Designer Courtney McLeod Turned a Drab Bathroom Into an Art Deco Dream — Here's How

makeover of the week - Courtney McLeod bathroom mosaic wall

Design: Courtney McLeod; Photo: John Neitzel, Digital Destinations

If there’s something we never get tired of seeing, it’s a great makeover. Whether it’s transforming a retro bathroom into a modern oasis or giving a lackluster bedroom a fresh look, pros perform these design miracles all the time. 

To give designers a chance to showcase their favorite makeovers—and to bring you plenty of inspiration for your own home—we’re sharing the best before and afters we’ve seen in our series, Makeover of the Week. Take notes for your next renovation.

“The actor Hill Harper purchased this 1922 historic mansion in the Boston-Edison district of Detroit in 2017, embarking on a three-year restoration that included the renovation of a guest bathroom,” says interior designer Courtney McLeod. “The space required a complete gut renovation, allowing us to reimagine the bath from scratch, and included a dramatic marble mosaic feature for the vanity wall that had to be a perfect fit. There was no room for error.” 

Meet the Expert

Courtney McLeod is the founder and principal of New York City-based Right Meets Left Interior Design. An avid colorist at heart, McLeod draws from a kaleidoscopic toolbox of texture, pattern, and color to create rooms evocative of one emotion above all others—joy.

Before:

Before shot of bathroom.

Courtesy of Courtney McLeod

“The guest bath was once most likely grand, with its high ceilings, hexagonal floor tile, pedestal sink, and glass towel rack. But it was long overdue for an update given the failing fixtures and finishes,” notes McLeod.

After:

makeover of the week - courtney mcleod mosiac bathroom

Design: Courtney McLeod; Photo: John Neitzel, Digital Destinations

“I enjoyed flexing my creative muscles to design the custom marble mosaic feature wall, which was inspired by fireworks and executed with the team at Ann Sacks," McLeod says. "Given it’s a guest bath, we opted to place the mirrored medicine cabinet on the side wall, instead of above the sink, so the mosaic would remain interrupted."

What Changed:

  • Color theme: Shades of black, white, gray, and green join together to create a sophisticated, Art-Deco feel. 
  • Wall mosaic: The mosaic feature wall incorporates six different marbles: Nero Marquina, White Thassos, Bardiglio Imperial, Carrara, Ming Green, and Verde, while an etched White Thassos field tile in a custom pattern fills the space below the mosaic. 
  • Floor: Subtle white Thassos marble in a ½” square-honed mosaic keeps the attention on the feature wall. 
  • Vanity: A glamorous black sink, inspired by a 1929 Kohler exhibition in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, rests on nickel legs and plays nicely with the Art Deco feel of the space.
  • Toilet: The unique black one-piece, wall-hung toilet has concealed hardware and saves on space. 
  • Pendant light: The design of the half metal, half opaque white glass hanging globe fits the feel of the space. 
  • Shower: The minimalist shower fixtures in a deep platinum hue complement the classic features throughout. 
  • Heater: The radiator was coated in gold paint formulated for metal that can withstand high temperatures. 
  • Art on wall: An original graphite on paper titled “Tension”, by African American artist Elizabeth Youngblood, is presented in a simple wood frame.
  • Window treatment: The sexy design on this 100% cotton roman shade depicts a gaggle of colorful emerald and sapphire snakes.
  • Accessories: A dramatic urn, depicting face profiles from every angle, was inspired by Dora Maar, a muse of Pablo Picasso.

Shop the Look:

makeover of the week - courtney mcleod bathroom with snake shade and bust

Design: Courtney McLeod; Photo: John Neitzel, Digital Destinations

Dora Maar Urn
Jonathan Adler Dora Maar Urn $395
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Sumner pendant light.
Hudson Valley Lighting Co. Sumner Pendant Light $608
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schumacher giove fabric
Schumacher Giove Fabric $Price Upon Request
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