Bathroom design for children

Creating an interior space for children can be a difficult design project. But it doesn’t have to be.

Professionals and DIY designers must balance making space welcoming, safe and enjoyable for young children, yet sympathetic to adult design sensibility. Something to remember when decorating or designing space for children; is children don’t stay children forever. Employ flexible, clever design strategies and your bathroom will appeal when your children are little, and stand the test of time as they grow up.
Bathrooms are key learning areas for young children. You don’t want to transform your bathroom into Disneyland, yet, at the same time cold minimalism is not an inspiration environment to learn toothbrush skills. This week I’m going to provide some advice on how to give you and your children, the best of both worlds in the bathroom. Create a fun exciting space, capable of standing the test of time.

1. Safety first

This one, hopefully could have gone without saying. Number one when building, or renovating to suit young children, is safety. Bathrooms are dangerous surface emporiums, filled with sharp edges, glass and slippery floors. Often you will be with your child, but as your little one grows, they will want to feel more independent. There will come a time when going to the toilet and brushing teeth, will become solo tasks. Here are some ideas to assist in minimising risk and maximising safety.

  •  Framed shower screen: Frameless glass shower screens look amazing, but when designing for children, I recommend investing in framed screens. Exposed glass edges are difficult to see. Frameless glass, with young children is a disaster waiting to happen. Richters offer a range of framed shower enclosures, perfect for minimising bathroom risks.
  • Rounded vanity: When selecting your vanity and basin, choose products with smooth edges to avoid nasty bumps.
  • Big bath mat: Ensure stray splashes and spills are taken care of. Invest in a larger than average bath mat to minimise wet and slippery surfaces.
  • Non-slip flooring: Not all residential floor finishes are non-slip. When selecting bathroom flooring, no matter what material, aim for at least an R11 slip rating.

2. Colour

Children love bright splashes of colour. Cheerful tones will automatically make your bathroom inviting and interesting. The key to using colour, is keep it bright, but simple. Keep your palette to a maximum of two colours and one shade. Following this formula, your interior will be less likely to date over time. Finding balance between colour and shade will allow your interior to present joyful in a mature manner. Opt for timeless colour combinations you find appealing and your bathroom will stand the test of time. Some of my suggested colour combinations are:

  • Aqua and crisp white
  • Lime, stone and cool white
  • Orange, maroon and warm white
  • Lemon, stone and cream


 3. Be fun, but don’t be foolish

Accessories are the best way to cost effectively transform any room into a child friendly space. The advantage of quirky children’s bathroom accessories is they’re not permanent. You can update regularly with minimal financial impact. There are incredibly cute bathroom accessories available, bath towels plugs, toothbrushes and bars of soap – your options are endless. Increase bathroom enthusiasm, give your children the opportunity to select their own bathroom accessories.

4. Storage for you and them

Children love feeling part of the ‘big kids club’. The last thing you want is to create an interior where all a child hears is “no”. “No you can’t touch that”, “No you can’t open that” – it’s all very negative. Enable children to feel permission and responsibility in the bathroom by incorporating easy to reach storage options. Open wall storage provides children easy to access lower level nooks for bath toys and towels. Higher shelves can be used by adults to store bathroom products best kept out of reach. Allowing children access to their own towels, bath toys and hairbrushes will give them a sense of ownership and pride in the bathroom. They will also truly feel like on of the “big kids”.

5. Make it easy to use

All residential bathrooms, even new builds designed with children in mind, will be proportioned to suit adults. Allow easy, safe basin and toilet access via bathroom stools. Invest in products specifically designed for bathroom use. These stools have multiple step options, non-slip feet and they make an adorable addition to bathroom décor.

Avoid using chairs and generic stools, these are more likely to slip out from under a child, because they’re not designed for this application

Image Source: Bliss, Lesley Graham, thewhitecompany, apartmenttherapy, EliethFox on Pinterest, BostonGlobe

Five bathroom investments you will never regret

The savvy home owner should always aim to design their interior to stand the test of time.

The kitchen is the most expensive room in a renovation or build, the bathroom is second. When investing time and money into a bathroom build or renovation, you want to ensure you get maximum value for money. You need to aim to create an interior you will enjoy for years to come. Everyone has their own style. For some, a bold and daring design will appeal, others will prefer more classical styled space. Regardless of personal preference, there are some essential bathroom features with mass appeal. This week’s design advice is for everyone. If you’re renovating or building, believe me, you will never regret investing in the following five bathroom ‘must haves’.

