A trip to the shops, nursery and hardware store is all that's needed to give your bathroom a style lift

Whether you need an instant pick-me-up to enliven your bathroom’s aesthetic, or it needs a whole new look, these simple styling tips and projects will deliver a breath of fresh air to the smallest room in the house, but won’t make much of a dent in your hip pocket. The only challenge you’ll face is deciding which changes you want to make first.

1. Get fresh with flora
For instant gratification, place a vase of your favorite flowers on the bathroom counter. Depending on your selection, the arrangement can bring both a pop of color, and a delectable fragrance to the room.

Keep it pretty with peonies or roses …

Keep it pretty with peonies or roses …

… or go bold with natives. This tip is especially great for preparing a bathroom for guests.

… or go bold with natives. This tip is especially great for preparing a bathroom for guests.

2. Go wild with wonderful wallpaper
If your powder room is in need of a lift, be daring and opt for a statement wallpaper. A lively wallpaper in a small bathroom provides real bang for your buck, and is an excellent way to experiment with color and pattern. Wild wallpaper works best in small spaces with simple, stylish fixtures to avoid overwhelming the space.

3. Add a heavenly aroma
Why not spoil yourself with a decadent candle or fragrance diffuser to bring a sense of luxury to the bathroom. Try scents like lavender and sandalwood for relaxation, or citruses and mint for alertness. Integrating a fragrance into your bathroom is an easy but effective way to heighten your enjoyment of the space. If you’re fond of a long soak in the tub, lighting a beautiful candle will also add to the atmosphere.

4. Clear out the clutter
Possibly the simplest and cheapest way to refresh your bathroom is with an old fashioned deep clean and declutter. Clear the vanity countertop of the items that inevitably find their way there, put in some elbow grease to make your surfaces sparkle, and for the really committed, declutter your bathroom cabinets of unused or out-of-date products. To maintain a clear and calm bathroom, return only the absolute essentials to the countertop.

5. Bring in some new towels
While towels clearly have a utility value in the bathroom, they’re also a wonderful way to add colour, texture and pattern. Towels are an excellent device to vary the mood of your bathroom as often as you vary yours.

Try monochromatic towel patterns for a chic, contemporary vibe, or textured brights, such as turquoise or blue, for a summery feel.

Try monochromatic towel patterns for a chic, contemporary vibe, or textured brights, such as turquoise or blue, for a summery feel.

6. Organize and accessorize
Accessorizing with practical but pleasing storage systems can not only offer a visual update, but could also improve the way you use and experience your bathroom. For a quick fix, try a coordinated range of accessories from your favorite homewares store, or for the more patient and creatively inclined, opt for a bespoke storage solution such as this inventive hanging system.

7. Scrub up
To refresh both yourself and your bathroom, invest in a selection of sumptuous bath products. Look for a range that offers both opulent fragrances and appealing packaging. Alternatively, seek out attractive pumps and bottles you can fill with your existing products.

8. Turn over a new leaf
While fresh flowers are a delight, placing a potted plant in the bathroom will offer greater longevity for your investment. Choose an indoor plant with luscious green foliage suited to the conditions of a bathroom, such as a cast-iron plant or a peace lily, and display your plant in a decorative pot or planter bag. The gorgeous green leaves will bring both color and calm to your bathroom.

9. Get a handle on it
Handles can be the finishing flourish in the bathroom, like adding the perfect pair of earrings to a beautiful outfit. Swapping cabinet handles for something new is an affordable alternative to a full-scale revamp and a project most amateur DIYers could tackle in an afternoon. Try something bright and colorful for a cheerfully fresh look, or go for lucite and crystal for glamour.

10. Bring in the bling
For a truly extravagant bathing environment, it’s hard to go beyond the bling. If you’re dipping your toe into the bejewelled waters, start small with metallic and burnished accessories. For the veterans of sparkle, add a crystal pendant light or shimmering wall sconces. Remember that a little bling goes a long way, so err on the side of caution to achieve glam rather than gaudy.

Amy Kreitals February 13, 2017 Houzz Australia Contributor. Interior designer and artist living and working in inner-Melbourne.