An ensuite bathroom can add a touch of luxury to any home. Whether you’re getting ready for a full day ahead or relaxing in the evening, an ensuite is a tranquil place just steps away from your own bed.
This relaxing space is deserving of beautiful design, but as many ensuites here in the UK are no bigger than 2.5m2, it can be tricky making a small room feel luxurious. However, with a few clever design tricks, you can easily transform even the smallest ensuite into a beautiful oasis. We’ve put together our favourite small ensuite ideas, including our layout ideas and design tips, so you can make the most of your space. We’ll cover:
- Small ensuite layout ideas
- Small ensuite design
Small ensuite layout ideas
Small ensuite layouts can take a little extra planning and consideration to get all your bathroom furniture in the right place. You want to make sure you’ve included everything you need, while still giving you enough space to move. Bathrooms come in different shapes and sizes: some are narrow, while others come with extra complications such as low ceilings. Our small ensuite layout ideas below include top tips and floor plans to help you create the right design for your space.
Small square ensuite ideas
Prioritisation is key with a small ensuite layout. You’ll want to make the most out of every inch, so deciding how much space you want each element to take up is crucial. For example, if your main focus is storage, you may consider utilising a full wall for your sink and cabinetry. If your design highlight is luxury, then consider a more compact toilet and vanity area to make extra room for a larger walk-in shower, wet room shower, or even a bath.
If your ensuite only has enough room for the fundamentals, corner showers can help save on valuable floor space. Curved and pentagonal showers can help retain even more space, so are often a great solution for tiny ensuites. Similarly, slimline shower trays are ideal for making the floor space feel bigger.
Small corner ensuite ideas
A corner bathroom may seem tricky to plan initially, but the process is much the same as planning a square bathroom. However, with a little bit less floor space, work with what you have by installing a curved or pentagonal corner shower, or by installing a run of cabinetry in the corner of the room.
Small narrow ensuite ideas
Small narrow bathrooms can be a little tricker to design, but you can still make them look great if you think carefully about the placement of your fixtures and fittings. A built-in shower helps square off the room, giving you an even space to install the rest of your bathroom furniture. Adding your shower at the very far end of the room can therefore get the best out of your floor plan.
With a narrow bathroom, your wall space is invaluable, so installing vertical storage systems such as wall shelves and tall cupboards also makes better use of the space you have.
Small loft conversion ensuite
Loft conversion ensuites come with their own set of unique challenges. Not only are they low on floor space, they can also be low on height thanks to sloping ceilings. Luckily, with a few clever tricks you can ensure that no space goes to waste.
To work with the sloped ceiling, it’s wise to install your shower at the apex, which is the highest point in the room. The space under the eaves is then used for areas that don’t require much headroom, such as a built-in storage area or your toilet.
Small ensuite design
With your layout planned, it’s time to start designing your dream ensuite. With the right choices in style, colour, finishes, and lighting, you will open up your bathroom and transform the space. Our expert tips below will help you decide on the perfect additions and finishing touches for your small ensuite design, including:
With space at a premium in a small ensuite, choosing compact bathroom furniture will help maximise the space you have. These space-saving options are usually designed to be a little smaller than standard options but without compromising on style, making them the perfect solution in small ensuites.
Slimline basins and vanity units also help to save on valuable space. These models are slightly smaller and are specially designed for cloakrooms, guest bathrooms, and small ensuites. Floating basins take up minimal space, but the pipework is usually visible. More stylish and convenient solutions are basins with integrated storage, which hide any pipes and give you space to keep your toiletries.
Similarly, wall-hung vanity units make cleaning the bathroom so much easier, as you can reach and mop underneath it without difficulty.
A shower is a more compact washroom solution compared to a bath, and with the right design is equally luxurious. Corner showers help save on space and there are a few clever tricks to make the room feel bigger, such as opting for sliding doors and a frameless screen. Installing your shower so the base sits flush with the bathroom floor also helps to open up the space. You could also consider a walk-in shower or wet room shower, which removes the need for a shower door altogether.
The way your bathroom door opens also has an impact on the ways you utilise your space. If your ensuite door currently opens into the bathroom, consider switching it for an outward opening option. Pocket doors also help save on valuable floor space. These doors will slide away neatly into a cavity in the wall, meaning you don’t need to factor in any space for the door to open into the bathroom.
Clutter makes any room feel smaller, so having enough storage for all your bathroom essentials is vital in a small ensuite. Floating vanities give the illusion of extra space, while floor-to-ceiling cupboards make use of any awkward areas behind doors or in corners. Opting for a mirrored cabinet, an integrated laundry bin, and adding extra shelving to under-utilised areas — such as above the toilet and door — can also help make the most of your space.
