By Kim Saavedra

Bathrooms are becoming so much more than a small room where you begin and end your day. With all new features and amenities, a well designed bathroom can bring a sense of well being to your daily life while increasing the value of your home.


When it comes to proper lighting, one of the most critical spaces in the home is the bathroom. Bathrooms require practical and functional lighting solutions. It’s the first place people go to when they wake up in the morning, and it can set the mood for the day. Making sure your bathroom mirror is well lit is a great way to start the day ahead. Mood lighting can create a more relaxing atmosphere. Ideally, dimmable wall-mounted sconce fixtures on either side of the mirrors (at users eye level) leaves no part of the face in shadow. And if the budget allows consider a redistribution of dimmable recessed lighting to continue the ambiance. Over the shower and tub are additional lighting areas that will give the illusion of high ceilings. Keep in mind an overhead vanity light fixture or hanging pendant behind the head will leave the face in shadow.


Don’t under estimate the importance of storage in any bathroom layout. Now’s the time to invest in an above the sink recessed display(medicine) cabinet or two. These multi-purpose cabinets come in all styles, sizes and shapes and are mirrored on the inside too. Once installed they look like a stylish flat beveled mirror— the perfect place to store anything from dental supplies, medicine to cosmetics, while providing a handy mirror. Even a tall cabinet tower between two sinks offers enormous storage potential.  In addition, consider installing simple glass shelving under the mirrors or behind the toilet for those everyday items. In the shower and tub areas carve out a shampoo niche, vertical alcove or waterproof floating bench—all are a must have. Last but not least don’t forget to install a series of matching towel rods and robe hooks throughout the bathroom, you can never have enough.These are all are great ways to create space for your bathroom essentials and more.


Planning a functional and beautiful bathroom that meet’s your family’s needs is challenging. A pocket door (frosted glass insert) is an ideal solution where there is little room to accommodate a swinging door. These are great for water closets, wardrobe walk-ins or connections between rooms while offering an open, yet private upscale design look and feel.


If you are short on vanity counter space consider a wall mounted faucet over the sink or even next to a free standing tub. Although the install is a bit more costly, it’s easier to clean, and a stylish backsplash sculpture. Best of all, it really helps free up that much needed square footage you’ve been looking for.


If you are updating your bathroom vanity with a gorgeous piece of quartz, try continuing that custom quartz look and feel throughout the bathroom. Creating a floating quartz bench, long shampoo niche shelf or functional bathtub ledge can really add a touch of luxury throughout the bathroom.


When you are looking to expand your small bathroom space, consider a Zero entry or curb-less bathroom shower. In addition, to offering an upscale look and seamless flow, curb-less showers allow for easier access. The tile flooring continues into the shower stall without a lip or curb to step over. Extend your eyeline with clear frameless glass shower enclosures and/or wider door reflects a more expansive flow to the room while projecting a more luxurious style. In addition, consider a square or tile linear drain that makes for a cleaner look on the shower floor and can even match the tile format. Accessible features like shower grab bars and endless towel hooks will also help accessorize the plumbing fixtures.


Just because you don’t have a sizable bathroom doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t have a bathroom that feels large. If you are planning on updating your home, this tip can work in any size bathroom. Large or small, extending tile up to the ceiling, well above the shower head will draw your eye up and give the illusion of height, making your new bathroom renovation feel and look much larger. You can even try a solid wall of mesh mosaic decorative tile on the vanity wall (with no side splash) reflecting a luxurious hotel look and feel.


Install floor tile on a diagonal which will give the illusion and appearance of more square footage. Big tiles look best in small bathrooms and thin grout lines give the appearance of a bigger space.


A floating vanity with soft close pull out drawers give the illusion of added space while creating a sleek, stylish and less cluttered look and feel. In addition, think about ditching that old built in roman tub for a spa-like free standing acrylic tub. The open area beneath the tub can make any bathroom look bigger than it actually is. Acrylic tubs are available in virtually every shape, size, and configuration—and are very affordable nowadays.

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