Home Plans: Renovating the family bathroom

Family bathroom renovation

Despite our home being basically a new build – we were the second owners – we’re still making changes to it here and there. As the previous owners bought it off plan, they’d been able to choose specific parts to fit their style and those don’t always work with us. The next big thing on the list is to replace the carpets as they’re pretty low quality ones, have a few stains from before we bought the house (and from a couple of spillages on my part…) and they love to gather up cat hair – and considering our cats are black and the carpets are cream, this is not fun for anyone. Although I have been given a tip to use a squeegee to get it out, which is a little bit fun as it looks slightly ridiculous. Like the time my sister combed her carpet. Oh yes, she really did.

It turns out carpets are expensive though, especially when you’ve got the vast majority of the house to replace. Do I sound absolutely ridiculous when I tell you that we’ve actually got a “new carpet fund” on our wedding gift list?!

So in the meantime, we’re working on smaller things, starting with the family bathroom. I’ve said before that I think our house has too many bathrooms – we have one downstairs (which we recently redecorated), an en suite for our bedroom, an en suite for one of the guest rooms and another bathroom – we call this the “family bathroom” because even though we don’t necessarily have a family, that’s what its use would be. I’ve frequently said that I would rather get rid of one bathroom and have the fourth bedroom (currently acting as piano room/office area/wedding storage) be slightly bigger, or even the family bathroom just be a little larger.

Family bathroom renovation before

Family bathroom before adding details

The family bathroom is pretty basic. It just has a bath, a toilet and a sink. It has beige tiles up to half way around the room around the bath, and a little window above the basin. The room is only as big as is necessary to fit each of these things in, so it’s not a luxurious space that I’d like a bathroom to be, but it’s functional. Ideally I’d like the bath to be bigger (I was spoiled with our old house!), but unfortunately it won’t fit a bigger one.

So in the absence of being able to make big changes to the family bathroom, I’ve been researching ideas for renovations and decided to make some smaller updates that will change the atmosphere of the room.

Family bathroom renovation

One of the things that I think makes a big difference to rooms is the flooring. It’s generally the largest surface area expanses in the room, is one of the first things you see and sets the whole tone for the atmosphere of the room. The hall and garden room in our house have a gorgeous amtico flooring (which I totally didn’t realise wasn’t real wood until a few weeks in when I got down on my hands and knees to clean it!), but the kitchen and en suite bathroom had some pretty standard flooring that was thin and bubbled, so we’ve recently replaced these. The family bathroom has the same style of flooring that our en suite previously had, so we ideally want to replace this too and are looking at these kinds of karndean flooring for this. I want something fairly minimalist and sleek, but it needs to be water resistant and durable for a bathroom, so this looks ideal.

In our en suite, we swapped the tap on the sink to a waterfall style one. You wouldn’t think a single tap would make a difference, but believe me, it did. I’ve always loved waterfall style taps, and swapping to one has given our bathroom that more luxurious spa-like feel. Since we’re only making small changes, I’m happy to spend a little more money on these small details, so we’re looking at these luxurious style ones for the bath. I prefer taps in the middle so they don’t get my way, but if I had one of these, I’d definitely be happy.

I’d also like to add more “accessories” to the room to give it a more homely and comfortable feel. I’ve started to do this already, but it could definitely do with more. We’ve already swapped the toilet seat from plastic to wood, which looks far nicer. I’ve also got some wicker drawers (which have actually travelled downstairs from our en suite), a colourful bath mat, some candles for the windowsill, a Cinderella Castle cork board (made by me!) complete with pins, and this bath caddy.

Family bathroom renovation - bath caddy

That last one is pretty life changing, in a non-dramatic kind of way. I love taking baths, so much so that I’ll happily read in the bath for more than 2 hours. During that time, I get thirsty so I tend to balance glasses on the edge – not always successfully. To be fair, it’s not usually wine, but Ben did bring me a glass of blackcurrant squash in a wine glass so I could test out the caddy’s abilities at holding that while pretending to be fancy.

It’s also extremely useful for those times you’re trying to revise in the bath with ALL your study notes for your whole semester for your final exams in one week in one single book. Not that I dropped mine in the bath and screamed the house down while throwing it across the room. That wasn’t me. And it wasn’t Ben that had to dry it with a hairdryer either. Ahem.

Anyway, more accessories are necessary! I’m thinking plants, pretty refillable bottles and storage cases for soaps and solid shampoo bars (since I’m trying to be more eco friendly), and potentially some matching towels, like we did in our en suite.

I’d also like to change those tiles, but I think that’s a job for another time really…

What else would you add to renovate a family bathroom with small changes?

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