Most of us aren’t professional interior designers, which is why it’s okay to make a few design mistakes from time to time (It’s the best way to learn, right?). However, you don’t have to live with your missteps forever. Often, with just a few small tweaks, those errors are easily fixed and your interiors feel more fabulous and functional than ever.
Here’s four of the most common bathroom design mistakes we see, as well as simple steps you can take to correct them. If you realize you’re guilty of one or two on the list, don’t worry—we’re here to help.
1. Not layering lighting
Are you settling with simply the overhead lighting in your bathroom? If so, you’re doing yourself a disservice. Layered lighting is key to creating a truly functional room, and the bathroom is no exception. Layered lighting makes grooming routines, such as shaving or putting on makeup, a whole lot easier.
For those unsure of what a layered lighting arrangement might look like, here’s an example:
- Ambient lighting: Your existing overhead lighting. Consider adding additional recessed lighting to brighten up any dark corners.
- Accent lighting: An additional fixture around the mirror or vanity helps with grooming routines. If you frequently soak in the tub to relax, consider adding a fixture there as well; one that will let you dim the lights to create some ambiance.
- Task lighting: Smaller, lit beauty mirrors can also help with grooming.
2. Making storage an afterthought
Like layered lighting, this mistake affects both form and function. A bathroom without enough storage to keep everything organized is all too common. Products get piled everywhere, making the room look messy and distracting from the design.
It’s time to get serious about storage. The first step is figuring out exactly what you need. Go through your routines with your bathroom as-is, and do your best to pinpoint where things begin to break down. Focus on any points where you find yourself getting frustrated with your current layout, or digging through unorganized drawers to find an item you need.
Next, go shopping for appropriate storage solutions with your problem areas in mind. Here’s the key: don’t just opt for the cheapest, utilitarian option. Instead, invest in a piece that will do double-duty by adding some aesthetic value, such as the wicker baskets shown above.
3. Mismatching fixtures
Let’s face it: it’s pretty easy to mismatch fixtures. You may have re-done your bathroom piece-by-piece, only realizing over time that something didn’t quite add up in your design. Luckily, however, it’s also a fairly easy fix; one that can certainly be tackled in a weekend.
When dealing with fixtures, it’s important to remember that while the material you choose for your fixtures is key, the finish may be even more so. Two fixtures that are made of the same body material, yet host different finishes, won’t match. Consider the look you’re after before purchasing:
- Polished: Polished finishes are the most modern looking, featuring smooth texture and high shine.
- Brushed or satin: These finishes are the most common, offering more of a matte look.
- Oiled: Some consider darker, oiled finishes to be a little old-fashioned, however, they work well with certain aesthetic styles like Tuscan or French Country design.
4. Forgetting about décor
When dealing with a tight space, it may be tempting to forgo bathroom décor for the fear of creating clutter (see bathroom design mistake #2). However, we advise against following this urge. Décor items are often the details that can help make your design feel intentional, complete, and personal, rather than a strictly utilitarian space or an afterthought.
The reality is that you don’t need too much décor to pull off a cohesive look. Start by making sure all your textiles—such as towels and floor mats—match. Put a piece or two of wall art on display. Then, if you have any room, consider adding some greenery or candles to your vanity or another flat surface.
Bathroom design mistakes happen to the best of us, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn from your mistakes and make some changes for the better. Have you made any of these common bathroom design mistakes before? What are your favorite bathroom design fixes? Leave a comment and let us know!