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How an Interior Designer creates the perfect bathroom

elegant bathroom with sinks opposite each other, a large window and a freestanding bath in front of it

After kitchens, bathrooms are the next most expensive areas of your home to renovate. However, they add significant value to your home and, if you’re selling, can facilitate a quick sale.

Bathroom remodelling can be challenging, time-consuming, and costly. If your bathroom is up-to-date and finished to a high standard, it becomes an attractive prospect on the housing market. Even if you have no intention of selling soon, it’s crucial to keep your bathroom well-maintained. Leaking pipes and cracked sanitary ware are not only unsightly but can also lead to expensive structural problems.

A traditional style bathroom, tiled floor with tiled walls up to picture rail. Freestanding bath in the centre

I always recommend hiring a team of professionals for your renovations. This should include a trusted plumber, an electrician, an Interior Designer and possibly a decorator. Bathrooms have certain limitations that can make their design somewhat restrictive. While almost anything is possible with enough effort and budget, it’s often preferable to work within existing constraints, such as the current plumbing layout.

As an Interior designer, my goal is to create a bathroom design that you love without requiring extensive and costly structural changes unless absolutely necessary. One common restriction is the location of the toilet. Moving the toilet can be problematic due to the need for proper gradient in the waste pipe. It’s usually best to leave the toilet where it is if possible.

modern clean grey bathroom with freestanding bath and black window behind

Another restriction is the window placement, which can limit the positioning of showers and other fixtures. Some modern homes have bathrooms without windows, presenting unique challenges. I view these restrictions as a spatial puzzle, drawing on my experience as a Visual Merchandiser where I learned to create appealing room setups within limited constraints.

To create an efficient layout, start by drawing the main walls (indicating whether they are load-bearing, external, or stud walls), windows, and doors to scale. Then, draw scale fixtures (toilet, basin, shower, bath) and cut them out to help visualise different layouts. Consider the needs of those who will use the space, including accessibility and usage patterns.

a clean warm bathroom with a countertop basin wth toiletries next to it and mirror above

Good lighting is essential. Consult with an electrician to install appropriate lighting that meets regulatory standards. Decide on the type and placement of lights, switches, and other electrical features like shaver sockets and speaker systems.

Joinery can significantly enhance a bathroom’s appearance. Custom cabinetry can hide sockets and provide storage, making the space look more luxurious. A good carpenter can create bespoke pieces based on your plans.

Choose the highest quality materials you can afford, especially for floors and wet areas, to ensure durability and safety. Keep hardware consistent throughout the bathroom to create a cohesive look, and avoid overly trendy designs that may quickly become dated. Classic white sanitary ware is a safe choice, though unique pieces like freestanding baths can add character.

a dark moody bathroom with dark wooden walls and jack and jill basins and mirrors above

For the layout, consider the orientation, natural light, and overall design style of your home. Sample a few paint colors or wallpapers to see how they look in different lighting throughout the day.

When it comes to decorating, keep it minimal to maintain a hygienic space. Plants can thrive in the humid environment of a bathroom, and art can add personality as long as it’s resistant to moisture. Towels are an easy way to add color and pattern and can be changed out for a quick refresh.

a classic bathroom with a freestanding bath with towel rail

I hope this guide helps you design your dream bathroom. If you need further advice or direction, please get in touch—I’d love to help with your renovations.


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