The Best Bathroom Design Tips are Most Easily Overlooked

all white bathroom with banjo countertopOn the surface, it’s a beautiful white bathroom that blurs the line between traditional and transitional. But look closer, and you’ll see plenty of smart design details that make the most efficient use of space in this bathroom. Let’s take a tour of some of the more easily overlooked design choices curated by Normandy Designer Ashley Noethe that make this primary bathroom a standout:


A banjo countertop above the toilet answers the question “can we find any more counter space in the bathroom?”. This shallow shelf is a continuation of the vanity countertop and is a favorite in both small and moderate size bathrooms alike.

Multi-level shower niche provides plenty of variable height storage options for shampoo, soaps, and shower necessities. As an added bonus, it’s the perfect excuse to add texture by way of a fabulous accent tile.

Corner cabinets where vanities meet take advantage of what is often neglected space. Perfect for shared items, these cabinets are ideal for rechargeable toothbrushes, a hair dryer, or any bulky item that you’ll want to keep at the ready.

recessed niche next to makeup table in all white bathroomShelves in the recessed niche next to the makeup table take advantage of vertical storage space, providing room for daily essentials and decorative touches.


Matching tile baseboard around the room tricks the eye to make the space seem slightly bigger. This tile is available in profiles similar to a wood baseboard, but its durable nature is especially well-suited to rooms prone to splashing, making them easier to keep clean.

Volume controls on your shower are often located beneath the fixture, but there’s no reason that’s where they need to land. Relocate the control to just inside the shower door and you can turn on the water to let it warm up before you get wet.

Low-maintenance finishes are popular selections for bathrooms because we all want a more convenient way to keep the tiled areas clean. Quartz countertops and porcelain tile that look like natural stone give you the beauty and warmth of organic products without any of the worry.

A shaving ledge that doubles as a mini-bench seat in the shower is a feature that you won’t believe you lived without. It provides a stable foothold for shaving, and if the need ever arises, it can serve as a bench that will pair with the hand shower.


All white bathroom with framed arched mirrors, freestanding tub, and skylightLarge mirrors around the perimeter of the room work with the skylight above to bounce the natural light, making it cheerful and bright during the day without having to turn on the lights. They offer the added bonus of making the room feel larger, and their beautiful arched top adds a sweet charm to the room’s aesthetic.

A freestanding tub was the right solution in this bathroom, as they sought to expand the shower’s footprint, but wanted to keep the option of a bath. Freestanding bathtubs take up less space than a traditional bathtub with deck surround, so they easily yield additional space to the more frequently used shower.

Wall sconces mounted directly to the mirror at eye level provide flattering lighting while getting ready. In tandem with the mirrors, the sconces also enhance the brightness in the room.

Design is always in the details, but it’s not always the showy choices that make you fall in love with a space. Talk to Ashley about finding the ways to make your new bathroom a study in details. You can find inspiration in our photo galleries, or delivered to your social media feeds via Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.


all white shower with accent tile and shaving ledge that doubles as mini bench  freestanding tub and matching tile baseboard

all white bathroom with framed arched mirrors and skylight  temp control just inside shower wall

Door or Curtain? Which to Choose for Your Hall Bathroom

semi-frameless shower door with black handleYou’ve selected gorgeous shower tile for your bathroom remodel and now you need to decide whether to show it off by installing a glass shower door or allow it to be a hidden surprise behind a shower curtain. Normandy Designer Becca Ruggiero offers the pros and cons for each option.

“Overall, a shower door is better than a shower curtain at retaining heat and keeping you warmer, because it creates more of a seal,” says Becca. “Shower doors also offer a contemporary feel, and the aesthetic of glass doors present a cleaner look to the bathroom, while also showing off the tile you selected.”

If you chose a standard size bathtub, a stock shower door can be ordered off the shelf. “With nonstandard tub sizes or dimensions, you’ll likely need to order a custom shower door,” says Becca. There are a variety of shower door styles and types, such as sliders, which will have a narrower opening or frameless shower doors, where one piece is stationary and the door swings out. “Be mindful of clearances with the door swings,” Becca cautions. “You’ll want to make sure there is clearance for the toilet or a towel bar that may be in the vicinity.”

Another factor to keep in mind when choosing your shower door is the height of the people who will be using the shower. “Shower doors come in different heights and not many people take this into consideration,” Becca says. “If you’re taller than average, you’ll want a shower door closer to the 7’ version. This way the top of your head and the shower head will remain below the top edge of the shower wall, keeping you warmer, and preventing overspray.”

Second floor addition full bathroomThere are a few drawbacks with shower doors, however. “Since shower doors are mounted to a track usually on the lip of the bathtub, this means more elbow grease is needed to keep it clean,” Becca says. “The shower door track can also get in the way if you’re bending over to bathe children or pets, making a shower curtain the better option.”

Some additional benefits to selecting a shower curtain for your shower/tub combo are that it’s easy to change décor by simply changing out the curtain and you can curate a look that best fits your bathroom’s aesthetic with a fun or unique shower curtain rod and rings. Cost wise, installing a shower curtain will be significantly more affordable than a shower door.

If you’re still in the design idea phase of your bathroom remodel project, reach out to Becca. She can help you design a beautiful retreat within your home, no matter your choice of shower door or curtain. You can find some of our most recent bathroom, kitchen, and home remodeling projects under our Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest accounts.


bi-fold glass shower door with upper track  black bathroom with green shower tile and shower doors    sliding shower door with black frame

hall bathroom with shower tub combo and shower curtain   full bathroom with shower curtain and floating vanity   full bathroom with dark vanity, hexagon floor tiles and shower-tub combo

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