Counter the chill of white, chrome and hard surfaces with these bright ideas
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With their white suites, sparkling taps, wipe-clean surfaces and cool tiles, it’s no wonder bathrooms can end up feeling like the coldest part of a home. The very materials and qualities that make them functional and hygienic are the ones that can make them feel more wash and go than linger in comfort. For a warmer welcome to your ablutions, check out these ideas.
Exposed brick can be warm in colour, and its uneven surface is a tactile contrast to smooth sanitary- and brassware. In this bathroom, it’s used in the areas that don’t need protection from splashing, with tiles confined to the shower and basin areas.
Repeat the look with brick slips – thin slivers of brick you can use as wall cladding and which come in a range of tones.
The tiles in this bathroom extend high up the wall, so a geometric wallpaper was added above them and on the ceiling. With a pattern dominated by shades on the warm side of the colour wheel, the wallpaper counters the cool white of the room beautifully.
This is a great strategy if you want to makeover a bathroom on a budget, as all the major elements can remain unchanged. Wallpapering a ceiling is more tricky than working on a wall, though, so DIY novices might want to call in a pro.
10 ways to go bold with wallpaper
Transform with tiles
Metro-style white tiles have been a bathroom hit for a while now and don’t look set to fade from popularity. One of their many benefits is that they’ll happily combine with a second tile, which can soften a bathroom’s lines and add a shot of colour. Here, encaustic-style tiles are used for the floor and shower wall, creating a vibrant finish.
Try a curvaceous motif like this one to complement a roll-top bath for a happy pairing.
Count on wood
In this bathroom, it’s the look of wood on the floor that makes the room cosier. Rather than real timber, these are, in fact, wood-effect tiles – water-resistant but with an authentic look.
Note the simple wooden stool that’s also a pleasing and rustic contrast to the sleek surfaces of the suite.
10 beautiful bathrooms that use wood
Of course, the real thing’s a possible route to take. Here, wood panelling for bath and basin temper white tiles and suite. Even simpler to add is a wood-framed mirror like this design.
Think sandy shades
The travertine tiles of this bathroom evoke the varied and gentle colours of a beach. Using them on walls, floor and bath surround ensures that white becomes a clean highlight instead of a chilly presence.
Get the same look with limestone, which comes in a variety of tones including beige.
Choose freestanding storage
Swapping built-in bathroom storage for a stand-alone wooden piece can make the room feel more welcoming. Here, it’s naturally at home in a room that retains its fireplace, but it’s an equally viable tactic for a room without architectural features.
Candles might be an old trick for changing the mood in a bathroom, but it’s nonetheless valid for that. Just make sure they’re fully extinguished when you leave the room.
Golden rules for choosing a freestanding bath
Get out your paintbrush
In this bathroom, a hot-pink radiator and matching accessories banish any hint of cold. It’s a shade that works as an accent, so it’s accompanied by two warm shades of grey.
Paint makes a difference to this tiny bathroom as well, with soft colour on the wall, ceiling and bath panel balancing the areas of white in a rustic scheme.
Bathe in light
In this bathroom, a layered lighting scheme ensures the room has a sanctuary feel with downlighters in the ceiling, wall lights by the mirrors and accent lighting in the wall nooks.
Look for the colour temperature if you’re shopping for LED lights. A warm white is around 3,000K and light becomes cooler the higher the number.
Taps and other brassware in stainless steel or chrome could never be said to look warm. In this bathroom, on-trend copper is used instead for bath, shower and basin, providing the opposite note, and the hexagonal floor tiles pick up the shade.
Copper’s not the only option if you want to ring the changes with brassware. Pinkish rose gold is an on-trend choice, too.
The impulse in a compact bathroom is to go for white to visually expand its boundaries. This compact shower room shows how dark walls and floor can create a cocooning feel instead. If you’re repeating the scheme, keep the ceiling light so the room feels lofty, and hang a large mirror.
What makes your bathroom feel warm? Tell us or show us in the Comments section.