Bathroom Choices

Bathroom Choices

What do you need in a modern day bathroom?

Bath – Vanity – Shower – Toilet – Bidet – Heated Towel Rail – Demister Mirror – Heated Floor Tiles – Heater – Extract Fan – Stereo – TV?

As our lives get busier the time we spend looking after ourselves is diminishing. Way back in time – taking a bath wasn’t a luxury like it is now – it was the only way to get clean. Now in the time it takes to fill and prepare a bath we could have already run through the shower, got dressed and be onto sorting out our hair! Does it have to be this way?

From a design perspective we put so much effort into creating a bathroom that looks fantastic and has all the modern conveniences that will save water, power, keep our towels warm, make sure we don’t get cold feet, keep the bathroom dry and healthy, yet we don’t instruct our clients how to use it.

I start with the bath – too often now I hear people saying to me; “No we don’t want a bath – we don’t have kids at home anymore so we won’t need it and it just collects dust that we then have to clean”.
To be fair – I also thought I could live without a bath and I have kids. Space was a factor in that choice for our house and I regret it every day. I wish we had put in a bath. I have to place a very large bucket in the bottom of the shower for my youngest to have his bath in the shower! Kids love to sit in water and play, it is a great way to unwind and relax. I do believe that as adults we forget all these little tricks we use on kids and don’t apply them to ourselves. I often get home from a busy day at work and feel like sitting in a bath of hot water to soak and forget the day, switch my mind off and relax. A shower just doesn’t do that for you. A shower is refreshing but I don’t find it relaxing.

Luxury bath
Pure luxury – relax in this bathroom

Then we have the design discussion of having a toilet in the bathroom versus having a separate toilet room. The pro’s and con’s – having it on the bathroom is a great way to save space in your design, it is also very convenient if you are using the bathroom to be able to go to the toilet without having to run down the hall half dressed or with a towel around you and back again. But if you are going to start using the bathroom like I explained above for some quality personal and relaxing time in the bath – the last thing you want is someone wanting to use the toilet and knocking on the door interrupting your peace. If you have multiple toilets in the home this isn’t an issue. If you have one bathroom you do need to think seriously about having the toilet in a separate room.

luxury bathroom
Luxury of space in this bathroom

Showers? Do curved showers really save space? They do on a drawing, but once you are inside one they are pretty cramped. This is why I always say to clients – try before you buy. Go to the bathroom stores and go through their showrooms, stand in the shower, put your arms up as if you were washing your hair – do your elbows hit the side? Are your feet standing on the waste? This is one of my pet hates – the shower waste is often placed right in the middle where you stand, I find that very annoying.

Glass shower door
Popular Glass walls and shower door with tiled walls – plenty of space here to wash your hair

The same can be said for all the other items you need for your bathroom. Sit on the toilet, all toilets are not the same, some are higher, wider. I always look for ease of cleaning in my bathroom fitting selections also, especially if you have more than one bathroom that you will have to look after. The bath is critical for you to try. Some are very narrow and not wide enough for some peoples hips, others and too short for long legged people. You can get baths that have the waste in the middle and are designed for two – so check that out if you want to take your bathing experience further!

Heated towel rail
Heated towel rail to keep your towels dry and warm

There are so many things that you can now have in your bathroom, I have even seen bathrooms with a TV and stereo surround sound.  I could imagine Hugh Heffner may have this special feature, I am guessing that as he walks around all day in his PJ’s and Bathrobe that he is a fan of lingering in a bubble bath, relaxing and watching TV!

Simple vanity
Good storage in this vanity

To summarize, bathroom design is not a difficult task. It is critical to think about each element and how it will be used in the clients home, don’t be afraid to ask questions about their lifestyle. You are designing for them to use it after all. Have fun and don’t forget to try all these fittings and fixtures yourself. You will be guiding them to choosing what works best for them, you need to know their advantages and disadvantages.

I am now off to dream about having a luxurious bubble bath one day soon…..

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