With bathroom sales predicted to grow Margaret Talbot looks at bathroom design trends for the rest of 2018. Simple wall-hung modern furniture in subtle wood shades, soft creams or soft graphite teamed with either a counter-top or vanity basin in an appealing shape or a super-size slab top with one or two bowls and complemented by wall-hung sanitaryware, a walk-in shower and a freestanding bath are the essential base ingredients for design success. Bathrooms are being designed for use simultaneously and independently by multiple generations. Parents and children may use the room at the same time and dual basins or shower heads mean partners can utilise the shared space also. Modesty is enhanced with clever bathroom designs, such as furniture like tall units that can shield a shower from the basin or WC area.
The increasing use of mineral cast has made it possible to manufacture basins with defined angles and edges. The bright whiteness of these basins looks dramatically brilliant combined with furniture in anthracite, deep grey, plum or black. For a softer look, manufacturers such as VitrA are also creating basins in cerafine, the finer particles allow for a narrower edge than traditional vitreous china. The material is particularly successful with countertop basins in VitrA’s Outline range. Star of the show is an elegant shallow pebble shape. Available in matt mink, matt taupe, matt black, matt white and white, the basin makes a stunning feature combined with a built-in mixer either deck or wall mounted.
A dark tile floor combined with a paler shade for the walls creates a softer, kinder look but the brick effect style using white metro tiling is still popular. Look out for increasing mosaic styling in tiles, with standout shades for grouting.
Futureproofing is very much on the agenda with consumers who want their home to be a permanent one. This does not mean installing a bathroom that looks like something from a hospital type environment. Modern wall-hung WCs can be set at a comfortable height for those with back or knee problems and families, both young and old, will appreciate the convenience and care offered by a multi-function WC like VitrA’s V-Care.
Wall-hung fittings are a practical choice. The WC is suspended from the wall, supported by a concealed frame. All that is visible is the fitting itself and a flush plate. Ugly pipework is hidden away, and cleaning is easy as the fittings are clear of the floor. Wall-hung also makes a small bathroom appear larger – and is flexible – if there is a window in the way, a short height frame is available. There is no need to worry about safety – a VitrA WC pan suspended by a wall frame will safely hold up to 60 stones (300kg).
VitrA’s V-Care WC is perfect for all kinds of reasons but is also helpful if a person needs the help of a carer. Washing with water after using the toilet leaves you feeling clean and fresh, the V-care Comfort model shower toilet features a sensor that opens the lid as the user approaches, adjustable washing and drying functions, a heated seat and more. The pan is wall-hung so can be set at a comfortable height. It also features odour control and VitrA’s Rim-ex construction which means there is no rim around the inside of the pan for germs and limescale to lurk.
Freestanding baths are enjoying a rebirth – but forget the heavy, cold to touch, cast iron rolltop. Contemporary freestanding baths can be deep but certain designs help to save water without affecting the bathing experience., All bathtubs should be designed for comfort and made from warm to the touch, lightweight materials. VitrA’s 4Life collection features organic shapes and sophisticated design from VitrA’s in-house design team.. In an ideal world, it would be fabulous if the bathroom included a walk-in shower as well as a bath. A simple level access walk in can be fitted into a small space and just needs a simple glass panel to hold water. VitrA Zero to Surface shower trays offer step-free access and have a large central waste to swoosh water away.
“The trends we are seeing now are very much inspired by hotels, luxury Airbnb, boutique hotels and for those that do, cruise ship bathrooms,” says VitrA’s Margaret Talbot. “The essence is simple, subtle style to create a room that is easy to use and an absolute pleasure to be in. “