Top five bathroom trends for 2014

If you're thinking about the possibility of redesigning your bathroom this year, the last thing you want to do is spend a load of money on it, only to realise it already looks dated by the time the job's done.

There are plenty of ways you can go about updating your bathroom and they don't all have to cost the earth, either. Sometimes, just changing the flooring or furnishings can make the space feel like a completely different area, adding a wow factor that might have previously been missing.

If you want to ensure that you're keeping ahead of the trends, here are the latest styles you should be looking out for throughout 2014.

Add a splash of black

Whereas a gleaming white bathroom used to be the must-have design, what once seemed clean and pristine is now looked upon as being sterile and clinical. Having everything in white can also be difficult to keep clean, with dust and grime easily showing up, meaning you have to spend more time maintaining the room, when you could otherwise leave it alone for a little longer.

As a result, black furnishings are definitely in this year. Whether its a black tub, lighting or faucets, the industrial edge this adds to your bathroom can add an extra dimension and remove that feeling you're washing yourself in a hospital or science lab.

Wood flooring?

While installing wood flooring in a room where it's more than likely you'll have more than a few spills of water underneath your feet is probably not the best idea, one of the trends for 2014 seems to be around wood-effect tiles.

There are actually some really nice designs out there and if you go for a darker wood style it can really add a bit of warmth to the room. 

Large, rectangular tiles would work best here to emulate what you would see as part of a real wood floor. For an added touch, why not continue to tile part-way up the wall to create a fluid, vibrant feeling around the room?

Matte tiles

In keeping with the idea of moving on from clinical, white bathrooms, matte tiles are becoming more and more popular in modern bathrooms.

They have the ability to add a sense of character to a room and those with a powdery or natural finish are becoming increasingly sought-after. 

In terms of where these tiles are best placed in the bathroom, why not opt for behind the shower or underfoot? Tiling just a specific area rather than the whole room can create quite a nice effect and also make the room seem larger.

Open spaces

On the subject of making the most of your space, one design aspect that many bathrooms seem to be adopting is the curbless shower.

For those who have a stand-alone cubicle rather than a unit over a bath, removing the step so you quite literally have a walk-in shower seems to be the way to go.

Not only is this more functional (who hasn't stubbed their toe or fallen in or out of the shower at some point?), but it also makes a room appear cleaner, sleeker and high-end. 

It's all about the curves

Another aesthetically-pleasing approach to the modern bathroom is ensuring you have plenty of curved fixtures.

Rounded units, curved bath tubs, circular mirrors - there's a variety of ways you can incorporate this feature into the design of your room.

These curvier elements are not only beautiful, they're also practical - freeing up plenty of floor space by eliminating those corners we're so accustomed to.

Hidden storage

With a constant need for storage space in most bathrooms, it was only a matter of time before finding a way to solve this common problem became a popular feature.

This year, many designers are opting for the ledge approach - creating space within the wall to keep useful items like shampoos, razors and other products nearby.

One trend seems to be incorporating these alongside the bath, meaning you only have to reach an arm out while having a soak to grab what you need. Practical and attractive, this is another example of function meeting fashion and something beautiful being created as a result.

Blast from the past

The vintage movement has been building momentum for some time, so its something of an inevitability that this classic style has now found its way to the bathroom.

From chic sinks to shabby toothbrush holders, giving your space a 30s feel is both easy to do and cost-effective. What's more, the only thing limiting you is your imagination.

Of course, you can source fittings yourself from reclamation yards or buy old, brand new.

Why not try chunky wooden towel rails, old-fashioned radiators, or elegant chrome taps and shower accessories?

Whatever you choose to do - and whatever style you decide to adopt - just make sure you're happy with it and it reflects your own personality and taste. If not, then you've missed the point!

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