Delano Designs

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Bathroom Reno Part 2: “Possibilities”

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Bathroom Reno Part 2: “Possibilities”

As I said in my previous post regarding our bathroom remodel, there is not such thing as a simple home repair when you are a designer.


So while reality said we needed to keep the current footprint to keep our costs down, the designer in me just had to try a few other possibilities. In the end, I came up with 3 different configurations of the space.  The original bathroom is pictured below.

PicMonkey Collage(2)

Possibility #1 The first configuration involved tearing out the existing tub/shower combo and adding a free standing tub. I have been dreaming about a deep, free standing soaking tub for years and I really wanted to see if there was a way to add one to this small space. After playing around a little, I did find a way.

By removing the tub/shower combo and moving the vanity into its space, I was able to add the tub in the area formerly occupied by the vanity. I chose this layout, rather than leaving the tub in the immediate entry area, to prevent it from being too crowded as you walked into the bathroom. Because this is this the main bathroom for two of the bedrooms in the house, I also wanted to include a shower.   Since there is no room for a separate shower within the existing footprint of the bathroom, a shower was added to the tub, by suspending a shower curtain and shower head from the ceiling.  The wallpaper was replaced with a paint color I had used for a project I had worked on with a client, and had fallen in love with – this bathroom project seemed like the perfect place for it!  Classic elements that fit well with the feel of the tub, such as a marble counter, white subway tile and black and white floor were added to finish off the room.

Below, you can see a floor plan blueprint, and two 3D images of this interpretation of the space.

Possibility #2 For the second configuration I went in the opposite direction and removed the tub completely. A shower replaced the tub/shower combo, and it was kept in the same location.  However, to make the space feel more open, the wall between the vanity and shower was removed and the plumbing was shifted to the other end. This allowed for a glass wall on 2 sides of the shower. The same finishing touches as in possibility #1 – marble vanity top, black and white tile flooring, white subway tile, and the paint color on the walls – were used again in the second design.

Below, you can see a floor plan blueprint, and two 3D images of this interpretation of the space.

Possibility #3 Finally, the last configuration kept the same footprint as the original. However, the soffit was removed from above the shower/tub combo to open up the space. And as in the other two possibilities, flat panel cabinet doors were replaced by shaker style doors and all the materials (paint, tile, etc) were changed. Although it was still a floor to ceiling renovation, this configuration was the least expensive option as it did not require moving any fixtures.

Below, you can see a floor plan blueprint, and two 3D images of this interpretation of the space.

So after weighing all of our options, what did we decide on?

We chose the third configuration!  While cost was a major consideration, we also took into account who the bathroom served. This bathroom is the main bathroom shared by two bedrooms upstairs. The master bedroom has an en suite with a shower only, and the bathroom shared by the two downstairs bedrooms has a shower only as well. The second configuration, which involved removing the tub, would mean there was no bathtub in this house. As a parent/grandparent with young grandchildren who visit, a bathtub is a necessity. In addition, I love a good soak with a book now and then and was not ready to just give this up. Therefore, we crossed possibility #2 off our list early on. These same considerations actually led us to conclude the free standing tub was not practical. It is much harder to bathe children in a freestanding tub. And as my husband and I plan to age in place in this home, a free standing tub could be difficult to navigate in our later years. In addition, even though we needed to keep a tub, showers are more frequently taken in this bathroom and the freestanding tub does not provide the best shower option.

As you can see, there is a lot more to take into consideration when going through a remodel than just how a design looks.  A good design is only as good as it is functional.  Our spaces need to be both beautiful AND practical (and in our case, sustainable!) in order to truly make our lives better.  Luckily, it’s almost always possible to be both!

In my next post, I will share the materials we decided upon for our bathroom remodel. They are quite different then the ones pictured here, which were chosen initially to complement the free standing tub idea. I kept them consistent across the three floor plans so the materials did not influence our views of the floor plan.


Since completing our remodel I have come across an option I did not find available at the time we were remodeling. Had I known it was possible, this is the design option we would have chosen.  While keeping the current floor plan, we would have created a wall – solid at the bottom and glass at the top – that would divide the shower/tub from the vanity. The tub spout would be mounted on the bottom portion of the solid wall, while the shower and the piping for the shower would be mounted on the upper glass portion of the wall. This would have let much more light into the shower area and really opened up the space. (Note: the picture of the shower does not accurately represent the shower hardware needed, but it was the best my program could do. The pipe from the handle to the showerhead would actually extend down to the solid wall where it would access the water).


Do you have a project – big or small – that you need to tackle?  Contact us today, we can help you get started!



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