En-suite bathrooms: 13 ideas to transform your small space | Real Homes

En-suite bathrooms: 13 ideas to transform your small space

Whether your current en-suite bathroom is in need of an update, or if you're planning a new project, get inspired by our gallery of ideas...

En-suite bathrooms
(Image credit: Katie Lee)

Finding stylish and realistic en-suite bathroom ideas can be tricky, but if you are after ways you can really make the most of your en suite no matter what the size then you have come to the right place. You may be working with a tiny or awkwardly shaped room (or both!), or your en-suite may be open to the bedroom, but whatever type of en-suite you have, this is a room that needs careful planning so that you get it right.

So, whether you're updating a tired space and need helpful bathroom ideas or if you're designing a bathroom from scratch or even thinking of adding a bathroom to a bedroom, extension or loft conversion, our en-suite design ideas are compact, contemporary and practical in their design. 

1.  Opt for streamlined sanitaryware

light coloured bathroom with large windows and neutral scheme

(Image credit: GSG Ceramic Design)

Opting for streamlined sanitary ware in an en-suite is a practical option that maximises space while giving a bathroom a sleek and contemporary feel – a countertop basin with a simple silhouette is both a practical and stylish example. For more gorgeous contemporary bathroom ideas, check out our gallery. 

For similar fittings, try GSG Ceramics.

2. Maximise awkward spaces

modern bathroom with a freestanding bath, wall hung units, white walls and a wooden table

(Image credit: Rachael Smith)

En-suite bathrooms, particularly those in a loft conversions, can be small, awkward spaces with tricky angles. It's important to plan your en-suite effectively in order to maximise space and come up with design solutions that tackle awkward angles. 

Transforming an en-suite into a wet room can be a great way of tackling this issue as it allows the installation of a simple shower screen (rather than a fitted shower unit), ensuring that awkward spaces are utilised effectively. If this idea takes your fancy go and have a read of our guide to adding a wet room

3. Design a scheme that complements adjoining rooms

Blue ensuite by B&Q

(Image credit: B&Q )

When designing an en-suite, it can be a good idea to opt for a scheme that complements the adjoining rooms. This creates a sense of flow and continuity through the spaces, making them feel connected and well considered. 

4. Consider opening up a space with a doorless frame

bedroom leading into ensuite in farmhouse

(Image credit: Douglas Gibb)

If you want to create an open feel between a bedroom and en-suite bathroom, consider choosing a doorless frame. This can help enhance the feeling of continuity between the two spaces, particularly when similar colours run through the schemes of both spaces. 

5. Create the illusion of space with open plan design

Black shower by Meir

(Image credit: Meir )

A minimalist, open-plan scheme is a great option for a small bathroom or en-suite, creating the illusion of a space that's large and light. Consider installing a recessed wall unit during the process of designing a bathroom, as this maximises space and makes for an effective bathroom storage solution

6. Optimise storage with built in units

Ludivine Broch:

(Image credit: Darren Chung © Future)

If maximising storage is essential in your en-suite, it may be worth considering a built in or bespoke storage unit – we'd recommend opting for a sleek and minimalist style to prevent an en-suite from feeling boxy. No space? An under-the-sink storage unit can fulfil most storage needs in a small ensuite. 

7. Create a partition between your bedroom and en-suite with the addition of a stylish glass screen

small bathroom with freestanding bath and stylish screen

(Image credit: The Baked Tile Company)

A floor–to–ceiling glass screen can make for a stylish option if you're adding an en-suite and are concerned that doing so will compromise natural light within a space.  Plus, patterned floor tiles, like these London Funk Compass Tiles from The Baked Tile Company, help create flow between the two spaces. We have loads of patterned floor tile design ideas over in our gallery so go and take a look if you want to recreate a similar look. 

8. Choose tiles that complement a space

En suite bathroom by Topps Tiles

(Image credit: Topps Tiles)

Take time to consider a tile scheme that complements your en-suite bathroom – particularly if it's an awkward shape. We are obsessed with scalloped tiles at the moment, and they are looking to be a big interior trend for 2020. These tiles are the Syren tiles from Topps Tiles

9. Go colourful and eclectic with a fun wallpaper

Bathroom lighting ideas by Ikea lighting

(Image credit: Ikea)

Enhance your en-suite visually with a colourful wallpaper. A particularly good option for loft en-suites, since the wallpaper with draw attention from the awkward shape of the room. You can go bold with your choice too, don't let the fact you are working with a small space let you be deterred, a wallpaper that has a lot going on can actually visual expand the room. 

Like everybody else we love Cole & Son's Jungle wallpaper

10. Embrace a monochrome colour scheme

En suite bathroom by Britton Bathrooms

(Image credit: Britton Bathrooms)

En-suites tend to be small spaces, and using colour contrasts is a good way to make them seem larger. Check out more similar designs in our black bathroom ideas gallery. 

We love the elegant monochrome juxtapositions in this en-suite by Britton Bathrooms

11.Choose a small (but statement) freestanding bath

(Image credit: Brent Darby)

Didn't think your en-suite could fit an elegant freestanding tub? Think again. There are so many models out there that are made for small spaces. Just look at this gorgeous little bath from Albion Baths, the Tubby Too is only 147cm long!

For more gorgeous freestanding baths, have a read of our dedicated feature. 

12. Go for an all white colour scheme for a fresh look 

All white ensuite bathroom

(Image credit: H and G Designs)

Is there anything more Instagrammable that an all white room with a couple of stylish house plants? We don't think so, and it's a really easy look to achieve, especially in a bathroom where most of the essentials are obviously white. 

Make the space slightly less clinical with greenery and choose hardware – things like handles, taps, shower heads – in gold, silver or even black to create a bit of contrast. You could also add colour with a cute bath mat. 

13. Add an ensuite into an alcove in a loft bedroom 

January 2020: Debbie Goodwin set about lovingly renovating the bungalow her dad built

(Image credit: Katie Lee)

If you have a loft bedroom, it can be tricky working out how to fit in an en suite. This is such a fab idea though, use the eaves, the sections that might otherwise go unused. Just plan your bathroom around the proportions, for example a bath where the ceiling in lowest to create a cosy feel and a shower at the tallest part of the room.  If you want more en suite ideas, take a tour of this bungalow transformation what has been fitted into that small space is amazing. 

Looking for more en-suite inspiration?