Do you have a small Bathroom? Want to make it feel bigger?

I would estimate 50% of the kind people from across Northern Ireland who come into our Ballymena showroom looking for a new bathroom suite tell us “My Bathroom is Tiny” or “There’s no Room for X, Y or Z”. Whilst this may be true for a number of these people, it does not mean that their options should be limited. It does however mean that some extra care must be put in to maximise what space is available in their bathroom.

In our Ballymena showroom, 25 minutes from Belfast (Some may say they do it in 20), we have dozens of Bathroom settings, all complete with toilets, vanity units, mirrors, showers and baths. We try to replicate real life constraints with space, shape and light to give our customers a true idea of how certain configurations work best for certain circumstances.

1. Make a Plan of your Bathroom

The first thing that we would recommend someone to do before even coming into the shop is to draw a plan of their bathroom, marking any doors and windows and where these open. Draw it to scale and then make cardboard shower trays, baths, toilets and vanity units, at the same scale. The standard sizes to use for these are:

  • Shower Tray – 900x900mm Quadrant, 1200×900 Offset Quadrant, 1200×900 Rectangle
  • Bath – 1700x700mm, 1500x700mm
  • Toilet – 625x360mm
  • Vanity Unit – 600x425mm


Once this is done, you can play about with different sizes and layouts to find what works best for you. Having this done before coming into the showroom makes it clear to you what is on your shopping list. Although it isn’t very high tech, this is a very effective way of tailoring your bathroom layout.

Whatever floorspace your Bathroom has - keep it!

If you have a small floor space, don’t choose products which eat away at this, as this is a common mistake made by people with small bathrooms. Why spend time choosing your dream floor tiles just to set a large vanity unit on top and hide a lot of them? Most modern vanity unit ranges have wall hung options, which will open up the room by showing more of your floor tiles, and whilst this may compromise on the storage capacity of the vanity unit, it is worth it. Have a look at how we maximised the space in our small bathroom in our Ballymena showroom by using the wall hung Otto Plus Vanity Unit.

This vanity unit still offers two generous sized drawers that can be used for storage whilst also preserving any of the little floor space that we have to show off the gorgeous 800×800 Grotto Tiles. We also made use of a wall hung back to the wall toilet pan, to help maximise floor space. The storage space that may have been lost by the use of a wall hung vanity unit has been offset by the shelf that our concealed cistern provides.

3. Be Smart with Your Bathroom Colour Scheme

Creating a feeling of space is very much a visual illusion, and the greatest tool that we have available to us to influence visuals is colour. Colour is very important in creating the spacious bathroom you long for. Whether that be the colour of the wall tiles, the colour of the floor tiles, the colour of your vanity unit or colour of accessories, it is important that this be planned to make sure everything complements the theme you choose. Not only must you like the colours but it must suit the bathroom and everything else in it. Like everything, colours come and go in cycles. 5 years ago everything was cream and brown, and recently the majority of people are after grey.

ANZA Lifestyle

The whole point of colour is to attract the eye. So, if we want the room to feel bigger, we want to attract the eye to areas we have more of. In small rooms, we have a lot more wall area than floor and so its important that the eye is drawn to the walls. This is done by using brighter tones on the wall which will reflect any light available in the room. The floor can then be a slightly darker tone, to create the contrast and clearly define the floor and wall area. It is advised that natural tones such as beige, cream, white, and light grey are utilised throughout, as this will maximise the light available. 

Praga LS Web

Tile texture is also a great opportunity to make your room unique, whilst sticking to the light and natural tones. Look how the Praga Wave range is used to add character to the room and draw attention to the walls.

Its important to decide on a colour scheme good and early in your project so you can focus your tile shopping on the styles that suit your room. 

4. Bathroom Mirrors and Light

The most important aspect to space in any room is light, or the lack of it. In small bathrooms. it is vital to have sufficient light, whether this be natural light or artificial light. It is best to mix both sources to find optimum lighting conditions.

LED lights are common on most mirrors these days, which have a dual benefit for making bathrooms feel bigger. A larger mirror can make a room feel twice as big, couple this with effective lighting and you are well on your way to a larger bathroom. Back-lit mirrors, paired with glossy wall tiles are a very effective and popular way of emitting light throughout the entire room.


