Play a winning hand in the bathroom design stakes with tips and advice from industry experts. From planning to selecting finishes and the best sustainable products available, here’s all you need to know.
Bright hues combined with minimalist features take center stage in 2018. To add depth, play with textures and finishes.
SIOBHAN THOMAS FLUSH BATHROOMS
Hottest bathroom trend for 2018?
Colour. Black tapware and shower frames are massive at the moment. So too are champagne and bronze hues.
Biggest bathroom luxury?
A high-tech paperless toilet. It is huge in Japan, and extremely environmentally and health conscious. The toilet has a hygienic built-in bidet spray with warm water, as well as a dryer. It also has a male and female option.
Smartest water-saving gadget?
Aerators (Neoperl is a tried-and-tested range). Install these on taps and shower heads to reduce water usage. For instance, if you have a Hansgrohe basin mixer the flow rate is usually 5l per minute. If you would like to reduce this you can replace the aerator (the small nozzle part of the basin mixer) to either become a 1l, 2l or 3l. When it comes to shower roses, a water flow reducer can lessen the amount of water used by as much as 60% without you even feeling much difference in performance. These little aerators sell for about R60 each, so it’s an easy and affordable solution.
Must have eco-friendly bathroom item?
Ceramic toilets and basins coated with Ceramic Plus. The coating protects the ceramic so that it stays looking cleaner and whiter for much longer, this, in turn, allows homeowners to use less harmful detergents and toxic cleaning materials.
RUDIE BOTHA WERKHOF ARCHITECTS
Bathrooms – what’s new?
The focus is moving away from objects and rather falling on the space. This allows for the bathroom to take on any surface treatment because the way in which the space is considered is changing. The everyday use of the space and how light and ventilation takes place become more important.
What to consider when choosing surfaces?
Trends will come and go, so the best way to counter redoing the bathroom every second year is to choose timeless materials as the primary focus for walls and floors. The closer these can be to natural or raw materials the better the chances of it surviving.
Best value-for-money surface options?
A stucco finish for floors and walls, interrupted with another material, such as marble slabs or timber, always make for a good economical solution. The idea is to use the stucco as a backdrop or canvas and then fill it in with smaller amounts of more expensive materials.
What to keep in mind when designing a bathroom?
The most important thing to remember is that the space will be used primarily for cleansing of the human body, this means water at showers, baths and basins. Threshold spaces between these water using areas should be used to create dry zones.
Statement bathroom idea?
Nothing speaks louder than a thick slab of marble or a shower bench made from a fallen forest tree.
Must-have sustainable product?
The new intuitive water control by Hansgrohe called SELECT.
Experiment with unconventional materials and placement for a fresh take on walls and floors.
‘The most important light in a bathroom is natural light – if this is achieved then the idea of cleansing in nature is also emphasized.’
Create bespoke, high-impact spaces with finishes in rich, sultry colours and gold tapware and accessories.
Choose one or two statement pieces to accomplish this look and pair it with a serene white basin for a modern contrast.
DANIE STEENKAMP, SKIN ARCHITECT AND INTERIORS
Be bold and move away from the generic type of ‘white-on-white’ bathroom typology we all know. Even though the latter won’t go out of style, this year is it’s all about bold accents. Using unique shaped tiling to accentuate a feature wall or choosing coloured fixtures to add a splash of life to bathroom interiors, it has turned into a space of artistic expression.
Material you’re most excited about?
Bamboo. Often overlooked, it is very versatile and can be formed and molded into various shapes. It can start as a cladding on the shower wall and transition into the floor finish. It can also be used as a tile, it is up to the designer’s imagination. It is also one of the most sustainable materials to use.
Wow design idea?
Use full-length tiles to cover wall surfaces. For example, if you choose something with a natural stone finish, it creates the effect that your wall has been cut from a single slab. Contrast this with brass or matt black fittings for a very impressive look.
What to keep in mind when choosing lighting fixtures?
Lighting must be layered. For general lighting, you can use LED down lighting. The next layer will be task lighting, such as your vanity lights.
How do you choose a sustainable bathroom feature that is still beautiful?
Luckily the new age designer sees aesthetics and sustainability in the same light. A more refined designed fitting also ticks the sustainability box. Sustainability does not only apply to how it consumes power or manage water, but also to where you source it from. Try and look at local options before ordering something that needs to be shipped from Italy.
Compiled by Sanri Pienaar.