Small is bold

When it came to a change in the small ensuite shower room, I decided it had to be a dramatic one.

I was fed up with tiling and wallpaper wasn’t going to be such a great idea as condensation from the shower could be a problem. You can’t always rely on your guests to open a window or remember to use the extractor fan!
bathroom.beforeShower room – before

 So, I struck upon the idea of part panelling the walls and incorporating cupboard space to match. The natural light is limited on this side of the house and no matter how much off white I used, I wasn’t going to make it any bigger and it may start to look clinical. So, colour swatch in hand I decided to celebrate this small space and make it bold, inviting and seductive with a dark grey in Farrow & Ball’s Down Pipe and colour matched so I could use a gloss paint. Yes, a gloss paint! A throwback from our parents’ generation I hear you cry. Well, if you want a high shine, nothing else really cuts the mustard. I’ve been seduced by flat matt and chalky finishes and to be honest , I’m over it!   bathroom.afterShower room – after

Dark colours look fantastic in gloss. They appear velvety and rich in depth of colour and reflect the light.

I contrasted the shine with a flatter finish on the walls and ceilings, keeping the colour (Farrow & Ball Skylight) the same. The black marble top is in a flame textured finish and needed to have a thickness and depth to it to work with the scale of the panelled walls and the sanitaryware in brilliant white, with simple clean lines.

To play off the dark grey, I decided to introduce a splash of red on the windowsill. It’s a great colour to use as an accent in a room to lift and draw the eye in. Too much and it can become restless within a room.



Farrow & Ball Drain Pipe, mixed with gloss by Johnsons

Red – Strawberry Fields by Albany Paints


As with all finishing touches, you can have fun finding the accessories to complete the scene. I wanted mirrors on the walls to reflect yet more light and small ‘fish eyes’ do this perfectly and give that ‘Alice in Wonderland’ feel, that makes it feel all isn’t as it seems! Placed opposite a window or open doorway, they give the impression of endless space and distance.

Next time you are challenged with a small space, remember be bold!


Sanitaryware – Littlejohn Bathrooms. Petersfield, Hants

Mirrors and accessories – Simmons Interiors Grayshott

Cupboard door handle – Anthropologie

Tip – for a smooth paint finish when using MDF always use moisture resistant, especially in bathrooms

  • Melanie

    Inspired! About to re-do our bathroom, really fancied going for a bold, deep, rich colour but was unsure – now I’m certain!ReplyCancel

  • Karen Prichard

    Wow! What a contrast!ReplyCancel

  • Natalie Gotts

    Wow! Wow! Wow! Can’t wait to see it in the flesh. Or should that be marble?ReplyCancel

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