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Looking for an alternative to white for your bathroom? Yellow bathroom ideas may seem odd, but the energetic and quirky color can bring life to any space, especially small ones like many bathrooms.

Yellow is a great color to jump start your day. There is so much you can do with yellow.

Yellow offers a wide range of shades, something people often forget when thinking about the color.

Because of this, the color can work great for a variety of styles and moods. Here are some great yellow bathroom ideas to help you get started on creating the perfect yellow bathroom for your home.

Going With Yellow

Yellow is a great way to add personality to a room almost instantly, particularly if you choose a vibrant shade. It can be a really good addition to minimalist styles, adding in a bit of color and pop to a space with few details. Adding yellow to minimalist designs can bring a much needed touch of color. Yellow can also be used to draw attention to any interesting details.

classic-on-the-green-by-gelotte-hommas-drivdahl-architecture Yellow Bathroom Ideas: Decor, Curtains, and Accessories
Image source: Gelotte Hommas Drivdahl Architecture

It’s one of those colors that almost instantly draws the eyes, especially more highlighter type yellow shades. For a fresher feel, use yellows with green undertones. These always seem more spring-like and have their own naturalistic liveliness. Softer yellows create an overall brighter mood, especially if you have an abundance of natural light.

Yellow should always seem like a deliberate addition to the bathroom. Balance it throughout the room if it’s your chosen accent color. Get yellow bathroom sets that pick up the same yellow shade as any paint you use. It can work well as the threshold of a doorway, a bright and purposeful touch.

Yellow bathroom décor can be used to balance out cooler color schemes. Stark neutral palettes, like gray and white, can have an uncomfortable coldness. A touch of soft golden yellow in the right spots can help alleviate this feeling. Paint is easily the best way to do this both quickly and affordably, but the right yellow bathroom accessories can also help if chosen wisely.

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Image source: LDa Architecture & Interiors

Bold yellows should be used thoughtfully, otherwise they become something of a visual attack. Brighter yellows work best with a lot of natural light, which works to soften the impact of the color. Large windows also work to break up the color if you’re using it for your walls.

A good way to integrate yellow is by using lighter woods and stone types with yellowish casts to them. You can emphasize this almost glow by using soft shades of yellow next to these materials. The overall effect is warm. It’s a great choice for a bathroom in a home in cooler climates. The sunny, cheery yellow bathroom still looks like it fits in the climate but it can be really nice during the shorter and chillier days of autumn and winter.

If you want to use yellow, but the walls are just not the place to do it, think about painting the bathroom tiles yellow. You first need to make sure you clean the tiles extremely well. Then coat them with a good urethane-based sealer, especially in areas that are going to get wet like the shower and bath. Now you can paint the tile! Finish the project by painting all the gout joint in both a new color with grout paint. Use an artist’s paintbrush on the grout joints for a nice effect.

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Image source: LifeStyle Homes,Inc.

You could also consider painting a yellow pattern on the walls. You can have the pattern on all your walls (which works best for a simple stripe of yellow paint, for instance), or you can just have a pattern on one wall as a more interesting accent wall.

With the second option, you can create much more complex patterns, such as geometric or floral ones, without crowing the room and making it seem too visually busy. You can tie the room back into the yellow wall pattern by including yellow bathroom accessories throughout the space, especially if they tire back into the pattern in some way.

Yellow and Grey Bathroom

Yellow and grey are an odd color combination that works surprisingly well. Dove gray and soft yellow work together to create a soft look. It can be very modern or very whimsical or even both. Either color can be the dominant color or the accent color. Use floral elements and designs to complete the look. Remember to use softer shades of both colors, otherwise the yellow and grey bathroom will be harsh and unharmonious.

Retro Yellow Bathroom

Yellow, particularly mustard yellow, is a vintage tile color, found from the 1940s until the end of the 1960s. You might finds that your bathroom already has this color of tile, if you live in an older home or apartment. Instead of going through the expense and effort if tearing it out (often difficult because these tiles were usually set in a mud job), revitalize it instead for a new take on an old look.

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Image source: Robert Nebolon Architects

Mustard yellow is a very decisive color choice that can make a space feel quite small, especially if the tiles extend through the entire bathroom. The key to keeping this from feeling claustrophobic is to do what you can to lighten the space. Make sure you have (or keep) a white tub, toilet, and sink. Paint the walls above the tiles white (the yellow tiling typically only reaches the level of the wainscotting).

All this white will brighten up the yellow bathroom and make it all look very crisp. It also creates a neutral background you can easily introduce other, new accent colors to more easily. A few good choices for accent colors include green and blue. Pick out shads that don’t clash with the yellow and suddenly the old tile is charming rather than an eyesore.

There are a lot of retro bathroom accessories that can look very nice in one of these redone white and yellow bathrooms. Chrome fixings and other items look very nice, especially if they have retro-futuristic styling. Restoration Hardware is a good place to look for this sort of thing, but there are also cheaper options easily found at a lot of home décor stores and on the internet.

