Every type of home out there has one thing in common, a bathroom. Not all bathrooms are created equal though. Many homeowners in Phoenix, whether in a condo, loft or smaller scale home tend to have petite bathroom quarters for their hall, guest or even main bathroom. While new homes tend to have double the bathroom space than older homes do, these smaller spaces typically average about 5’ by 8’ in size. Realtors term them as “cozy” when listing a home. The magazines and television shows like to show off the spacious enlarged bathrooms, not your every day run of the mill standard bathroom or smaller “cozy” bathrooms for that matter. Whose to say your bathroom is destined to be considered this way and not as a personal spa though. A smaller bathroom can be just as impressive as a spacious one with the right design elements and the help of an experienced general contractor. Though it can be challending, it does lend itself to more lavishly creative ways of thinking in order to maximize space and bring out the illusion of additional square footage that isn’t there. However, your general contractor will still be keeping the focus on including well-designed storage solutions, a functional layout and space saving ideas during the design phase of your bathroom remodel as well. This mindful designing will take your simple bath and turn it into a stylishly intriguing room.
A modern minimalist approach is perfect for small spaces and undersized bathrooms. Glass elements, mirrors, plenty of natural light, clean lines and soft contrasts are just a few ways that you can improve the design elements of your bathroom. You will want your space to be inviting and comfortable for completing your daily routine efficiently, thus turning it in to your unique spa-like escape.Lighting and color in particular, when used correctly, can add depth. These are the types of tricks that we’ll cover in this article.
- Choose The Right Color Palette.
Light monochromatic schemes are great for small spaces. Color plays a very important role when decorating. Black and whites remain a very classic and elegant look, while the use of white provides the feeling of being roomy and fresh. Darker color schemes are more preferred in larger spacious rooms of the home as they can tend to make your area seem smaller to the eye. If a pop of color is needed, you can add minimal splashes of color to your small space with colorful accessories while still maintaining neutrally light color schemes for the more permanent aspects. Soft green and blue hues are a great choice for reflecting natural light and promoting a relaxing atmosphere.
- Mirrors Increase Depth Perception. Mirrors can easily up to double the depth appearance of your bathroom. Unusual wall mirrors are a great way to bring in more light stretching your space and accentuate the overall design. Additionally, tall mirrored medicine cabinets can help amplify the light from your fixtures to brighten up your space.
Eliminate Visual Barriers. Glass shower enclosures and glass elements are a wonderful space-saving fundamental. The transparency of glass allows full sight of the room versus a closed off or even curtained showering area thus shrinking the visual appearance of your space even moreso. Glass allows the eye to continue from one side of the room to the other without interruption making your space airy and breezy, while maximizing the flow of any form of natural or inserted lighting elements. Adding to it’s list of benefits, a full or partial glass enclosure wont break your remodel budget either. Glass is also a great choice for any additional shelving that you may need.
- Choose a Minimalist Design. You’ve probably heard the phrase “less is more”. By sticking with a sleek minimalist design, you are able to maximize your storage space while minimizing avoidable design distractions.
- Be sure not to overdo it with too many accessories. Clutter control is key in a small bath and or vanity area. Although knickknacks add to the personal touch of your space, they do take up valuable real estate space that could be used for other necessities or needed storage. You can corral your favorite miscellaneous accessories on a vanity tray of sorts if necessary to give the impression of being clean and under control.
- An added benefit to having this minimalistic mindset paired with a small bathroom is that you have fewer furnishings and décor to worry about. This makes the space ideal for splurging on a particular higher end amenity or item that you normally wouldn’t when remodeling a larger space. Examples of this could be an upgraded sink, that beautiful (expensive) tile that you fell in love with or the shower fixture that you didn’t think would fit within your budget.
- Opt For Smaller Appliances. The quickest way to make a smaller scale bathroom seem just that is by using full sized appliances. Talk to your general contractor about incorporating space-saving appliances to fit your space, such a as a smaller sink or toilet. By giving up 1-2” of toilet space that you may not even notice, it can help open up the flow and walking area within your bathroom. Vanities can also be designed at shallow depths to better fit in tight quarters.
- Incorporate Plenty Of Lighting. A dark or dimmed bathroom appears closed off and diminishes it’s size, while a well-lighted area appears bigger. Feel free to add more than one style of lights, such as task lighting at the vanity and ambient lighting over the bathing area. While natural lighting from a window or skylight is ideal for a small bathroom, a mix of light fixtures can add to your space. By incorporating lights on both sides of your vanity mirror, as well as over the mirror you can help eliminate unnecessary shadows making for optimal lighting during tasks like shaving and applying make-up.
- Include Eye-Catching Flooring. You may be limited on space, but you are not limited on style. In many instances, Peoria homeowners fall in love with a specific tile that is over their initial budget, thus resulting in a compromise for a cheaper alternative or to use it minimally as an accent only. With a small bathroom, even the pricey pick won’t bust your budget. By using larger scale tile in a straight lay pattern, such as 12” x 24” size tricks your mind into thinking that being the the tiles are bigger that the room itself is bigger as well. Smaller tile will also have more grout lines and grids which can lend to the illusion of seeming smaller. Not to mention, as an added benefit, the larger tile will have less grout that needs cleaning.
- Patchwork tile designs and patterns, as well as mosaic tiles can be used to add interest and charm to your bathroom, but keep in mind any that require larger amounts of grout will play into your small space feeling.
- When using tile (subway or elongated) on the floor and up the wall, it’s best to place the tile vertically rather than horizontally. This will help draw your eye out and upwards playing into the fantasy of a bigger room with a taller ceiling height.
