Effective Small Bathroom Design Tips for a Spacious Bathroom

For bathrooms that are small but perfectly formed.

In an age when homes are getting smaller, and therefore bathrooms with them, the question on many minds is how to make small spaces feel bigger? Certainly, few of us have the luxury of a large home, never mind a lavish bathroom. There’s nothing less relaxing than a cramped, and cluttered small washroom, yet it is so often a space that is overlooked in the home.

So what to do with a small bathroom, you say? Fortunately, there are simple small bathroom ideas and clever design and styling tricks you can employ to create a soothing, tranquil bathroom that at least feels more spacious than it is!

Small Bathroom Layout

Maximising on space in small bathrooms begins first and foremost with careful consideration of your bathroom layout.

Consider a Wet Room Layout

If you are in a position to be able to renovate and replumb your bathroom, then opting for a wet room style layout is a great way to make bathroom space feel larger and more spacious. A wet room layout requires extensive waterproofing, also known as tanking, but completing this step means your small bathroom need not be sectioned by shower trays or ‘wet zones’, making the most of every metre.

Choose Concealed Fittings

You can also create additional bathroom space by considering your fittings and their placement in your layout. The increasing demand for creating small yet luxurious bathrooms has been met by an abundance of concealed bathroom fittings options - from clever WC designs that hide away unsightly pipework, to recessed shower valves that display only a sleek plate and a few handles! Installing hidden bathroom fittings such as concealed valves, flush plates and in-wall cisterns all put focus back on the walls and tiling and ultimately make the space seem more expansive.

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Conceal & Reveal

Make use of concealed fittings such as wall-mounted, concealed cistern WCs and concealed shower systems to give the appearance of space.

Small Bathroom Colour

Utilise White & Neutral Tones

It’s hardly surprising that white and neutral tones give the impression of a lighter, brighter space and the same applies to small bathroom design. Introducing a light colour to your compact bathroom is a simple and effective way to make tiny bathrooms seem more spacious. White needn't be boring, however- layer a white palette by mixing textures and materials through the colour. Elevate the modest white tile with an elegant herringbone pattern, stay contemporary with a sleek white System gloss unit or lightly sand and whitewash any darker wood features for a distinctly airy Scandi look.

Consider a Feature Wall

Don’t let a small bathroom limit your colour choice. If you miss the whimsy of a varied space, consider using darker shades on a single wall to accent an otherwise neutral palette. Tie this colour in with accents in your bathroom accessories to keep the look cohesive. Alternatively- play with texture on your feature wall- keeping the colour consistent but adding in panelling, shiplap or board and batten details.

Opt for Monochrome

Make a room look larger by keeping your colours consistent- tiling your floor and shower enclosure in the same colour will help prevent your bathroom from looking disjointed and busy. Likewise, a wall to ceiling colour works particularly well in narrow bathrooms to draw the eye upward and create a gravity-defying statement.

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White Washed

Create the illusion of space and light by using a white or neutral palette in a mix of textures & materials. All of our units are available in gloss white and versatile neutral finishes.

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Scheme 800mm Gloss Light Grey LS REV TR LR

Small Bathroom Tiles & Surfaces

Invest in Large Format Tiles

A less conventional small bathroom design idea is to use large or slab-style tiles. Large format tiles such as marble or travertine, when correctly installed, can make your bathroom feel bigger by giving the feeling of a seamless whole. The key here is to keep the tile grouting thin to give the effect of a slab of stone, rather than individual tiles - making your small bathroom look altogether palatial, as well as making cleaning a breeze. Naturally- you needn’t use real marble, if you are on a budget large format, faux marble ceramic tiles are equally as effective.

Make Use of Glass

Extend the feel of your bathroom with a glass shower enclosure that gives the illusion of more space. A contemporary frameless walk-in shower is an ideal solution to a smaller space bathroom, with a pentagon, or cut rectangular style being best suited to utilising awkward corner spaces. Be sure to opt for a protective coating on your shower glass to help prevent hard water deposits to maintain the clear glass, clean lines effect.

