brass tapware and white tub _ earthy coastal bathroom

Exploring an earthy coastal bathroom with an arched wall niche

If this title doesn’t grab your attention, we’re not sure what will! Rest assured, it isn’t click bait… this bathroom by Alex Hutchinson of @our_cactus_abode is a Mediterranean coastal delight! And of course we expected no less after her recent coastal ensuite makeover. Featuring a tonal colour palette and tactile materials, come with us as we explore all the stunning details in this earthy coastal bathroom tour with Alex.

Related article: Everything you need to know about lighting your bathroom
Related article: A relaxed, beachy bathroom with powder blue feature wall

timber vanity with white basin and arch mirror _ earthy coastal bathroom
brass tapware and white tub _ earthy coastal bathroom

Being unable to travel gave Alex and husband Ryan the perfect opportunity to work on the master bathroom.

“This is the first house we have ever renovated!

“We completed our guest house early last year. Our focus then turned to our main house. We couldn’t travel with Covid so it was the perfect time to get stuck in to it.

“We changed the layout of the bathroom completely. Everything is new! I focused on earthy textures and tile pattern, with a touch of colour.”

coastal bathroom with tub and timber vanity

Inspired by different styles, the soft earthy tones create a dreamy atmosphere perfect for relaxing after a long day.

“Being a fashion designer I have always loved being creative so it really came in handy when choosing all the elements.

“When I first started designing this bathroom, I had no idea. I knew I wanted natural textures like timber, but it took some time to find all the elements. I definitely wouldn’t say this bathroom has a specific style, it’s such a blend.

“This bathroom is a blend of my favourite elements from a few saved pictures I found on Pinterest and Instagram. I really liked the idea of a feature wall colour. Now I absolutely love our peach Venetian render wall behind the bath.”

arched wall niche _ earthy coastal bathroom
brass showerhead in coastal bathroom

With every renovation project, it’s good to know what you want out of a space before you start!

“The bathroom had to feel as big as possible. With our 4-year-old, the bath was a must! I also had my heart set on an arched niche above the bath.

“We definitely splurged on the Venetian render from Modtexture and the bath and basin from Highgrove bathrooms. We wanted a touch of luxury and are super happy we didn’t skimp on these.

“Definitely plan early. Don’t pick things last minute. We were hoping to have a sky light above the bath, but it just wouldn’t fit with our solar panels on our roof.”

Build — Sam from Bridgland Builders

Thank you Alex for showing us around your master bathroom makeover. To see more from Alex and her renovation, you can follow her Instagram, or check out her website for luxe leather goods. Do you like this earthy coastal bathroom renovation? Let us know your favourite feature in the comment section below!

Find more bathroom tours here

white basin and arched mirror
timber vanity with arched wall mirror

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Nine to Know | Architectural Bathroom Lighting | Design Products

When est spoke with Viabizzuno founder and creative director Mario Nanni, he said light is a fundamental part of architecture, so it’s essential to design the right light. “My lighting solutions are not the result of market research nor a fleeting trend; my ambition is to resolve specific design situations and meet each necessity.” In this Nine to Know, we explore architectural lighting’s role in the bathroom through nine examples that follow Mario Nanni’s philosophy.

To ensure compliance with Australian standards and adherence to IP ratings and zoning requirements in the bathroom, est recommends consulting a design professional and an authorised electrician.

This feature originally appeared in est magazine issue #42

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Design Covet | Statement Bathroom Tapware | Style

House Fin by CJH Studio

Reimagined by CJH Studio, House Fin pays homage to its traditional Edwardian lineage while opening up to its contemporary future. Designed for a growing family, the new open-plan layout features a pared-back aesthetic with a tempered palette – allowing the home to grow with the household.

CJH Studio envisioned quiet, clean spaces for the bathrooms. The designer selected creamy whites and muted pale cabinetry, while grey marble benchtops meet the durability demands of a busy family. A double vanity dressed with matte black Phoenix wall mixer sets allows dual functionality during the family’s busy morning rush.

The powder room sets a more playful tone for guests, with an over-counter stone basin resting proudly on a marble benchtop. A single curved wall sconce accentuates the elegant matte black accents.

