Are you looking for small bathroom ideas, where bathroom designs make the most of the space they have?  Sometimes effective small bathroom design makes the most of the storage spaces offered.

At other times, it is the small bathroom layout or the use of DIY techniques to add creativity.  Here are a few great bathroom design ideas to inspire you.  All of these small bathroom remodel ideas offer an innovative touch.

Process overview

Kiyot-Way-Remodel-by-Marissa-Cramer-Interiors Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Marissa Cramer Interiors

If you are exploring bathroom designs for small spaces in order to remodel your bathroom, remember that careful planning is crucial.  By planning carefully, you will be able to determine where you can save time or money.

Carefully planning your contractual or DIY tasks will enable you to work efficiently as well as keep costs under control.  Some tasks which will speed up your process include:

  • Drawing up plans (particularly if these will involve changes to the layout of your bathroom).
  • Acquiring any permits you need in order to proceed with the work.
  • Hiring any professionals you need to complete your work and contracting their time.
  • Sourcing any materials you might need and ordering them with time to spare.

A contractor will always agree to plan your layout, get any permits approved, source and order your materials.  However, if you are on a budget, you can carry out these tasks yourself and save yourself some money.


Crescent-by-RG-Design-Studio-Inc Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: RG Design Studio Inc.

Before you can begin to install new fixtures into your bathroom, you will need to begin a demolition process.  This means removing any items which you no longer require.  Depending on the complexity of the job, this is limited to removing tiles, bathtubs or showers.  Alternatively, it could be as complex as stripping the entire bathroom down and removing floor joints or wall pins.


Once your bathroom has been demolished it’s time to work with the frame.  In a small remodel, you may not need to add frames.  However, if you are adding a new shower stall or wet room, framing these spaces is important.


Southbay-Home-Spring-2017-Issue-by-Custom-Design-Construction Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Custom Design & Construction

This is where you need to add a professional.  Your plumber is vital to the overall efficiency of your bathroom remodel.  Any leaks will mean removing tiling and bathroom fixtures, which can be costly.

Once your frames have been added, your plumber will add pipes and drainage.  If you are a skilled or experienced plumber, you can undertake this work yourself.  However, even experienced DIY handymen usually hire a professional plumber.


The next stage in a small bathroom remodel: it is time to bring in a licensed electrician. Your electrician will add new lighting as well as run circuits for heated towel rails or vent fans.  An electrician will also be able to monitor work already completed for safety requirements.

Installing drywall

Westchester-Rehab-by-Carley-Montgomery Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Carley Montgomery

Many small bathroom remodels involve opening up walls or ceilings.  If this is the case for you, it will now be time to install new walls or ceiling boards.   Drywall can be installed by a contractor or DIY specialist once the plumbing and electrical work have been completed and passed.

Tiling and flooring

New-West-Classic-by-Clay-Construction-Inc Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Clay Construction Inc.

Despite the work that has gone before, your ceramic or tiling installation will add a huge element to your small bathroom decor ideas.  Smooth patterns and angled edges will make a huge difference to your bathroom finish.  Most small bathroom remodels benefit from leaving this work to the professionals.


Once your tiles have been installed, it’s time to add cabinetry.  Would you like a shelf or a small pedestal under your basin?  Where will you store towels, soaps, and scrubs?  There are many cabinetry ideas for small bathrooms.  Your cabinets will be installed after your tiling is complete but before your final plumbing fixtures.

Fixture installations

Small-Space-Bathroom-by-Toronto-Interior-Design-Group-Yanic-Simard Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Toronto Interior Design Group | Yanic Simard

Once your tiling and cabinetry is complete, your plumber and electrician will return to finish off taps, lighting and heated towel rail connections.  This is the final stage of your small bathroom remodel.

Planning considerations

When creating cool bathrooms, remember that your bathroom will be considered one of three types, regardless of the size.  Your overall goal for your should be kept in mind while you explore new bathroom ideas.

