead the construction process. She pulled up her Instagram inspirations and we started to identify a design direction so I could start pulling the finishing materials. His major goal was that she was happy. Smart guy.

White subway in a herringbone pattern gives the simple material a more exciting vibe.

Since we were removing so much charm by getting rid of some of the original details, we wanted to infuse it back with period specific floor tile. The space isn’t huge so we didn’t want the details to over run the space and a lot of the stocked patterned tiles were just too busy. So I found a simple black and a simple white tile and worked with the installer to lay out our own pattern. Guys, I do my own stunts… if you need me to crawl around on the subfloor you bet your britches I will. The resulting layout is perfectly spaced and adds just the right amount of detail. When it came to the wall tile, we aimed to achieve the same thing. Just enough detail without being over bearing. The overall walls are a standard running layout, but in the shower I worked with the installer to switch into a herringbone layout without any weird transitions. It’s all in the details!


By keeping the tile tame, we were able to really have fun with the wallpaper and other decorative accents. Blush pink and green in an abstracted foliage design is the perfect nod to the old tile color but with the same vibrancy the client exudes. Simple brass lights partner up well with the warm bamboo mirror the client found at a warehouse sale. She was on the fence of whether she should buy it so she sent me some pictures of the mirror and I told her to RUN do not walk and snag that beautiful baby before someone else did! The contrast against the white and pink is a real showstopper and the wood tone adds a lot of warmth.

Mixing in the not expected bamboo color adds the eclectic charm present in the rest of the house.

When it came to selecting the plumbing fixtures we needed a narrow sink as to not create a pinch point nor make the room feel small but also wanted a little extra width for added functionality. This sink fit the bill perfectly. The metal base adds a little shine and keeps things feeling open. Pairing it with a simple faucet modernizes the otherwise traditional silhouette.

Crisp white in a bathroom are what dreams are made of. Adding warm tones in the lighting and mirror give it extra appeal.