10 Trendy Patterns To Liven Up Your Bathroom

Patterns add visual interest and movement to any room. In a space like a bathroom, which can easily be over- or under-decorated, choosing a pattern that suits the space can make all the difference between a boring room and something amazing.

Bold patterns can be added to a bathroom via wallpaper, towels, or a shower curtain. Tiles are also a good way to add interesting visuals, but today I want to talk about printed patterns. 

These printed patterns are making waves in the 2016-2017 decorating...MORE trends, so let's have a look--and maybe you'll feel inspired to add a little fashion to your bathroom decor this season.

  • 01 of 10

    Tropical Foliage

    banana leaves
    Nacivet / Photographer's Choice / Getty Images

    Tropical flowers and leaves are no longer kitsch. Modern interpretations of the classic Martinique Banana Leaf pattern (as seen at the Beverly Hill's Hotel) are sweeping the design world right now.

    You can use the original pattern if you like (expensive, as it is exclusive to a single company) or go with something a little more subtle yet obviously inspired by this famous design. 

    This will give a totally tropical vibe to your bathroom; learn more about tropical-style bathroom decor here.

  • 02 of 10

    Not-Quite-Perfect Polka Dots

    imperfect polka dot
    ulimi / DigitalVision Vectors / Getty Images

    In a world of perfect symmetry, imperfection can be powerful. For example, imperfect polka dots bring a new twist to the classic retro style.

     In a bathroom, imperfect polka dots are feminine and quirky. They're perfect for that brilliant powder room you're planning, or an eclectic bathroom share between roommates. 

    Imperfection can mean many things: hand-drawn, asymmetrical, rubber-stamped, or any other subtle or bold way to break the typical polka dot pattern.

  • 03 of 10

    Hand-drawn Patterns

    CSA Images / Printstock Collection / Getty Images

    Speaking of hand-drawn, there's a rising trend for freehand-type illustrations turned into patterns. 

    These types of patterns have a natural movement and naturalness to them, and are generally playful and immediate. They give a sense of humanity to a space.

    In a bathroom, they can counteract our tendency to leave the space too clinical. They make us feel like a human lives and bathes there, and often that's all you need for a little decor pizzazz. 

  • 04 of 10

    Brush Strokes

    brush stroke
    Endai Huedl / Getty Images

    Perfectly fashionable in both clothing and decor, the abstract brush stroke is definitely having a moment right now. It's whimsical and yet so grounded, like the first strokes of a painting.

    It's also a bit 80s, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. You can do the 80s tastefully by just adding bits here and there.

    Add it to your bathroom via a shower curtain if you're afraid of using that trend in a more permanent way. A brushstroke wallpaper, or actual brushstrokes done by your...MORE own hand, will work too, but you have to commit!

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Illustrated People

    John Devolle / Ikon Images / Getty Images

    The human shape is endlessly fascinating to us. Lots of people enjoy drawing humans.

    And so the illustrated human makes it into home decor. Although it can look a little freaky at first, it's actually quite playful and interesting. After all, there are patterns everywhere, including our bodies.

    This cool towel(meant for display rather than use) featuring synchronized swimmers is a really original and whimsical way to add this pattern to your bathroom, but you can also use stylized humans,...MORE robots, or anything that reminds you of the human body.

  • 06 of 10

    Geometric Patterns

    geometric pattern bathroom
    Inami Ryutarou / EyeEm / Getty Images

    Styles and eras come and go, but geometric patterns stay. Their colors and preferred shapes change with the seasons, but these patterns always remain top in the home designer's toolbox.

    In the bathroom, they can be super-bold and an inherent part of the design (through tile, color choices, etc.), or more subtle and soft. Whichever you choose, know that geometric patterns never really go out of style; as long as you like it, you can keep it for years without fear of going out of fashion.

  • 07 of 10


    CSA Images / Pattern Collection / Getty Images

    Animal patterns have been popular for a few seasons now, and the trend is not likely to die anytime soon. Whether you like wildlife or Yorkshire puppies, somewhere there's a wall decal, wallpaper or shower curtain with your favorite animal on it.

    Animals are cool for children's bathrooms, but adult bathrooms with a bit of a whimsical side are also perfect for these patterns. And if you can join this with the hand-drawn trend, you kill two birds with one stone! (Pardon the pun.)

    Show your...MORE animal love by adding animal prints or prints of animals.

  • 08 of 10


    CactuSoup / DigitalVision Vectors / Getty Images

    Unless the wannabe street artist in you with a graffiti bathroom. This trend is really taking off in the decor world right now, especially as we develop an appreciation for graffiti work as real art.

    You can order a custom mural from your local artist if you have the budget; that'll make your bathroom original, fun and unique. Or, you can take advantage of vinyl coverings, wallpapers and shower curtains using graffiti patterns.

    This is great for kids' bathrooms---or kids-at-heart's. 

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Floral Patterns

    floral pattern
    Susan Fan-Brown / Photographer's Choice / Getty Images

    Floral patterns never seem to totally leave the trendy decor scene. The colors and styles change with the seasons, but rarely have I seen a season without at least one kind of floral pattern.

    You can choose something classic, something more abstract, or something modern. It's usually feminine, but can be more gender-neutral if you're going black and white.  

    Floral never goes out of style, so it's a good decor investment if you're worried about changing trends. 

  • 10 of 10

    Tribal Patterns

    tribal pattern design
    Martin Harvey / Gallo Images / Getty Images

    It all started in 2015 with fashion's obsession with the ikat-style pattern. Now, all kinds of tribal patterns are fashionable, from Navajo designs to South African traditional patterns. They can be used as super bold style statements, or more subtle accents.

    If you want to respect a culture's traditional designs and patterns, make sure that the pattern you choose is not sacred or otherwise related to religious or specific cultural rites. Everyday patterns on clothes and household fabrics...MORE and rugs are generally okay though.

If you like patterns, this fashion season is filled with interesting ones to experiment with. They will all suits bathrooms, depending on your style and preferences. Geometrical and floral patterns are always a good choice if long-term style is your concern; for the fashion-inclined, there's plenty more to choose from.