Home Design Trends: How to Create an Open Concept Bathroom

Let’s talk about the biggest trend in home renovations and new build design - the open concept bathroom! This is the perfect bathroom design for HGTV fans who love to open up a wall! From a curbless shower with trackless glass, seamless spaces for your vanity and free-standing tub, or a luxurious open plan ensuite bathroom design, we’re diving in to key ways to create a luxurious bathroom that has the perfect flow!

How to Design an Open Concept Bathroom and Curbless Shower

Bardiglio 3X6 Beveled Marble Subway Tile on the bathroom and shower walls to carry the design throughout the room. The Bardiglio Penny Round & Carrara Dot Marble Mosaic Tile is approved for wet area flooring, like this shower enclosure with wrought iron frames!

When renovating your bathroom for a seamless finish, a luxurious open concept layout creates a nice roomy feeling. It creates a relaxing minimalist setting, while the lack of obstructions provides a seamless transition from the rest of the bathroom into the shower area or vanity space, and vice versa. It is important to be conscientious about the overall design and finishes you use in order to create a seamless relationship between areas in your open concept bathroom!

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How to design an open concept bathroom 

To design a bathroom that’s as comfortable as it is aesthetically pleasing, clever use of space is required to shoehorn in all the desired features! An open concept bathroom does a lot more than just provide a space in which to get clean and unwind after a long day. It creates a room with easy flow — where a walk-in shower with a glass enclosure features a low or nonexistent curb, giving the appearance of a bright and airy design overall.

Minimalist Bathroom with a Floating Vanity and Curbless Shower Enclosure

The absence of shower threshold gives you lots of flexibility when it comes to bathroom design. We especially like that an open layout design allows additions like in-set shelves, niches, and even heated floors for a more relaxing and clutter-free aesthetic. Here, Grey Sparkle Waterjet Marble Mosaic Tile acts as the bathroom’s striking feature, while our Thassos White 3X6 Beveled Marble Tile flows from the shower walls to the vanity backsplash to create a streamlined look. The shower enclosure is designated by a frameless glass wall.

This can also be called a ‘wet room bathroom’, an interior design style that gained popularity in Japan and has rapidly become an international favorite! 

 If you are a fan of a sleek, streamlined look, there are the key design elements to consider:

  • Consistent use of finishes and materials to create a uniform look
  • Floating vanities with clean lines and limited clutter
  • A subdued neutral color palette and subtle texture
  • Minimalist faucets with slim shapes
  • Streamlined light fixtures
  • Minimal glass shower doors

Because showers are tall elements, they allow you the opportunity to craft a striking focal point through the use of wall and floor tiles that flow from the bathroom into the shower enclosure, in turn making the entire space appear continuous and harmonious. 

For instance, you can pick a single tile material as a prominent feature of your open layout bathroom and ensure that it works cohesively with other design elements such as the vanity, lighting, hardware, and paint color!

Wet room bathroom design trends

Beautiful tiles in eye-catching designs, finishes and layouts are a key element in bathroom design — and in recent years, residential bathrooms are substituting bathtub and shower combos for the practicality and sensibility of walk-in showers. Along with this noticeable growing trend comes a greater emphasis on curbless walk-in showers that eliminate the physical barrier between traditional shower enclosures and bathtubs. 

Marbled Hexagon Floor Tiles for an Open Plan Bathroom

A curbless shower in this case acts as a blank canvas on which to design your dream bathroom. Since this style of wet room bathroom can be more prone to moisture, a non-porous and slip resistant flooring material is key! The pattern of our Cosmo Black Marbled Porcelain Hexagon Tile flows uninterrupted through the whole space, with the Gray marbled hexagon tile carrying the pattern onto the wall. Consider incorporating indoor greenery or wood countertops to add an organic touch that pairs with the minimalist hexagon tiles on the floors and walls!

Bathrooms with a limited footprint can seem cramped and claustrophobic — but a carefully designed and constructed open layout allows for a seamless flow that leaves your space feeling open, less cluttered, and more modern! 

1. Glass shower enclosures

For homeowners seeking a serene retreat that feels like a visit to a spa, curbless shower enclosures keep modern bathrooms looking spacious and sleek. Ideal for open concept bathroom planning, these are made up of a frameless glass panel to minimize separation from the rest of the space, usually with minimal glass doors or frames.

Curbless Shower Enclosure with an Open Plan Bathroom

This airy design allows for sleek, contemporary, and luxurious finishes and fixtures! The patterned shower floor tile carries through to the rest of the bathroom for a consistent, streamlined look.Tile Club’s Square Weave Equator and Thassos Polished Mosaic Tile adds texture, visual interest, and movement to the space for both the shower and bathroom floor, with an angled floor to allow for adequate drainage. 

Having one flooring style creates continuity throughout the bathroom design as well as long visual lines that help make the space seem larger! There must be a slight gradient so water flows to the drain instead of pooling outside the shower area.

