Before and after – a new layout has taken this bathroom from dreary to delightful

Moving the loo has opened up the space

bathroom with shower
(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

When my husband 
and I first moved in, the bathroom was functional but dated, with lots of dark-stained wood and a small, tired shower bath with a shower curtain that would constantly stick to us. The only lighting was two ceiling spotlights over the basin, and the vinyl flooring didn’t fit the room properly.

We convinced ourselves it would only be a few months before we could get a new suite so we left it as it was. A year later, we’d finally saved enough money, and had a clear idea of what we wanted. We’d had an electrician in to do rewiring, so had swapped the poorly positioned spotlights for six evenly spaced ones.

We also had to rip out our current suite, remove the wall tiles and re-plaster. As we have only one bathroom, we were using the facilities at the local gym – luckily it’s just down the road.

Bathroom makeover patterned floor blush walll

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

I love a soak in the tub, but my husband was 
fed up with stepping over the side and battling with the taps to find the ‘perfect’ temperature for a shower, so we needed space for a walk-in shower and bath. We decided if we could move the loo a few feet along the wall, we could fit in both.

Luckily my dad is a DIY whizz and offered to help, so we hired a scaffolding tower, took a sledgehammer to the outside wall and made space for the new waste pipe.

We’d been into our local Bathstore to discuss ideas with the very helpful sales adviser and chosen a spacious shower enclosure, with a deluge showerhead
plus a hand-held one. We opted for a digital system, with no taps, to control the water temperature and flow at the press of a button. We also chose a boxed-in bath, to maximise space under the window and create a handy shelf.

patterned floor blush walll bathroom

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

Dad plumbed in the loo, basin and shower, installed the bath and laid the shower tray. My husband and I were new to this level of DIY, but after watching him at work, we started to learn and helped as much as we could. Dad also helped us to install two wall lights above the basin to create some ambience when having a bath.

Get the look
Buy now: Cambridge basin vanity unit, £279.99,
Buy now: Blanc white gloss tiles, £22.95 per sq m, Walls and Floors 
Buy now: May Fair floor tiles, £29.95 per sq m, Walls and Floors

open shelves on wall

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

I found a black-rimmed mirror to match some black-edged shelves I’d bought, to hang over the loo. These display all our prettier everyday items at a handy height. For the untiled walls, we went for pale pinky-grey paint that was neutral, with a bit of warmth.

Get the look
Buy now: Walls painted in Farrow & Ball Peignoir modern emulsion, £45 for 
2.5ltrs, B&Q
Buy now:
Lucca single bathroom spotlight, £25, John Lewis

bathroom with towel rail

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

Opting for a white rather than chrome towel rail helps it blend with the tiles and stops it visually dominating the room. We chose towels with texture rather than pattern as the floor was already the star of the show.

Get the look
Buy now: Qual-Rad 1200x500mm heated towel rail, £50, Homebase

bathroom with mirror cabinet

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

The only storage, initially, was the under-basin vanity unit, which soon filled up, so we hung a mirrored medicine cabinet above. It's the perfect place to hide away necessities.

Get the look
Buy now: Similar Croydex Michigan Double Door Bathroom Cabinet, £79, Homebase

bathroom with glass door

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

Get the look
Buy now: Surface 1200 x 760mm shower tray, £189, Bathstore
Buy now: Atlas 1200 sliding door shower cubicle, £999, Bathstore
Buy now: Mira Vier dual rear-fed digital shower, £769, Bathstore

I’d always loved patterned floor tiles, and chose a fairly traditional monochrome design. We paid a tiler to lay them, and install underfloor heating. I wanted plants, too, so went for a mix of real and fake. The green really pops against the tiles and, so far, the real ones have all stayed alive!

Holly Walsh
Content Editor

Holly Walsh has been Content Editor at Ideal Home since 2021, but joined the brand back in 2015. With a background of studies in Interior Design, her career in interior journalism was a no-brainer and her passion for decorating homes is still as strong as it ever was. While Holly has written for most of the home titles at Future, including Livingetc, Country Homes & Interiors, Homes and Gardens and Style at Home, Ideal Home has always been her ideal home, and she can be found sharing her expertise and advice across both the printed magazine and the website too.