Lighting is particularly important in bathrooms as tasks such as shaving and applying makeup are performed. Because of this, you should always look for smart ways to introduce light in ways you may not have considered. Click the images below to learn more about our unusual lighting options

5. Bath or Shower? Is the bathroom big enough for both?

We all love the idea of coming home for a relaxing bath, but how many of us actually do it? When was the last time you had a bath? Did you just hop into the shower instead? Through our time in the industry we have seen a sharp decline in the amount of people who want baths, and the majority that we do sell are for decoration. It isn’t just us who appreciates this trend. According to Carmen Fishwick, only 4% of the British Public take a regular bath, with more than 3 quarters of people stating they prefer the speed of a shower. With this in mind, you must ask yourself; Do we really need a bath? Should I utilise the space I have with a bigger and better shower? 

The new popular trend these days is to take out the bath and replace it with a large, walk-in shower. With this comes a less cluttered feel to the bathroom, with more open space. A glass screen is used as a boundary for the shower, and with trays coming as large as required, you certainly won’t lose out on washing space. The good thing about modern trays are that the majority are low profile and so they will not look as chunky and will be slick and minimal looking. “Slate Effect” Trays can also be used, if different colours to the standard white are required. This allows colour schemes to be implemented into the shower design. An added bonus of these trays are that they can be cut into shape, allowing awkward spaces to be utilised in the shower.

Another modern trend is to double up the function of the bath to be a Shower Bath. Manufacturers now produce dedicated “L” and “P” shaped baths which allow for extra standing room at one end. This allows you to install a shower on the wall at one end and then use the bath as a shower tray when you want a shower instead of a bath. 

P Shape Bath
L Shape Shower Bath

If you require any assistance in choosing the layout, colour scheme or configuration of yor bathroom then please contact us on 02825632343, email us at or contact us on Facebook @justtilesni.

Alternatively, come and visit our tile and bathroom showroom in Ballymena:

Unit 22a Pennybridge Industrial Estate


Country Antrim

Northern Ireland


Whilst a bath is merely a container for water, and sometimes other cleansing fluids, the bath is far more to the modern user than simply a utilitarian bathtub. There is nothing better than coming home after work and indulging in a lavish bath. Comfort is the most important consideration while selecting a bath tub. Bathtubs not only come in a multitude of sizes, colour and styles, but in a variety of materials as well. The choice and combination depends upon individual needs and taste, as well as architectural limitations.

In Ballymena, Antrim, Belfast and even Northern Ireland, the basic 5ft wall-to-wall built-in model in white still remains the most popular tub. Some are porcelain on steel; some are acrylic; some cast iron.

The luxury and health benefits of the baths are enormous and they include; improving blood circulation for individuals. Steeping the body in hot water to the neck is an exercise of sorts for your blood vessels.  Water creates physical pressure on the body and so increases the capacity of our heart. In other words, when we’re in the water, the heart works faster and stronger. This is not by any means heavy exertion, more like a light workout for the heart. A few dips a week is an excellent workout for your heart, while doing the head no-end of benefits also.

Secondly, helps individuals in falling asleep. Hot water relaxes the body and better prepares us for falling asleep. When a tense body enters a warm bath, the hot water increases the body temperature and relaxes the muscles. Relaxing the muscles not only soothes us physically, but also mentally, and many of us need that peace of mind at the end of the day.

Thirdly, the bath relaxes the body and better prepares us for falling asleep. When a tense body enters a warm bath, hot water increases the body temperature and relaxes muscles. Relaxing the muscles not only soothes us physically, but also mentally, and many of us need that peace of mind at the end of the day.

In Ballymena, Antrim, Belfast and Northern Ireland, the bathroom has been transformed into a spa, a place to unwind and refresh the body. Situated at the heart of this relaxation centre is the tub. Once a utilitarian device, the tub has become a glamorous and, in many cases, exciting feature in bathroom design. These days, when it comes to choosing a tub, the possibilities are nearly limitless. Options include soakers and whirlpools; classic claw-footed models; contoured shapes, ovals, squares, and rounded; tubs with neck rests and arm rests; tubs set into platforms; and tubs you step down into—or even walk into. All this variety comes at a price, so it’s important to remember that the total cost of a tub will reflect the amount of technology involved as well as the type of finish and material.

Formerly bathtubs had been just a tub-and-shower combination, with the primary goal being showered and basic body hygiene. Today, baths are often separate from the shower, with the sole purpose of soaking to relax and unwind. Buying a tub is no longer a simple decision, and because a tub can be an expensive and permanent purchase, it is very important to do the research before you actually buy.

Before shopping for a tub, first ask yourself how you like to bathe. Do you prefer a long, lingering soak, or an invigorating whirlpool massage? Factor in how important bathing and other uses of a tub are to you and your family. Taking this opportunity to evaluate your goals and lifestyle before choosing a tub can be well worth the time investment.

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