According to former The Block contestant Dale Vine, designing a bathroom these days is relatively easy.
“Bathroom products have evolved to the point where they almost all look beautiful,” he points out.
“It’s very easy today to build a beautiful bathroom just through the products themselves, compared to the choices you would have had ten years ago.”
If you’re planning a bathroom renovation and need some inspiration for items that will elevate your space, read Dale’s advice.
1. A luxurious tub will serve you well
If you have the space and want a tub, take some time evaluating your options.
A soaking tub will make your bathroom feel like a spa. Picture: Zephyr + Stone
“Baths at the moment are very luxurious. They have beautiful rounded edges, are very generous in size and they’re very deep so you can really submerge yourself and forget about all your worries,” Dale notes.
“Even without water in them, the look of a beautiful bath really makes you feel like you’re somewhere luxurious.”
Freestanding baths are a popular choice right now. Dale’s pick? Highgrove Bathrooms currently has an attractive range of matte white tubs that look particularly sophisticated.
2. Incorporate a few statement pieces
Basins and tapware can now be statements within themselves, Dale finds.
Incorporate statement materials via a concrete basin or metallic taps. Picture: Highgrove Bathrooms
“Black tapware looks amazing against white baths,” Dale offers.
“You can have a big spout off the floor or off the wall that looks really sharp and clean. You can also go with Brushed Brass if you wanted to jazz it up. Just run that finish through your whole space and from room to room, to create continuity throughout your home.”
Similarly, basins no longer need to be buried within your vanity. Many are opting for above-counter or bench mount basins, in a variety of unique shapes or materials, like concrete.
3. Control your heating for comfort
Bathroom heating is certainly a luxury, but if you’re doing a large renovation and you have the budget, it’s definitely worth considering underfloor heating or heated lights.
“Underfloor heating is a feature people love to see if they’re buying a house,” Dale says.
“Some underfloor heaters even come with timers so you can set it to come on 15 minutes before you normally have your morning shower. This way you can get out of bed and walk straight onto a warm tiled surface, which is so luxurious.”
Dale adds that bathroom heating can also help “dry out” the room.
“Bathrooms are obviously damp and wet areas, as such underfloor heating can help your tiles dry out a lot quicker and reduce mould and mildew. It’s a pretty cool added extra.”
4. Play with your colour scheme
“There are a lot of feature walls going on at the moment,” Dale points out.
Thanks to advancements in the colours of ceramics and tapware, there’s no need to be boxed into one colour for your bathroom anymore.
Textured black bathrooms paired with warm accents like timber and brass can be an impressive statement. Picture: Damien Bredberg Photography
In Dale’s case, while most of his walls are a beige, natural stone look, he chose white for his feature wall.
“We’ve got a Travertine-look tile at home which is a nice, natural looking tile. Then we’ve got a crisp white subway tile behind the vanity to break up the room. It makes all those features on the vanity wall – like mirrors and tapware – just stand out,” he says.
“You can also go the other way and go dark. There’s a lot of people loving full black feature walls and offsetting that with a tapware style that stands out against the dark backdrop.”
Dark statement walls with textured tiles are a popular trend. Black tiles around an LED mirror and vanity can provide a dramatic, luxe-looking feature.
5. Give yourself some space to shower
Even if you’re working with a small bathroom space overall, gone are the days when you have to accept a small and pokey shower. If you’re working with a small square footage, consider if you can rearrange the space or sacrifice in others areas, such as a more slimline vanity or storage solution.
“Instead of tucking a shower into a small corner, people love to create a bit of extra room in the internal shower space so you can move around and actually enjoy your shower,” he says.
“[People are loving] double shower heads as well. You can have a hand-held shower on the wall and then a ceiling-mounted rainfall shower.”
6. Use creative materials
Raw, natural and textured materials are popular in bathrooms right now.
Create warmth with natural materials. Picture: Highgrove Bathrooms
Timber vanities are one way to work this into your space to create a bit of warmth, and can be complemented with timber towel racks or shelving, woven baskets and other ‘organic’ accessories.
Raw, textured tiles or concrete tubs or basins, paired with matte black or brushed metal tapware can also help achieve this look.