10 Small Bathroom Ideas and Design Tricks
Making a small bathroom feel bigger doesn’t require a full-scale remodel. A few easy tricks can instantly refresh your space, from the right paint color to clever wall storage.
A bold hue on an accent wall can be a powerful solution for a tiny bath. Just be sure to balance it with neutrals and simple details, like a clean trim and molding detail.
1. Hang Curtains
Even if your bathroom doesn’t have a window, curtains can make the room feel brighter and add character. Choose a light fabric for privacy and softness, or go with a bold pattern to create a focal point.
If your bathroom has a window, try to install narrow but tall curtains (like these pink and white patterned ones) to frame the space and draw attention upwards. It’s also a great way to showcase your personal style, and it can help eliminate the need for another wall decor.
Paint is another important element when it comes to small bathrooms, as pale colors can visually enlarge the feel of a room. This trick can be applied to the ceiling, trim, window frames, and any edging above like picture rails. This will create a seamless look that the eye can move around without interruption.
2. Install Floating Shelves
Open shelving provides a fresh look and feel in small spaces. Create bathroom shelves that stand out in a statement piece, like the metal pipe and reclaimed wood DIY shelving project shown on martysmusings, or opt for a more blended effect by staining your floating shelf base in a shade that matches the wall color.
Use these wall-mounted storage solutions to store everything from extra hand towels to skincare products, and even decorative items. You can find shelves with a built-in rod at the bottom for draping a towel over for added convenience, as seen in this small bathroom from Hello Hayley.
Floating shelves can be attached to nearly any portion of the wall in your small bathroom. This is especially ideal in nooks, crannies, or over the toilet. Alternatively, consider adding shelves to a built-in cabinet for a cost-efficient upgrade.
3. Install a Vanity
Floating vanities take up less floor space than freestanding ones, and they offer a more streamlined look. For a cohesive design, choose cabinetry that matches your countertops and sink.
Opt for a pedestal sink instead of a bulky cabinet to make a room feel bigger. A wall-mounted vanity is a great place for a large collection of toiletries and extra towels.
To install a new bathroom vanity, first shut off the water supply to the fixture, then disconnect the hot and cold water lines and drain the P-trap. Be sure to have a bucket under the drain to catch the water that will pour out of the pipes. Then, remove the old vanity. Before reinstalling, wrap the drain pipe in the plumber’s tape to ensure a leak-free seal. Toss in a new mirror and towel bar for eye-pleasing symmetry.
4. Install a Floating Sink
Floating sinks make a dramatic impression in bathrooms of all sizes, but they’re especially eye-catching in small baths. They free up floor space and create a floating effect that elongates the room. Installing a large mirror over the sink also helps stretch a small bathroom and bounces natural light around.
Glass shelves and doors add transparency to a room, making it feel larger. Incorporate them in a shower or into a vanity enclosure to visually extend a bath. For a cohesive look, match the glass to the shower tiles or wainscoting as done here in this elegant powder room featuring floral wallpaper.
Open shelving in small bathrooms gives the area a relaxed, casual appeal. Unify the look by painting open-shelving a color that coordinates with your bath’s scheme.
5. Install a Floating Toilet
Don’t let a cramped toilet room hold you back from the rest of your bathroom design. Installing a floating toilet can give you the open feel of a bigger room while also freeing up floor space underneath for storage solutions.
If your bathroom has a pitched ceiling cutting into wall space, work around it by choosing art that features tall frames. Like this framed floral print, this bathroom idea draws the eye upward to visually elongate a room with narrow dimensions.
For more ideas that will help you make the most of your small bathroom, check out these easy storage and styling tricks for tiny spaces. You’ll be surprised at how much style you can fit into a small washroom with the right planning and design ideas. The right colors, storage solutions and clever styling will have you forgetting how compact your space really is.
6. Install a Floating Shower
The small size of a bathroom shouldn’t mean that style has to be compromised. By incorporating design tricks and storage ideas, even tiny bathrooms can achieve beauty and function.
Use wall voids for built-in shelves to hold shampoo bottles and other bathroom essentials. This helps open up space and also gives the bathroom a modern, minimalist look.
Installing pocket doors can make a bathroom feel bigger by eliminating the floor space needed for swinging door frames. This frosted-glass design allows natural light to filter in and still provides privacy.
A patterned shower curtain can visually divide a room, but this homeowner used a single bold hue to bring everything together and create a cohesive aesthetic. By painting the frames in Farrow & Ball Pitch Black, this bathroom feels clean and modern. The homeowner also opted for a clear glass shower to visually expand the space.
7. Install a Floating Tub
When it comes to bathroom ideas, clever layouts, smart storage solutions and snazzy finishes help compact rooms feel spacious and polished. This dazzling bath, for example, makes an enviable powder room by pressing a repurposed antique dresser into service as a vanity and adding sleek recessed shelving between the studs to make the most of unused wall space.
Mirrors stretch the visual length of this narrow bath by reflecting the tile pattern. The pale wall color and the floor’s continuity add to the room’s expansive look.
If you want more natural light in your bath but can’t cut a window, install a transom above the shower that lets in light and maintains privacy. A skylight is another great option that gives a bathroom a celestial feeling.
8. Install a Floating Toilet Seat
Just because a small bathroom lacks floor space doesn’t mean you have to skip the visual appeal. In fact, small bathrooms are a great place to experiment with rich materials, like this moody moss-green tongue-and-groove paneling.
Mirrors stretch a room’s width and reflect light, making any narrow bathroom feel bigger. This is especially effective if you pair them with a light color scheme.
Keeping clutter to a minimum makes any bathroom seem bigger, but this is especially true of tight spaces. Consider shutting lotions, potions, loo rolls, and towels inside slim built-in cabinetry to streamline the look. Also, choose wall-mounted basins and WCs to make walls appear more spacious. Alternatively, try installing a tile wainscot to add texture and a sense of depth. This is an easy DIY project that’s also a stylish alternative to wallpaper.
9. Install a Floating Cabinet
The space above the toilet is a great place for storage. Install a narrow, not deep cabinet like this pink one by Zoe Feldman to free up walking space and make the bathroom look bigger.
Keep walls clear of extra clutter to minimize the visual weight of your bathroom. This flowery chintz bathroom uses clever wall art ideas to add drama without overtaking the small room.
If possible, enlarge a bath window to stretch out a narrow bath and bring in natural light. If it’s not feasible, add plenty of artificial light sources, including wall sconces that don’t protrude into the room, and use mirrors to stretch out the design. A light color scheme will also help a small bath feel brighter and larger. Light colors reflect more light than dark ones, so they’re a good choice for small bathrooms.
10. Install a Floating Medicine Cabinet
In small bathrooms, it can be difficult to create a cohesive look. However, incorporating a medicine cabinet is a simple way to make the room feel like one cohesive space. Medicine cabinets are typically narrower than vanity mirrors and come in various designs to match any bathroom style.
Using the same color on the floor and walls will also visually connect the room. For example, this powder room by WG Wood Products uses matching marble tile throughout the space for a seamless look.
Before installing your medicine cabinet, locate the studs by either listening for a sound or using a stud finder and marking the location of the mounting holes. Once the holes are drilled, install your cabinet using anchor screws. Choose between surface-mount or recessed-mount cabinets, depending on your preference. A recessed-mount cabinet will sit flush against the wall while a surface-mount cabinet will jut out from the wall.