Tile, plumbing fixtures, paint colors – all of these pieces seem to consume us when planning a bathroom update, but what about those details that seem to be an afterthought? There are a lot of opportunities to make your bathroom more functional that are often overlooked or overshadowed by the more glamorous details. Bartelt takes a look at some of these underestimated features that can make homeowners’ lives easier in the bathroom.
In the Shower
- A shower bench may not seem like a vital detail, but once you have one, you’ll be glad you included it in your bathroom plan. Not only does it offer another spot to place showering essentials, but it’s also helpful for shaving, relaxing, and aging in place.
- Recessed niches carve out extra storage space and prevent bottles and soap from taking up residence on the floor or ledges. Mosaic tile, tile patterns, granite, glass – with so many material options, it’s also a design opportunity!
- Hand-showers can be a game-changing detail. It’s all about making your life easier by helping you clean both yourself (or maybe even a pet) and the shower walls.
- If you have the space, consider a water closet. It offers additional privacy and allows multiple people to use the bathroom at the same time, which can be useful during those hectic mornings.
At the Vanity
- Countertops are often a detail homeowners pay close attention to, but one thing that can be overlooked is countertop maintenance. It isn’t always an important detail, but for those who are concerned about stains or etchings, a low-maintenance top (like quartz or quartzite) may be the answer.
- Proper storage planning ensures everything has its place within arm’s reach of where it is needed. There are a lot of opportunities to customize your storage – dividers, hot tool drawers, cubbies, vanity towers, medicine cabinets, and beyond.
Throughout the Bathroom
- Bathroom ventilation is definitely not the most interesting piece to the bathroom puzzle, but it is an essential one. You want a quality system that quickly pulls the moisture out of the air to prevent mildew, rust, peeling paint, and other undesirable outcomes.
- Lighting isn’t necessarily ignored, but the actual layering of light can be forgotten. It’s important to include task lighting by the vanity and shower, decorative lighting, and natural light. You may also want to consider night lighting, such as dimmers or toe kick lighting.
- Plan your accessory placement early in the design process. It’s important you have the proper spacing and location for toilet paper holders, towel bars and rings, and robe hooks. It may be necessary to think to the future and install grab bars or backing for future grab bars, as well.
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