Professional Design Tips when Designing a Bathroom

Professional Design Tips when Designing a Bathroom

Designing a bathroom is no different to designing a multi-functional space. It needs to be practical and robust enough for the family, look anything but like a utility space and act as a haven you can escape to - somewhere you can lock the door and relax away from the usual stresses of everyday life. It’s a balance of practically and style, and it's a balance that can be tricky to strike. So, to help you through the process, here is our founder and award-winning interior designer Lesley Taylor, with her guide to designing your bathroom space. 
There are a couple of options to deciding upon your bathroom design layout. Firstly, you can take a primarily hands on, back to basics approach, and draw the room to scale using graph paper. Ensure you include all information such as plumbing locations, radiators, all important windowsill heights (they may not be high enough to locate a basin under the window, for example) plus doorways, including architraves on the plan. Then draw up your preferred choice of fittings such as the bath, WC, and accessories in the same scale (dimensions for these items are usually shown on manufacturers brochures) - cutting these out, you can then use these blocks for exploring various layout options. Be aware however, as mentioned before, a working knowledge of basic plumbing is essential when doing this, as the secret to a successful bathroom design is not just aesthetic, but relies on the ability to move water and waste to their desired locations - this isn't always as straight forward as you imagine. We always recommend that should you decide to take this DIY route, make sure you check with a qualified, accredited plumber before ordering any product. 
The second option is to seek assistance from a Bathroom Supply Company, who may offer design services to assist you with visualisation by creating bespoke design layouts and alternatives. Though these companies are supportive in creating rendered imagery, don’t forget you can upload your own visuals and perspective to our Baked Tile Visualiser, and check out how your preferred tiles would look in an existing space- all at the touch of a button.
A company that Baked Tiles love to work with are Drench, an online company with a real passion for helping customers create their dream interiors. A brand partner of Baked, we have negotiated a discount for our customers to redeem with Drench, so please get in touch to combine Baked Tiles with a gorgeous Drench space.
Images detailing the visual render process from Baked Tiles and Drench
As a final option, employ an interior designer, but we stress - it is vitally important that they have practical bathroom design experience, as a bathroom can be one of the most technically demanding spaces of a home to design and not all interior designers have the relevant experience in this area. 
One thing I used to find very helpful when designing bathroom and ensuite spaces for my clients, I would ask them to create a wish list. This list would prioritise the items they would ideally like to have within the space; shower and separate bath, double basins, walk in shower, or ample storage, for example. We couldn't always get everything into their space, but it meant that we could focus on the things that were very important and try wherever possible to make it work. If you have time to create your own wish list before you go to a bathroom design company or interior designer, it ensures your designs are in line with the needs of your family. 
The sheer number of places to visit when seeking inspiration can almost prove overwhelming, but creating your own bathroom board on Pinterest or collecting images from Instagram are very secure, proven means of communicating the designs you and your family love to your bathroom company or interior designer. Often, customers come to us at Baked when they have finalised the layout of their bathroom and are considering the finishes and furnishings. When they have visual pointers in the form of imagery to give to our design team, it certainly helps with communicating the design style they love. So, investing a little bit of time on your favourite design platform can be very well spent as it can ensure your designer has a true reflection and understanding of your preferred design style. 

Don't choose elements of the design in isolation - for example, before committing to that unusual pink vanity you fancy, make sure you can find tiles that will work alongside it and create the overall look you want. 

Designers always look at a room holistically, settling upon the overall look and feel they want to create and then break it down into small elements. These are the parts of the jigsaw you need to put together to create the finished room.  We don't suggest committing to any individual elements until you are sure that all elements you want are available and work beautifully together.  

If, however, a particular style of bath or decorative basin has caught your eye and you just have to have it, then our interior design team here at Baked will happily help you create a scheme that will put that centre stage. 

Be aware, light colours make a space look more spacious, but bright white can be cold. Always layer tone and colour, don’t stick to one single shade or tone or your room will look very one dimensional! 

My advice with a dark small space is ‘make it dramatic’! Make a feature of the fact a room has no natural light, as keeping dark north facing spaces white and bright, just won't work - they will look cold grey and uninteresting. 