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Curve Appeal | Bathroom Design with CJH Studio

Smooth curves are the red thread through the bathroom and laundry space, as seen in the Laminex Milkwood and Laminex French Cream tall cabinetry forms, edging and shelving, underscored by the raw Travertine tiles. The curvaceous motif offers insight into construction techniques possible with laminate – post-forming and cold-forming – and highlights the woodgrain’s consistent direction. “The curves allow a sense of shadowplay, defining the woodgrain texture and creating strong, seamless junctions with the product,” Cassie adds.

The Outcome

For Cassie, the bathroom space is a case study in challenging our perception of laminate in achieving a high-end, hyper-detailed outcome. “It’s about considering it in a new way, pushing and understanding the material,” Cassie reflects, “you need to think outside the square with what’s possible with the products.”

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A Dreamy Danish Summer Cottage With an Outdoor Bathroom

A Dreamy Danish Summer Cottage With an Outdoor Bathroom

Brace yourselves friends, summer has just arrived on My Scandinavian Home! Today, I'm transporting you to Ann-Britt's charming summer oasis in Southern Jutland, Denmark.  Known simply as '#haveno105 - or allotment cottage number 105, the classic black and white cabin is the perfect antidote to life in the city. Owner of lifestyle boutique Gemakker, Ann-Britt has kept the interior deliberately simple and pared back with a focus on easy living and a seamlessness between indoors and outdoors. Think bamboo furniture, nautical stripes, and touches of wicker, rattan and jute - all of which ensure a relaxed, coastal vibe. Keep a look out for the outdoor bathroom and 'lean-to' which ensure nature is never far away. The talented guys at Another Studio were there to capture these lovely images. Sun hats at the ready!

Aaaaah, lovely! Relaxed Danish summer style in all its glory! 

Could you imagine hanging out here all summer long? I certainly could! 

Let's keep the Scandinavian summer alive today. Pour yourself a coffee, put your feet up and check out these cottages: 

Roll on summer, we're ready for you! 


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my scandinavian home: Tiny Cabin Bathroom Sneak Peek

my scandinavian home: Tiny Cabin Bathroom Sneak Peek

*GSI Ceramica and Cristina Rubinetterie are kindly partnering in our project. 

I can't tell you how much progress we've made in the bathroom at the cabin* since I shared the original plans. After a copious amount of work (who knew a 3.6 m2 (38f2) bathroom could take up so much time?), it's finally coming together! In fact, it's almost finished, woohoooo! Here are some snapshots of the progress which I snapped with my phone. Oh, and I'd love to hear your thoughts on some of the final details too. 

It's been fun to see the space come together - one layer at a time, starting from the bare bones. 

Wall tiles

For the shower and lower section of the wall we chose matt white square tiles with a simple white grouting (I felt this would give a cleaner, less fussy look in such a small space). 

Wall mounted loo and taps

I love a wall hung loo (specifically the WC Kube X from GSI Ceramica) they look so sleek and also help to contribute to an airier feel in a small space. I was also keen to install wall mounted taps (I selected the Basin Mixer CRITV257 from series Tricolore Verde by CRISTINA Rubinetterie)However, in order to achieve this we needed to build out a section of the wall by 15 cm (wide enough to fit a Gerberit cistern). I was a little nervous as it's already a narrow bathroom - but actually, I'm thrilled with the result. The shelf has turned out to be a real bonus!  

Bathroom paint colour

Wall mounted sink and cabinet

Here's a close up of the sleek, timeless Kube X washbasin (60 x 47) in matt white. I'm so happy with it as well as the Prisma Unit cabinet (also from GSI Ceramica) - it's perfect for storage, and since the entire unit is mounted, it gives the illusion of space. 

Taps and shower

Shower door

We still need to add a glass wall (80 cm wide) between the shower and sink. However, I haven't decided if we also need a shower door (70 cm wide) across the front, what do you think? 

Floor tiles and details

And finally - the stone floor. I sourced the Tumbled Turtle tiles from Swedish brand Stiltje (I love the owner Pamela; she has incredible taste!). We really splurged on these and once the floor had been laid, there were a few tiles leftover which we used for the ledge above the sink and a corner shelf in the shower.  

