‘it’s no longer cramped and bland’
Carmen ditched the bath tub to achieve more space in her new-look bathroom
Being roughly just two metres square, our family bathroom could never be described as generous and, although it was clean and functional when we moved in, limited floor space meant it felt very cramped.’ says Carmen. ‘What’s more, the stark white wall-to-wall tiling and uninspiring fittings made the room feel rather clinical and impersonal.
Simply upgrading with a quality shower over the bath and retiling was the obvious solution, but our family are avid shower lovers, so my husband Daniel and I soon agreed the key feature of the new room should be a spacious, powerful shower.
Much to Daniel’s delight, we soon came to the conclusion that there was nothing really wrong with the layout, it was just that the existing suite was too big for the space. So with no complicated redesign or relaying of pipework to consider, we chose to design the room ourselves. A friend suggested a good local plumber, who was happy to guide us, and to save money we ripped out the existing suite and flooring ourselves. However, we did bring in the professionals to remove the tiles and replaster throughout.
One of our first, and most controversial, design decisions was to ditch the bath in favour of a generous wet room-style enclosure. However, on the advice of our plumber, we made sure the dimensions still allowed for a bath to be reinstated easily, if it’s ever needed. By installing
‘introducing a bold pattern on the floor is a great way to add decorative interest without overwhelming smaller spaceslike this’
a slimline 700mm wide tray we were able to claw back valuable floor space. Concealing all the exposed pipework plus a new cistern within both a halfand full-height false wall helped visually streamline the room and gave us a handy shelf. Along with the vanity and shower niche, carved out of the existing stud wall, it has tripled our storage capacity!
Establishing the look
For me, an eclectic mix can work well, so I had no reservations about teaming our minimalist enclosure with more traditional fittings, such as the luxurious oversized deluge shower, classic freestanding vanity and brick tiles. With the colour scheme, most of our friends thought we were mad to paint the walls such a dramatic, dark green-grey, but I think offsetting them with white tiles and sanitaryware has kept the room both cosy and airy.
In line with our mix-and-match theme, we chose a traditional-style, floor-mounted radiator and opted for a bespoke wood-effect blind. My favourite addition was actually free – it’s the vintage mirror given to us by my mother. It sits happily alongside high street accessories in what, I’m proud to say, is now a luxurious and practical family bathroom, complete with ample floor space!’
SLEEK STORAGE ‘To maximise floor space we specifically sourced a slimline vanity – it may only be 40cm deep, but it’s 80cm wide, so the basin and storage are still adequate, space-wise.’
TOTAL £3,217 TURN OVER FOR MY SHOPPING LIST DRAMATIC DECOR ‘I’m so glad we had the courage of our convictions when it came to using colour and pattern in such a small space, as the bathroom now feels warm and welcoming’
BOXING CLEVER ‘I’m a huge fan of painted tongue-and-groove panelling, so it was the obvious choice when it came to boxing in pipework and the concealed cistern’
BLIND PASSION ‘to achieve the look of a wooden blind without the worry of it warping in such a humid area, we picked a smart, easy clean, faux alternative!’
FEATURE FLOOR ‘My lovely ceramic tiles not only add decorative interest, but have proved a hard-wearing and practical option in this family room’