A powder room

Small-Bathroom-remodel-by-Walls-too-Windows-Interior-Design Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Walls too Windows, Interior Design

A powder room is not a full bathroom, but simply offers a sink, toilet and privacy.  It isn’t a full bathroom, or even a tiny bathroom.  Instead, it simply offers facilities to guests not looking for the use of a full bathroom.

Full bathroom

A full bathroom made up of a toilet, sink, shower and/or tub.  This is often the bathroom the family will use on a daily basis. Sometimes a home has more than one bathroom; one bathroom will be used by the children, while another will be used as the master bathroom.  How and who uses a bathroom will determine the choice and quality of tiling and fixtures.

A guest bathroom

Basement-Revamp-by-Reliance-Design-Build-Remodel Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Reliance Design, Build, Remodel

Guest bathrooms are full bathrooms with sink, toilet and tub/shower.  A guest bathroom will not be used all of the time, but only when guests come to visit.  In some homes, where children have left the nest, the old family bathroom is converted into a guest bathroom.

The master bathroom

This is a full bathroom which is often used by the owner of a home rather than the children or guests.  In a family home with more than a bathroom, the master bathroom will be used on a daily basis by adults in the family.  In a home with only one full bathroom, this bathroom will be considered the master bath, no matter how small.

Some great small bathroom ideas

His and her bath

East-Nashville-little-wonderland-airbnb-by-Becker-Hill-Interiors-by-Marilyn-Kimberly Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: East Nashville | little wonderland airbnb

Using a large frameless mirror, horizontal lines, well placed lighting and a curbless shower creates the illusion of a much larger space in this small modern bathroom.  A marble clad dividing wall creates a private toilet area.  At the same time, there is a recessed storage space for all those items you need in a bathroom.

Zen Escape

If you have a small master bathroom with an awkward feature, don’t stress.  This gorgeous Zen bathroom had an off-centre aluminium window which threw out the balance of the room.

A floor to ceiling Japanese screen was used to allow in light while disguising this feature.  A 7 foot framed mirror creates an instant sense of space, and a bamboo ladder towel rack offers a great storage space while also creating an attractive feature.

Small spa retreat

Refreshing-Renovation-Huntington-Beach-CA-by-Morey-Remodeling-Group Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Morey Remodeling Group

Tiny bathrooms cannot always be extended.  This was true for this tiny bathroom, which was bordered by two bedrooms.  To make the space appear larger, the owners used marbled and mirrored surfaces to reflect light.

The use of floor to ceiling cabinets made the most of vertical height, adding a three dimensional element to the room.  A glass shower cubicle left the space feeling light and open.  Finally, rich tones added warmth and balance to the room.

Hacienda-style bath

This inspiring bathroom idea shows a custom made counter with red travertine top, handmade tiles and a copper sink.  Rich shower drapes add charm.

Each of these elements results in a bathroom which is unique without being overwhelming.  A wonderful bathroom idea if you wish to create a unique and inspiring bathroom.

Tone and texture

Tuscany-Style-Bedroom-Suite-Bath-by-Wesley-Design-Inc Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Wesley Design Inc.

This beautiful powder room adds tone and texture to create a beautiful bathroom interior.  The vanity is smooth with an understated flaxen veneer.  The bronze basin adds warmth while the patina counter adds richness to the room.  Recessed lighting is placed around a large mirror to add atmosphere.

Modern Makeover

This small modern bathroom has been given a makeover filled with contrast.  The bold vanity, padded silk upper walls and zinc backsplash combine to create an interesting mix of textures.  What a great small bathroom makeover.

Compact commode

Walnut-Creek-Modern-Farmhouse-Larkey-Park-by-The-Home-Co Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: The Home Co.

This tiny bathroom features a commode which has been attached to the wall, clearing up floor space.  The glass doors in the shower leave the room feeling open and uncluttered.  Light beams into the room through skylights.  What great small bathroom decorating ideas.

The Grandeur of Glass

Glass adds light and space to this small bathroom renovation.  The curved glass countertop adds space to the room.  Glass mosaic tiles repeat the swooping shape of the fixtures.

