Dream Big When it Comes to Small Bathrooms

“Big things come in small packages” (at least that’s what my mom used to say), which is why I always go for the small box during Christmas raffles! Sometimes smaller spaces have their perks, too. If you have a smaller bathroom, there are several things you can do to maximize its space and functionality. In addition to lower-cabinet storage, consider vertical storage on the top part of your vanity or next to it. Built-in medicine cabinets are always a win, especially when installed mirror-on-mirror; that really can explode the space.

Using the same-type and same-size tile on the shower walls as used on the floor can enlarge the space and make a difference in fooling the eye. Sometimes you can gain space by adding a tray or skylight to a ceiling. Large-scaled wallpaper can also create spaciousness, as well as add a great deal of style to the overall design.

For a very teeny-tiny bathroom or powder room, this is your chance to show off your design savvy by turning it into a jewel box that is unforgettable. It isn’t a primary goal to always make a space look larger. First, decide how the bathroom is dedicated. Is it your master bath where storage is at a premium or is it a guest bath or main-floor powder room where dramatic aesthetics are the primary concern?

Regardless, bathroom design has come a long way. In addition to natural stone, there are available a myriad of porcelain tiles with some that mimic wood flooring to give spaces a “spa”-like feel. To score extra points for originality, consider rice paper or bamboo textures if it fits the overall look you want to achieve.

If you want to “get your glam on”, then look for tiles with metallic overlays that can add to the glamour and create a modern aesthetic. Some of the more recent things I have seen in bathrooms are rectangular-shaped tiles versus square, polished chrome versus satin nickel, hidden storage and drywall niches along with anything that can mimic a spa-like experience.

Good design can trump any trend, so no matter what the trend, follow your heart and go with what you think you might want to see every day. Just like the little black dress in your closet that you always go to, you want something that feels comfortable and classic, and then you can add all the bling and style with accessories, mirrors and art.

As designer Paul Rand famously said: Design is everything. Everything!”

Master bath BEFORE: The homeowners were aware that their master bath seemed tight. They wanted a larger feel for it.

Master bath AFTER: Notice the vertical storage on the vanity, and the mirror-on-mirror medicine cabinet. The pretty containers on the shelving also act as storage for makeup. By adding a skylight, we brightened up the dramatic space.

This recently completed small bathroom doesn’t appear that way at all! I used large-scale floral wallpaper, which added to the drama and scale of this bathroom along with the tray ceiling where a chandelier can be placed.

This powder room is a “jewel box.” The art, mirror and rug add to the overall glamorous feel.

This bathroom shows the same type of floor tile on the shower wall.

Pictured here in this same bathroom are vertical storage and the mirror-on-mirror feature.









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