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Are you gearing up for a bathroom renovation? Every homeowner daydreams of a functional AND well-designed bathroom, but diving into a detailed project like this can feel like navigating uncharted waters.


Black and white bathroom - top tips for planning your bathroom renovation

Table of Contents

Fear not! With the proper planning and guidance, you can sail smoothly through the process and make the ideal selections to bring your dream bathroom to life.

Today, you’re in luck! I’m sharing my top tips to help you plan a well-designed bathroom without missing a beat. Follow this roadmap for a bathroom transformation that’s as smooth as a sea breeze and as stylish as a sunset stroll.

Don’t have time to read it now? Pin it for later!

Pearls of Wisdom: Future Proofing

Given the cost and mess of a bathroom remodel, I strongly advise designing a classic room. Even if your home has modern architecture, a classic modern bathroom (example below) will ensure you won’t need a remodel for 20+ years.

2 modern home exteriors - 1 is 70's style on the beach and 1 is hollywood hills style
Modern Architecture
2 modern bathroom - truly for modern architecture
Perfect for homes with Modern Architecture

Your Current Situation

What do you like about your current bathroom?
What do you dislike about your current bathroom?
Identifying those pros and cons will help you determine your needs from the categories below.


Establish a budget with a 10% buffer for any unforeseen surprises. Because, let’s be real, unexpected twists are not just for TV dramas.


Is it a dedicated bathroom or a multitasking marvel? Consider your unique needs – laundry space, kiddos’ splashy adventures, or a serene sanctuary solely for you. Once that’s decided, plan your space accordingly.


Are you looking for a classic, functional, and pretty bathroom? Do you want to feel like you’re in a hotel? Do you like to feel like you’re in a spa? Do you have a vision?o.

Vanity Essentials

How many people will use the bathroom? That answer (and your square footage) will help you determine the number of sinks and vanities. I recommend a minimum of a 42″ vanity if only one can fit in the square footage, but ideally, two 42″ (or larger) vanities are best for an owners’ suite.


The larger the vanity(ies), the better. If you have a long wall, a custom vanity to fill the space is fantastic for storage, and you could also consider a tall tower with added electrical between the two sinks. Do you need a linen closet in this space? Will the square footage allow it? If not, you could have a few shelves in your closet for linens.

Blue bathroom double vanity with tower and marble counter and backsplash
D Miko Design

Bathing Amenities

Consider the amenities: free-standing tub, shower/tub combo, jetted tub? Opt for the luxurious features that elevate your bathroom experience.

If you’re a shower person, decide between a shower/tub combo, a spacious walk-in (a.k.a. zero entry, curbless) shower, or the luxurious indulgence of a wet room.

Other considerations:
One-piece porcelain shower pan for a sleek look without grout 
One shower fixture or two
Handheld shower fixture
(I love combining the feature of a rain shower head with a handheld fixture – the best of both worlds)
One large niche or 2-3 smaller niches
Linear, square, or round shower drain
Commode with bidet seat

Water Closet

Do you prefer a separate small room for your commode, and does your square footage allow it? If not, I like placing the commode in a corner partially hidden by a half wall that could be part of the shower.

PRO TIP: if you choose a water closet, I recommend a pocket door – it’s a big space saver.

Fixed Elements

What is your preference for hard surfaces?
tile floor – shape and size
marble floor – shape and size
other type of flooring
tile in shower – small or large format (bring it to the ceiling for a designer look)
tile behind free-standing tub or vanities
niche in shower – one large or 2-3 small
vanity countertops – marble, quartz, other

another view of the large shower
Long Shelf in Shower - D Miko Design


You have several options here:
vertical or horizontal planks
ceramic architecture

Different tiles designed to make a patter for ceramic architecture - field tile, pencil tile, decorative tile, chair rail tile
Ceramic Architecture - for illustrative purposes only as these undertones are not cohesive


Don’t overlook grout details. Opt for quality epoxy grout with a color that complements your tile choice. It’s the finishing touch that ensures lasting beauty.

Vanity Mirrors Matter

Beyond style, consider functionality. Would you benefit more from a flat mirror, a lighted mirror, or the practicality of a medicine cabinet? Today’s medicine cabinets are chic, not those little boxes of yesteryear.

Modern Medicine Cabinet for a bathroom reno
Arched Medicine Cabinet
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Gold Medicine Cabinet - several sizes
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Round Led Medicine Cabinet
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Lighting Layers

Diversify your lighting sources. Combine ambient, task, and accent lighting for a layered effect that enhances functionality and ambiance. I prefer sconces at the sink vs. one overhead bar light. It provides more light and is much better for applying makeup as it doesn’t cast shadows on your face.

Faucets and Hardware

Mixing metals has a more custom look, but limit it to 2 finishes and repeat each finish at least once.
The best combos are:
gold and chrome
brass and polished nickel

***Warning*** unpopular opinion coming up:

I know black is trending right now, but please-please-please don’t install a black faucet. Instead, use a black-rimmed mirror and repeat the black only one more time (not in the plumbing fixtures).


Temperature Control

For the ultimate comfort, especially in cold climates, consider heated floors. It’s a luxurious touch that adds warmth and sophistication and saves on heating bills.

man installing radiant hear floor


If your house has modern architecture, look for tiles that resemble cement for cohesion in design – cream, beige, or gray are great choices. Otherwise, be very careful with your color selections. For instance, white and cream bathrooms are timeless if designed correctly. However, blues, greens, and tans can be used judiciously in coastal homes.

PRO TIP: To get a timeless designer look, use the same undertones.
For instance, my bathroom floor is shell stone tile installed in the Versailles pattern. It’s creamy with lots of off-white and yellow. The tub and sinks are pure white, and the vanities are off-white. To pull it all together, I used Cambria Whitecliff quartz as the countertop – it is creamy but reads warm white when viewed with all the other elements.

Shell Stone in Versailles Pattern - Source

Et Voilà!

You’ve got a complete roadmap to planning and designing your perfect bathroom. Start using these tips and watch as your space undergoes an on-point transformation. Ready to take your renovation to the next level? Book a VIP Strategy Consultation with me today! Trust me, it’s not just about saving money in the long run—it’s about getting your design and selections spot-on from the get-go, ensuring your dream bathroom becomes a reality without a hitch.

Keep Dancing, Darlene