Who wouldn’t love an expansive, spa-like bathroom? Unfortunately, remodeling or adding square footage isn’t always possible for all kinds of reasons; but there are ways that you can make your small bathroom seem bigger. From enhancing the amount of natural light to incorporating decor and storage strategies to make it feel taller or roomier, it’s possible to at least make the space seem like it’s more than it is. Even some simple decor tactics can help amp up what you have. Sometimes limitations make you more creative, so here are 15 ways that you can make your small bathroom seem bigger and grander:
Use a Big Mirror
Mirrors can work miracles in spaces of all sizes. This particular bathroom uses two tall mirrors above the sinks, but even using one above a single pedestal sink will do its magic. First, they reflect their surroundings, making the room feel larger. Secondly, mirrors amplify whatever light is available, whether it’s natural or not. Finally, using a tall and slender mirror in a small bathroom will draw the eye upward and visually add height. So, while you might not have tall ceilings, you can easily fake the feeling.
Add a Gallery Wall
As you can see this bathroom by Katie Curtis Design has a common layout with just enough room between the elements, so there’s not a lot of extra square footage. Instead of hanging a single small framed piece above the toilet. try arranging a gallery wall instead. The colorful and eclectic arrangement of decoupage plates by John Derian draws the eye and enhances the feel of the space. This can be done with many types of collections that can be hung on the wall. The only caution is not to hang valuable artworks in a bathroom where moisture and humidity can damage the pieces and diminish their value.
Tile it All
In a small bathroom, opting to tile the entire space in a single, clean color can enhance the feeling of space. Without changes in colors and textures, the small room feels cohesive, making the boundaries and individual sections meld into one. Presented by Nobo Home, this bathroom is simply clad in a clean, white subway tile, with white mosaic tile for the floor and the countertop. The only pop of color is from the bins on the shelf under the sink, which keeps the look interesting. This particular bathroom also uses space-saving wall-mounted faucets.
Corners can easily be a major waste of space in a small bathroom, so if things are really tight, why not make better use of the corner. This small, eclectic bathroom by Hillary Thomas Designs incorporates a small vanity with a round basin that is oriented into the corner. The rounded cabinet underneath is more streamlined than an angular design but still offers storage space. Using a vanity like this makes the bathroom feel larger by freeing up a little floor space and leaving more room in front of the toilet.
Use Vertical Storage
Whether or not your bathroom is small, vertical storage will visually heighten the space. Here, a bathroom by Jackie Vella Design makes great use of an area that often goes overlooked. The shelf is narrow but extends all the way to the ceiling, offering up loads of space for extra towels and other bathroom necessities. In a larger bathroom like this on it’s simply an added bonus of storage space but in a small bathroom, it’s critical not just for stashing linens and toiletries, but also for visually extending the height of the space.
Add Small Surfaces
This bathroom by Gradient Architecture shows how small surfaces help keep everything in proportion in a small bathroom, making it seem larger. Even though there’s plenty of room above the toilet, the floating shelves are slim, short and widely spaced, giving the illusion of openness. The sink has small ledges on each side, large enough to hold a necessity or two, and even the toilet has a slim tank. Crowding the bathroom with fixtures made for one with more square footage will always make it seem small and inconvenient. Opt for good proportion every time.
Opt for the Dark and Dramatic
We’ve always been told that bright and light is the way to go in a small space, but it turns out that turning to the dark side can also be a great idea. This bathroom by Sea Island Builders is a great example because not only does it feature dark walls, but it also has a dark vanity. The slight luster of the matte paint reflects just enough light instead of swallowing it up. The wood floor is a good contrast as are the brass lighting fixtures, which add a little extra drama. This bathroom has a few other space-enhancing tricks too: the wall-mounted faucet saves vanity space, the one-piece toilet has a small footprint and low profile, and the large mirror amps up the natural light from the window.
Bathrooms of any size — especially small ones — will feel larger when you have a glass enclosure around the shower instead of a shower curtain. This makes complete sense when you consider that the glass opens up the area visually while a curtain instantly lops off a good number of square feet from the perceived bathroom space. This Los Angeles bathroom is big and roomy but you can instantly tell that it wouldn’t feel quite so luxurious if the shower enclosure was not made of glass. Whenever possible, opt for a glass door or enclosure for your shower to make any bathroom feel grander.
Include a Shower Niche
A shower niche is a marvelous idea for any bathroom, but particularly for a small one, where storage space, in general, is at a premium. Often, a small bathroom also has a small shower and trying to add a portable shelf to the already-tight space can be a real headache. This niche design by Leicht Westchester is in a large shower but offers a great view of how it can provide plenty of room for necessities and keep them at your fingertips. This way, there’s no need to keep shampoo bottles on the shower floor or store them precariously balanced on any small ledge you might have inside the shower.
Use a Small Floating Vanity
One of the reasons a bathroom can feel crowded is because the vanity takes up a good chunk of floor space, visually shrinking the perceived area. Another way to open up the feeling of a bathroom is to use a floating vanity instead of a traditional one. this keeps the floor space clear and tricks your brain into thinking that it’s more open than it is. This rather small master bathroom by Jaimie Nelson Design seems much larger than it really is in large part because of the floating vanity. (And the glass shower, which we already mentioned!)
Towel bars around the sink
When bathroom space is tight, make use of the space around the sink by adding towel bars there. You might not have a lot of wall space, so this preserves what there is and keeps towels within reach. When space is super tight, you can opt for hooks instead of pars, which take up less space and are really trendy now. In any case, keeping them near the sink will save space and give the bathroom a clear look, and consequently, a larger feel.
Add Storage Above the Toilet
This concept may be part of organization 101, but many people still overlook how much storage space they have over the toilet. In many cases, there’s a towel rack located above the toilet, but that’s actually a waste of valuable storage space. Adding a wall cabinet or floating shelves in the space above the toilet gives you ample room for some storage or an area to display some items like candles, perfume bottles or other attractive items. This is a super simple fix for small bathrooms that will make it look more finished and spacious, and can even be done in apartments.
Install a pocket door
Sometimes, the biggest hindrance to having your bathroom feel spacious is the door because they typically swing inward. If this is the problem element in your bathroom, consider installing a pocket door. These types of doors are a great option when the clearance for the door is tight or if opening the door makes it a tight squeeze inside. The door simply slides out when the bathroom is being used and then neatly slides back into the wall.
Let in natural light
Any room is made better when you can let in lots of natural light and the bathroom is no exception. In fact, natural light streaming into the bathroom can make it feel more spacious. If the windows are private — or face a great view — and no one can see in, leaving them uncovered is a good choice. Another one is using blinds that virtually disappear when open or chose shades that roll up from the bottom, giving you the option to pull them up high enough for privacy but still open at the top to let in the daylight. Found on edmondslee.
Go for a Monochrome Look
Color schemes can also give your bathroom a different feeling and going for a monochrome palette is definitely a plus for making it feel bigger. This bathroom — even though it’s already large, feels even bigger because the walls blend with the vanities and countertops to minimize their visual disruption. Even the neutral tone of the floor enhances the wide-open feeling.
If you’re blessed with a big bathroom, that’s great — you can use these tips to make it seem even larger. For those will a small bathroom, even though it might already be perfectly functional, incorporating some of these strategies can make it feel bigger and more convenient, even if the upgrades are just visually enhancing.