Where do you start when one of the most important rooms in the house needs a facelift? How do you combine function and curb appeal to create a room that will meet your needs and yet still be attractive? These are questions that anyone who’s looking to give their bathroom a new look must ask themselves. After all, the bathroom is one of the most useful and important rooms in the house, alongside the kitchen.
Put Function First… Above all things, the bathroom must be functional. Storage and outlets must be accessible and ample enough to accommodate the needs of all its users. If the function is at the heart of the renovation, designing the bathroom of both your needs and dreams will follow. With that said, determine what your bathroom absolutely must have to accommodate everyone and begin your design plans around function first.
Dollars and Sense… Unfortunately, most of us don’t have a no-holds-barred budget for a renovation of any type and as a result, we must work within the confines of a budget. As a result, it’s a good idea to price what the project will cost and make adjustments to the budget as needed. Become familiar with what that claw-foot bathtub will cost. Is it possible to get it second hand if it’s a little too costly? Decide what the big ticket items will be in your bathroom and where you will opt for more economical options to keep cost down. Once you’ve tied down a budget and determined what the big spenders will be you can move into planning the actual layout and design of the bathroom.
Plan the Space… Plumbing is going to be key in terms of where the bathtub shower and toilet are placed. With that aside, walk the space with your contractor and determine what areas are going to require the most logic in planning. What items are reached for more frequently and where will they be stored? Would you rather reach up to retrieve them? How close should they be in proximity to other things in the space? Think ergonomics. Space should add convenience to usage. The linen closet should be close to the tub or shower. The medicine cabinet shouldn’t require more than arms reach to grab items that are used frequently.
Decide on a Motif… Is the mood of the bathroom going to be relaxing and casual or formal.? Decide what you’d like the overall mood to convey and decide on a motif that will promote that mood. Casual relaxing atmospheres usual have soft muted colors instead of strong dramatic ones. More formal bathrooms usually contain strong colors or extreme colors like black or white.
Understand the Strengths and Limitations of the Materials You are Using… If you are going to use marble or other natural products, become familiar with how to care for it and what to expect from it. Lighting should be approached with the same mindset. FLourescent lights provide a lot of illumination but tend to create a bluish cast, unlike incandescent lights that tend to be softer and have a yellowish undertone. Consider mixed lighting if some areas will require more or a different type of lighting than another.
Add Touches of Luxury… Would you like a seat in the shower or a rain head or waterfall shower? Even the faucet fixtures can add a splash of drama and elegance. Whatever you decide you’d like to add to your bathroom to create that spa-like atmosphere, plan it, and choose the touches that you and whoever will use the room will enjoy the most.
A renovation of any type requires planning and thought. The personality and preferences of everyone that will use the room are all important considerations in designing a smart, functional, and attractive space. Without question, the bathroom is clearly one of the most important rooms in the house, although it’s certainly one of the smaller spaces. However, it’s size makes it no less important, and for these reasons bathroom design requires careful planning and thought. The results of a personalized well-designed bathroom yield a beautiful space that easily accommodates all its users.