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Image source: Crisp Architects

Make sure it looks sleek and not shabby. While a shabbier, cheaper looking bathroom may be more accurate to your memory of an old yellow bathroom, it’s not going to look good.

If you don’t have a bathroom that’s already has this retro look, but you want a retro bathroom, you can also recreate the style yourself with a more modern edge. Use mustard yellow tile and white tiles in a basket weave pattern. This is a very pleasant looking retro mosaic pattern.

This basketweave tile design also looks pretty good when done with black tile instead of white, though you’ll need to avoid a bumblebee effect. Do so by using different non-yellow colors throughout the space, like gray-green or French blue. For a very clean looking space, use white bathroom accessories.

Mix up your yellow bathroom accessories with your other chosen colors. Have yellow bathroom rugs as well as at least one of your chosen accent color, for instance. Include natural elements of wood and stone, especially if they are antiques that help keep that retro atmosphere.

gatsby-by-siemasko-verbridge Yellow Bathroom Ideas: Decor, Curtains, and Accessories
Image source: Siemasko + Verbridge

These designs maintain that retro style yet keep a modern feel. Because of that, if you eventually choose to redecorate your yellow bathroom in another, more modernistic style, you have a lot more possibilities that don’t require you to painstakingly tear out the tile.

Darker Shades of Yellow

Most of us think of only brighter shades when we think of yellow, but the truth is that there are darker shades as well. Some of these yellow shades seem almost green or gray. They are more subdued and more naturalistic than brighter ones, but they still retain a bit of yellowy zest. If you want to use one of these darker yellow shades, make sure you balance it properly.

Avoid having a yellow floor in any shade if you use these colors for you walls. Balance it with other colors, like teals or tans. Feel free to include natural elements. Florals, especially yellow ones, can add life to a darker room. Make generous use of patterns. You’ll find a lot of reed weaves that already have the darker yellow tones. You should make sure you have a lot of good lighting to keep the space from turning into a cave.

circle-drive-kitchen-2-by-hb-designs-llc Yellow Bathroom Ideas: Decor, Curtains, and Accessories
Image source: HB Designs LLC

Blue and Yellow Bathroom

Blue and yellow offer a classically playful look. The combination is instantly eye catching and invigorating. It’s a bit of a classical color palette, since the contrast is so innately interesting. There’s a lot you can do with it. With the right design choices, you can make the most of energetic yellow and calming blue.

To start with, the walls can be painted either blue or yellow. Blue walls create a more claiming, soothing space. Yellow walls, on the other hand, create a more energetic space. Whatever color you choose for the walls, the other color should now be used as your accent color.

Of course, you could also choose to use both colors on your walls by finding blue and yellow wallpaper. You should select wallpaper with dustier or paler shades of yellow and blue so that the color combination’s contrast is not too intense. There are a lot of wallpaper patterns in blue and yellow, from vintage floral patterns to vertical stripes and everything in between.

If you have a window, use it to help the mood of the room come across better. Use gauzy curtains in the correct accent color for your blue and yellow bathroom design. You should use this window treatment to help balance the room. More solid curtains help balance a room with patterned walls, while patterned curtains look very nice in a room with solid colored walls.

South-Kensington-Apartment-by-Alison-Hammond-Photography Yellow Bathroom Ideas: Decor, Curtains, and Accessories
Image source: Alison Hammond Photography

For other kinds of lighting, try adding in some covered sconce lights. The calmer, more subdued lighting will make the blue and yellow you use seem softer and the contrast will not be dizzying. It creates a more relaxing space, which can be hard to pull off in a yellow bathroom.

Another way to capitalize on the play of light on a blue and yellow color scheme is to use mirrors. Try hanging two small round mirror across from a window (if you have one) with a pale yellow window treatment. Combine this set up with sconce lighting that has blue shaded glass. This will create an interesting bit of lighting. In the morning, the lighting will emphasize the room’s yellow features, while in the evening the mirrors will catch the blue light from the sconces and emphasize the calming blue elements.

You should choose a shower curtain in the color you want to add more of in the room. Your blue or yellow shower curtain should be either a bit darker or lighter than your other uses of that shade in the space. This will allow the shower curtain to fit in with the room but also add some color variety. A shower curtain covers a lot of space in a bathroom and you should think of it as an opportunity to add more color into the design.

Remember to balance out your use of blue and yellow bathroom accessories. Add elements of your accent color to under-decorated parts of the room. Balancing these elements will make your color scheme cohesive and homey. It will keep the contrast interesting rather than unpleasant.

Ending thoughts on yellow bathroom design

Yellow offers a lot of diverse choices for your bathroom décor. With yellow, you can create a soothing space to relax or an invigorating place to start off your day, or even a space that can be either depending on the time of day.

The variety of shades of yellow paint mean you can integrate the color in modern styles, naturalistic styles, industrial styles, and just about any kind of décor style you can imagine. Yellow can be a great addition to your bathroom design.