If you’ve been looking for bathroom ceiling ideas, you’ll love the amethyst ceiling.  This great colour causes the ceiling to appear lower than it is, creating a tunnel effect.

Retro Redo

Dairy-Ranch-Remodel-by-Teton-Heritage-Builders Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Teton Heritage Builders

Modernise your home while adding style from years gone by.  This small bathroom makeover includes a medicine cabinet concealed behind a mirror, oversized tiles, sconce lights, a frameless shower door and amber glass accents.

Eastern Ease

The warmth of wood, a long vanity, bamboo ladder and unique mirror create a warm and luxurious feeling in this eastern oasis.

Colours are soft and neutral and combined with the warmth of dark wood.  Gorgeous dark panels add an artistic touch.  Wonderful use of space in small bathroom designs.

How to add storage to your small bathroom

Artist-Residence-Oxfordshire-by-Mr-n-Mrs-Smith Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Mr & Mrs Smith

  • Use your towels as decorative features in your bathroom. The soft textures and interesting colours, while placed on shelves, will create a cosy feel to your bathroom.
  • Use floating shelves as part of your small bathroom decor.
  • Bright storage ladders add creative pops of colour while creating a perfect storage space.
  • Skirts under your sink offer a great place to conceal cleaning products.
  • Wooden crates add a rustic touch and make great storage spaces. You can stack them, bolt them to the walls, or space them out.
  • Woven baskets make great spaces to store towels or linen.

Keep it functional

With small bathroom decor, functionality is essential.  Anything you don’t use will so easily become clutter.  Don’t purchase anything you won’t use, or add unnecessary items into your small bathroom design plans.  This way you’ll have everything you need with enough space to spare.

  • Use glass jars on floating shelves to store items like cotton balls or buds.
  • Place your laundry hamper under the sink to keep your bathroom clutter free.
  • For a clear, clutter free appearance, store your medical supplies, creams or soaps and shampoos in a cupboard.
  • Store your towels or other personal products in stackable baskets.
  • Coordinate your bathroom colours with the rest of the house.

Plan your palette

French-Inspired-Apartment-in-New-York-by-Gleicher-Design-Architecture-n-Interiors Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Gleicher Design – Architecture & Interiors

Once you’ve made small bathroom plans, it is time to work out your colour palette.  Warm neutral colours will make your bathroom appear soothing and give a larger sense of space.  If you do want to paint an accent wall, remember that this will take time to create.

  • Begin with a neutral colour for your bathroom.
  • Add textures and deeper or lighter tones to add interest.
  • Whites will make your space appear light, bright and clean.
  • Unusual items or interesting details will keep your space unique and interesting.

Add accent colours

  • Instead of painting in bright colours, you can add pops of accent colour to your bathroom by using towels, decor items or accessories.
  • Vibrant coloured robes or towels add personality.
  • You could use colourful soap dishes, burners or other accessories to make a unique statement.
  • Use brightly coloured mirror frames to add interest.

Add a walk in shower

Bathroom-basement-by-NF-interiors Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: NF interiors

When you remodel a small bathroom, you’ll have more space if you replace your old tub with a walk in shower.  You could explore walk in shower ideas for small bathrooms to see the luxurious amount of space you’ll gain.

Although soaking in a warm tub can be soothing, a walk in shower is more practical and the large amount of space available will feel liberating.

Use porcelain for a faux marble effect

Porcelain tiles are strong, durable and easy to clean.  By adding a marble lookalike porcelain tile, you’ll be able to save money to use in other areas of your bathroom.  You’ll also be guaranteed a durable and high quality finish.

Add a bench and a wall niche to your shower.

BS-House-Phase-II-by-Hulburd-Design Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Hulburd Design

If you will be building your shower from scratch, adding a bench and a wall niche will give great benefits.  A bench is a great space for shaving, soaping or relaxing in the shower.  A wall niche provides storage space for soaps, scrubs and shampoos.

Use custom doors

Simple bathroom ideas such as custom doors for your shower will help you to create a unique space.  Using glass doors as walls or adding unique details to your shower doors gives personality.

