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In a corner? Add artwork, greenery to create interest

DEAR GAIL: For some reason the builder did not extend my bathroom cabinets into the corner, so I have this weird empty corner. Of course the first thing that went there was the laundry basket, but we’ve just remodeled our closet and have a place for it in there now. So now I’m back to an empty corner. Do you have any suggestions? — Cindy.

DEAR CINDY: I have a couple of different suggestions.

The simplest and least expensive solution would be to purchase a nice floor plant to bring in some greenery and life to the room. Yes, many times we do use floor plants and trees just to be corner fillers. It might do the trick for you.

Or, instead of just one plant, use a tiered plant stand. A grouping of smaller plants is always more interesting than just one. If you don’t want that many, place a spider plant on a pedestal. I know they are supposed to be hung, but we don’t hang plants from macramé holders inside anymore. It’s OK for on your patio, but inside it screams the ’70s.

To give the corner more interest, add artwork above the plant. One of my favorite and unexpected ways to hang art in a corner is what I call “corner art.” For corner art you need to have two identical pieces or coordinated images that are matted and framed the same. Then, instead of centering them on each of the walls, you hang them close to the corner at the same height and the same distance from the corner.

Don’t hang the pieces of art any further from the corner than 6-8 inches, otherwise they become disconnected and you lose the effect of cornering the art.

Since most bathrooms have limited wall space, another idea is to place a piece of art on an easel.

If the area is large enough, consider a small chair to use when you’re getting dressed in the morning. Look for an interesting chair that is unique and with a personality that fits your décor. Consignment stores, thrift shops and yard sales would be great places to shop for one.

Plus, if you have the room, add a small side table with a candlestick lamp that you can leave on as a night-light. But if you know that this would just become a dumping place for laundry, you’d be best with the floor plant.

If you’d like to have more color and a display area, a tiered stand would work. They come in wood, iron and rattan in every finish, style and size.

Instead of a piece of furniture, you can use corner shelves. You want the shelves to fit right into the corner, so get them pie-wedge shaped. What makes them different than straight shelves is that they are unique and draw your eye right into the corner.

I know the corner is a bit awkward now and you don’t want to draw attention to it, but once it is decorated you can. But consider this: You will be drawn to it so don’t let it become your extra makeup storage area or a place for your extra toiletries. When using shelves, remember you can incorporate smaller pieces of art with the grouping.

A final thought would be to use a group of large floor accessories. I found some wonderful baskets that were amazing. I used a group of three and they ranged in height from 3-5 feet.

For floor accessories to work, they need to be fairly tall so they can stand on their own. To give you a guideline, anything that would be small enough to place on a table would not work on the floor. Bigger is better with floor accessories. You can use one fabulous piece or a grouping of three. More than that would most likely overload the corner.

Have fun!

Gail Mayhugh, owner of GMJ Interiors, is a professional interior designer and author of a book on the subject. Questions may be sent by e-mail to: [email protected] Or, mail to: 7380 S. Eastern Ave., No. 124-272, Las Vegas, NV 89123. Her Web address is: www.GMJinteriors.com.

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