I hope you like what we've done so far! I'm so excited the bathroom is nearly finished. We're on the home straight! 


The next step is to add:

1. A shower wall and potentially a shower door 

2. A privacy film inside the garden glass door (or should we go for a blind?) 

3. A loo roll holder - any thoughts on where this should go? 

4. Hooks for towels, robes, swimwear etc. 

5. All our toiletries! 

I'd love to hear your two pennies worth! 

Hopefully it will all be finished in the next few weeks - I'm so looking forward to sharing the final reveal once everything is in place!


All photos taken with my iPhone. 

*For those of you who are new to My Scandinavian Home - Per and I are building a 30 m2 (323 f2) cabin in the garden of my Mother-in-law's summer cottage on Sweden's West coast. You can see the plans here

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Nine to Know | Bathroom Essentials

Nine to Know | Bathroom Essentials

Elevate the pleasure of daily rituals with our nine favourite bathroom essentials.

The bathroom is typically designed as a place of escape – to exude tranquillity and quietness. We’ve curated nine bathroom essentials for creating a private sanctuary to pamper yourself every day of the week.

This feature originally appeared in est magazine issue #42

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Made in New Zealand from 100 per cent woven cotton, the Bemboka Cotton bathrobe channels a day spa atmosphere for the home.

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The F.A.33 rectangular mirror is one of Gio Ponti’s signature designs for Gubi. Initially designed for his own home on Via Randaccio in Milan, the mirror features an atypical crown-like detailing on the top – a feature in several of Gio Ponti’s works.

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The minimalist HAY Marble tray is perfect for displaying skin care, soaps and fragrances.

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The Missoni Home Rex 21 bath mat has the brand’s iconic textured chevron pattern in a soft velour material that’s luxurious underfoot.

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The ØDENSE Star Anise coffee scrub by WØRKS is for restoration, made with antioxidants, vitamins and vegan ingredients.

The post Nine to Know | Bathroom Essentials appeared first on Est Living | Interiors, Architecture, Designers & Products.

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Devils ivy in bathroom

Indoor plants that thrive in the bathroom

We adore using plants in the home — they look ah-MAZING and offer a loads of health benefits — but finding plants that will not only tolerate but like living in your bathroom can be tricky. Fear not! We’ve come up with a list of 10 plants that thrive in the bathroom.

Related article: Top 20 hard to kill indoor plants
Related article: Top 7 stylish bathroom accessories

1. Peace lily

A gorgeous, easy to care for plant, the Peace lily has glossy green leaves and produces a stunning tall-stemmed white flower. This beauty originates from the steamy tropics so will feel right at home in your bathroom. An added bonus is that it’s also great at helping to purify the air.

We don’t like to play favourites but the Peace lily is one of our personal plant heroes, because it actually shows you when it needs water by drooping its leaves. Check out more plant care tips here.

2. Devil’s ivy (aka Pothos)

Devil’s ivy will grow pretty much anywhere. And trust us when we say if we can keep one alive then anyone can! This trailing plant will grow best up high near light so a hanging planter or window sill is an ideal home for your Devil’s ivy.

And once you’ve got it thriving, you can try your hand at propagating with our easy step-by-step guide. You’ll have a tropical jungle in your bathroom in no time!

3. Aloe vera

Aloe vera is another excellent, easy to grow choice for plants that thrive in the bathroom.

As a notorious plant killer, Style Curator team member Dan (who recently sent another plant baby to plant heaven — whoopsie) has had great success growing Aloe vera in her main bathroom. So if she says it’s easy to keep alive… then it is!

Water sparingly, especially over winter. Aloe vera looks wonderful in a hanging planter, or in a small pot on the vanity.

4. Zanzibar gem (aka ZZ plant)

The Zanzibar gem, also known simply as ZZ plant, is one of the best plants for the bathroom as it tolerates very low light. This is great news if your bathroom is a little on the darker side and means you don’t need to place it near a window like other bathroom-loving plants.

This guy doesn’t need much water and is often said to be drought tolerant, which is perfect if you forget to water your plants (guilty as charged over here!).

