Home Build: Primary Bathroom Layout

by | Feb 5, 2023 | Stephens Homes, Stephens Living

The primary bathroom is the one space most of us genuinely look forward to designing. It’s our daily retreat, our spa-inspired escape, and a room we spend a lot of time in. We want our bathroom to be comfortable and accessible. Here are some things to consider when designing your primary bathroom layout.

The Floorplan and Build

When designing your primary bathroom layout, consider the following things:

How many people will be using the bathroom regularly? If it’s just you and your spouse, you may need two sinks and extra storage space for toiletries and accessories. Also, consider whether your bathroom is where you want to store extra towels and linen, as this will need extra cabinet space.

Do you want your bathroom to be connected to your closet? Some people prefer this, as it allows someone to shower and get ready for the day without needing to walk back through the bedroom to get to the closet. Also, if you have a partner who gets up for work much earlier, I’d recommend this layout.

The Elements

You may want or need to add several elements to a primary bathroom layout. Let’s discuss them.

The Shower

There are various options for shower style. One of the most popular recent design trends is a curbless shower (also called a walk-in shower). There’s a seamless transition between your bathroom and shower floor. This requires a sloping floor in your shower with either a center drain or a linear drain near the entrance or the shower wall. This is a good option for a smaller bathroom as it creates an aesthetically spacious look. The only downside to this is that a curbless shower typically doesn’t have a closing shower door so it can be a bit chilly. One solution for this is heated floors.

Secondly, there’s a standard shower/tub combo. Most homes have this option, as it’s been the most popular over the years. This design choice does make a bathroom look smaller, and the tubs are generally smaller. If you’re a soaker tub lover, this design choice is NOT for you.

A corner shower is much like a curbless shower, although with a curb. Appropriately named, it’s in the corner of the bathroom and will typically have glass walls and doors. With this design, there’s no need for a sloping floor, as a regular drain works fine because the curb holds the water in. This provides the same modern-type aesthetic without needing to slope the floor.

Curbless Shower- Via Schluter
Walk-In Shower, Via Better Homes & Gardens
Shower/ Tub Combo, Via Stephens Homes

The Tub

There are plenty of options for a bathtub, including a stand-alone tub, a built-in tub, or no tub at all! But, of course, if you don’t use a tub regularly, there’s no sense in spending money on one. A stand-alone tub is the easiest way to instantly elevate your bathroom as it’s a visually impactful element.

The Lighting

Each room in your home should have some overhead lighting. To fully understand the different types of lighting available to you, check out the “Types of Indoor Lighting” blog. In a bathroom, I would include accent lighting. This could be a pendant light about a stand-alone tub or sconces above or on either side of your mirror. Your bathroom should emanate a spa retreat, and accent lights that you can dim are a must.

The finishes on your lighting should match the finishes in your closet and bedroom for a cohesive appearance. I’d also recommend matching them to your cabinet hardware finishes. Again, we want aesthetic cohesion throughout the entire space. Notice in the photo below the finish on the lighting matches the finish on the hardware.

The Design of Your Primary Bathroom Layout

As with any other room in your home, your bathroom should consist of the same design elements as the rest of your home. Neutral elements work the best as they’re timeless and elegant and maintain the resell value of your home. Keeping neutral elements in your design plans also allows you to transition between decor styles easily. It’s much easier to change out decorative accents and furniture pieces than it is wall colors, cabinet finishes, and bathroom hardware.


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