Small bathrooms can present a large design challenge. You may think there’s not much you can do with a small bathroom but make the best of it. With some careful planning and creativity, you can make your small bathroom look and feel bigger without expanding it.
Many people think if a bathroom is small, they don’t need to plan the design as thoroughly as with a larger bathroom but the opposite is actually true. The key to making the most of your small bathroom is to take advantage of every square inch by selecting fixtures and features carefully.
Selecting the right paint color can help make your bathroom feel bigger. Lighter colors tend make a small space seem larger. White and off-white are the most popular colors for small bathrooms, with light grey gaining in popularity. The ceiling should be kept white. Consider contrasting dark, rich cabinet colors with the lighter colored walls and flooring. Stick to solid colors; patterns can be overwhelming in a small space.
Lighting can make a big impact on the perceived size of your bathroom. More light will make the room feel larger. Overhead lighting will give more overall illumination while side lighting is more flattering and works well for task lighting. A skylight will bring in lots of natural light.
Traditional vanities can take up a lot of room and disrupt the flow of traffic in a small bathroom. If you don’t want to give up the storage provided by a vanity, consider a floating vanity that mounts to the wall, providing the illusion of extra space. A curved vanity still provides storage space but the rounded shape takes up less floor space and is less cumbersome in a small bathroom. If you’re willing to give up the vanity, a pedestal or wall-mounted sink is more streamlined and will take up less space. A corner sink is a great option to take advantage of space that would otherwise be wasted.
Even selecting the right mirror can make an impact. A larger mirror will reflect more light and color to make the room seem bigger. Consider adding additional mirrors in the bathroom, such as above the bathtub.
When selecting tile for your bathroom, consider using large tiles. Larger tiles result in fewer grout lines, which are easier to keep clean, and they give the impression of a larger space. Smaller mosaic tiles can be used to accent the larger tiles.
If your bathroom is a full bath, the tub or shower you select can impact the perception of space. If you have a shower, opt for a frameless clear glass enclosure over a shower curtain or an enclosure that is framed or uses frosted glass. The clear frameless enclosure, particularly one with a curb-less entry, removes the visual barrier of the shower and immediately gives the impression of more space. If you need to include a bathtub, opt for one with minimal height.
Even the toilet you use can have an impact. A compact elongated toilet or a wall-hung toilet with the tank built into the wall will improve the feeling of space.
A cluttered bathroom automatically will feel smaller, making storage a necessity. Unfortunately building storage into a small bathroom can be challenging. Make use of corners by installing shelves or cabinets into corners. Use floating shelves or shallow wall-mount cabinets to take advantage of wall space, especially above the toilet. Building recessed shelves or cabinets into the wall are a great way to increase storage without taking up valuable floor space. Even something as simple as swapping towel bars for hooks can make your bathroom feel less crowded.