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Thinking Clearly

Walk in or floor level showers with clear glass paneling and minimal framing are a simple way to open up small space bathrooms.

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Vetro grey and black marble tiles

Small Bathroom Furniture

Choose Wall Mounted Bathroom Furniture

A wall mounted or floating unit is a great way to create a more spacious feel to a smaller bathroom by opening up the floor space and creating the impression of a continuous line. Optimise on space by choosing a double drawer unit, such as our Scheme furniture range, which also features convenient in-drawer dividers.

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Float on...

Wall hung vanity units give a feeling of lightness and space to a room, as well as a clean, contemporary look.

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Esta cloakroom wall mounted Light Grey lifetsyle

Or Cloakroom Bathroom Furniture

The natural choice for a downstairs WC or ensuite, compact cloakroom vanity units can also be used in your master bathroom if space is at a premium. A far cry from the pokey, small bathroom sink set-up of old, cloakroom vanities are now equally as stylish as their larger counterparts, and available in multiple styles and finishes. One of our most popular designs, our Hampton cloakroom vanity features charming details such as hand-painted cabinetry, framed doors, a generous Belfast-style sink and lots of storage.

Consider Fitted & Custom Bathroom Furniture

Investing in fitted bathroom furniture is a certain way to make the most of space in a small bathroom. Not only does fitted bathroom furniture conceal unsightly and space-occupying pipework, but it maximises on storage - keeping your small bathroom looking clean and uncluttered. The beauty of fitted furniture is that it offers all the flexibility of custom furniture without the expensive price tag - all the while you can tailor your bathroom furniture to the exact size and proportions of your bathroom.

Small Bathroom Storage

Embrace Over-the-WC Shelving

If the bathroom is the forgotten space in a house, then the area above your WC is almost certainly the forgotten space of your bathroom. And yet, over the toilet storage can be especially effective at tidying away those lesser used bathroom products. Consider installing slim depth shelving or an over-the-toilet organiser in this space - stacking storage boxes to keep open shelving organised. The addition of a small bathroom cabinet at a safe distance from head height is also a great way to make the most of this space.

Consider Recessed Storage

If you have an especially narrow bathroom design, you may want to consider installing a recessed bathroom cabinet that facilitates lots of storage, yet sits flush to the wall. While this does require some professional install work, it is an effective way of gaining storage without losing out on precious space in small bathrooms.

Upgrade to In-Drawer Storage

A simple yet effective way to organise your bathroom and create more space is by adding in-drawer storage to your vanity unit - allowing you to keep bathroom essentials out of sight and away from your lovely clear surfaces! Many of our vanity units are equipped with internal dividers, but you could go a step further with the addition of lidded boxes for a more well stocked bathroom vanity.


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Small Bathroom Styling & Accessories

Make the Most of Mirrors

Draw the eye upwards and save on precious floor space with floating fixtures such as a vertical radiator and towel rail, or a wall-mounted mirrored cabinet. Mirrored detailing across your bathroom furniture will also automatically introduce light and make the most of even minimal spaces- taller, vertical mirrors such as the Eminence Pill Mirror or the Ultra Slim Mirror are especially effective.

20 Minute Small Bathroom Makeover

You can make the most of corners and otherwise wasted wall spaces by taking just twenty minutes to put up some simple shelves or corner baskets. A concealed fixing system and a sleek chrome finish make our Halo collection an easy space-saving solution. For an even quicker fix, simply clear out your bathroom of unsightly plastic and empty bottles. Minimise clutter and make a subtle style statement by using brown glass or old pharmacy bottles for beauty products, then be brutal and tidy everything else away!


Square Inlay Washstand with scheme lifestyle DPS

Reflect your style

Mirrored surfaces are not only practical, but capture & project light into darker corners to open up your bathroom space.

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Frame 1200mm matt light clay lifestyle

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