Whether you’re working with a small space or looking to make a decorative splash, the options are limitless when it comes to bathroom design. jessica doyle selects some inspiring examples…
Five experts, five trends
Clockwise from top right
1. Barbara sallick, founder of waterworks
‘We’re seeing a big shift from nickel fittings to unlacquered brass, which will tarnish and soften with time.’ ‘Henry’ one-hole cross-handle faucet in unlacquered
brass, £1,354.32, from waterworks.
2. Rita konig, interior designer & house & garden columnist
‘I’m really into wallpaper in the bathroom, particularly in flora or fauna prints. I’m installing ‘fuchsia’ by twigs in a client’s bathroom.’ ‘Fuchsia’ (salmon), by
twigs, 67.5cm wide, £288 for a 4.5-metre roll, from simon playle.
3. Daniel cook, designer, c p hart
‘Designers are rejecting the functional requirements of austerity and embracing flair, opulence and luxurious detailing.’ ‘Organico’ basin with lamp, by jaime hayón for bisazza bagno, 81 x 142 x 62cm, £3,300, from c p hart.
4. Rita rendo-castro, head of marketing, catchpole & rye
‘We’ve seen a move away from colour and this month are launching several new smart metal finishes, including this bath with nickel interior, from £5,400, from catchpole & rye.‘
5. Louisa morgan, marketing director, mandarin stone
‘Designers are becoming more daring, using darker stones to create show-stopping spaces.’ ‘Black emperador’ polished marble, £71.98 a square metre, rom mandarin stone.
More ideas for overhauling your bathroom
1. Good wood
Wood panelling and cabinetry – or even a wooden bath – can add warmth and character to your space
Dark, heavily veined wood is the theme at the estancia vik hotel in uruguay. The smooth finish of the panelling and sculptural design of the bath keep the look sleek. Based in devon, william garvey is a good source for modern wooden baths. williamgarvey.co.uk
2. Small spaces
Shoehorning everything you need into a compact bathroom is a challenge, but one that can be overcome with these clever solutions
It’s a wrap
A smaller bath, built in and panelled with marble, is an elegant option when space is limited. At this house in chelsea, french interior designer eve mercier used wrap-around carrara marble in large-format slabs ‘to visually enhance the sense of space and avoid a “bitty” look’. Natural light is afforded by a frosted, circular ‘peekaboo’ window between the bathroom and adjacent bedroom.
A small room doesn’t necessarily need small fixtures and fittings. The owners of this notting hill bathroom wanted a large basin that could double up as a utility sink, so architects maxwell & company installed a belfast sink with built-in oak-veneer panelling incorporating a cabinet. Try victorian plumbing for belfast sinks, from around £150.
Space-saving multifunctional products
1 ‘Coffee bamboo arena revolve 1400‘ cabinet, by wireworks, 140 x 28 x 18cm, £389, from heal’s.
2 ‘Myroom‘ slimline polymarble basin and worktop, 12 x 150 x 30.5cm, £199, from bathstore.
3 ‘Xenon‘ 77.5cm stainless-steel organiser pole, £609, from samuel heath.
4 ‘Storjorm‘ mirror with integrated lighting, 47cm diameter, £55, from ikea.
5 ‘Biblio‘ bath, £13,800, from cp hart.
3. The right lights
Even in a bathroom with plenty of natural light, good lighting is vital
Sally storey of john cullen lighting shares her four golden rules for effective bathroom illumination:
1 General for ceilings of under three metres, recessed downlights are a practical option; place leds close to the wall, directed towards the basin and above the wc or towel rail. for ceilings of over three metres, a chandelier provides a focus and has the effect of lowering the feeling of the ceiling height.
2 Task wall lights on either side of a mirror give the correct side light that will balance the reflection of your face. if the bathroom is too modern or small for wall lights, consider a strip of led backlighting behind the mirror.
3 Atmosphere to create a spa ambience, use one-watt low-level led uplights at the base of a stone or tiled wall, behind a free-standing bath or in a windowsill to light shutters.
4 Control a dimmer system will allow you to set different lighting ‘scenes’ for the morning, evening and night.
4. Get organised
Good storage is a must, whether you choose integrated, open or free-standing
If you have the space, opting for free-standing storage allows you to use furniture not specifically designed for the bathroom. Here, henri fitzwilliam-lay has chosen a glass-fronted wooden cabinet, which, teamed with an antique rug, creates an unstructured aesthetic.
For a streamlined, uncluttered look, it’s best to go built-in. Interior designer philippa thorp hasn’t wasted an inch of space in this chelsea bathroom,
incorporating cupboards under the basins and ceiling-height mirror-fronted cupboards above built into the wall cavity for a flush finish.
5. Decorative touches
Patterned wallpaper, art, lighting and accessories create a bathroom that packs a decorative punch
Artwork can set the tone of any room. Here, a map becomes a visual cue for the bather to daydream about far-flung places. If you’re worried about steam ruining art on the wall, stick to prints in inexpensive frames. Stanfords stocks a wide range of maps.
‘Use design elements from other parts of your house in the bathroom,’ says sarah watson of balineum. ‘Wallpaper, fabrics and furniture help make it an extension of the house.’ By bwarchitects, this manhattan bathroom exemplifies her point, combining decorative lighting, shimmery de gournay wallpaper, an alpaca rug and a mirror ball.
6. Floor show
Whether it’s brightly coloured or monochrome, choosing a theme is a good starting point
The colour of the bath establishes the decorative scheme of this pretty bathroom. It is the ‘spey’ bath from drummonds (from £4,980).
And has been painted in a bespoke colour to match the salmon pink of the mix-and-match terracotta-tiled floor from palazzo morelli, which is also echoed in the curtain fabric. The loo and shower are neatly concealed behind the wall to the right.
A dramatic black-sided bath and black and white tiles – popham design’s ‘lantern’. From £300 a square metre – create a monochrome look in this bathroom by suzy hoodless.