Bathrooms, Before and After

In Praise of Small Bathrooms: Two Small, Stylish Bathrooms

Lets talk small bathrooms.  I’m going to vent first about my own, un-renovated bathroom so you understand where I’m coming from.  My bathroom is incredibly small and quite beige.  There’s no storage at all in it, no counter space and the tile that a previous owner put in everywhere is imitation, polished beige marble.  That’s right.  Imitation, polished beige marble with a decorative border of butterscotch colored glass tile.  Give me some inexpensive, plain ceramic tile any day over imitation stone!  If you have a small bathroom with no linen storage in it, in fact, no linen storage available anywhere in the home, have the decency of putting in a vanity with doors so you could at least store cleaning supplies and toilet paper.  I beg of you.

That aside, small bathrooms are easy to clean, not echoey, warm up easily, are less expensive to renovate compared to a large bathroom and they don’t lend themselves to family members lingering in them.

I recently finished 2 remodeled bathrooms in a ranch house in Golden, Colorado and 1 new bathroom for the home’s basement.  Both of these bathrooms are incredibly small but with stylish finishes and beautiful plumbing fixtures they are fun to be in!  Here’s the basement bathroom before:

Before: The basement was set up for a bathroom (ironically, this was the cat’s bathroom), but as you can see, it’s hard to envision a bathroom here and the water heater was inconveniently placed.
After: A colorful vanity, patterned floor tile and a wall of glass help make the room seem less small. (Photo by Sara Yoder project on Laura Medicus Interiors)

The vanity is Pottery Barn’s Classic Single Sink Mini Console in White – we had it painted a custom color (Benjamin Moore’s Rose Parade) to give the room a little bit of an edge.  The floor tile is a painted ceramic tile by Original Styles, the wall tile is a beveled, 5×7 gray tile from Emser Tile.

This is the photo I took at the tile shop – Rose Parade is a deep pink with some red in it. You can see her colorful stair carpet peeking out on the lower left.

The other bathroom in this home that the client decided to update along with the other two is in the Master Bedroom.  It’s also delightfully small and for this room we went monochromatic.   Here’s the refinished room:

Simple, geometric goodness. I love the new frameless glass enclosure. And the charcoal hex tile gives it a custom feel. (Photo by Sara Yoder)

Last week I promised you a cat photo from this client’s home in lieu of awesome before photos that I should have been taking.  Here is just one of many:

She’s a Devon Rex cat – pretty cool looking, right?  This is outside the new basement bathroom.  Note the new ceramic faux wood plank tile.

If you have a small bathroom and enlarging it is not an option – embrace the smallness and splurge on the details like higher end plumbing fixtures and nicer tile.  Upgrade your lighting and if there’s a shower in the room, go for the frameless glass enclosure to open things up.

“Small rooms or dwellings discipline the mind, large ones weaken it.” -Leonardo Da Vinci







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