5. Dumb cane (aka Dieffenbachia)

Loving life in a bright, indirect spot, Dumb cane is a tropical beauty who will enjoy living in your bathroom. Be sure to give this plant well-draining soil as too much water will cause root rot. It adores high humidity spaces making the bathroom its ideal home.

Also, interesting fact — Dumb cane gets its name because it has the potential to cause speaking and breathing difficulties if ingested. So while we’re sure you wouldn’t go for a taste of any of your house plants, definitely don’t snack on this one! It’s toxic to your furry friends too, so best to keep it up high.

6. Moth orchid (aka Phalaenopsis orchid)

The Moth orchid is not only stunning to look at, but adores the high humid climate in the bathroom. They tolerate quite low light areas and are super low-maintenance, producing gorgeous flowers for up to 3 months.

They appreciate their own special orchid soil mix, but apart from that, what’s not to love?!

7. Boston fern

Look… ferns can have the reputation for being pretty temperamental, BUT the good old Boston fern is a pretty laidback plant.

They look fab in a hanging pot, draping down in all their green glory, and don’t take a lot of effort to care for. Perfect for a humid bathroom, give this one a drink and its leaves a spritz of water every so often and it should love you back for years to come.

8. Mother-in-laws tongue (aka snake plant)

Known for it’s love of high-humidity, low-light conditions, the Mother-in-laws tongue plant is a great choice for your bathroom.

Keep in mind, they’re slow growing but are very hardy and require minimal maintenance (love that for us). They’re also known to help improve air quality.

9. Rubber plant

If you’re lucky enough to have a bathroom that gets bathed in light, perhaps your plant of choice could be the rubber plant. This beauty likes bright but indirect sunlight. This means, no sunlight beaming directly onto the leaves — otherwise it may become sunburned.

And if you need any more reasons to pop a rubber plant in your bathroom, just check out how gorgeous it looks in Anna’s bathroom here.

10. Spider plant

Spider plants are a terrific plant for the bathroom, especially if yours gets a fair amount of light. They thrive in bright light, but will happily live in low light too — they’re a versatile and forgiving plant (our favourite kind!).

Give them a moderately humid environment and they will love you for it.

Has our list of plants that thrive in the bathroom made you want to rush out and buy a newbie for your place?! Which one is your fave? Or maybe we’ve missed a bathroom loving plant you think we should add to the list. Tell us in the comment section below.

Find more plant articles here

Disclaimer: This article was first published in February 2021 and has been updated with new information and images. 

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ming green natural marble mosaic tile with white vanity

Ming green marble mosaic bathroom tour

We’ve just wrapped up our latest bathroom project and it’s a beauty, even if I do say so myself! This ’90s style bathroom was in dire need of a makeover and in my signature style, I couldn’t help but inject a bit of luxe into the space. It’s a small bathroom but just because you’re short on space doesn’t mean you need to compromise on style.

Let me take you on a tour of this ming green marble mosaic bathroom and share some of my top bathroom design tips.

Related article: Gina’s bathroom renovation reveal: Take a peek around my new bathroom
Related article: What bathroom mirror to buy: How to choose the perfect bathroom mirror

Style Curator bathroom design
Come with me to take a tour of our latest bathroom project where Ming green marble mosaics from Tile Republic steal the show!

Ming green marble paddle pop mosaic is the hero of the bathroom

Without a doubt, the star of the space is this ming green (also called Verdi Cristallo) marble mosaic feature tile. It’s the first thing you see as you step into the bathroom. I love the interesting patterns and tonal variation of each piece, and the muted pop of colour it adds to the space.

I went with a relatively new tile mosaic shape, which goes by a few names including arch mosaic, paddle pop mosaic or elongated fish scale. Whatever you want to call it, I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it’s STUNNING. As soon as I saw it at Tile Republic, I knew it was the one and the rest of the bathroom scheme built off this selection.

Ming green marble mosaic tile in paddle pop shape
ming green natural marble mosaic tile with white vanity

A tonal tile scheme helps a small bathroom to feel larger

If you’re looking for a way to make a small bathroom feel larger, forget using gloss tiles and embrace a tonal tile scheme instead. Using the same tile on the floor and walls blurs the lines between these surfaces and create a sense of space. I used the Etna Moon tile in a semi-polished finish from Tile Republic on the floor and walls. It has a subtle pattern that complements rather than competes with the natural marble and picks up on the grey undertones of the stone.