2 .Tile style on display

Your bathroom is a canvas where you can express your unique style and create a highly functioning space at the same time! An open concept bathroom can read as a modern design, but there are endless style options to create your ideal look. You could create a contemporary, minimalist space inspired by clean lines with a muted palette; a vintage ensuite bathroom with classic hexagon mosaic tiles, or a rejuvenating and soothing interior surrounded with natural beauty. 

Open Plan Bathroom Accent Wall with Black Glass Herringbone Mosaic

With a wide variety of textures, colors, and shapes, tiles can be used to customize the bathroom and shower walls in a way that puts your individual style on display and harmonizes with the rest of your interior for a coordinated and intentional look. Timeless, classic, and bold, our Obsidian Black Herringbone Glass Tile maintains a luxurious and gorgeous feel in an all-white setting. This glass accent wall flows from the bathtub surround to the shower enclosure, with minimalist glass shower doors to keep the look streamlined.

Seamless materials you can use for your bathroom floors and walls

On a practical level, a tile surface is ideal for a wet room bathroom, since it can withstand repeated contact with water that could otherwise ruin the subflooring or walls underneath — as well as helping provide a safe, slip-resistant floor. But let’s be honest, the most exciting part is choosing the type of wall and flooring finish that will create a personal spot of luxury, a cozy and inviting guest oasis, or an invigorating, efficient space!

Bathroom tiles can provide the perfect finish and set the tone of the overall bathroom aesthetic - especially since there are tiles available to suit every budget, style, and need. With a rainbow of colors to choose from and a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and finishes, you can find a fabulous floor or beautiful backsplash for any price point and aesthetic.

Black Subway Tiles and White Oak Tile Floors for an Open Concept Bathroom

With plenty of tactile preferences, you can get really creative and add instant color, texture, and pattern whatever style you are going for... This Spiga Olson Blanco Wood-look Chevron Porcelain Tile might feel understated, but it complements the Mallorca black ceramic subway tile and bathroom fittings beautifully, resulting in a look that’s both elegant and cohesive. 

So where do you start designing an open bathroom layout?

Designing an equally practical and stunning bathroom and shower floor is essentially among a homeowner’s first thoughts when deciding to remodel their space. When it comes to selecting tiles that suit the wide-open bathroom space, the choice is pretty open-ended. Ceramic and natural stone tiles are all popular and beautiful choices for bathroom walls and floors. Ideally, you want to select a tile that’s approved for Shower Floor use, as they have a low coefficient of friction, which equals a higher level of slip-resistance! Check the Area of Use to confirm your preferred tile meets the safety criteria for a wet area floor.

As technology and innovation continue to make our lives easier, we can now find a hybrid of different materials, with stone and wood-look porcelain tiles offering the same aesthetic as natural flooring materials, with a wide range of additional benefits.

Rustic Modern Shower Enclosure with Wood Look Tile

The warm and inviting hues of our Tribeca Blanco Whitewashed Wood Look Tile lends a timeless and charming finish with the look of whitewashed shiplap. Unlike real hardwood, it is a slip-resistant floor, making it an ideal choice for wet areas.  Pairing it with Tile Club’s Recycled Glass Subway Mosaic Tile for this open concept shower floor and wall adds to the natural style of this shower!

A freestanding bathtub or the absence of a shower threshold offers one very strong stylistic benefit — the fact that you can install running tiles straight down the bathroom into the shower pan. This style of waterfall tile is great for minimalist design and small bathrooms, creating a consistent color and pattern for the backsplash, walls, floor. This effortlessly coordinates the design elements, creating less visual clutter. 

Neutral Open Concept Bathroom with a Free Standing Tub and Marble Mosaic Floor

An open bathroom concept can make even the smallest of spaces feel airy, bright, and bigger. Removing barriers creates a seamless look, and our Sand Valley and Thassos Wave Marble Mosaic Tile lends itself beautifully to the monochromatic color scheme and luxurious furnishings and fittings.

While you may opt for contrasting tile design for the shower and the rest of your bathroom space, this does not reduce the open feel and functionality that a trackless shower offers. However, including too many different types of tile within the space may result in a chaotic and overwhelming look. It is important to choose finishes that complement the character of the room and tie the whole look together. 

Check out our guide to mix and match tile styles together to create a seamless pairing!

Prairie Interiors designed this gorgeous ensuite bathroom, with specifically designated areas for the shower enclosure, free-standing bathtub, and vanity counter.

Prairie Interiors designed this gorgeous ensuite bathroom, with specifically designated areas for the shower enclosure, free-standing bathtub, and vanity counter.

Once you’ve decided that you love the idea of an open concept bathroom, it’s time to narrow down how you want to pull it off! From a floating vanity to a curbless shower, a consistent bathroom and shower floor tile, and minimalist glass shower enclosures, there are lots of ways you can create an open plan bathroom without actually opening up a wall!

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