Today’s choices in bathroom tile are amazing — colors, sizes, and textures from dazzling to demure. You can even choose wood, real stone, and metal. So it’s more important than ever to zero in on style before you shop. This homeowner wanted a fun, expressive color pop in her guest bath; she chose ceramic tile in a bright, candy-red dot pattern ($7-$13 per sq. ft.) set off with pure white grout. Small mosaic tiles come as 1-ft.-sq. mesh-backed panels for easy installation.
Everybody’s happy in this generous 5-by-5-ft. custom shower enclosure. He’s got a tall shower head and body sprays; she’s got a steam shower and hand-held showerhead. Both have seats with grab bars for safety, and both are surrounded by elegant Calcutta slab marble walls (with marble tiles on the ceiling). Four recessed ceiling fixtures ensure plenty of light.
Although curbless and barrier-free showers are all the rage, a step-up shower installation is ideal. A step-up provides enough height so a standard shower pan can be installed without any structural changes to the floor joists underneath. It’s a good solution for retrofitting bathrooms in out-of-the-way locations, such as a converted attic.
Best Ideas for Bathroom ShowersLighten Up Your Shower
Nothing brightens your day like a refreshing shower, and this is one of the brightest — with a glass block exterior wall and a skylight, there’s plenty of daylight. Choose a skylight that opens to let humidity escape and help prevent problems with bathroom mold.
Glass door? Shower curtain? How about no door at all? This cozy shower enclosure ditches a door in favor of an airy approach. A curb helps contain overspray, and the ceramic tile floor is easy to blot dry if droplets escape. A good rule of thumb is to have at least 3 feet of wall before the opening to stop splashes. In this design, a cool inset mirror over the commode helps bounce light around.
This prefab glass block wall ($1,700 to $1,900) features thin, 3-inch-thick blocks that save space and let light through; decorative glass tiles fused to the outer surface add happy high notes. Installation is DIY-friendly. The walls are composite polyvinyl panels that mimic the look of real stone at about half the price. The waterproof panels are easy to clean, won’t crack, and resist mold. A kit shower enclosure is $900 to $1,500.
Best Ideas for Bathroom ShowersTwo Heads Are Better Than One
“My husband is a shower hog,” explains Eliesa of apinterestaddict.com.“So this way, I can get in and out while he’s still showering.” Separate controls for each shower head keep temps optimum and everybody happy. Eliesa says she prefers a shelf to niches because shelves tend to be wider and easier to clean. Walls lined with Carrara marble tiles are an elegant finish.
A glass enclosure puts your shower in its best light — and plenty of it. Custom-made enclosures with ⅜-inch tempered glass and hinged door run $1,500 to $8,000, depending on the size and configuration of your enclosure. You’ll need to hone your cleaning chops to keep that glass sparkling, but green cleaning your shower will keep your home free of chemical irritants.
Strips of waterproof LED lights cast a glow from below in this unique enclosure. The strip lights are attached to the bottoms of marble slab walls, and the walls are installed so that they’re slightly elevated off the floor. The little light channels mask an “infinity” drain — water goes out the edges so there’s no floor grate.
Custom ironwork and a frosted glass partition enclose a wet room. There’s a toilet, bidet, and a separate area (to the right of the door) for the shower. Wet rooms typically have ceramic tile floors and walls that make cleanup a snap. The partition wall doesn’t reach all the way to the ceiling — a feature that encourages air circulation and helps prevent condensation and moisture problems.