- Free Up Floor Space.
- A pedestal sink or floating vanity take up a reduced amount of visual space without compromising the look or style of the room. Before choosing which option is right for you, consider everything that you will need to contain within the bathroom, any other available storage space within the bathroom or outside of it (see #12) to be sure that the storage option that you choose will suit your needs.
- Floating vanities are ideal for storing a vanity stool or extra storage baskets. Larger baskets like these are great for spare towels and toilet paper.
- Built-in niches are a great way to make use of wasted space in your small bathroom. A niche can be built into the wall between studs just like in your shower to hold bottles, cosmetics, lotions and other hygiene items. Be sure to include plenty of niches in your bathing area as well for storing shampoos and soaps conveniently.
- If additional shelving is needed opt for open shelves to hold bathtime necessities, canisters and linens. This allows you to store items conveniently within reach while adding decoration and color to your space. For storing personal items or cleaning supplies, try incorporating a woven basket or bin. Glass is another great selection for shelving material. The open concept makes the room seem larger by allowing you to see the walls. Embrace any available vertical space, such as over the toilet. This is an ideal spot for these extra storage amenities.
- Wall-hung toilets are another way to free up floor space. Not to mention they are easier to clean versus a standard toilet. While you are looking at toilets, we recommend asking about water saving features to save you money in the long run.
- Get Rid Of Your Swing Door. A barn door or pocket door still provides the privacy aspect that you need for a bathroom without using up your valuable floor space. This is especially beneficial for bathrooms that open up into a hallway, bedroom or narrow space.
- Frosted paneled doors allow for natural light to still filter through while maintaining privacy.
- Splurge For Spa-Like Extras. Just because you have a small space doesn’t mean that it doesn’t deserve to have luxury features incorporated into the design. By adding an oversized shower head with a handheld, body sprays or rain fall shower to the bathing area will step up your style game. Incorporate robe hooks as you get into the bathing area. Soft fluffy towels and a smart device docking station can have you relaxed in no time.
- Ditch The Tub and Go For A Curbless Shower. A standard tub on average will span the width of your bathroom, while a shower can be designed smaller scale or at an angle freeing up valuable space that could be better utilized for storage. By eliminating the barriers in your bathroom footprint, a curbless shower creates an open spacious feel allowing your eye to continue all the way to the showering wall and essentially up the wall. This especially plays a factor when a frameless glass full or partial enclosure is used.
- Venture Outside Of The Bathroom. If you are finding that you just cannot effectively fit what you’d like to in your petite space, take a look outside of your bathroom door. Consider utilizing an empty corner, closet or bookshelf for storing items that do not necessarily have to be in the bathroom at all times. This could include additional towels and linens, spare toiletries and hair products, medications or anything else that you may still need near the bathroom area.
These 12 design ideas have hopefully got you thinking about remodeling your small bathroom with plans of a newly updated impressive and roomy appearance. Now that you can envision the possibilities that await, it’s time to start your project off on the right foot by hiring an experienced general contractor. While there are many to choose from, finding the perfect one for your project doesn’t have to be daunting. There are a few qualities that you’ll want to look for in your ideal contractor during your initial consultation or interview process to help keep you on track for the goals of your space.
- Is Licensed, Bonded and Insured – Don’t be afraid to ask for proof of insurance and always do your due diligence to check up on their licensing to make sure it’s (1) active and (2) doesn’t have any claims against it. Construction companies within Arizona are regulated by the Arizona Registrar of Contractors or ROC. You can look up any construction contractor on their website at https://roc.az.gov/. If building in other states, check with their appliable governing board.
- On-staff designer(s) – Let’s face it, this just makes life easier during the planning phase so that you are not having to work with a 3rd party designer and coordinate your vision between two separate companies.
- A Design Showroom – Not all general contractors or design-build firms will have a showroom and will want to accompany you or send you around town to pick out various components of your remodel. While it’s not the end of the world, it is a timely process versus one that has a design showroom in-house where you can pick out all of your materials in one convenient location with your designer. This is particularly important to make sure that you love all of your material choices when used together.
- Has A Store-Front – This speaks more to your piece of mind when hiring a contractor. If the company has a store-front location, you can bet they are not a fly-by night company and are more known within their community. You’ll want to choose a general contractor that will be there months and years down the road should you have any warranty or customer service needs.
- Provides A Warranty – By Arizona regulation, every licensed contractor must provide a warranty for any workmanship provided. Be sure that you get your chosen contractors warranty policy and procedures in writing for your records.
- Written Contract – It is never recommended that your construction agreement be verbal or based on a handshake. Be sure to get all specifications of your project, including total price, any applicable progress payments, warranty as described above, etc in writing. This way there are no unanswered questions or gray areas when it comes to how, when and what will be used in the building of your project.
Now this is just scratching the surface, but it gives you a few general tips to keep in mind before you sign on the dotted line (or shake hands!). When you are ready to start any type of home remodeling project in the Peoria or Greater Phoenix areas, you’re likely to be recommended repeatedly to TWD. Word of mouth, online directories and resources, as well as community associations all recommend the best … Todd Whittaker Drywall Inc. or more commonly known as TWD. They’ve been in the business of remodeling since 1996 winning various awards and accreditations for their customer service and skill. If you are looking for a design-buid general contractor for any type of home improvement project, you can find them online at https://www.twdaz.com or by calling (623) 544-1211. Their knowledgeable employees and on-staff designers are happy to help guide you through the design and remodel process, while ensuring you are completely satisfied with the end result. Stop into their design showroom or check them out online. You’ll be happy that you did.