Get the balance right. "This is a steam shower which is why the ceiling is sloped and tiled the glass goes all the way up to the ceiling and there's a hinged panel that can be cranked open" says Ines Hanl. "The shower has white Thassos marble on the walls and a black marble mosaic on the floor both of which are inspired by the color scheme in the rest of the bathroom– black and white marble mosaic for the floor and black‐stained cherry cabinetry". Contrast modern and rustic. "This bathroom was part of a renovation in what was originally an old stone gatehouse" says Kelly Solon of Murdock Solon Architects. "We were trying to insert a clean modern design into a very rustic and visually heavy environment. The frameless enclosure provide a light and airy feel as well as a contrast to the other materials in the space".
Use fancy little trays to collect and curate your bath items; place a few bath oils and soaps on one a cluster of votive candles on another. Potted plants are a wonderful way to add mystery and depth. Try ferns orchids or a palm. Mood lighting is key for the spa escape look so look beyond the standard choices for interesting light fixtures. I adore Moroccan hanging lanterns; hung alone or in a cluster they add a big punch of style and cast an amazing glow. Cultivate the feel of a five‐star European hotel with rich materials glossy finishes and a tightly edited black and white palette. Search vintage shops for a small glass‐front cabinet to use for towel storage. Paint it in the glossiest darkest black you can find then fill it with fluffy white towels.
Collect and curate interesting details – a giant seashell a small bust and real art on the walls will add a storied feel. Splurge on a few luxury bath items to display (and use). Stow all unsightly items behind closed doors or in boxes or bins. It's true that if your existing bath fixtures consist of a pink sink and lemon yellow tile you will be hard pressed to create the black and white palette this look calls for. If you have a bit more time and savings to invest in your bathroom makeover adding wallpaper or a dark paint color to the upper walls and white paneling below (less pricey than retiling) will go far. If you are considering replacing the sink having a vintage cabinet or table fitted with a simple sink bowl can be a creative solution. While you are at it remove that medicine cabinet and hang a pretty mirror instead.
The familiar furnishings accents and surfaces in this space right down to the flowered wallpaper mark it as traditional. But its classic mien wouldn't be out of place in a preppy home either. Contemporary forms (that stacked sink!) and plenty of open space drive the design here. The space feels of the moment and that's what contemporary style is all about. From the subway tile to the vintage‐style fixtures and pedestal sink this bath would fit right in with a cottage interior. Beadboard wainscoting would be another ideal choice. This transitional bath blends classic lines and profiles with streamlined detailing and pared‐down accents. It wouldn't look amiss in a traditional or contemporary home but it has its own distinctive appeal.
In the absence of natural light sconces and candlelight can create a warm feel. A gorgeous trumeau mirror works with the room's antique lighting for ultimate elegance. If a Venetian mirror is too small to make a room feel as big as a full‐length mirror can get the same effect by layering it over a sheet of plain mirror. More mirrors mean more glamour. The vanity Venetian mirror and shimmering tiles in this bathroom complement one another for a truly statement‐making look.
Go for an elegant look. "The inspiration for this bathroom was elegant glamour" says Jamie Herzlinger of Jamie Herzlinger Design. "The easiest way to get elegance into your bathroom is by using a frameless shower because it keeps the look clean and sleek". Embrace minimalism. "We were looking to have the colors of the limestone tile bounce light around the room and to use few if any noticeable details in keeping with our firm's philosophy of embracing minimalism" says David Webber of Webber + Studio Architects. Infuse a sense of calm. "I was inspired by the tranquil river and landscape surrounding this home to create a peaceful sanctuary that brought the outdoors in" says Justine Sterling of Justine Sterling Design. "The frameless shower design was key in creating transparency openness and a sense of calm". Invite nature to be your guest. "This master bath is in a summer home on a lake and the back of the house faces the woods" says Nora Schneider of Nora Schneider Interior Design. "The shower faces an entire wall of windows overlooking the woods and I wanted to invite nature in as an evergreen guest".
Do it for Mom. "The idea for this beautiful tub really came from my client Susan" says Colleen Mahoney of Mahoney Architects. "She wanted her master bathroom to include a freestanding tub where she could feel that she was getting away from all of the demands of her daily life – a place with a sense of sanctuary and quiet. The tall ceilings and suspended chandelier contribute to the sense of luxury. In a busy mom's life it's good to have a place to escape". Give your guests the best. "This bathroom is situated within a dormer gable on the top floor of a large house and it receives infrequent use" says Dennis Budd of Gast Architects. "When the bathroom door is open the room’s position adjacent the open central stair’s upper hall landing allows occupants to view the tub dormer windows and decorative full‐height tile wainscoting as they ascend to the roof level".
Graywater reuse. It's a little crazy that we use potable drinking water to flush our toilets. Aqus is a simple system that routes used sink water (graywater) through a filter and disinfectant and into any nearby toilet tank for use in flushing. Being water smart couldn't be easier.