shower remodeling

We often get so caught up in choosing tile, metal finishes and other decorative aspects of bathroom design, that we forget about the big-ticket items, such as your shower. Certainly, you will be looking at that vanity top every day and you want to be happy with how it turned out. But though a countertop can be easily swapped, shower design and features can’t be that easily reconfigured. Here are a few ideas from our Maryland bathroom remodeling specialists on how to turn your shower into a space you will love and enjoy every day.

Do Away With the Bathtub

If you are remodeling a small bathroom, there may not be enough room for both a shower and a tub. Cramming both of them in this tiny space is probably not the best idea, as neither will be comfortable and spacious. If you barely use your tub anyway, consider doing away with the tub/shower combo and going with the full-size shower.

This is a safe bet if this is not your only bathroom with a tub. If it is, then evaluate carefully what home buyers in your neighborhood expect in a home. You definitely don’t want to devalue your property by removing the tub, if this is what most house hunters desire. However, if you live in an area where there are a lot of singles or young professionals, they may view a larger shower as a bonus and won’t even notice the lack of a tub.

Plan for Storage

Shower storage is something to think about BEFORE you start remodeling your bathroom. If you leave it as an afterthought, you will likely end up with a gazillion suction-cup baskets or unsightly poles and shelving units covering up the beautiful tile work. One of the best shower storage options are niches recessed between the wall studs. They make it easy to keep your shower products organized without getting in the way.

Evaluate how many people will be using the shower, so that you can estimate how much storage you need. If, for any reason, recessed storage is not an option in your shower, built-in ledges and shelves can be a great alternative. And if you are adding a built-in bench, it could also double as a shelf when not in use.

Consider Multiple Shower Heads

Multiple shower heads in the shower is one of the recent bathroom design trends. A typical setup includes a rain shower head on the ceiling and a fixed or hand-held shower head on one of the walls. In larger showers, couples even opt for his and hers shower heads to conveniently shower together. However, be sure to evaluate your plumbing, water heater and water use when increasing the number of plumbing fixtures. Proper infrastructure needs to be in place in order to support any new additions.

Whatever you decide, we recommend installing at least one hand-held shower head. Even if you don’t use it often, for the times when you actually need it to wash your pet or rinse the shower walls, you’ll be glad you have it.

Add Natural Light

Natural light in a bathroom does wonders, especially if it’s the bathroom you use when you get out of bed in the morning. Natural light can brighten your mood, help you judge the weather and give you something picturesque to look at when you shower. Adding a window to your shower area or moving the shower location to where the window is can be a good idea, depending on the layout of your bathroom.

Another option is to add a skylight, so that you can bask in the sun rays or stargaze as you shower. If you are worried about privacy, keep in mind that a window can be placed at your head level. If you want a larger window, the bottom portion of it can be frosted to create the desired level of privacy. Having a window or a skylight that opens is also great for ventilation, helping you prevent mold and putting less stress on your bathroom fans.

Glass or no Glass?

Glass enclosures are a popular solution for showers, and there are good reasons for that. They are easy to clean and they are transparent, creating an illusion of a larger space. To take full advantage of a glass enclosure, go for a floor-to-ceiling enclosure made of large panes of glass. It will make your shower look like it’s not detached from the rest of the bathroom, providing a clear line of sight from wall to wall.

If you have a fairly roomy shower, you could ditch the glass and the doors in general. By using a counter-height wall with a glass top (or a full glass panel) on the shower head end of the shower, you can create a sufficient splash barrier. In this case, the door won’t be necessary at all. However, in winter it can get chilly if you let your shower steam escape the enclosure. If you tend to keep your thermostat on low in winter, having a fully enclosed shower can help you keep it warm and cozy as you get in and out.

Need help turning any of these ideas into reality? At Bath Doctor, we’ve built everything from simple acrylic shower cabins to high-end luxury enclosures. Let us know what’s on your wish list and we’ll help you plan, design and build!

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