Tackling 5 Common Bathroom Design Problems

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Dec 13, 2010 | Yamini Mudaliar

Bathrooms are the smallest and the wettest rooms in our homes. With our lives getting busier by the day, a well designed bathroom will not only make our early morning rush hour less stressful but also provide us a peaceful sanctity after a hard day’s work.  Here are some changes you can make to your existing bathroom to bring them from Blah to BLING!

1. Breaking the Line
Standard and efficiently designed bathrooms have a tub, a double vanity/ or a pedestal sink and a toilet lined up against one wall, also called "the wet wall." If this layout is getting on your nerves and your standard sized tub has just enough space to let your elbows get wet during a shower, then consider removing the bath tub and installing a walk in shower with a frameless glass enclosure. Include niches for bath accessories and remove all external storage accessories causing clutter and visual chaos. Additional storage can be installed at a certain height on the wall making space for foot circulation. This arrangement creates a spacious feel and makes the vision flow beyond the tub and the shower curtains that were initially causing an obstruction in the line of sight.

2. Double Vanities
A double sink vanity with a mirror running the length of your vanity serves its purpose, but can get boring after a while. Try instead:  two independently separate vanities with framed mirrors, wall sconces for lighting and storage under each vanity. This creates more interest and visual appeal, creating a rhythmic contrast between the wall color and the architecture of the vanity.

3. Tiles and Finishes
The most important challenge we all face when it comes to finish selection is trying to achieve visual appeal, durability and maintenance all in one tile or finish. While this is possible, the important factor is to select a material that will not blow your pocket. The one design tip to keep in mind while selecting tile is “Keep it Classic, Accent with Popular.” There are several finishes that are hot for a year and then fade as newer and hotter finishes enter the market. Don’t get carried away by a product that is trendy. Finishes, like wainscoting, are a hit in powder rooms. Wall papers are making a comeback and are reasonable priced alternative finishes if you are willing to install it yourself.

4. Lighting
Try something new if your standard 3-light vanity fixture is uninteresting and does not create an ambience in the space. Lighting should serve the functional purpose, as well as create a soothing and ambient environment that helps calm and relax during a shower. To achieve this effect and style, install a medium-sized chandelier in the center of the bathroom or above the Jacuzzi and pair it with a row of colored,glass blown light fixtures by an accent wall (the wall across the vanity will be a good choice). These are the lights fixtures that you would typically install above a kitchen breakfast counter or a bar table. But, who said you cannot use them in the bathroom for decorative purposes? We are here to break the norm and customize your space. Concealed lighting are always great to have especially if you have a decorative stepped ceiling.

5. Accessories
Everybody loves accessories like towels, floor mats, frames and vases, but choosing the right amount and the best one could be tough. Don’t be a victim of monotone monarchy. Contrast your accents, compromise on the color and pattern if you already have a stunning bathroom. For an all white bathroom, splurge on colors and patterns keeping in mind balance and harmony.

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