Remember less is often more, particularly when you’re working in a small space. There’s a lot that gets added to a bathroom design vanity, mirror, tapware, bathware, lighting so you don’t have to make a loud feature out of everything. Actually, if you do it will have the reverse effect and create a space that’s overwhelming.

I’m not going to lie, I was nervous about the ming green marble mosaic for a minute when I saw it appear on The Block. Mitch and Mark went with a more is more approach, using the feature tile in excess on one full wall and also in the oversized niche on the adjacent wall. And then they paired it with an equally bold Calacutta marble patterned floor and wall tile. Although they used all luxe elements, there was so much happening in the space that your eye didn’t know where to look.

Luckily, the tiles had already been ordered so there was no backing out!

grey bathroom with brushed nickle tapware
white plantation shutter in grey bathroom

Look for a vanity with drawer storage

In my book, drawers trump cupboards in the storage stakes every time! Drawers open to reveal all of their contents, whereas with a cupboard-style bathroom vanity you need to crouch down and move items about to access what’s behind.

For this bathroom, we chose a white 2 drawer wall hung vanity with shaker doors called ‘Fremantle’ also from Tile Republic. It’s more interesting than a flat all-white vanity and is a classic style that offers timeless appeal. Most importantly, it doesn’t compete with the other design elements.

White and other neutral colours offer breathing room to your bathroom design. So we also used a white rectangular solid surface mirror in this space. I like to have contrast between the shape of the mirror and the tiled wall behind. For example, if the wall has angular tiles, I’ll look for a mirror with curves to soften the look or vice versa.

Shaker style vanity

Brushed nickel tapware adds a subtle pop of bling

With dozens of tapware finishes now on the market, you can have lots of fun making a statement with tapware! While white tapware would have added an edgy element to this space, it wasn’t right for the client or their home.

Rather than selecting the same polished chrome tapware used elsewhere in their home, we chose brushed nickel Nero tapware from Tile Republic. It has a softer and more muted finish than chrome but still fits with traditional style spaces. This finish was carried through on all of the bathroom accessories.

green long fishtail tile with brushed nickle mixer _ ming green marble bathroom
Brushed nickel shower by Nero from Tile Republic
brushed nickel mixer

Add a window covering to finish the look and offer privacy

In a bathroom it’s common to use frosted glass and no window treatments. But to really finish off a bathroom design, I love adding a plantation shutter. This beautiful white plantation shutter was custom made by dollar curtains + blinds and completely elevates the feel of this bathroom.

As well as enhancing the aesthetics, it offers various functional benefits. Most importantly, it allows the client to open the window for ventilation while maintaining privacy.

white plantation shutters on grey tile wall _ ming green marble bathroom
ming green long fishtail tile with white shaker style vanity

Design, styling and photography — Style Curator
Tiles, vanity, tapware and bathware — Tile Republic

I hope you enjoyed taking a tour of this ming green marble mosaic bathroom with me. Do you have any questions about the space? Pop them in the comment section below and I’ll get back to you asap. Or let me know what you think of the space. I’d love to hear from you!

More bathroom inspo

brushed nickle shower head in grey bathroom
grey bathroom shower shelf _ ming green marble bathroom
grey bathroom with brushed nickle tapware _ ming green marble bathroom
ming green paddlepop tiles with a brushed nickel hook

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Everything you need to know about lighting your bathroom

Everything you need to know about lighting your bathroom

If there’s one thing we’ve learnt from building and renovating, it’s that you can’t underestimate the impact of great lighting. Skimp on lighting and generally the results speak for themselves… or take the time to develop a well-considered lighting plan early and create a space that looks and feels architectural.

Today we have lighting expert James Nagel with us to share everything you need to know about lighting your bathroom. James is a qualified Illumination Designer with over 15 years experience and founder of lighting specification company Luxygen.

Related article: What height to hang pendant lights?
Related article: Trend alert: Basket pendant lights and where to shop our faves

Function first

Other than general lighting, the most important function of lighting in a bathroom is to light your face. Especially when using the vanity mirror. Whether it’s to shave or put on makeup, during these sorts of tasks is where you need your lighting to work for you. The rest of the lighting in your bathroom is considered general or creative mood lighting.

