Tips To Make A Small Bathroom Feel Larger
Is it better to choose small or large tiles to make a bathroom feel larger and what else can you do to visually enlarge a small bathroom?
There are interior designers who will tell you that installing large tiles in a bathroom will make the space appear larger and then there are designers who will advise that you use small tiles for the same reason. Using designer tricks to make a small bathroom look and feel larger can be confusing when there are so many differences of opinion so we put together a list of designer tricks that have been successful in visually increasing the size of a bathroom.
Let's take a look at some easy ways to make your small bathroom feel a bit bigger, so that when renovating or giving the bathroom a makeover, you will know what to consider:
1. PLENTY OF NATURAL LIGHT
When it comes to designing bathrooms for townhouse or cluster developments or more affordable housing estates, developers don't seem to put much thought into making sure bathrooms receive a lot of natural light. In most instances, bathrooms have a single window that is 50cm wide and just under a metre in height. While that might be okay for a powder room or guest toilet, it doesn't provide for much natural light.
If you are in the process of signing up for a spec-build property, one where you have the option to make changes here and there, adding an extra small window or enlarging the existing window design should be something to think about.
Where you are buying a ready-built property, you can consider the alternative to remove and replace a small window with something larger, but there is also the option to look at having a skylight or tubelight fitted. Both these options will increase the amount of natural light in a bathroom.
2. KEEP COLOURS SIMPLE
Once again, using colour in a small bathroom is a flip of a coin for designers; some say you should keep it white while others say you can use colour to your advantage to create the illusion of more space. The problem with an all-white bathroom is that it can appear bland and sterile and lacking in interest. That's all fine and well for making a space feel visually larger, but sometimes it can also make a bathroom feel impersonal and cold.
One simple way to visually affect the size of a room is to incorporate a feature wall in a small bathroom. This can be achieved with a coloured or patterned tile, mirrors, or by using natural materials such as brick and stone cladding, etc. The colour and texture of the materials used on a feature wall can add character and style to an otherwise bland bathroom.
Choosing the right paint colour for a small bathroom isn't easy if you are looking to make the room feel larger. Firstly, you need to decide which wall to paint. In a long, narrow bathroom, similar to the one shown in the image below, painting the far wall in a dark colour can further increase the feeling of a narrow space and make you feel closed in.
If you have the opportunity, draw up a basic sketch of the room and use pens or paints to colour in walls to see how this will affect the room, or go online to look for similar bathroom designs and how these have been decorated.
Another designer trick that can be used to widen a narrow bathroom is to use horizontal tiles such as subway tiles. Despite their small size, horizontal tiles have the ability to visually fool the eye.
3. BLENDING COLOURS, MATERIALS AND TEXTILES
Unless you are specifically opting for an in-your-face colour scheme, choose colours that work well together. In a bathroom that is only tiled halfway or three-quarters of the way up walls, choose paint colours for the walls that complement the colour of the tiles used in the space. By doing this you will blur the line between tiles and painted walls.
When renovating or designing a bathroom, you might also want to consider using a grout colour that is similar to that of the tiles. e.g. dove grey or beige grout to match ceramic or natural stone tiles. This will also help with visually enlarging the space by providing far less of a distraction on walls for the eye to catch upon.
4. GLASS AND MIRROR FITTINGS AND FINISHES
We all know how mirrors can be used to visually open up a small space and this applies to bathrooms as well. When combined with glass shower panels, a mirrored vanity wall not only bounces light around the room, but it also makes a bathroom feel larger than it is. A single large mirror or several medium-sized mirrors above a bathroom vanity will bring more light into the room, acting almost as an additional window.
Turn mirrors in a bathroom into a design element. Use them to reflect a beautiful accessory, unique plant or vase of fresh flowers in a crystal vase.
Glass shower panels open up sight lines, allowing light to flow throughout the space. Replacing brick or partition walls with glass creates the illusion of a much larger space.