Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Here are some details on the interior design of our bathrooms. We decided to use the same finishes in both full bathrooms, and a different set of finishes for the two powders.

As a space-saving measure, our master bathroom is designed to be continuous with our bedroom; it was otherwise challenging to fit three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a large master closet in one level of our tight building footprint. Here is the view from our bedroom:

As you can see, there's a lot going on in a tight space. At the back are three black Milgard aluminum windows, looking out onto exterior siding (we plan to frost these windows for privacy). Moving from back to front, we have two floating mirrors with Itre Cubi wall lights mounted on them (unfortunately not illuminated in this image). Then, we have the same white Quantra quartz used in our kitchen on the backsplash and counter. The floating cabinets are Pacific Crest Amero with Metro doors, and the undermount sinks (great for cleaning) are Kohler Verticyl; these are the most rectangular sinks we could find to help maintain our right-angled theme. The faucets are Grohe Essence, which I managed to snag on Ebay for a great deal (a bit scary, but it worked out). The cabinet pulls are Ikea. The black wood-look floor tile is Anne Sacks Xylem in Ebony.

Here are some close-ups.

To the right of the double-sink is the shower/tub, which is fully enclosed in glass. We had originally planned on an open shower without a door, but we were worried about splashes and cold drafts. This much shower glass cost quite a bit, unfortunately.

Inside the enclosure, all of our hardware is from Danze, which is an affordable brand with lots of modern options. We have a wall shower, rainhead, and hand shower; each can be on or off, so there is a separate dial to select between the 8 possibilities (maybe not the best interface). The wall tile is Metro by Arizona Tile, sold locally by Statements.

You can see the lack of a floor threshold between the shower and the rest of the bathroom, as well as the storied linear drain above. It turned out great, but was it worth the extra cost? Hard to say. Finally, within the shower enclosure we have the Kohler Archer jetted tub, with its own filler. This is probably the only affordable and reasonably modern jetted tub available, at least that we could find.

We used the same tub, without jets and with an integral apron, in the kids bathroom. We would have preferred a tiled apron rather than plastic, but in yet another oddity of the plumbing world, it turns out that alcove tubs without aprons are remarkably expensive. Getting an alcove-style tub with an integral "tile bead" (basically a raised lip) is important, however, for waterproofing in a combined shower/tub, so we just went with the integral apron.

To the right of the tub is a Toto Acquia II dual-flush toilet, which we used in all bathrooms.

Finally, the two powder rooms. We used floating countertops of Quantra quartz, but otherwise tried to keep costs low, here. Remarkably, our cheap sinks and faucets turned out higher quality than we expected. The vessel sink is by Kraus, and the faucet by Vigo. That faucet cost less than a nice dinner, but the quality is surprisingly good!

Phew. Bathrooms involve a lot of choices, I almost forgot how many until I wrote this post. Overall, though, we're really happy with how it all turned out.


  1. Agreed, looks fantastic! And yes, the linear drain was worth the extra cost :-)

  2. Looks great, but I will never understand why people put their shower controls right underneath the showerhead. Such an easy modification to put it off to the side, where you don't get nailed with water. I thank myself every morning for doing that.

  3. I kind of knew you would say that, Mike :), I remember your post about it. We considered doing what you suggest, but we thought it looked much cleaner visually to have everything in one line. Also, in the master shower there is enough room to stand in the corner and turn on the water without getting wet. Each of those tiles are 2 feet wide, so it's actually pretty big.

  4. I like it! This evolution in lifestyle has raised the need for a most restful time in homes and one improvement that makes a realization out of this is modern bathroom remodeling.

  5. Simple but elegant! great!

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  6. You mentioned that you found your faucets on ebay. I'm in the process of budgeting with our builder's plumber for our new construction and it appears that I could find faucets for less than his bid. He does include installation and warranty. Did your plumber install for you, and did they care that you supplied the faucets?

    Love your blog -- we're hoping to break ground before it's totally soggy here.

  7. Thanks, Allison, Our plumber did install. We arranged at the beginning with our GC that we would buy our plumbing fixtures, so the plumber's bid was always for install-only (and piping, etc.). He also did our radiant heat, so the plumber was still one of our biggest subs in cost.

  8. Hello. I love how you tiled the tub apron... it doesn't seem that there is enough room for 2 x 4's, sheetrock AND tile to be flush with the edge/lip of the tub.. How did you build this to get it to be flush? Would you happen to have pictures? Thank you in advance.

  9. Re: Anonymous, to be honest I don't know. The tile contractor/superintendent figured it out.

  10. What flooring material did you use for the powder room? My husband and I have been searching (and debating) for months on what tile to use for our bathroom remodel. Who knew just picking out tile would be so difficult!

  11. Hi Holly, the powder room is poured concrete, not tile.


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