Choosing thoughtful, stylish and durable flooring is essential to set a strong foundation in any room. But this is especially true in small bathrooms, which tend to present some tricky conundrums. Big-ticket items (showers, baths, sinks and toilets!) and storage needs tend to get the most attention, but choosing the right material for your surfaces also deserves some thought, as it can end up making a big difference . So consider this a friendly reminder not to underestimate flooring! Whether you’re looking for creative design solutions to deal with a less-than-ideal bathroom floor situation, or you’re about to start a renovation, you’ve come to the right place. With 14 small bathroom floor ideas from designers ahead, you’ll get to know the best materials for a bathroom environment, while also seeing inspiring decorating ideas and tips.
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Natural stone slab
Lucy Harris extended a tiled wall throughout the bathroom for a consistent feel, a necessity in a small bathroom. For a similar level of consistency, while still incorporating contrast, she used the same marble top on the bathroom floors. All-glass shower doors make it feel open and breezy.
This marble and glass shower is a welcome modern surprise in the rustic 1770s Charleston home designed by Cameron Schwabenton. The overall eclectic approach honors the integrity of the home’s history with rustic wood foundations. But by incorporating more modern materials, such as the marble and glass used in the shower, it also feels contemporary and polished.
White painted wood
A simple design trick? Paint your surfaces white for a bright, crisp upgrade. Designer Andrew Flesher gave this small farmhouse bathroom a fresh coat of white paint, including the old wood floors. He also made the most of the limited space by skipping bulky cabinets and installing a floating sink vanity.
Natural stone tiles
A great way to save without compromising your vision is to use natural stone tiles instead of larger seamless slabs. Given their natural resistance to water, natural stone tiles such as marble or granite are an excellent flooring choice for a saturation-prone space such as a bathroom. This bathroom designed by Heidi Caillier features black and white stone tiles on the floors and alternating gray marble subway tiles on the shower e.
Graphic porcelain tiles
Designer Andy Beers of Ore Studios created a bold irregular pattern with graphic floor tiles that are further encouraged by a modern pendant in this small bathroom.
On the durability scale, concrete floors rank high, especially when it comes to water resistance. The edgy look of poured concrete is also perfect for any risk takers or city dwellers with modern style out there. Instead of choosing between a shower and a bath (or cramming in both), Leanne Ford used concrete flooring throughout this bathroom and installed a central drain so the space could function as a wet room.
The tiny dusty pink and mauve zellige tiles and cheery tangerine powder coated cabinets bring so much life to this bathroom designed by ETC.etera. They offer a more eclectic and unique look due to their unique firing process than other clay tiles.
For a bathroom just off the master bedroom in Alison Victoria’s Atlanta loft, the HGTV star designer made it feel more spacious and open by not installing doors and by using the same flooring in each connecting room. When Victoria moved into the loft, the existing concrete floors had a reddish-orange stain, so she laid vinyl plank flooring that looks like wood throughout the space. It’s a great budget-friendly alternative to wood, and it’s very durable (ie perfect for bathrooms!).
Colorful area rug
Mise and Scene Design opted for contrasting brass features for a moody yet rustic feel in this powder room. A vibrant blue area rug enhances the entire room. If you’re not quite ready to tear up your floors or you want to experiment with some color schemes, throw an area rug in a bold color over the floor, as seen here.
Terra Cotta tiles
In this modestly sized powder room designed by Corinne Mathern Studios, the small shelf transforms an awkward corner into something chic and practical. It’s just big enough to fit a few select cosmetics or a vase of flowers. Modern lighting and accessories set it in the contemporary moment, while the original terra cotta floor honors the Spanish Revival architectural bones.
Graphic ceramic tiles
Ceramic tiles are an easy favorite in bathrooms, especially on the floors. They are very water resistant, easy to clean, and they are incredibly versatile, coming in essentially any shape or color. Here, in this small bathroom by Atelier ND, an undulating contrasting floor tile is carried against the side of a built-in bathtub, unifying various surfaces in this bathroom.
The thin rugs connect this small bathroom and dressing room by McLaren.Excell with the primary bedroom beyond and also provide a soft landing for cold feet. The flamboyant custom gold details, industrial carpet and concrete materials, and warm wood paneling blend monastic calm with bold design. Carpet doesn’t seem like the best fit for splash zones, but with the right shower design, it can actually work quite well.
Cork is an eco-friendly material and it is also gaining more traction in the design world. In this tiny New York City powder room designed by Shawn Henderson, it proves an unexpectedly stylish surface material. If you do decide to use it on your floors, be sure to top it off with a water-resistant coating to ensure a long life.
In this bathroom by Heidi Caillier, a unique pattern is created in the shower with a mix of mosaic tiles and subway tiles. The rest of the floors are wood.
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