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Bathroom furniture ideas and inspiration

These storage and vanity choices can transform any bathroom into a stylish, comfortable and practical space.

When renovating a bathroom, the furniture you choose can make or break the entire project. From vanities and mirrors to those all-important storage solutions, the furniture pieces you pick out can turn an ugly and impractical bathroom into a beautiful and functional retreat.

So rather than just rushing out and buying every piece of bathroom furniture that appeals to you, it’s essential that you ask yourself some important questions and decide on the design, look and atmosphere you’re trying to achieve.

Do I need bathroom furniture?

The furniture you need will vary depending on the size and scale of your bathroom renovation; a small ensuite will have very different requirements then a spacious bathroom for a family with a couple of young kids.

However, the main furniture items you need to consider are:

  • A vanity. The right vanity will look great and merge seamlessly with its surroundings, but it should also be practical and easy to use every day.
  • Storage cabinets. Adequate storage space is a must in the bathroom, where all the linens and personal hygiene products can be stored to avoid clutter.
  • Shelving. This can provide additional storage for all of the odds and ends in your bathroom.
  • Hampers. If want your bathroom to stay pristine, put your dirty clothes in a hamper, not balled up in the corner on the floor.
  • Extras. Small items that can add a unique accent to your bathroom are things like additional mirrors, stools and artwork.

There are plenty of other accessories you’ll need to consider, including everything from lighting to towel racks and toilet roll holders, but a bathroom vanity and adequate storage are two items you need to get right.

How to choose the right bathroom furniture

Wander through a furniture store, shop online or visit a thrift shop with vintage items and you’ll quickly learn that there’s no shortage of choice when it comes to bathroom furniture. Every possible color, size, shape and design combination you can think of is available, so narrowing it down to the right choices for your space can be difficult. Ask yourself the following questions to simplify the task:

What’s my budget?

Before you start shopping in your mind, sit down and work out a realistic furniture budget to avoid spending more than you can afford. We all have a certain “look” we’re going for and specific items we’d love to include, but sometimes it’s simply not possible to justify the cost for some expensive items.

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What look and feel do I want to create for my bathroom?

Every good bathroom must balance two factors: style and practicality.


This early stage of the renovation is the perfect time to think of the big picture: what look and atmosphere do you want in your bathroom?

Is it simple and low-maintenance, luxurious and spa-like or a bright and inviting family bathroom? Your bathroom could be:

  • A sleek, modern space
  • A rustic country design
  • A classic, elegant bathroom
  • Custom-made to suit you and your family
  • Generic to make it easier to sell the house in a few years

The possibilities are truly astounding.

Think about the colors, materials and finishes you want to include in the space, as well as the statements you want to make with your furniture. There are heaps of renovation websites that are overflowing with design ideas and inspiration for your bathroom space, so find some ideas you like and then start to narrow it down to your favorites.


Bathroom cabinets can be used to create ample storage space, conceal pipes and unsightly plumbing connections, and add decorative flair. Before choosing any furniture, consider exactly what you want to achieve with your bathroom cabinetry.

At this stage, think about if you need to relocate your plumbing arrangements to suit your new vanity. If you plan to switch from a floor-mounted vanity to a wall-mounted unit, you’ll need to budget for the extra costs involved.

What type of vanity do I want?

Take some time to think about what your vanity will be used for most often. Will you and your partner use it to get ready for work each day, and if so, does making his and hers sinks a viable option? If it’s for a bathroom that’ll be used by the kids, you’ll want to aim for durability and ease of cleaning? Or perhaps it’ll be a rarely used guest bathroom and you might not need as much storage space as you think.

The height of the vanity is another factor many renovators overlook until it’s too late — a vanity that’s too high or too low can be a headache. Don’t forget about easy access to power outlets for all those hair dryers, electric toothbrushes and other essential beauty gadgets you need to plug in.

The style factor of the unit is just as important. Will it be modern, traditional, European, Japanese or any other style you can think of? Think about how you want your new vanity to look and how it will blend in with its surroundings.

How will the rest of the space look?

How will the furniture match the other features of the room. Would a wood-grain finish look best or maybe a streamlined all-white look is a better fit? Will the handles and knobs of store-bought furniture match the faucet and other handles in the room?

Consider large items like the bath and toilet, smaller items like taps and faucets, and how everything else will come together in your space to create a unique atmosphere.

Of course, you’ll also need to think of the color scheme and the overall look and feel you’re trying to create.

How much storage do I need?

Before you start your renovation, take an inventory of all the stuff you store in your current bathroom. Once you know what will be kept in the bathroom, ask yourself these questions:

  • Will you want to store all of the same items and more in your new bathroom?
  • Does the new vanity have enough space where every day items — makeup and toiletries — can be accessed and stored easily?
  • Will your odds and ends be best kept in drawers, cabinets or on shelves?
  • Is there anything that might require a uniquely-shaped space for convenient storage?

Once you know what you need you can start browsing the available options. There are plenty of clever storage solutions available to help you make the most of the space you have.

How much space is available?

Get out a tape measure and work out exactly how much space you have to work with, remembering to factor in door openings, shower entrance and anything other spaces you’ll have to work around. This’ll narrow down the furniture items that can fit in your bathroom. The shape of the space you have to work with is important, sometimes custom-made cabinetry might be a better fit than a store-bought piece.

You’ll also need to think about where each item will go. Make sure your vanity is placed in a spot where it won’t block the flow of traffic through the bathroom, even with doors and drawers open. You’ll want to have the vanity in a spot where it’s convenient to clean and within arms reach of a cupboard.

What materials should I use in my bathroom?

Vanity units and other pieces of bathroom furniture need to be able to withstand life in a humid and wet environment. They also need to be capable of handling everyday use, plus be especially durable in a family bathroom. You’ll also want to make sure the bathroom is waterproofed to avoid potential leaks causing structural damage.

Built-in or freestanding storage?

Should your bathroom storage cabinets be built into the surrounding space or would a freestanding unit be a better fit?

Built-in storage

Can be custom-built to suit your space, fitting in your bathroom perfectly and blending seamlessly with the rest of your fixtures and fittings. Not only can this help you make the most of the available space, it can also contribute to the sleek and stylish look you want to create.

Freestanding storage

Can be a focal point in its own right, plus there’s a huge array of stylish and unique pieces available to add character to your bathroom. There’s also the potential to move items around if you ever want to freshen up the space. You could always repurpose an old piece of vintage furniture to add character too.

Whichever option you choose, you’ll need to remember to maintain the balance between style and character.

Bottom line

There’s a lot that goes into choosing bathroom furniture, so take your time and carefully consider each piece individually in terms of how it fits into your bathroom as a whole. With a patient approach and knowledge of what will work and what won’t, you can select the right furniture to help with an ideal bathroom renovation.

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