Ashley Colombo is a Chicago-based interior designer who left her career in fashion to follow in her mother's footsteps, founding Ashley Colombo Interiors. Ashley designed two bathrooms that we couldn't help but share! Enjoy, and get ready to take some notes. : )
Ashley, we loved learning that your mother was also an interior designer. Did you always know you wanted to follow in her footsteps?
I’m so lucky and proud to be the daughter of an interior designer - I loved accompanying her to the showrooms when I was young. I thought she had the coolest job growing up, but I didn’t initially follow in her footsteps. Out of college I actually went into fashion and advertising as my first career in New York City. It was after I decorated our apartment in New York and then our first home in Darien, Connecticut that I fell in love with interior design, and I suddenly had requests from friends and friends of friends to help them with their homes. After dipping my toe in and loving it, I decided to follow my underlying passion and dream of being an interior designer like my mother.
What advice do you have for those selecting wallpaper for a bathroom space?
Bathrooms are a great opportunity to be bold with color and pattern. More often than not, wallpaper will make a small space feel bigger by drawing your eye up and around the entire room. If a powder room doesn’t have a window then I’d recommend choosing a pattern that has a light background. I sometimes use patterns that have a vertical direction to give the illusion of making the ceiling feel higher.
Sourcing for Bathroom #1:
Floor tile: Zoudia Porcelain Tile
Cabinet Hardware: TopKnobs
Sink Hardware: Kohler
Tape on Window Shade: Samuel & Sons 2” French Grosgrain Ribbon in Coral
Towels: Grey Piped Starter Pack with Crosby embroidery in grey thread.
When you start a design plan for a new space, where do you begin?
It varies from project to project and depends on how much existing furniture we’re using. I tend to start by creating a few mood boards that I present to the client with paint colors, a mix of small and large scale fabric swatches, furniture styles, and possibly wallpaper and rug options to show the overall aesthetic of a room. Sometimes clients know what they like and don’t like but can’t articulate what they’re style is, so showing them mood boards helps them and me with that process.
Sourcing for Bathroom #2:
Wallpaper: Thibaut, Pattern is ‘Best Friend’ in Blue
Mirror: Pottery Barn
Vanity Hardware: Top Knobs
Floor tile: Sourced locally, but here is a similar option!
Light Fixture: Pottery Barn (this light fixture is no longer available but you can find a similar fixture here.)
Roman Shade: Select Blinds
Bathroom Accessories: By Cassadecor from Target
Towels: Black piped Starter Pack with Tybee embroidery in black thread.
Favorite scent: Nest Grapefruit
Recent Interior Design Splurge: Bungalow 5 Jordan desk
Recent Interior Design Steal: A $100 pair of cane backing dining chairs in perfect condition from a local antique shop which I then had painted and reupholstered.
Interested in more design inspiration and tips? We know just the thing for you. Check out our recent Q&A with interior designer, Clary Bosbyshell, here.