White bathrooms are a staple of modern residential design. White gives of the feeling of cleanliness, purity, and lightness.
I am an architect in New York and owner of Fontan Architecture. We work on a variety of project types including apartment and loft renovations. All photos in this post are from our projects in New York. We will explore the use of white in bathroom design, and various white bathroom ideas.
- Pure White Marble
- Marble With Veins
- Porcelain Tiles
- Sculptural Tub
- Clawfoot Tub
- Add Color
- Matte Finishes
- Minimalist Design
- Add a Niche
- Custom Vanity
- Wall Mounted Vanity
- Attention to Detail
- Metal or Black Door Hardware
- Unique Metal Finishes
- Walk In Shower
- Barn Door Shower Door
- Frameless Shower Doors
- Wall Sconces
Pure White Marble
If you want a white bathroom then you may want to consider white marble. I will put white marbles into two categories. Marble with veins and marble without veins. If you want a really all white uniform look than you should consider white marble without veins. Some marbles have a lot of detail but some have no detail at all. This is a good go to for modern white bathroom design ideas.
In the picture below you can see a white marble bathroom we renovated in a Manhattan Apartment. This marble has absolutely no veins and creates an incredibly uniform white surface.
White Marble Tile With Veins
There are many different types of marble available, even if you are only looking at white. Most marbles have some veining. Some marbles have more veins then others. If you are going to make a white bathroom you may want to use a marble with some veining to add detail and character to what could otherwise be a very stark bathroom design. This all comes down to personal taste.
In the picture below you can see a white marble bathroom with dark veins.
You do not have to use marble to make a white bathroom. Porcelain is a really popular material for bathrooms and comes in many different finishes. Porcelain tiles can be uniform colors, have textures, and mimic natural materials such as marble. Some of these porcelains look better than others so as an architect I always go to the showroom to see samples especially if they have large pieces on display.
This bathroom has a white statuary marble look porcelain tile. It was installed with tight joints to make the wall look uniform and the tiles are oriented vertically which is a more modern look.
White and off white bathrooms can be overly simple. A sculptural tub can add a bit extra design to a bathroom. If the bathroom is large enough you may want to consider a freestanding tub which has a real luxurious feel to it.
The picture below is of an off white bathroom with a freestanding sculptural tub.
A claw foot tub is a classical feature that can actually work very well in a contemporary or modern bathroom.
Sometimes the best idea for a white bathroom is to add some color. All white with white on white is not for everyone. If it is not for you then you should consider mixing some other colors into your bathroom design.
The bathroom in this next picture has white walls, a white toilet, and a white sink but also a wood vanity with a blue mosaic marble floor. Don’t be afraid of a little contrast.
Matte White Finishes
When making an all white bathroom you may want to use polished finishes but if not matte finishes can be a more subtle option. A matte white bathroom design can be a great idea for a simple contemporary bathroom.
This bathroom has matte white marble tiles, matte white Corian, white tub, and white toilet. The tub is an undermount tub with white Corian top and removable face panel. This therapeutic tub required access panels and due to the configuration of the apartment the only place to put access was in the tub apron, which we made custom and removable.
White bathrooms can be very minimalist. Keep it simple and you can have a modern white minimalist bathroom.
Modern Bathroom Niche
A bathroom niche is the ideal option for a modern bathroom. A niche can be long and linear or vertical and full height.
In this bathroom the niche goes from floor to ceiling in the shower. It is in the corner with one wall continuing straight into the niche.
Custom White Vanity
If you can’t find a vanity you like then you can make a custom vanity.
This bathroom has a custom white vanity with a Corian integrated sink and countertop with countertop waterfall side panels. This is a simple contemporary vanity.
Wall Mounted Vanity
Wall mounted vanities are a modern and convenient addition to a bathroom. They are easy to clean and have a modern floating look.
Details Make the Design
There are a lot of details to consider when renovating a bathroom. No detail should be overlooked nothing should be left to chance. Good design is consistent and thought out.
In the picture below you can see a large wall mirror with a mirrored vanity installed in it. The towel warmer is installed on the mirror and the outlet even has a mirrored cover since it is installed on the mirror.
Metal or Black Door Hardware
If you are going to make a white bathroom you will probably have a white door. Metal or black hardware goes very well with white. You may want to match the door hardware finish with the fixtures in the bathroom.
Unique Metal Finishes
Gold finishes have been trending recently at least what I can see from my clients tastes. It’s not for everyone but see the picture below with gold fixtures in a white bathroom. If you like white and gold maybe consider some unique finishes for your fixtures and finishes.
Walk In Shower
A separate walk in shower and separate bathtub is a great option if the bathroom is large enough. this is very common in luxury bathrooms.
The picture below has a white marble and glass walk in shower with a mosaic floor.
Barn Door Shower Door
Modern barn door style shower door hardware is a great look for modern bathrooms. They metal finish hardware stands out and has a real sleek mechanical feel.
Frameless Shower Doors
Modern Wall Sconces
White Bathroom Design
As an architect, I study design and construction, but these are complicated and quite involved issues. Every project is different and must be assessed on its own unique characteristics. This post does not assume to cover every possible issue or condition, but provide a general overview of the topic.
Thank you for reading our blog post on White Bathroom Design Ideas
I hope this was helpful. Please leave questions and comments below. If you would like to speak with an architect, you can contact us directly.
This post was written by Jorge Fontan AIA a Registered Architect and owner of New York City architecture firm Fontan Architecture. Jorge Fontan has earned 3 degrees in the study of architecture including two degrees from the City University of New York and a Masters Degree in Advanced Architectural Design from Columbia University. Jorge has a background in construction and has been practicing architecture for 15 years where he has designed renovations and new developments of various building types.