Small bathroom renovation ideas that make a big impact

Cleaning Tips
Large bathroom with wide vanity and spacious walk-in shower

There are many factors to consider when planning a bathroom renovation.

As well as the style, function, and future considerations, there’s one key set of parameters that sets in stone what’s actually achievable with your new look: the size of your bathroom.

However, having a small bathroom doesn’t mean you can’t create a space that you’ll be truly happy with.

Here are our top small bathroom renovation ideas to help you create a big impact in a small space.

Maximise space with clever storage solutions

Adding storage to your bathroom might seem like it will take up more space than it’s worth. But when undertaken correctly, adding storage to your small bathroom actually works to make your room feel bigger, and less cluttered.

Shower niche

Make the most of your shower space with a shower niche. A shower niche is a recessed shelf within your shower, giving you room to store your shower necessities. In stud-framed homes, niches can be installed between two studs of your interior wall, meaning no additional space is needed to install it.

In places such as Western Australia, where most houses are double brick, niches are a little more complex – they may be installed on external double brick walls, but can require a bit more work than a niche in a stud-framed home. On internal single brick walls, it can be virtually impossible to install a niche without being able to visibly see the back of the niche on the opposite side of the wall.

Installing a shower niche helps you eliminate the need for ugly shower caddies, or messy (and dangerous) shower floors, while creating an attractive look that can actually add value to your bathroom. But make sure you do your research before you get one installed, or choose a reliable bathroom renovator who’ll be able to explain this all to you.

Wall cabinets

The standard wall cabinet can be an excellent solution for your bathroom storage. Recessed mirrored cabinets are particularly popular at the moment. While a space-saving marvel in their own right, the recessed mirrored cabinet may not be suitable for all homes, especially those with double brick walls, such as those in Western Australia.

However, standard wall cabinets offer valuable storage without the need for intricate installation. They can help you keep your bathroom organised and clutter-free while still maintaining a clean and uncluttered look on the outside.

Custom-made vanities

To truly maximise your available space, custom-made vanities are a great option.

Get extra compartments added to your vanity for all of your needs, such as laundry hampers, make-up drawers and in-drawer power. Floating vanities (or shelves) are also a great option. These can even be installed above the toilet or sink to store essentials without taking up valuable floor real estate.

Covered floating vanities, in particular, help to reduce visible clutter, and ensure you can keep your everyday essentials off the already valuable bench space.

When selecting the design of your custom vanity, opt for drawers over doors. Drawers provide effortless accessibility and make more efficient use of your storage space.

Open showers

Open showers don’t just look sleek and modern, but they can save you space, too. By removing your large, space-hogging bath, you can add significant space to your floor plan.

And an open shower doesn’t necessarily mean it’s completely open. A frameless glass partition stops water from escaping and splashing around, while improving the visual appeal of the shower area—no more ratty shower curtains.

Nib walls and ledges

Nib walls can help you create space in your bathroom while adding a timeless, yet stylish, element to its overall look and feel. A nib wall is a slim wall that sits at the end of your vanity, and extends into the shower area. Completely bricked and tiled, it works to block any space-wasting (and ugly) gaps between the two spaces, while adding an extra wall storage solution in your shower.

By installing a nib wall, you can eliminate a notoriously hard-to-clean space and create a whole new shelving area in your shower for your daily cleaning needs.

In addition to nib walls, consider the versatile and stylish option of ledges. Whether installed along the walls or in the shower area, they offer a functional platform for placing decorative items, plants, or additional storage containers. Ledges not only maximise space but also add a touch of personalization to your bathroom.

Not to be overlooked is the practicality and convenience offered by corner shower seats and built-in footrests. These elements ensure comfort and ease during your daily routine, making your bathroom not only functional but also a sanctuary of relaxation.

Create the illusion of space

In a bathroom where space is at a premium, creating the illusion of space is a clever tactic to make your room feel more comfortable and expansive. And all it takes is just a few simple bathroom changes.

In a bathroom where space is at a premium, creating the illusion of space is a clever tactic to make your room feel more comfortable and expansive. And all it takes is just a few simple bathroom changes.

  • Utilise mirrors. Mirrors reflect both natural and artificial light, instantly brightening your space and making it feel larger. Place your new mirrors so they’re opposite your windows, helping to capture and better distribute the ambient light.
  • Opt for clear glass shower screens. Clear glass shower screens offer a transparent barrier that keeps the visual flow uninterrupted, making the room seem less confined. They can also reduce actual space taken up by bulky shower screens and ugly curtains.
  • Feature walls. A well-designed feature wall can draw the eye and create visual interest.
  • Large format tiles. These tiles can visually expand your bathroom by reducing the number of grout lines. Their uniform and sleek surface adds to the sense of space, making the room feel less busy and more comfortable.

    The direction in which you lay your tiles can also make a significant impact on the perceived size of your bathroom. Tiles with a vertical pattern can visually heighten the room, while horizontal tiles can make it seem wider. Combining this with large format tiles can create a powerful illusion of expansiveness.
  • Bring the outside in. To make sure that your bathroom feels even bigger, consider incorporating large windows to invite natural light and scenic views. Incorporate some plants and greenery to introduce a refreshing and airy atmosphere.

Downsize your features

To truly maximise your available space, you can look into replacing your current bathroom features with more compact, yet functional, options.

For toilets, consider integrating cisterns into ledges, vanities, or external walls to optimise space while maintaining a clean and stylish bathroom.

Another good option can be to invest in smaller basins. Here you’re actively creating more space, which you can increase further if you pair with a floating vanity or a wall cabinet. In many bathrooms, the basin primarily serves the purpose of hand washing and teeth brushing, with the occasional use for shaving or washing of your face. In these cases, often creating more bench space is more paramount.

Your towel rails take up a lot of space, too. Replacing them with a vertical towel rail is a quick space-saving option, which works to improve the aesthetics of the room. Vertical towel rails typically feature a heating element inside the rail, which allows you to hang your towels closer together, but with the benefit of drying them quicker and more efficiently.

So, rather than racks of towels taking up your wall space, they’re all hung on one or more elegant vertical rails—a huge space-saver in a small bathroom.

Contact WA’s small bathroom renovations experts

Just because your bathroom is small, it doesn’t mean you can’t create the appearance of a much bigger space.

Transforming your small bathroom with our renovation tips can help you get a bathroom that stands the test of time. From clever ideas like installing custom cabinets, floating vanities, or nib walls, to upgrading your entire bath with an open shower—or even just replacing your towel rack—there are ways to optimise your space without having to move house.

Get in touch with the team at WA Assett today to speak to an expert, and get an estimate for your small bathroom renovation.