When space is in short supply, you need to make the most of what you have. In a studio flat, you may have a foldaway bed, effectively altering the purpose of the room with a single, simple movement. In a kitchen you may choose integrated appliances as well as extensive cupboard space. But what’s the solution for a bathroom that’s seriously lacking in available square footage?
While some may choose to create a wet room or remove the bath, this isn’t always practical nor indeed will it provide a full resolution. In a recent survey conducted by Utopia Bathrooms, they found that a large percentage of homeowners were looking to create a room that was a relaxing, luxurious retreat. To achieve this, you need to remove clutter without removing vital features – including the bath.
Luxury is often defined by how comfortable your surroundings make you feel. An unattractive room filled with cosmetics, shampoo, cleaning products and other lotions and potions is only going to appear jumbled. Even within a stylish, modern bathroom, the appearance of any such items is likely to detract from the overall ambience. This is why bathroom furniture is so important.
In a large room, this furniture can be a little more expansive. Indeed it can actually be used to fill wide spaces and provide a decorative finish that binds together the overall design. There are plenty of styles to choose from, ranging from the ultra-modern to the decidedly kitsch. Given the abundance of available space, it would be a crime if you weren’t able to keep everything tucked away.
Things become a little more complicated as the available room decreases. However, that’s still not an excuse to give up. Indeed, you just need to be a little more creative.
So where do you have space?
One of the most popular forms of bathroom furniture is an integrated sink and cupboard. As well as hiding unsightly pipework, this provides an opportunity to store your various bathroom items. In essence this is wasted space, particularly if you have a protruding sink on a pedestal. So by building in an attractive integrated unit you can immediately tick a number of boxes, including:
Of course you’re not limited to just this one area, by taking a look at the various solutions available, sizing up your own bathroom and even visiting showrooms you can gain plenty of inspiration. There are wall-mounted cabinets, integrated surrounds for the lavatory and even bespoke solutions to help fill every area.
For instance, who says that a basin has to be flush with the main wall? You could actually decide that it would be much better fitted into the corner. Again, this would be a question of logistics as well as your own personal taste. However, if you were to do this, then that could potentially free up additional space elsewhere, or indeed allow you to install your preferred furniture.
In the aforementioned survey, over 70% of respondents claimed that being up-to-date with the latest trends wasn’t a priority. Indeed most claimed that they would rather have a bathroom that matched their own personal style or was comfortable. Again, this is where furniture can be so important.
Stylistically, you will discover that there is no shortage of options. While some units are designed with larger rooms in mind, many are deliberately crafted to offer a solution for more compact spaces. With most homeowners looking for substance over the very latest trends, there are actually very few reasons why you can’t achieve both.
Whether planning a city or a bathroom, if the floor space is limited, you often have to build upwards. While you may not want to cover every square inch of wall space, it may be worth considering where cupboards could be fitted. Remember, it’s important to remove any aesthetic preconceptions. There are styles to fit almost any taste, you just need to find something that fits in your bathroom (and your budget).
But why is bathroom furniture so important?
When it comes to putting together a bathroom, many will consider colour schemes, baths, showers and even the individual fittings before all else. However, a suite without storage is always going to struggle when it comes to presentation and practicality. It’s difficult to relax with the toilet bleach on full view or all your (or your partner’s) shaving kit is out on show. So while you may have the perfect shower cubicle, it can be quickly undermined and overwhelmed by surplus products.
So there is certainly a practical element to bathroom furniture. But there’s much more to it than that. In many ways, these various cupboards, cabinets and shelves are used to bind the room together. They can complete the look you’re trying to achieve and make exceptional use of the space available.
Every last detail should be considered. So look for designs that match your colour scheme, are ergonomically friendly (i.e. everything is at the right height) and will obviously fit in with your bathroom’s proportions. But even though there are plenty of things to consider, it will be well worth your while investing a little effort.
You want to be able to move around the bathroom without bumping into things left right and centre. It’s also important that your furniture opens up space and doesn’t create a visual illusion that constricts the area. Less may indeed be more, while light colours and mirrors can also help to open things up.
So when you come to renovate or simply update your bathroom, consider logistics as well as style. Having very little space to play with doesn’t mean that your options are equally limited. As long as you are prepared to be creative, have a good idea of what you’re looking for and have a reasonable budget, then you should be able to create a space that is both stylish and practical.
In the survey conducted by Utopia, almost one in five were prepared to spend over £5,000 to achieve the perfect bathroom. This level of investment is going to provide you with plenty of options and deliver a luxury suite that will offer years of satisfaction. While money isn’t everything, quality of materials and design are important. So don’t cut corners, fill them.
This Guest Post was written by The Utopia Bathroom Group, a leading manufacturer of luxury bathroom furniture.
Image Courtesy: utopiagroup.com