1. The double shower rose

For all the couples out there, this is one bathroom feature you won’t truly appreciate until you have experienced it, but trust me, it is one small feature all couple bathrooms need. Two shower heads will not only elevate your bathroom to designer chic, with the trend popping up in designer magazines and blogs everywhere, it will more importantly make the shared shower experience a thousand times more enjoyable. Never feel the icy chill of being the one half stuck out of the water, as you both struggle to fit under the one water source. Run your shower at the temperature you like,  and most of all enjoy your own space while still experiencing some time with your lover.

Let’s face it, sharing a shower sounds romantic, but fighting for water and disagreeing on temperature really takes away from the experience. Double the shower heads, double the enjoyment.

2. Glass shower screens

If you’re trying to decide between a shower curtain and a glass screen, you will never regret investing in a quality shower screen. Easy to clean and never out of fashion, you will thank yourselves for avoiding the sticky shower curtain battle and opting for glass.

A glass shower screen is timeless. Select a frameless, semi-frameless or framed screens from Richters for an on-trend sleek aesthetic. Richters range of glass shower screens will suit any bathroom décor. Glass shower screens provide clean lines and beautiful simplicity to any bathroom. Richters have an extensive range of shower configurations, meaning you will easily find a screen suitable for your bathroom.

3. A tub for two

I don’t know many people who don’t enjoy a long relaxing bath. However a bath can quickly be less than enjoyable if it’s not big enough. A standard bathtub will struggle to fit one adult, let alone two on a romantic night, or a couple of children at bath time. Don’t deprive yourself, invest in a large bathtub and never look back.

For added luxe, eliminate ‘the bad end of the tub’ and make sure you select a bath with central drain design, and fit tapware to the centre of the bath.

4. Storage you will actually use

I believe storage is key to a successful interior, regardless of the room. You can’t expect your room to look as you dreamt, if it’s a cluttered mess. Bathroom storage can be difficult. Often you’re working within small space, and humidity and dampness will effect storage options. My advice for storage, remember everyone is different and you have to find solutuins suitable for you. You won’t regret taking the time to sit down and really think about what you need to store in your bathroom. Ask yourself how you like/do interact with storage systems. There’s no point designing something you won’t use.

If you’re time poor and don’t like packing away all the time, opt for open, easy storage solutions, such as baskets and shelves. If you have lots of smaller items that need organising (ladies I’m talking nail polish and make-up here), multiple shallow draws might be the solution for you. Smart, effective storage will make or break your bathroom design.

5. A feature mirror

We all groom ourselves in the bathroom, it’s not a case of vanity, it’s practicality. Bathroom light is often the best in the house, and after a shower or bath, it makes sense to preen. In addition to practicality,  a large mirror, half, or full body, will make your bathroom look larger, lighter and more inviting. For a range of aluminium mirror frames or frameless, visit Richters Show Room for different options.

An extra treat for the bath…

Bath bombs! Bring a little ‘bath champaign’ into your next tub experience, and make your own fizzy bath bombs. If you have children, these are are a guaranteed winner – fun to make, and even more fun to watch in the bath as they fizz, bubble and whiz. Enjoy…

YOU WILL NEED

  • Baking soda
  • Cornstarch
  • Citric acid
  • Spray bottles
  • Food colouring
  • Glass bowl
  • Essential oil
  • Baking moulds
STEP ONE

Sift 1 3/4 cup baking soda, 1 cup citric acid, and 2 cups cornstarch through a sieve to remove chunks. To make different tints, fill small spray bottles with water and add about 6 drops of food colouring to each.

STEP TWO

Pour 1 cup of powdered mixture into a glass bowl. Lightly spray, stirring after each spray, until powder is desired colour. Add water slowly, so mixture does not fizz. If mixing two tints, alternate colours as you spray. Check the consistency of powder with your fingers; when it can be tightly packed or shaped, stop spraying (this may take a little while).

STEP THREE

Select an essential oil. Add five drops if it’s one of the stronger scents (peppermint, lavender), six if it’s a weaker one (lemon, grapefruit). Mix well. Firmly pack mixture into small baking moulds. Allow mixture to set for two hours, then pop out carefully. Repeat with different tints for remaining powder.

(source: Martha Stewart)
Image Sources: Pinterest, atomcave, flickr,