How To: Bathrooms for Small Spaces

written by:
March 6, 2014
We can never get enough of great big design in tiny spaces—especially when it comes to efficient, space-saving bathrooms.
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  In this uber-efficient Brooklyn apartment, the resident kept lines as pure as possible by designing built-in storage alcoves. The cutout space in the white bathroom cabinet does double duty as a door pull and a cubby for frequently used items. Photo by Gile Ashford.  Photo by: Gile Ashford

    In this uber-efficient Brooklyn apartment, the resident kept lines as pure as possible by designing built-in storage alcoves. The cutout space in the white bathroom cabinet does double duty as a door pull and a cubby for frequently used items. Photo by Gile Ashford.

    Photo by: Gile Ashford

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  This smart 520-square-foot backyard retreat includes a spacious-seeming bathroom that employs a thin pane of glass to cordon off the shower without sacrificing sight lines. The absence of a door, combined with windows on two sides, makes the bathroom feel like a continuation of the overall space. Photo by Lincoln Barbour.  Photo by: Lincoln Barbour

    This smart 520-square-foot backyard retreat includes a spacious-seeming bathroom that employs a thin pane of glass to cordon off the shower without sacrificing sight lines. The absence of a door, combined with windows on two sides, makes the bathroom feel like a continuation of the overall space. Photo by Lincoln Barbour.

    Photo by: Lincoln Barbour

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  Secret compartments abound in this 650-square-foot Chelsea co-op: Even the bathroom's laundry hampers are discreetly stowed out of sight. Photo by Ian Allen.  Photo by: Ian Allen

    Secret compartments abound in this 650-square-foot Chelsea co-op: Even the bathroom's laundry hampers are discreetly stowed out of sight. Photo by Ian Allen.

    Photo by: Ian Allen

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  In this 240-square-foot Manhattan shoebox, a sleeping loft is situated over the kitchen in what the architect calls a “crafted jewel box” of blonde woods. Limited space in the tiny bathroom is brightened with warm wood and tiny tile. Photo by David Engelhardt.  Photo by: David Engelhardt

    In this 240-square-foot Manhattan shoebox, a sleeping loft is situated over the kitchen in what the architect calls a “crafted jewel box” of blonde woods. Limited space in the tiny bathroom is brightened with warm wood and tiny tile. Photo by David Engelhardt.

    Photo by: David Engelhardt

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  For this Mad Men actor's 580-square-foot bachelor's pad in Hollywood, his architect came up with a space-saving but glam solution for the bathroom: Hide it behind custom Japanese-inspired fiberglass-and-steel sliding screens that glow when illuminated from behind. Photo by Joe Pugliese.  Photo by: Joe Pugliese

    For this Mad Men actor's 580-square-foot bachelor's pad in Hollywood, his architect came up with a space-saving but glam solution for the bathroom: Hide it behind custom Japanese-inspired fiberglass-and-steel sliding screens that glow when illuminated from behind. Photo by Joe Pugliese.

    Photo by: Joe Pugliese

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  The bathroom in this converted 360-square-foot carriage house in San Francisco, the architect shoehorned a small bathroom next to the kitchen, under the dormer. The etched translucent glass lets light into the main living area and serves as one side of the shower. Photo by Susanne Friedrich.

    The bathroom in this converted 360-square-foot carriage house in San Francisco, the architect shoehorned a small bathroom next to the kitchen, under the dormer. The etched translucent glass lets light into the main living area and serves as one side of the shower. Photo by Susanne Friedrich.

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  Your first impulse for a tiny bathroom might be lots of optic white. Instead, play up the close quarters with a darker hue. Black tiles and fittings lend this Stockholm attic bathroom a dramatic look. The black bathtub is made of recycled plastic, and the Mora faucet was initially intended for use in a kitchen, though it allows more room here in tight quarters. Photo by Per Magnus Persson.  Courtesy of: Copyright Per Magnus Persson

    Your first impulse for a tiny bathroom might be lots of optic white. Instead, play up the close quarters with a darker hue. Black tiles and fittings lend this Stockholm attic bathroom a dramatic look. The black bathtub is made of recycled plastic, and the Mora faucet was initially intended for use in a kitchen, though it allows more room here in tight quarters. Photo by Per Magnus Persson.

    Courtesy of: Copyright Per Magnus Persson

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  "Because it’s a small space, it was possible to make everything pristine,” says this homeowner, standing in her dream bathroom, outfitted with full-slab Carrara marble, a Duravit sink, and fixtures by Dornbracht. Her diminutive abode—clocking in at around 900 square feet—is tucked into the side of a scenic San Francisco hill. Photo by Zubin Shroff.  Photo by: Zubin Shroff

    "Because it’s a small space, it was possible to make everything pristine,” says this homeowner, standing in her dream bathroom, outfitted with full-slab Carrara marble, a Duravit sink, and fixtures by Dornbracht. Her diminutive abode—clocking in at around 900 square feet—is tucked into the side of a scenic San Francisco hill. Photo by Zubin Shroff.

    Photo by: Zubin Shroff

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  Another tip: Consider floating storage options to clear up valuable floor space in a tiny bathroom. This configurable wood valet Clip Tree by Matthew Plumstead is kitted out with clip-on rubber hooks, shelves, and widgets. 

    Another tip: Consider floating storage options to clear up valuable floor space in a tiny bathroom. This configurable wood valet Clip Tree by Matthew Plumstead is kitted out with clip-on rubber hooks, shelves, and widgets. 

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