Our expert guide to creating your dream bathroom!

Creating your dream bathroom
McMillan Design | Dural Project

Stepping into a beautiful spa-like bathroom can be so inspiring!

Creating your dream bathroom that has the perfect energy to lift your spirits in the morning, and then provide tranquillity and calm in the evening is ideal! But to be a successful bathroom it must also deliver all the functional design elements to make it a highly liveable, durable space.

It’s critical to invest your time in the planning phase and to consider all the details that will create a blissful look and feel and the functionality you desire!

To help you create your dream bathroom, we’re sharing our expert guide for how to plan your bathroom renovation PLUS we share our favourite bathrooms for extra inspiration AND list our top tips for ‘What’s Hot’ currently in bathroom design!

Step 1: Identify the purpose and goals for your bathroom!

This may seem like a frivolous first step however it’s important to be clear on your bathrooms purpose before planning starts! It will help you make big decisions along the way as you design your space.

  • What role does this bathroom play in the context of your whole home? Is it a bathroom for the whole household to use? Or is it a kids-only bathroom? A second bathroom? An ensuite? Or a powder room for guests?
    • If it’s a family bathroom, think about your families’ immediate needs – i.e. does it need to work for small children, so therefore have a bath that’s easily accessible?
    • Is it an ensuite for the Master Suite? If so you’ll probably want it to feel a bit more elevated and special.
    • Is it a bathroom for guests to use? Then you might choose to be a bit more playful with your selections.
  • Identify your goals – what are the 3 most important things you’d like in your bathroom? It could be to optimise the floor plan, to modernise and create a luxe spa-like vibe, to have more preparation space at the vanity/ basin, to increase storage, or to increase the natural light… It’s important to know what your goals are from the outset and plan around that!

Step 2 : Layout And Space Planning.

Ok, we know space planning doesn’t sound that exciting to most… but honestly, a bathroom can only be successful with a well-planned layout!

Spending time thinking through the layout will ensure you get the best use of your space, and you’ll be able to streamline the process of selecting your inclusions as you’ll have already determined the size of vanity, bath and shower etc to fit in your space.

Follow our considerations below when planning your bathroom layout:

  1. Determine the space you’ve got to work with!! Are you simply using the existing bathroom space, or are you making it larger, or changing the footprint? Once you’ve identified the space and shape you’ve got to work with, grab paper and a pencil to start sketching your bathroom floor plan.
  2. Identify the fixed elements that aren’t changing – such as existing windows, door openings and possibly waste pipes. These are things that will need to be worked around and will dictate where you place the toilet, vanity, shower etc. Mark these things up on the plan.
  3. Consider the key features you’d like to make in this space, for example a free-standing bath or spacious shower. Also consider the line of site from the doorway… it’s not ideal to have the toilet being the first thing you see when you walk into a bathroom! Try to cleverly tuck it away and put the focus on other design elements.
  4. Place all the other components of your bathroom – the location of the vanity, bath and/or shower, and don’t forget things like placement of your towel rails and toilet roll holder to ensure there is a convenient spot for them too!

Step 3: The Vision, Look and Feel.

Do your research and then set a vision for your bathroom – this can include collecting inspiration imagery of gorgeous bathroom designs from magazines, Instagram or Pinterest. You can check out our completed projects here for some great bathroom inspiration too!

Identify the specific elements that resonate with you in the inspiration images – is it the colour palette, the tile choice or layout, the vanity style, the feature lighting, or the room layout… use those insights to create a vision board in Canva or PowerPoint.

The time spent researching and crafting a vision will help you cement the ‘look and feel’ for your dream bathroom and in turn, make it easier when it comes to selecting all your fixtures and finishes.

Step 4: Select the design details to bring your vision to life.

Yes, the fun part! We’re talking tiles, tapware, vanity, mirror, lighting and accessories (including cabinetry handles, towel rails, toilet roll holder), etc!  Think about any design elements you want to make features in the room – a feature tile, beautiful wall lights, gorgeous tapware, freestanding bath etc.

Our advice when designing a bathroom is to select finishes that will stand the test of time – both functionally and aesthetically – because let’s be honest, bathroom renovations require a significant investment and aren’t something you update easily or frequently.

That doesn’t mean ‘boring’ though, and you can inject your own personality and style with statement lighting, interesting vanity finishes, a special tile choice or gorgeous hardware finishes.

Pull together all your selections in one place (again, Canva or PowerPoint) so you can see it come together wholistically. Ensure you refer back to your vision / mood board to check that your selections deliver on your intended vision.

Our top tips for ‘What’s Hot’ in bathroom design!

To keep the inspiration coming your way, where’s what’s hot in bathroom design right now!

Bold tile choices! Think about going bold with either coloured feature tiles or for something more subtle, choosing a handmade, textured tile.

Lighting, lighting, lighting! Nothing adds more glam and wow factor to your bathroom quite like a gorgeous wall sconce! Positioned next to your mirror, it also helps provide additional task lighting, whilst also enhancing your bathroom design.

Embrace your curves! With so many ‘hard’ surfaces in a bathroom, injecting curves can really soften the space. Whether it’s in the vanity design, mirror, bath or shower screen, consider adding some curved finishes.

Sky lights. If your bathroom is limited on the natural light front, then consider adding a skylight to let in more light!

So, there you have it, our expert guide to creating your dream bathroom. Bathrooms can be sacred spaces in your home, so designing one that feels special and uniquely you can be so nourishing for your soul!

I hope our expert guide has given you confidence to prepare for your bathroom renovation, and at the very least, you can use it to get an understanding of your design priorities and the look and feel you’re wanting.

We strongly recommend that you work with a professional to help with your bathroom design, as they can optimize your bathroom layout, help avoid common mistakes and address any challenges that pop up along the way!

As always, if you are looking for some design support then we would love to chat.  You can book a complimentary 20min Discovery Call by simply clicking here.

Anna x