There are many ways you can create functional light at the vanity, including:

  • mirror with light ring
  • wall lights above or to the one or both sides of the mirror
  • pendant lights on one or both sides of the mirror.

Whichever lighting solution you choose, just remember you want to create light that hits the face. Avoid creating directional shadows. So while a downlight directly above a mirror may look nice, it can create an issue with casting downward shadows on the face. Likewise, backlit mirrors look beautiful but they aren’t great at throwing light onto your face so often supplementary lighting is required.

Keep reading further for ideas on how you can create accent lighting in your bathroom.

The future trends in bathroom lighting

Like all things design, lighting goes through trends. You can give your bathroom a design-forward look by embracing some of these future trends in bathroom lighting.

1. New ways to use LED strip lighting

For many years we saw people use LED strip lighting in similar places: below the vanity, below the shaving cabinet and in wall niches. Now we’re seeing more creative uses of LED strip lights.

As strip lights are now available in such a small size, they can be used in places that weren’t previously possible. For example, James says LED strip lights can be used just underneath the stone on a vanity, i.e. in the shadow line.

Another clever way of using LED strip lighting is to run a thin strip down the side of your mirror. With a simple Perspex cover this becomes virtually hidden and creates a diffuse light to light the face.

Generally mirrors have lights incorporated into them. They provide the diffuse light required to light the face without shadowing problems.

Image via White Elephant on Behance

2. Clean ceilings

James says there’s been a move away from standard downlights and traditional styles of lighting. People are favouring clean ceilings in the bathroom — the lack of obstruction creates a much sleeker look.

“A dropped ceiling with an LED strip box is very in,” explains James, “particularly in commercial applications and offers just as much light as downlights. An even more design-forward idea is to use strip lighting along one edge of the ceiling and down one wall.”

Tastics are a functional must-have for most people but you don’t need to go with a bulky design. James says newer models, such as the Tastic Neo, offer the same functionality in virtually flat profiles — keeping the clean line of your ceiling.

3. Less is more

James says one of the most common lighting mistakes he sees in bathrooms is that it’s often overdone. You don’t need to add feature lighting in every possible spot. Decide what statement you want to make and do that.

A tip of what light you should include is a night light on a sensor so during those unexpected night trips to the bathroom you’re not having to turn on the overhead lighting. A simple low-level night light is also enough.

Getting technical

Can I install a 240V light fitting in a bathroom?

You sometimes hear electricians advise that low voltage lights must be used in the bathroom and it isn’t until you shop for low voltage lights that you realise there isn’t much choice on the market.

James says if a light is inside the protected zones then it will need to be either low voltage, IP X4 rated or double insulated.

A standard fitting can be installed, provided it is outside of the zones deemed unsafe. Your builder, lighting designer or installing electrician will be able to provide you with zone category areas and advise where you can install.

Warm or cool (lamp colour temperature)?

There’s no right or wrong rule when it comes to selecting warm or cool LEDs as it comes down to personal preference… but James generally prefers warm LEDs and so do we! Cool LEDs can make spaces feel clinical.

Our tip is to use a warmer colour temperature as it’s ideal for creating a more inviting feeling.

The other thing that isn’t spoken about much is colour rendering. This is how colours appear under the light. James says most LEDs are very good with blue, green and yellow colours but reds are often poorly represented. He suggests looking for ‘high colour rendering LEDs’ as these may have better rendering properties in the red tones and will help make items appear closer to their true natural colour — particularly important in the bathroom for getting skin tones represented right.

What height to hang lights

James says this really depends on the light, your space (ceiling heights and scale of bathroom) and your overall design — what’s important is that the light is hitting where it’s needed. So wall sconces by the vanity should be placed at a height where the light will illuminate the face best.

You may like to check out this article about what height to hang pendant lights for more advice.

Do you have any other questions about lighting in the bathroom? Pop them in the comments below and we’ll get James to answer them!

More lighting advice and inspo

This article was first published in January 2019 and continues to be updated with the latest information and images.

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