Matt finishes make a space feel softer and warmer than glossy ones. 

Often less is very much more!

There is so much more to tiles than just a colour and shape.  

Specific tiles can help you overcome technical challenges within a bathroom space. A popular example would be showers with tiled floors will demand a tile that offers adequate slip resistance. Before rushing in, always make sure that the tiles you’re choosing are perfect for the scenario in question. All the tiles within our Baked Tile ranges are suitable for bathrooms, none of them require sealing and are all very easy to keep clean. You will find on our product pages that we highlight the ‘suitable for’ features for each tile – this offers peace of mind when regarding the type of tile to be used within a space.  


You may also decide to use under floor heating in the bathroom, particularly helpful if you have a walk-in shower area as any water taken under foot into the main bathroom will very quickly evaporate, a huge benefit alongside having a toasty warm floor. Under floor heating, however, does require the use of porcelain tiles, though this will be noted on our tile product pages. 

The Baked Tile website also has a mood board section where you can curate your own tile combos. This is a great space in which to explore all the wonderful options available to you, but if you're ever unsure as to whether you are making the perfect decision, our team of designers are always at hand to offer inspiring yet impartial design and technical advice. 

One common mistake when buying floor tiles for bathrooms is that customers will opt for an anti-slip finish. That seems like a practical approach; however, some anti slip tiles have a textured surface which is extremely difficult to keep clean and, in all honesty, anti-slip tiles are only essential for use on shower floors, pool areas and for external use - in other words, in areas where there is regularly water flowing over them. If you put a textured anti slip tile on the main bathroom floor, they would be exceptionally difficult to keep clean, and require rigorous cleaning. A natural finish tile is ideal for bathroom floors with the anti-slip version only used within a wet area, and most natural finish tiles will not be slippery under foot when stepping out of the shower areaMajor slip hazards are typically caused by shampoos, conditioners and body washes that contaminate shower floors and this is why the use of a textured anti-slip tile is essentialSlip resistance is quite a complicated subject, as there are differing degrees of slip resistance in tiles, with some being very coarse and textured in comparison to smoother alternatives. Whichever tile you choose, please make sure it has a + 36 PTV test result when wet, as this is the recommended value for an anti-slip tile – we list all of our tiles with their PTV rating on our website. 
In bathroom design, the finishing touches are not the things you leave till the last minute! One aspect of bathroom design that I often spend a lot of time considering for my clients is the lighting scheme. There is nothing worse than a scenario where all the lights are on during the day, or all the lights are off when using the bathroom in the night. It's always a pleasure to have the option of dim, ambient lighting to illuminate your way safely without waking you up. When considering ambient lighting designs in your bathroom, bear in mind that this requires two separate lighting circuits - one for task lighting and one for ambient lighting. This allows for a lovely aesthetic touch, such as highlighting the shape of a free-standing bath for example, or casting shadows down from a wall mounted vanity and from behind a beautiful, illuminated mirror. Additionally, it is important to make sure that you have selected the best grout colours and tile trims to reinforce your design scheme. I, personally, have a major disliking of Chrome tile trim, as I feel it draws attention away from other more deserving aspects of a bathroom design, wherever possible choose tile trim that will simply disappear into the background I'm not draw attention to itself. 

Once the room is installed, don’t underestimate the importance of dressing out items such as plants, storage baskets and other small items that elevate it from a utility space to a haven. Fluffy towels and the aroma of your favourite candle can simply transport you to an indulgent spa, so relax and enjoy the fruits of your labour!  

I hope this outline will help you make the perfect choices for your bathroom scheme, but helping to create beautiful rooms is what brings us pleasure at Baked, so please always feel welcome to get our design team involved to help ease your worries or concerns! 

I hope this outline will help you make the perfect choices for your bathroom scheme, but helping to create beautiful rooms is what brings us pleasure at Baked, so please always feel welcome to get our design team involved to help ease your worries or concerns! 
 Lesley Taylor BIID 
Member of the British Institute of Interior Design 
Founder of Baked tiles