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How to make a small bathroom seem bigger

When renovating a bathroom, here on the Sunshine Coast, sometimes our clients quickly discover that their budget or property limitations are not allowing them to create their best space. However, there are several smart design tips and tricks to keep in mind that can help you achieve your design dreams. Let’s break down how you can make a small bathroom feel bigger:


With space at a premium in a cramped bathroom, every inch of space needs to be used effectively. A well planned and hard working design will prove to be a winning strategy. The final bathroom design will have the sink near the door, then the toilet, and at the farthest point from the entrance, the tub and/or shower. Tip: For aesthetic reasons, the toilet should not be the first thing you see when you enter the bathroom! Make sure to leave at least 50 cm between the edge of the seat and any sink cabinet or wall so that there is enough room for even the tallest users’ knees. Also, when planning your bathroom layout, consider high ceilings in a small space, when possible. Opt for 2.7m high ceilings instead of standard 2.4m high ceilings. High ceilings will enhance the feeling of existing space.

Accessories and Accessories

There are a multitude of space-saving fixtures and fittings available on the market today. For example, wall mounted faucets can create even more space. Opt for a clean, rectangular sink instead of a round vanity; they usually take up more space. A compact and space-saving toilet cistern attached to the wall can provide more space than a standard toilet. However, this last option requires some thought, as plumbing problems with a built-in or wall-mounted cistern usually require opening up the wall cavity.

Doors and windows

A simple solution for a small bathroom is to use a cavity slider instead of a standard door in your bathroom renovation. Windows will bring in natural light which will also open up the room. If you can’t install/include windows, consider a skylight. The more light you can bring in, the more spacious and open your small bathroom will seem.

smart tiling

A good tile tip can help your small bathroom feel bigger. Floor to ceiling tiles will make the space feel larger, as will using large tiles. The larger the tile, the larger the room will appear due to the scale and proportion of large tiles that trick the eye into thinking the space is larger. If you can’t run floor-to-ceiling tiles, match the wall paint color to your tiles to keep it tonal.


In terms of color, lighter colors make small spaces appear larger, so prefer a lighter color palette to a darker one. Also, use one color for the entire room so there is less visual distraction that can visually divide the small room. Bonus points if the color and the entire room is white! Our favorite white is Dulux Lexicon Quarter.

design tips

Using a few key styling tips can improve your space-saving renovation techniques. A mirror is a great way to enhance a small space as it reflects natural light and opens up the room. In front of a window is a good spot as it will double the amount of light. As with mosaics, again play with a sense of scale and go big with the size of your mirror. A frameless shower enclosure will have fewer lines and thus visually open up the room. A tiled wall niche in the shower artfully creates additional storage while looking contemporary.

Consider all options

Although moving any plumbing in a bathroom is generally avoided, as it adds significant cost to the renovation, sometimes it’s worth freeing up space in a small bathroom if it adds valuable floor space. Options may include relocating the toilet to its own separate room elsewhere in the house or, if the washer and/or dryer are in the bathroom, possibly moving them to a nearby closet.

A combination shower/tub layout is another smart solution that can provide a home with both a bathtub and a shower (a strong selling point for buyers with children) while optimizing valuable floor space.

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