How to maximise space in the steamiest, and probably smallest, room in your new place
Photography: Frances Marais | Styling: Charl Edwards
The essentials for a bathroom are already in there: somewhere to wash yourself, and a toilet. From there, you’ve pretty much got the freedom to style it as you choose – but limited space. Choose multipurpose pieces and keep in mind that all purchases should make this room feel clean and fresh.
Minimalism has its limits, and simply shouldn’t extend to towels. Soft and cushiony, they’re also the ideal fix for those who ‘want to get you something for the new place’ but just don’t know what yet.
You may have believed that a towel laid outside the shower door was sufficient for the purpose of keeping the bathroom floor splash-free, but it’s time to realise that there are specific things for specific purposes, and invest accordingly. For the record, the same goes for combination face and body wash – please don’t.
Your laundry bag is quite clearly necessary if you’re hauling your clothes off to the laundromat to have them cleaned, but don’t neglect a designated spot for your dirty clothes just because you’re doing your washing nearby. Choose a standup option if it’s staying in one spot or a drawstring bag for trips down to the laundry room, and easy storage on a sturdy door hook.
If you’re setting up a home where you might not be staying for long, it’s just not practical to buy a chest of drawers for every room – and in a small space like a bathroom, not logistically possible either. The smart alternative is something that stands up and leans against unused wall space, or can be hung up on the back of a door to hold everything from hand towels to between-swim bikinis.
Need to store beach towels? Roll them up and pop them in a basket! Want to keep magazines stored for bathtime reading (if you’re lucky enough to live in province that isn’t drought-stricken)? Pile them into a basket.
Gone are the days of potpourri and air freshener with incomprehensible names – the best way to keep your bathroom smelling its most fragrant is a combination of candles and plant life. Just make sure that your new fronds enjoy humid environments! Want to keep your cosmetics contained but don’t want to invest in bulky storage that you can’t take with you? You guessed it – baskets.
A tumbler or two in your bathroom serves the all-important purpose of keeping oral hygiene equipment together (cap firmly on the toothpaste tube, of course) and also works towards keeping you to one cup of water per brush (at least they should). Trays, decanters and other items traditionally found in the kitchen can all lend usefulness to the bathroom, too.