Use large doors

Bernardsville-Master-Suite-with-Bow-Roof-by-The-Somerset-Hills-HandyMan-n-Co Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: The Somerset Hills HandyMan & Co.

If you’ve decided to use custom doors, custom sizes also add a great touch.  A stacked shower door which folds back into a backsplash behind your vanity will add appeal to your tiny bathroom remodel.

Add accent tiles to your shower floor

By inserting small coloured tiles into your shower floor, you’ll be able to create personality and colour.  A different texture in tiles will also add interest in a monochromatic space.

Use tile as your baseboard

By extending your tiles to your baseboard area, you’ll be able to create a high quality, high end feel to your small bathroom renovation.  Tiles are practical, easy to wash down, and are a great option for wet areas.

Add hooks

Robins-Way-by-Bates-Masi-Architects-LLC Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Bates Masi Architects LLC

Instead of using a towel rail, hooks add an interesting and quirky touch for holding rows of towels.

Make your medicine cabinet a feature

By adding a great medicine cabinet to your small bathroom, you’ll add interest and keep your space clear of clutter.  Some medicine cabinets can give you a retro feel.  A great nickel cabinet adds interest to your bathroom.

Some medicine cabinets can be built into your wall, while others extend out.  Deciding which is right for your bathroom will depend on your bathroom interior design as well as the placement of pipes or electrical wires.  If you cannot build into your bathroom walls, an external medicine cabinet will still keep your bathroom clear.

Let it match

Hampton-Hall-Farnsleigh-by-Court-Atkins-Group Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Court Atkins Group

With tiny bathroom designs, it helps if your fixtures and features all match.  This will create a harmonious effect in a small space.  A zinc medicine cabinet goes well with a zinc mirror and zinc taps.  This creates a consistent flow which unites a small space.  From shower head to towel hooks to taps, let your fixtures match.

Keep your vanity unique

Palo-Alto-by-Kim-Betzina-Interiors Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: Kim Betzina Interiors

By using a unique vanity, you’ll create a personal touch to your bathroom.  Your vanity may have to be altered to fit in with your piping but the end result will be creative and show your personality.  Explore pictures of bathrooms for a range of unique vanity ideas.

Use custom window coverings

Small bathroom window treatments should be unique to your style.  If you have a window you would like to hide, or you’d simply like to use a custom designed blind to create personality, a unique window covering will add a personal touch.

Heated floors

Surbiton-by-LEIVARS Small bathroom remodel tips to do it properlyImage source: LEIVARS

The best bathroom remodels add heated floors.  Tiles can be cold in winter and heated floors give a luxurious touch to a small bathroom. In a tiny bathroom, laying down heated floors will not be too expensive.  Even if this is the only area in your house which has heated floors, you will be in for a treat.

Additional tips:

  • When making small bathroom updates, use a corner sink. This will save you a great deal of space.
  • Small shower designs often work best with sliding doors or custom shower curtains. A folding shower door may not work well in a small bathroom.
  • If you’re exploring small bathroom vanity ideas, focus on vanities with rounded corners. In tight spaces, sharp corners may result in bruises.  Rounded corners are gentler.
  • If your toilet is adjacent to your vanity, extend it over your toilet space to add extra counter or storage space. This extra space can be enormously effective in a small bathroom.
  • Use large patterns such as wide stripes or large tiles. This will fool the eye into believing that your tiny bathroom space is larger than it actually is.
  • Use a large mirror. This is a practical option because it means two people can use a space at once.  It will also make a small bathroom layout appear larger.
  • Place your towel rail behind your bathroom door. In a tiny bathroom, this will give you extra space.
  • Use a trough sink which is mounted on the wall. This will give you space for storage.
  • In a small bathroom, you may not have enough space to open vanity doors. Use a vanity with open shelves to offer storage without stress.
  • Use a wall mounted tap or mixer. This will give you more space.  A wall mounted faucet will also need a smaller vanity, freeing up space.

If you liked this article talking about what a small bathroom remodel implies, you should check out these as well:

Categorized in: