It’s been a weird winter so far in Boston, and you can be excused for feeling confused. Polar vortex? Check. Balmy days in February? Check. Though we could just as easily be in for many more nor-easters before the season is out, let’s take our chances and look forward to spring — the perfect time for a little remodeling project. To get you in the mood, we’ve pulled together some of our favorite ideas to freshen up a bathroom.
What makes these ideas worth considering? They’re for small to average-sized bathrooms. Not everyone has acres of square footage to devote to a bathroom — especially if you live in one of the area’s older homes. That’s why we’re focusing on ways to get the most out of your existing bathroom, whether you’re remodeling a triple decker, an older condo, or a starter home. Read on and get inspired!
1. Open New Doors
Are you stuck doing a little dance to maneuver around the bathroom door when you open it? It’s not necessarily your bathroom that’s too small — but your door is definitely too big! You have a few options. First, you could rehang the door so that it swings out (assuming you have enough space in the hallway to do so). If you’re willing to do some more light carpentry, you could install a pocket door that slides into the wall instead. If that’s too difficult, adding a Jeld Wen DesignGlide barn door on a track accomplishes the same thing but is generally easier to install — and is a look that’s totally on-trend.
2. Upgrade Your Toilet
Another great way to save space as you complete your bathroom remodel is to replace the toilet with a wall-hung model. These modern toilets keep the water tank hidden in the wall, so you gain an extra foot or so of space around the toilet. Even better, the bowl is mounted to the wall, which makes it so much easier to clean the floor under and around the toilet. Because these are trickier to install than traditional toilets, it’s best to call a professional plumber to get the job done.
3. Vanity Is a Virtue
In many older homes, closet space is at a premium. And bathroom closet space? Forget about it. When storage is limited, it’s time to install the biggest vanity you can fit in your space. Treat your bathroom like a kitchen and go for customized cabinets to make the best use of every last inch of space below the sink. And get creative! Bathroom cabinetry by Decorá can integrate the under sink cabinet with matching wall cabinets for an upscale built-in, or you can play with multi-level countertops. There’s also no rule that says the sink has to be centered if you prefer a long expanse of vanity top to use as a workspace.
4. Ditch the Tub
Unless you’re actually one of those people who lights candles and soaks in the tub for hours at a time, eliminating an old-fashioned bathtub definitely has its benefits. A shower takes up less room, and you can tile the whole bathroom to create a seamless, integrated look that will make the room feel bigger. Bathtubs break up the space by stopping the eye, and they often can only fit in one part of the bathroom. A compact shower gives you many more choices if you want to redesign the entire floorplan of your bathroom, and you may even save enough square footage to add a small linen closet next to the new shower.
5. Go for Glass
In addition to adding useful storage space and maximizing the layout of your bathroom, a great bathroom remodel will use some design tricks to make the space seem more expansive. Glass is your friend! A transparent shower door lets you see the whole room instead of closing it off with a shower curtain. Likewise, a frosted glass window with no curtain at all lets in plenty of light and makes the room feel bigger by leading the eye outdoors. You’ll also want to install the biggest mirror you can find: The reflection will make the area feel twice as big as it actually is.
6. Think Outside the Bath
Still don’t have enough space in your bathroom for everything you need? It might be time to break out of the traditional bathroom space to claim some hallway real estate for storage. Try adding an armoire outside the bathroom door to use as a linen press for sheets and towels. You may also be able to repurpose a hall tree — traditionally used in foyers — for storage and a pre-bath prepping area.
When you’re ready to dive into your bathroom remodel, trust New England Building Supply to provide everything you need to get the job done right. From bathroom vanities and counters to expert advice, we’re ready to help you turn your humdrum bathroom into something spectacular.