Tips for Designing Your Own Bathroom

Designing the perfect bathroom is both an art and a science, blending aesthetics, functionality, and precise planning. Here’s a comprehensive guide infused with professional tips, strategic measurements, and creative design hacks to ensure your project’s success.

Start With a Clear Plan

Accurate measurements are foundational to avoid costly errors and make informed decisions:

  • Minimum Space for Toilet: Ensure at least 76 cm in width with 60 cm of clear space in front for optimal functionality.
  • Shower Size: Comfort starts from 90×90 cm, but consider 120×90 cm for a more spacious feel.

Optimise Your Space

Efficient use of every square centimetre can transform even the smallest bathroom:

  • Door Opening: At least 81 cm with an outward swing to maximise usable space.
  • Sink Placement: Maintain a minimum of 15 cm from the sink centre to any side walls, with 30 cm clearance in front.
  • Bathtub Dimensions: Length typically ranges from 150 cm to 180 cm, width from 70 cm to 90 cm, and a minimum depth of 40 cm for a comfortable soak.

Evaluating Walls and Fixtures: Tiling vs. Painting

Choosing between tiling and painting can dramatically affect the look and feel of your bathroom. Here are the pros and cons of each:

Durability Highly durable, resistant to wear and moisture. Less durable, can chip, peel, or fade in moist areas.
Maintenance Low maintenance; easy to clean, occasional re-grouting. Requires more frequent touch-ups, especially in high-moisture areas.
Cost More expensive due to materials and labour. Generally cheaper, with lower material and labour costs.
Installation Time-consuming and labour-intensive. Quick to apply, ideal for tight timelines.
Comfort Hard and cold underfoot, may require heating in cold climates. Softer and warmer underfoot.
Water Resistance Excellent protection against water, ideal for wet areas. Less resistant, susceptible to moisture damage without proper ventilation.
Ease of Update Challenging to replace or change once installed. Easy to update by repainting for a new look.

Choosing Materials and Colours

When selecting colours for your bathroom, considering the latest trends can help create a contemporary space that feels both stylish and welcoming. Both Dulux and Resene have released their colour trends for 2024, featuring a range of serene, soothing shades and vibrant, earthy tones ideal for bathroom environments. Each brand’s brochure not only showcases these innovative colours but also provides expert advice on how to effectively combine and apply these shades to enhance the aesthetics and mood of your space.

Dulux Colour Forecast 2024

Resene Decorating & Colour Trends 2024

Fixtures and Fittings: 

Choose fixtures that you love, as these can significantly impact the bathroom’s style. Remember, something as central as a tap can be replaced in about 45 minutes to an hour, allowing for relatively easy updates down the line.

Chrome Bright, shiny, and reflective finish that is quite popular and pairs well with many colour schemes. Modern, sleek, and clean
Matte Black A flat black finish that provides a bold, contemporary look. Modern, sophisticated, and dramatic
Gun Metal Dark grey with a slightly metallic finish, less reflective than chrome. Industrial, and modern
Brushed Gold Soft, warm golden tone with a brushed finish that avoids glare. Luxurious, warm, and inviting
Brushed Nickel  Subtle, warm grey metallic finish with a brushed texture that hides fingerprints and water spots. Soft, subtle elegance
Brushed Copper  Warm, earthy metallic tone with a matte finish that can patina over time. Rustic, warm, and artisanal
Aged Iron Dark, matte finish that looks weathered or aged, offering a deep, rich texture. Vintage, rustic, and robust
Oil Rubbed Bronze  Dark brown or black with copper undertones, often with a slightly distressed finish. Traditional, rich, and classic with a hint of antique charm

Smart Material Choices

Select materials that enhance both the longevity and aesthetics of your bathroom:

  • Non-Slip Flooring: Matte finish tiles with a texture prevent slipping, essential in wet areas.
  • High-Quality Sealants: Protect your investment from water damage and mould with high grade grout and sealants.

Lighting is Key

Lighting plays a pivotal role in both the functionality and ambiance of the bathroom:

  • Task Lighting Position: Around 165 cm off the floor to align with facial height, ensuring no shadows during grooming.
  • Layered Lighting: Combine overhead with task lighting. Consider sconces or pendants at eye level around the mirror.

Innovate with Features

Elevate comfort and convenience with modern bathroom technology:

  • Heated Floors: A luxurious touch for cold mornings and quicker drying.
  • Smart Showers: Advanced showers that remember temperature settings and start remotely.
  • LED Mirrors: Incorporate LED mirrors with built-in demisters and adjustable light settings. These mirrors are not only beautiful and energy-efficient but also functional, preventing fogging during hot showers. Available in both framed and frameless options, they provide a modern look and can adapt to different lighting needs, enhancing grooming tasks.

Personal Touches Make a Difference

Your bathroom should be a reflection of your unique style and lifestyle:

  • Art Placement: Position art at about 145 to 150 cm from the floor
  • Greenery: Incorporate plants like ferns or orchids that thrive in humid conditions, adding life and colour.

Smart Storage Solutions

Effective storage solutions are essential for a clutter-free bathroom:

  • Mirrored Cabinets: Utilise mirrored cabinets for dual-purpose storage and grooming. They save space and reflect light, making the room appear larger.
  • Shower Niche: Discuss including a shower niche with your builder and tiler. This is not usually standard but is a practical add-on for storing shampoos, soaps, and other essentials within easy reach in the shower. Ensure it’s waterproofed and strategically placed to complement the shower’s design.
  • Floating Shelves and Recessed Cabinets: Consider using vertical space with floating shelves or recessed cabinets, which provide ample storage without encroaching on valuable floor space.

Starting your bathroom renovation or new build with confidence, knowing that every decision you make is shaping a sanctuary that resonates with both comfort and style. Here’s to creating a space you’ll love for years to come