A Restful Retreat

Create a luxurious looking bathroom for less with these top tips that won’t break the piggy bank.

Style has nothing to do with the price tag when it comes to creating a bathing heaven.  A bit of creativity and a pared-back design, you can create a new look for a whole lot less.

  • Plan to keep the original plumbing in place, moving incurs a large cost
  • Attempt the simpler jobs, like painting yourself
  • Choose a referenced, quality trades person
  • Opt for simple designs with clean lines
  • Splurge v Save…freestanding baths may be expensive to buy, but they save on installation costs.  You do the maths!
  • Waterproof panels have come a long way with new chic designs, ideal for shower walls
  • Windows are often in the wrong spot.  Instead of trying to dress it just replace it with texture glass.








Starting from the ground up… Flooring.

  • Want the classic marble look?  Imitation marble ceramic or porcelain tiles will provide the luxe look without the cost.  By just tiling the floor and bath surround then painting the walls will save on the tile costs.
  • Don’t forget to look at pool tiles they’re cheaper and very tough.
  • Keep an eye out for discounts at your local tile shop.
  • Avoid porous tiles that are prone to stain

Vanity fare…ideally, the vanity should be the first thing you see when you walk in.  So it’s important to get it right.

  • Vanities in good nick can be revamped with a new bench top.  Look for quartz composite cut-offs at local marble & granite merchants. If unsuccessful, go to www.offcuts.com.au
  • Existing cabinets can be revitalised with a new coat of mould-resistant paint
  • For a vintage look, hunt around at second hand or trade-in centres for an old dresser or cabinet that can be converted. Note: if placing a vanity bowl on top of a dresser, try to find one with just cupboards under the bowls placement.  Less work to get the plumbing sorted.
  • Consider about how much storage you and your family need also.

Colour match…paint is the decorator’s rescuer, the ultimate quick fix.

  • Use paint colour as a feature, rather than expensive tile trims.
  • Opt for mould-reducing paints that will go the distance.
  • Pull a colour from the tiles for the wall colour, whether it’s a statement maker or a subtle choice to allow other pieces to be the attention grabber.
  • Always consider the size of the space before you choose a wall colour
  • Wallpaper can also have its place in the bathroom.  Create wall art with just one roll or part of, by attaching a painted timber frame (architrave board) around the wallpaper.  A statement maker and the unexpected.

All the trimmings…snap up discounted accessories and fittings.

  • Simple accessories can be sourced at your plumbing outlets. Check if they have discontinued lines or perhaps they’re redoing their showroom.
  • Frameless shower screens can break a budget.  Try semi-frameless or double blade of laminated glass for a day-spa look.
  • Mirrors don’t just have a place over the vanity, source demolishing yards for interesting pieces.
  • Ensure you have enough towel rails for the family.  Check if double towel rails allow enough space for proper drying.
  • Cane baskets make excellent storage and can work with most styles.
  • Colour match your bath towels, it’s a must.
  • If space permits, a simple chair adds a spot to put cloths.  Look for a timber or cane chair you can paint to compliment your retreat.
  • Hooks on the back of the door are a great space saver.

Light fantastic…something that most people don’t take serious enough

  • Most important is task lighting.  Natural sunlight is fabulous, but needs a hand especially over vanities.  Ensure the light source is in front of you at the mirror, not behind.
  • A simple dimmer switch will help with mood lighting.
  • Create style with decorative pendant or wall sconces.  Why not a chandelier?

So with the help of these top tips, you could get that bathroom retreat you’ve always wanted.

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