Swirls of Artistry Aglow in Powder Room

Luminous. Innovative. Extraordinary Craftsmanship. Stephanie Marsh Fillbrant transformed a narrow, classic San Francisco powder room into an airy and artful space.


Photographs by Elisabeth Fall

At this year’s San Francisco Decorator Showcase, Marsh and Clark’s elegant powder room wowed visitors. “This room embodies the Marsh and Clark philosophy of uniting traditional craftsmanship and innovative design,” said designer and principal Fillbrandt.

“I wanted to explore how this type of space could be re-made to feel as expansive and beautiful as possible. To address this challenge, I focused on the subtle repetition of shapes and texture,” said Fillbrandt.

Fillbrandt anchored the design with an exquisite hand-cut marble and limestone mosaic that unfurls up the subtly reflective, pale-blue Venetian plaster walls.


“I started with the floor design,” said Fillbrandt. “I knew I wanted the mosaic to curve up onto the base board then creep up the wall to create visual interest in the room—to lead the eye upwards to the window then ceiling, in order to really experience the room’s height.”


This was no simple undertaking by mosaicist Pippa Murray.

Said Fillbrandt, “It was challenging. We had to build curved ramps for the stone to bypass the right angle of the corner then laid the mosaic tile on top of it. Setting it into the wall required cement board be set behind the drywall, then the drywall was cut out in the area where we put the stone ribbons.”


“The arabesque floor and window are similar in composition. In both cases to keep the look modern we used larger pieces and non-traditional shapes and colors.”



Art-glass craftsman John Forbes used hand-blown glass to create a stunning portrait window, with curves that echo the floor’s mosaic. The artisans “did a wonderful job bringing my sketches and ideas to life,” said Fillbrandt.

In a modern contrast to the more traditional elements, Fillbrandt included a cantilevered vanity in the design. Master woodworker Rob Taboada created the vanity from FSC-certified, sustainably-harvested machiche hardwood.


The room is both striking and calming. I kept wanting to step back into it. This is one of those spaces that needs no additional art—the room itself is the art.

Fillbrandt and her team, including designer Christiana Ferroggiaro, brought the design to life under the tight time constraints of a Showcase. “We had eight short weeks to design, create and install everything. And, because every element, from the Venetian plaster walls to the cantilevered vanity, was custom made, there was very little room for error.”


Oh and by the way, during this time Fillbrandt gave birth to her second son. That’s her at the Showcase, five weeks post-birth.

What do you think of this Powder Room?

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18 Comments for “Swirls of Artistry Aglow in Powder Room”

Very cool- great window.

Hi Laurel,

The space is so relaxing and I agree about the window. A fabulous modern take on a traditional craft. Thanks for the feedback.


who did the venitian plaster?

I love this powder room! I live in an older home and have a similar space as a long closet in a bedroom. When I saw this room in several magazines it gave me the idea that my closet could be a powder room. I really want to know the dimensions of this room. Is it 3′ X 8-9′??? My space also has a window at the end.

Thanks! Janine

Hi Janine!

Me too. It was mesmerizing in person. And wow, it’ s great to hear she also got some magazine coverage.

Your closed idea is fabulous — I will email Stephanie Marsh Fillbrant and see what I can find out for you about measurements. I will post here what I learn.

Thanks for stopping in!
— Kathy

Hi Janine,

The room was 3′ by 9′ – so I think your space will work. Just make sure your door can swing out and you keep the vanity very narrow.

Good Luck!

I absolutely love this powder room. Do you think you could find out the color code of the beautiful blue walls, along with it was Sherwin Williams, Benjamin Moore, etc.,. Thank you!
Carolyn Gambon


Let me see what I can do. I will send a message to the designer and will comment back with what I learn.

Such an elegant space, isn’t it?


Thanks Kathy!

Hi Carolyn,

The walls are actually venetian plaster and the color is integrated into the plaster. We based the color on a Benjamin Moore color called Sweet Bluette, #813 from their classic color collection.

Stephanie Marsh Fillbrandt

Thanks so much. I just happen to have the classic color collection. I would of never of guessed it to be #813. Can’t wait to get started on my project!

[…] got fantastic feedback on the story about Marsh & Clark’s elegant and contemporary powder room design for the 2009 San Francisco Decorator […]

Hey Carolyn,

You might also be interested in the follow-up story I just posted about another powder room that Stephanie’s team just completed, that was based on this original design, but for a budget of about sixty percent less.

Have fun and please let us know how your project goes!


This bathroom is excellent. I am curious as to the size of the vanity (width and length) and sink (overall dimension). Could you tell me the clearance between the wall and the vanity? Thanks. Scott

Hi Scott,

I sent a message to the designer, Stephanie, alerting her to your question. That vanity is a gorgeous example of woodworking, isn’t it? I will keep watch for your answer.

Thanks for visiting!

Hi Kathy,

I was wondering who makes the bath fixtures and toilet roll holder, I would love it if you can find out for me!


Hi Yukirei & Scott,

I think it might be best if you contact Stephanie Marsh Fillbrant directly. I know she is working hard now on a design for this year’s San Francisco Decorator Showcase, so she is probably in and out of the office a bit. Here is here Web page that includes her contact info: http://marshandclark.com/.

Thanks so much for your interest in this lovely design!
— Kathy

Hi Scott and Yukirei,

Thank you for posting. The dimensions of the vanity were 42″ long X 16″deep X 20″tall. The sink was 12″ deep centered on the vanity. Not much room so we used the wall mounted Cifial Brookhaven faucet. Just let me know if you have more questions. Best, Stephanie

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