The bathroom is one of the most functional rooms in the house, but so many homeowners neglect to give it as much decorating attention as say, the living room or the kitchen.
In fact, because bathrooms are usually smaller, some well-thought out improvements and a few quality materials can make a big difference, turning an average room into an intimate masterpiece that you get to experience throughout the day.
Since natural stone and quartz are what we know best, here are four ways to use granite, marble, soapstone, quartzite, or quartz to improve the look and value of your bathroom.
Opt for a Custom Bathroom Vanity
It’s easy to make a big statement with your bathroom vanity. If you have an average sized vanity (anywhere from 24″ to 60″ or 72″), you will likely be able to find a granite or marble remnant to use. When fabricators cut up slabs for kitchens, they often have large pieces left over. These may be less expensive and you don’t need an entire slab, which means you can get a higher-end countertop.
Your bathroom is closed off from the rest of the house, and it doesn’t contribute as much to the overall decor as the kitchen. You are only in it for short periods of time, so why not choose a bold countertop that will catch your eye every time you open the door?
Besides the granite, marble, or quartzite you choose, there are a few more ways to make your bathroom vanity your favorite part of the house. First, if you have a contemporary design, you may want to consider a “waterfall” panel on one or both sides of the vanity.
This is where the granite “spills over” the edge, running down the side of the cabinet at a right angle to your vanity top. This gives you a better look at your stone from different parts and heights of the room. It looks great with a granite that has a flowing pattern.
Second, if you have an open cabinet style with shelves under your vanity for storing towels and toiletries, have custom granite shelves made from the same color as your vanity top. This makes those shelves into decorating elements in addition to being functional (and so much easier to clean than wood).
Having a few extra pieces of countertop cut for the shelves doesn’t cost much, but it gives the whole room a very finished look.
Add a Tub Surround or Shower Cladding
Granite is not just for your counters! Here’s another great way to create a more functional space that also looks incredible: if you have a drop-in tub, you can have a custom surround made from your granite or marble.
If you have a walk-in shower that would have tile on the walls, you can instead choose “cladding,” which is where the wall is covered with a single smooth piece of beautiful granite. Instead of having to watch grime gathering in your grout lines every time you shower, you can discover new colors and mineral formations as you gaze onto a soothing natural stone.
Shower cladding and tub surrounds can be expensive since they require a lot of stone and labor, but they will last longer than tile and look better doing it.
Add Matching Stone Details in the Shower
Whether or not you opt for granite all the way up your shower walls, you can still add little pieces of coordinated stone to take your bathroom design up a level. This can include shower seats, shelves, soap niches, or even the curb on the floor as you enter the shower.
Coordinate the Architectural Details in Your Bathroom with Your Vanity
In much the same way, think about using your granite or marble as a threshold, windowsill, half-wall cap, or on any other architectural feature or quirk that needs a little something to jazz it up. In old homes with radiators, a granite shelf sitting on your radiator makes a nice place to set plants or bathroom essentials.
All of the little details are relatively inexpensive, but can really make the difference between an average bathroom and a masterpiece.
Bonus Tip for Master Bathrooms: Matching Night Stands
Matching nightstands or a dressing table counter made from the same material as your bath vanity can be a great way to tie in an adjoining master bedroom. Not all your luxury upgrades have to be for your guests…sometimes you need to make a space gorgeous just for yourself.