To keep everything within easy reach, consider storing bottles in deep drawers. Drawer organisers also ensure that everything has a home, no matter their shape or size, so you can beat the clutter.
And you can still have a lot of functionality and technology in a small bathroom. Tablet and mobile phone holders that are attached to mirrors, built-in shaver and toothbrush holders, towel rails attached to cabinetry – all of these help to make the most of available space.
The colour scheme of your bathroom is integral to the overall feeling of the space. Wooden bathroom furniture injects a touch of organic calm to your décor, while light bathroom furniture creates a sense of openness and tranquillity. Especially when designing a small ensuite, colour plays an incredibly important role. White bathroom furniture is clean and opens up the space, but don’t be afraid to shy away from darker hues. Black and other dark-hued furniture creates a luxurious, spa-like atmosphere to indulge in.
Matt bathroom furniture looks great in rooms with plenty of light, but if your small ensuite bathroom is lacking in this department, then shiny, glossy finishes work incredibly well. These will reflect any light you do get — whether that’s from natural sunlight or artificial light — all around the room, making the space feel both brighter and larger.
If your ensuite is small and dark, you may want to consider designing a high gloss bathroom. The cabinets and washbasins in our Leonardo range feature a layer of glass, which not only gives them a luxurious shine, but also makes them very low maintenance. Mix and match your storage with a large mirror or mirrored cabinet to reflect the light even further.
Also consider the finish of your countertops. Wooden surfaces look luxurious when coupled with dark, matt cabinets, while composite basins offer the look and durability of marble at a fraction of the cost.
When it comes to tiles, again, light colours help to open up the room and keep it feeling bright and airy. But what about tile size? Generally speaking, the fewer grout lines the better, as this can trick the eye into thinking the space is much larger than it is. So, opting for larger tiles Is often the best option when decorating a smaller bathroom. For this reason, wooden flooring can work especially well in a small bathroom, as the long planks help to extend the room.
To make the space feel even bigger, there are a few other clever tricks. One is to decorate your walls and floors in the same tile, as this will blur the boundary between the two. If you’d like to inject a little bit of colour, take the tile up two thirds of the wall and paint the top third in your chosen colour.
Alternatively, install your floor tiles on a diagonal, which expands both the width and the length of your small ensuite at the same time. This trick can also work with wall tiles, giving the illusion that the space is both taller and wider than it really is.
Lighting makes a big difference to how a space feels. A light room instantly feels bigger than a dark one, and hints of mood lighting create a more relaxing atmosphere overall. Unfortunately, many small ensuites have limited sunlight, which means artificial lighting is your best friend.
Layering your lighting adds depth to your space. Spotlights are an efficient source of ambient lighting that don’t take up too much space, while wall lights draw attention upwards to give the sense of a large space.
Add extra interest by installing ambient lighting around key features in your ensuite. For example, add a downlight above your bathroom mirror, or even install a mirror with built-in LED lighting. This is not only functional for the evenings, but your mirror will also reflect the light and open up the room. Colour-changing, motion-sensitive, and remote-controlled mirrored lighting options are also available, so your lighting solutions can be beautiful, functional and innovative – all at once.
If you’ve opted for wall mounted cabinets, illuminating underneath these with LED strips or spotlights will highlight the open space. Adding small lights to extra nooks, such as at the back of a recessed shelf, can add even more depth.
Adjustable options are also available, so you can change the colour, temperature, and brightness of your lighting too. With a different look for every mood and time of day, it’s like having a whole new bathroom at the touch of a button – or a wave of a hand.
For further luxury, consider extra lighting options such as basin lighting, ‘shadow gap’ drawer lights, and cupboard lighting. Not only do these models look incredibly stylish, but they also help to illuminate the important areas where you need to see clearly, which is even more important for small bathrooms where light is at a premium. You can even choose options that switch on automatically using a motion sensor, so they’re always on when you need them, but turn off and conserve energy when they’re not in use. Lighting can also be controlled with a remote or app, so when you’re away from home, your house doesn’t look truly empty.
When space is low, designing a luxurious bathroom can be tricky. But, with a few clever techniques, you can easily make your tiny ensuite feel ultra-stylish. By choosing the right layout and taking on board our small ensuite ideas, this mini space will soon be your favourite room in the house.
A luxurious bathroom starts with the right design and beautiful bathroom furniture. Here at InHouse Inspired Room Design, we specialise in well-designed German bathrooms including Pelipal bathrooms and the stylish Leonardo range. These bathrooms will add instant glamour to your small ensuite design.
From choosing the right layout and storage solutions to selecting a colour and finish, our expert design team can help you get the very best out of your small ensuite, so be sure to get in touch to book your design appointment today. You may also want to take a look at our bathroom inspiration, where you’ll find even more ensuite design ideas to incorporate into your home.