For most people, one of the key rooms in their home is one that they spend the first and last minutes of their day in; their bathroom. In today’s housing climate, more consumers are looking at their homes in new ways; reevaluating their investment and often refocusing on a longer-term commitment. This means that an increasing number are choosing to renovate their bathroom space so that it will continue to deliver function, form and value for many years down the road. Master baths are becoming a special retreat for homeowners where more and more personalization and spa-like amenities are appearing – chandeliers, vessel sinks, dramatic tile selections and wall-mounted fixtures.

If you’re in the market of building new, retrofitting or simply making some decor changes, take note of the trends that are currently making a splash in bathroom design.

Tub Talk

Perhaps the most substantial trend in master baths is the replacement of the huge soaker tub that usually occupied a large corner space. Newly popular is the free standing tub, often the focal point of the room. Depending on the space, these can be versatile and fit any design theme. The tubs can be elaborate or simple, modern or classic, sit directly on the floor, on a pedestal or claw feet. Depending on which style you opt for, this type of tub undeniably adds a touch of charm or luxury to the bathroom and enhances the overall feel and value of the room.

Aware of this trend, some builders have opted to include these as a standard feature or upgrade option to their master suite designs and many manufacturers like offer freestanding baths at numerous price points. The trend continues to see predominantly white porcelain tubs, however, they can have sides of varying colours and are even available in copper or stainless steel. The faucets are either floor-mounted (pedestal), wall-mounted (including rain shower) or attached to the side or end of the tub, often including a spray in addition to the faucets.

Mood Lighting

When it comes to the bathroom lighting trend, the options are endless and are often connected to what type of style and mood you want the space to have. If you’re creating a spalike sanctuary, your lighting choices will differ from someone opting for a more traditional or retro retreat. Here are a few trends that are lighting up bathrooms nationwide.

Vanity Lighting

Task lighting around the vanity is an important component of a well-lit bathroom. Rather than a single light fixture above the mirror, more and more bathrooms are seeing two wall-mounted lights on either side of the vanity.

Ambient & Accent Lighting

All bathrooms need general lighting, which can be provided by various types of fixtures or pot lights. Recessed light fixtures can illuminate the shower, while custom-designed sconces bounce light off the ceiling. Accent or decorative lighting can be used to highlight interesting features in the bathroom. In many cases, designers are suggesting chandeliers to accent the freestanding tub.

Layered Lighting

Incorporating several types of lighting features will enhance the design and depth of your bathroom. Often, bathrooms can include vanity lighting, under cabinet lighting, recessed light fixtures and accent lighting all designed to brighten specific bathroom features and enhance the space according to style.

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More than just a Floor

Gone are the days when homeowners had very little options when it came to bathroom flooring. The market is full of a wide range of products for every bathroom style and best of all you don’t have to sacrifice form over function. Most offer both durability and water resistant properties and range from practical to elaborate. Here are a few trends that are leading the way.

Patterned Tiles

Patterned tile with a multitude of motifs seem to be on every designer’s wish list this year. Intricate and three-dimensional patterns are making a comeback as with modern geometric shapes. Homeowners looking to make a statement with fun patterns are in luck as these too are making their way back into bathrooms.

Warm Haven

Perhaps the hottest trend in bathroom design is heated floors. Tile floors can be hard and cold, but radiant floor heating systems provide a solution. These systems can be installed under tile — as well as hardwood and other popular flooring surfaces. They create a warm surface to step on after a hot shower or bath and add a level of understated luxury.

The other design trend causing some heat is fire features. If you’ve got the budget, you will not regret implementing this into your bathroom renovation. Ventless fire features make it easy and more cost effective to add warmth to your new bathroom. Not only will a fireplace add a sense of indulgence to your master suite, it will also help increase your home’s resale value too.

Tile Tales

The story of tile selection usually starts with ceramic. Durable and easy to clean, this tile is a practical flooring choice for the bathroom. They come in a wide range of sizes, shapes and styles; some of which actually mimic the look of natural stone. For aging homeowners or those with young ones, textured designs can also help prevent slippage.

Change the page to porcelain tiles; these are fired at higher temperatures than ceramic making them more durable and less porous. Today’s homeowners are opting for larger floor tiles —12×12 or 18×18 inches — to reduce the often-annoying grout lines. Finally, stone tile flooring lends a sophisticated look to a bathroom and is usually made from travertine, limestone, marble, granite or slate. This type of tile is certainly the most costly, but usually lasts a lifetime.

Doors for Days

Move over, shower curtain; French Doors are this year’s sleek design go-to. Much more chic than the curtain and it still serves the same purpose. They prevent water spillage but also create a majour decor statement in an otherwise simple space.

Tune In

Media and Music are the newest modes of bathroom entertainment. Whether it’s for relaxation or practicality, bringing electronics into the bathroom is becoming more commonplace. Televisions, wireless speakers, bluetooth devices and docking stations are being incorporated into walls, bathroom mirrors, showerheads and vanities.

Mood Room

If bathroom walls could talk, they would say that this year’s trend is dark and moody. Even a small bathroom can rock a dark wall, especially if you decide to paint the cabinets to match. Contrast with natural textures and you’ve created a space that will never go out of style. Molding and trim also make an Impact on the room. From baseboards to crown molding, these details add width, depth and height to even the smallest, most simple space.

Bath on a Budget

For homeowners on a smaller-scale budget, there are many
cost friendly trends. Simply adding some greenery, aromatherapy
or crisp linens can heighten and refresh the look
and feel of your bathroom space.

With all these features available at your fingertips, bathrooms can now have cutting-edge functionality and comfort. Whether you’re looking for spa-worthy products and features or timeless trimmings, the style of your bath can be created to suit all your bathing needs.—

Photo courtesy of Moen Canada