Key bathroom trends & décor ideas with Sofia Charalambous

With growing evidence on how our environment affects our wellbeing, having the right personal spaces in our homes is becoming increasingly important, even more so in light of the year we’ve just had.

Emerging trends were already having an impact on the way we design our homes, including our bathrooms even before Covid. Here, I share my insights, plus take a look at the key styles shaping 2021.


Let’s talk about wellbeing… The importance of this concept in bathroom design

Neuro-aesthetics: the study of how design impacts us on an emotional level, and how our interaction with objects can give us pleasure has been a scientifically recognised phenomenon since the late 1990s. The consequences of this pandemic have heightened and accelerated the discussion around wellness. So, this is becoming a key trend in bathroom design.

One thing I’ve learned from more than 25 years in this industry, is that the bathroom is so much more than just a place to wash: it’s so many things to so many people. It’s a place to relax, retreat and escape from the ‘rat-race’. It’s quite possibly the only room in the house where you can be totally private and uninterrupted… and now, more than ever, having a sanctuary, a retreat and escape, which gives you even a few minutes of real ‘you time’, is a precious thing.

The impact of bathroom decor on our mental health should never be underestimated. A considered, holistic approach to designing a space can make all the difference to a scheme and ultimately our wellbeing.

This wonderful quote which, for me, encompasses everything about interior design in the bathroom, from American interior designer Albert Hadley

Biophilic design – bringing the outside in

City round mirrors, 60cm & Tecno Project accessories in white

It’s a well-known fact that incorporating elements from nature into the built environment reduces stress, blood pressure levels and heart rates, whilst increasing productivity, creativity and self-reported well-being. And how better to bring this idea to life than with bathroom decor?

‘Bringing the outside in’ doesn’t just mean adding plants, though they are a great choice! It’s all about increasing direct and indirect connectivity to the natural environment; so why not incorporate natural materials, light, colour and artwork depicting natural scenes and designs?


Which key bathroom décor ideas can we expect this year?


Mixing it up is the new trend making waves in bathroom design. Known as ‘transitional’, it typically refers to meshing modern with traditional. But it can also mean mixing different genres, such as edgy industrial with country rustic. In fact, I think using transitional design is a great way to create a unique bathroom that truly reflects your clients’ individual style.

This cloakroom render from Love Your Bathroom demonstrates transitional design perfectly. This features our striking Docklands mirror, in a beautiful brushed brass finish

Open storage

I predict open storage is set to be key for bathroom décor in 2021 and beyond. The minimalism mantra is over – at least for bathroom storage ideas. You no longer need to hide everything away, removing all traces of personality and pizzazz. This relates back to the past when luxury bathrooms were synonymous with the bare and unembellished. So there has been no place (literally or figuratively) for beautiful display items. However, times are changing, and the opportunity to display stylish possessions in the bathroom is an exciting concept for the home. Time then to embrace and experiment with the wide variety of open bathroom storage options available.

Our Dockside mirror with open shelving, shows how open storage has evolved as a key bathroom trend this year. This image is courtesy of Lauren Sutton, head of design hub at Virtual Worlds

Metallic finishes

Brushed nickel and matt white are two metallic finishes to watch in 2021. I can safely say, with its timeless appeal, brushed nickel ‘transcends trends’ in bathroom decor. The beauty of brushed nickel, with its warm yellow hue blurs the edges between gold and silver. In fact, this makes it incredibly versatile. So, forget clinical. Matt white fittings will add a crisp freshness to the bathroom if this appeals to you. Simply pair them with natural materials, such as wood and restful greens, to create a warm, welcoming feel in a bathing space.

Our Tecno brushed nickel collection demonstrates the inherent beauty of this finish in luxury bathroom design.

Our Outline accessories, which stand out beautifully in this warm wood bathroom scheme

Why should mirrors form an integral part of a bathroom project?

Mirrors are more than just a place to check your look. They’re a great design feature in their own right, and some would say ‘a work of art’. This stylish form of bathroom decor reflects light and space, making your bathing haven feel bigger and brighter. And they don’t just have to be placed over the basin. Make a style statement with an extra-wide mirror on the wall above a bath.

Our Ravenna light mirror, 140cm, demonstrates how a mirror can be so much more than just somewhere to check what you look like. This image is courtesy of Lauren Sutton, head of design hub at Virtual Worlds

Bringing bathroom designs to life

Trends and styles – whether longer or shorter term – affect our businesses. Consumer behaviour constantly changes and adapts, so it’s essential for us to move with those times too; looking at what will be influencing householders and their purchases, then using those insights to make sure our offerings match their desires. And what better way to bring your bathroom designs to life than with Virtual Worlds.

Bio – Sofia Charalambous, Co-founder of Bathroom Origins |Mentor | Columnist |Judge for kbbreview awards 2020


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