When it comes to sharing design trends with my readers, I always feel a little ambivalent. I am not a huge fan of trends, especially when it comes to investments such as renovations. I tend to recommend colors and finishes in keeping with the home’s character and age, as well as the property’s resale value and future appeal to home buyers.
Usually, it is wise to invest in design components that will stand the test of time. Having said that, there are ways of integrating current trends that DO stand the test of time. ‘Trendy’ elements can be balanced out with classic features to create what we call ‘transitional’ design. Here are some ideas and valuable tips to inspire you.
Industrial-style plumbing fixtures
Yes, Industrial design is still very popular! Although industrial-style design is not everyone’s cup of tea, I can assure that in urban areas it is still very high in demand. One of my favourite plumbing fixture collections is from Watermark in the UK. Other lines are available, but nobody does industrial style plumbing like Watermark. Brushed brass or gold fixtures look fabulous with stone, concrete, and even wood features. They are always a conversation starter, and frankly very fun to use.
Smart features for bathrooms
Bathroom components and intelligent technology has evolved at a rapid pace in the last few years. Showers are available with LCD panels that allow you to control temperature, steam options, music and chromotherapy. You can program water-flow in your shower as well as program your toilet to clean itself. This steam shower we designed for a client also includes a wireless Blue Tooth shower head and Netflix streaming, as well as Chromotherapy.
These Mediterranean-style tiles have literally been around for thousands of years. They made a big comeback about 5 years ago and are still going strong. They are available in a range of colours, many of which are cement. They usually come in 6’’ x 6’’ or 8’’ x 8’’ sizes. Because the pattern is very busy, it is important to balance out the pattern with simpler surroundings. Also keep in mind, less is more; pick a wall or the floor, but not both.
Spacious and curb-free ‘Italian’ showers
For the shower, several options are out there, but there is more and more demand for Italian walk-in showers with glass enclosures as they are seamless and minimalist. These require a linear drain for quick evacuation of water seeing as there is no ‘curb’ or ‘ledge’ to hold the water in. It is possible that the floor may have to be raised (less than an inch) to accommodate the slope needed for the quick water evacuation, but it is worth it. Once my clients learn about the option of a curb-free shower, most of them jump on the idea. There is literally more room in this type of shower, and as we all know, when it comes to bathroom square footage, every inch counts!
Almost all the bathrooms we are designing include a free-standing bath as well as a walk-in shower. If our clients have an alcove bath and shower combined, we need considerably more space to separate the shower from the bath, especially if our clients are also requesting a large walk-in shower. Most of the time we can steal a bit of space from an adjoining room and/or closet or hallway. The only time I advise against a free-standing bath is for the washing of young infants. The sides of the free-standing baths are too high for parents to reach over, and therefore impractical and unsafe. In these situations, we design an updated and modernised bath-shower combination with the bath side at a more reasonable height.
Black accents and plumbing fixtures
Black and white bathrooms have been popular for at least 60 years. The wonderful component that can now be added to bathroom design is the availability of black plumbing fixtures as well as black accessories such as towel rings, soap dispensers, paper holders and more. Black bathroom fixtures and accessories look great with any colour palette or bathroom style. In this black and white bathroom, the clients desired a whimsical and bright bathroom with dramatic contrasts.
Gold accents and plumbing fixtures
The beautiful thing about warm metals is just that…they are warm! That means they play well off cool tones such as marble, stone, grey tile, white, neutral beiges, blues and even black…all of which are hues and tones that most homeowners are choosing as their colour palette for every room, not just the bathroom.
The ‘gold accents’ are actually available in different textures, and slightly different nuances, which is why you should make sure to buy all your gold, bronze or champagne plumbing fixtures from the same collection or manufacturer.
You would like to adopt some of these ideas in your own space but you don’t know where to start?
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