We all dream of having an enormous bathroom—a jacuzzi-style tub, full-length mirrors and a shower the size of your bedroom. In reality, though, most of us are dealing with small, cramped rooms that have barely enough space for your legs to go while you’re sitting on the toilet.
Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to make the most out of what you have. You don’t need to knock down the bathroom walls and renovate your home to give yourself some extra room, either.
These ten tips will help you to open up your bathroom a bit more and give you some more space until you’re able to afford one with a swimming pool sized tube. Ready? Let’s go!
1. Pedestal Sinks are Your Friend
If you have the option to put a pedestal sink in, do it. Without a clunky cabinet underneath your sink, you’ll have room to put wastebaskets, toiletry storage and other organizing tools. As a bonus, cleaning underneath a pedestal sink is also a lot easier, and cleanliness always helps to make the room feel bigger.
2. Sliding Doors are Space-Efficient
Swinging doors are nice to have when you’ve got the space, but we’re trying to think minimally. Sliding doors tuck right into the wall, making it easy for you to maximize the wall space right up to the edge of the doorjamb, as no space is shut off behind the swinging door.
3. Take the Cabinet Doors Off
If you’ve got cabinets in your bathroom, consider taking the doors off of them. This will essentially turn your cabinets (aka “clutterboxes”) into shelves that can be organized and decorated in such a way that transforms your room. Open shelving has long been a tenet of mid century modern design just for this reason.
4. Stay Organized!
Speaking of organization, it’s crucial to keep your stuff in order when you have a small bathroom. Utilize mason jars, decorative containers and shelving to store your makeup, towels and bath products. Try your best to make sure everything returns to its home once you’re done using it (we know…it’s difficult). Having trouble? Check out “The Art of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo for some inspiration.
5. Get Creative with Shelving
If you have no extra closet space in your home, which can be used to store towels and other bathroom goods, you’ll need to put some shelving in. Use a standing or hanging shelf behind your toilet to organize your stuff.
Don’t overlook any potential shelf space, either. Have a 6” section of wall next to your sink? Cut down some repurposed wood and mount the piece to the wall with brackets! these could be the perfect space for lotion bottles, cups of toothbrushes or extra bars of soap.
6. Utilize Mirrors
Okay, now we’re getting scientific. If you aren’t aware, mirrors can actually make your eye believe that the room is bigger than it is. By reflecting the space around it, a mirror can cause the person in the room to perceive the space as 50-percent larger.
If you can put some reflective tiles in your bathroom, definitely do it. They may be a pain to clean (ew..smudges) but they’ll make your small bathroom feel much bigger.
7. Keep Things Vertical
Vertical lines also play tricks on the eye. When our eyes encounter vertical lines, they can’t help but move up and down. They create the illusion that the ceiling is much higher than it really is, making the bathroom look a lot more spacious.
Consider hanging a vertically-striped shower curtain or window shades. You’ll be surprised at how it transforms your bathroom.
8. Let the Light In
Not everyone has a window in their bathroom (sorry, apartment folks). However, if you do have a window, let as much light in as possible. Thin, lightly-colored shades will allow you to maintain privacy while still allowing the natural light to fill the space.
9. White, White, White
If you’re trying to create space in a room that lacks it, white is the color to use. White paint, fabrics and tiles can produce the illusion of space. It’s also a great color because it matches everything, so any decorations you bring in will fit right in.
10. Keep it Clear
If you can afford them, glass surfaces are a helpful way to open up any room. Most big-box hardware stores sell glass shelving in a variety of different sizes. Whereas solid-colored surfaces stop your eye from moving, glass creates a sense of depth by allowing your eye to pass through them.
Again, the more glass you have, the more often you’ll find yourself cleaning. It’s one way to turn a tiny bathroom into a huge one (or one that feels huge, at least).
Some Parting Words of Wisdom
How big your space feels has as much to do with organization as it does size. If you are careful in planning your space, you can make a lot with a little. If there is anything that the tiny house movement has taught us, it’s that thoughtful layouts and lighting can make any space a joy to live in.
Thanks John Linden who is the editor of TheMostChic (www.themostchic.com) for providing this interesting article.