How to Achieve the Perfect Bathroom Renovation

How to Achieve the Perfect Bathroom Renovation

If it requires 11 different trades to build a house, nine of them are needed just for the bathroom. From plumbers and electricians to tilers, painters and glaziers, this little room is demanding in both time and money.

And getting the design right is not easy, especially if you’re dealing with small awkward spaces.

From where to place the toilet for a little quiet time, through to the most convenient position for the handbasin so that everyone can wash their hands before dinner, planning a bathroom requires a mix of common sense and attention to aesthetics.

We’ve broken it down so that smallest room in your house is not only beautiful to be in but works effortlessly for the whole family.

The stunning Neue freestanding bath is from Reece’s Kado range.

TAKING TIME OUT

The bathroom and the kitchen are two of the most-used rooms in the house, but business manager for Reece Daniela Santilli says the bathroom is without doubt the most important.

As our lives become busier, the bathroom has become a central zone for time out, as well as somewhere to get clean.

“There is less emphasis on one room being the living area because the allure of technological innovation is no longer limited to television and electronic entertainment. It now spreads throughout the home,” she says.

“In creating a kitchen space, you’re essentially crafting a social hub where people come together, whereas in the bathroom you’re creating a living room that connects you to yourself.”

She says it’s worth spending some time with your builder or designer to consider the most workable layout for your family, from how many basins to where to store the towels.

At the same time, you will want it to be a beautiful, relaxing space for restoring both mind and body.

“When designing the bathroom space, you should always consider all angles, from family functionality, future longevity and aesthetics,” Daniela says. “With such a range of different products on the market combined with
out-there trends, you really can have it all.

“It’s entirely possible to craft a bathroom that brings together function, utility, beauty and the senses to deliver a multipurpose space for rejuvenation and relaxation.”

The Era Bath from the Kado range at Reece is a modern twist on an old favourite .

BATHING BEAUTY

Baths used to be a practical inclusion to wash the kids but in recent years, they have become status symbols in the bathroom.

A freestanding bathtub is an architectural piece that acts as a focal point in the bathroom, making it a key part of the design.

“There’s now more choice than ever before,” says Jonathan Carter, marketing director at Victoria + Albert. “You’re not just limited to larger, traditional roll-top baths, you can choose from compact modern soaking tubs, to clever ergonomic designs, to the Victorian-style claw-foot tubs.”

He says bathtubs are great for families too.

“Bath time is often a really important routine for younger kids, but they also represent some solo pamper time for older members of the family.”

Increasingly, designers are looking to make the bath the centrepiece of the room, visible from the moment you step inside.

Placement will depend on access to taps but positioning it along the furthest wall is popular. For those looking for a little hotel-style luxury, an elevated bath literally takes the bathroom to a new level.

“For too long the bathroom has been seen as a utilitarian space, a place to just wash and go,” Jonathan says. “It doesn’t make any sense to treat the bathroom that way now.”

This Victoria+Albert bath is positioned at the end of the room for maximum effect. A skylight adds drama.

THE LITTLEST ROOM

Just as open-plan living spaces are being broken up, bathrooms are also becoming a little more segregated, with separation between the toilet and shower or bath.

“There is a trend to separate the two,” Jonathan says.

This can be particularly useful in single bathroom families allowing two people to use the space at once — but with some privacy.

“Don’t forget to include a handbasin in the toilet — this is often overlooked,” he says.

Of course, interior design has also played a huge part in increasing the bathroom’s status within the home, as over time interior designers have become more creative in their approach to this space.

“When styling and designing the bathroom space, you should always consider all angles, from family functionality, future longevity and aesthetics.

With such a range of different products on the market combined with out-there trends, you really can have it all.

“It’s entirely possible to craft a bathroom that brings together function, utility, beauty and the senses to deliver a multipurpose space for rejuvenation and relaxation.”

More Victoria + Albert, vandabaths.com; Reece, reece.com.au

An elevated bath and floating timber vanity give this Metricon Homes-designed bathroom a sense of luxury.

FUNCTION OVER FASHION

Once you have the basics sorted, it’s time to think about storage.

Metricon design director Adrian Popple says the vanity needs to provide ample bench space and storage while setting the style for the bathroom. Think about positioning it near the door for quick entries and exits.

Adrian says a good bathroom design should be able to tick both the fashion and functionality boxes.

“Functionality takes precedence and so long as you have a vanity, bath, shower and separate toilet, the space will always work,” he says. “The space can then be styled with your choice of tiling, paint, tapware and features, such as tiled recesses and vanity layouts.”

Tiles are still a popular choice for walls and floors because they are so practical in wet areas and come in such a wide range of colors, there’s something for almost
every style of bathroom. Before you decide, consider how easy they will be to clean.

Whatever colour you choose, think about how the light will reflect in the room, especially if you spend time applying make-up in the bathroom.

White or shades of grey are still the colours of choice for walls and vanity benchtop surfaces, although patterned tiles for floors are proving popular.

Colorful towels and the occasional indoor plant are an easy way to update the space from season to season.

Most of us are looking for a clean, hard working space that’s still a pleasure to be in, even if some of us spend more time in the bathroom than others.

“Women tend spend the most time in the bathroom preparing for the day and want to spend their time in a space that’s functional but also attractive,” Adrian says.

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