Vanity Trays: How to Add a Touch of Hotel Style

Recently, I toured some new model homes to get some decorating ideas. (If you don’t do this already, you totally should. It’s free and fun and full of inspiration.) One of the common ideas I saw throughout the professionally decorated homes was the use of vanity trays in the bathroom. Now, I’m a sucker for trays because I love for things to be organized and surfaces to be as clear as possible. They are great in the bathroom for keeping smaller objects (perfumes, make-up, toiletries) organized. They can also add a touch of elegance to the space, making these necessities appear more like decor than clutter.

Something interesting I noticed in these model homes was how they took their vanity trays to the next level. They incorporated pretty textural details around the items in the trays to create more of an impact. These simple decorative, yet functional features gave the bathrooms the vibe of an upscale hotel suite. And it’s such an easy and inexpensive idea to implement, I’m ready to do it in every bathroom in my house.

Vanity Trays

Vanity Trays: How to Add a Touch of Hotel Style | Decorating Files | #bathroom #vanitytray #decor

A chic silver basin is filled with white pebbles and topped off with pretty bars of soap. You could use just about anything as filling, from beans to marbles to sand.

Vanity Trays: How to Add a Touch of Hotel Style | Decorating Files | #bathroom #vanitytray #decor

To capture a more coastal look, bath salts mimic white sand beneath luxurious toiletries. (And as an added bonus, the bath salts smell really good, too.) A polished rock adds an extra decorative touch.

Vanity Trays: How to Add a Touch of Hotel Style | Decorating Files | #bathroom #vanitytray #decor

This wood tray captures a modern, rustic appeal, while loofahs fill a vase with some coastal texture.

Chic bathroom decor like this can be created with just three simple things: 1) A stylish tray, 2) some pretty lotions, hand soap, or other toiletries, and 3) a textural element with which to fill the tray or a vase.

What are some of your own creative ideas for this look?


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  1. 1


    I love that last wooden one! I have a mirrored tray in my bedroom that holds my perfume, and I’ve always loved it because it adds some sparkle to the wooden surface. There aren’t many decorating “showcases” around here in CT. I remember having fun touring homes when I was living in PA, though. You are right that they give a lot of inspiration. And you can always go out to lunch afterwards and make a day of it:)

    • 2


      That’s exactly what we did, Seana. Our outings always involve going out to lunch; that’s one of the best parts! Touring beautiful model homes followed by a delicious meal – sounds like a perfect day! 🙂