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When too many people want to use the bathroom at the same time at home, it becomes a major source of family friction. Among the best solution here is to see whether it is possible to provide extra facilities in the house, so that the whole family does not have to rely on access to a single bathroom.

Remember that a small shower or wet room, comprising an open shower area, small wall-mounted basin, a toilet with a built-in cistern and a sliding-door access, which can be accommodated in a space as small as 1100mm x 2200mm. So even if you are not fortunate enough to live in a large house, you may be able to find room for such an alteration.

The main restrictions concern the proximity of waste drainage and water pipes, and proper ventilation will need to be provided. If you don’t have the space or the budget to build a separate shower room, it is advisable to relieve pressure by installing double sinks.

Provide convenience

Double sinks provide extra convenience for high traffic areas – no waiting in line to brush your teeth in the morning, or no shaving cream drying on your face while you wait for your partner to finish with her make-up application. With double sinks, there is room for everyone.

According to Arvind Raghwani, managing director at Laxcon, there should be a distance of at least 750mm between the two basins, measured from the centre line of one basin to the centre line of the second:  “Less distance is acceptable, but will make it more difficult for two people to use the area at the same time.”


The two main considerations that dictate layout are the plumbing system and the need to provide sufficient space around the various fixtures for them to be used comfortably. Otherwise, the only considerations are the positions of the windows and the door.

The following guidelines can help you design a convenient bathroom space


The first priority in drainage planning is the location of the toilet as this need to be close to the sewer drain. You should keep the toilet located next to an outside wall for easy access, as laying new drainage pipes beneath the floors is very disruptive and expensive.

It will also be difficult to access, which may be problematic later on should the pipe become blocked. The waste pipes for other fittings can often run round one or more sides of the room as they tend to be small in diameter, but the ideal is to always aim for the shortest pipe runs, with as few bends possible. All pipes should slope gently downwards.


General bathroom ventilation is very important and is achieved via opening windows, by extractor fans, or both. Extractor fans do work, but nothing can compare to an opening window so it is important to try and include one in the bathroom design.

Windows are not only good for ventilation, but they are also important sources of natural light for the bathroom.


The position of the various washing facilities in the bathroom are influenced to a degree by the supply pipes from hot and cold water.

Long runs of hot water pipe are not recommended as they waste energy, and so should be avoided at all costs. In a low pressure plumbing system, the priority is to get a sufficient head of pressure by the correct placement of the geyser or the installation of a pump.

Space Planning

One of the major considerations in bathroom design is the space that is provided around the various fittings and sanitary-ware.

If the bathroom is to be comfortable to use, you have to allow sufficient space for movement. The crucial area is around the basin, where there needs to be a minimum of 200mm elbow room on either side and 700mm of space in front to allow comfortable washing.

Enclosed showers with one or two sides require a clear floor space of 400mm next to the tray for access and dressing, while those enclosed on three sides require a minimum of 700mm of space in front. Make sure you have easy access to bath taps, and a minimum space of 700mm x 1100mm next to the bath for climbing out and drying.

Baths can be placed below a sloping ceiling, for example below stairs or under the eaves of the roof – 1200mm headroom above the base of the bath is usually adequate, but it is advisable to check the space beforehand by physically going through the actions.

Similarly, you can fit a toilet in a restricted space – 2000mm headroom is required to stand in front of the pan, but the roofline can slope down to 1200mm behind the cistern. Clear space of 600mm x 800mm should be left n front of the toilet for access. A bidet requires similar space, plus a 200mm knee space either side.


When rearranging fittings, ensure that enough space is left for the door to swing open and for a person to step into the room and shut the door comfortably.  If necessary, doors can be re-hung to open outwards, but take care that they will not hit anyone passing outside is opened suddenly.

Alternatively, sliding, concertina or saloon doors offer great space-saving and very functional alternatives.


Arvind Raghwani, Managing Director,


Edition 10

Bathroom Décor



Today there’s certainly no better place to relax in at home than in your bathroom – often referred to as the inner sanctuary of the home.

While actualizing a bathroom that reflect your taste and likes, it important  to keep in mind that you need to have some sort of game plan prior to purchasing your decorative items. The last thing you want is an over-crowded, cluttered room filled with mismatching and out of place items.

Everything in the bathroom will either enhance or detract from the aesthetics. Functionality and practicality are key, however decoratives for the sole purpose of a decorative function add a certain appeal to your room.

More than just a soap dish or a toothbrush holder, the range of accessories available for bathrooms today is huge. The more contemporary bathroom finds itself fitted with artwork and art pieces as well as framed mirrors, vases, candlesticks and so on.

Bathroom Designs“Probably the most important thing to bear in mind when adding accessories is to ensure that everything is coordinated – by colour, material and/or style – and that everything has both a place and a purpose, even if that purpose is to simply bring colour into the room,” says Sherrif Raafat, the Ideal Standard Export Area Manager.

Having an underlying linking thread (be it complementary colours, or pieces of a similar style) ensures that a seamless flow is produced in this space.

Settling on the most ideal sanitary-ware and furniture in the bathroom has become a popular trend. Vanities, curtaining and drapes are becoming the norm and are a great way to bring colour into this space. Once you have selected the theme and style you like; purchasing accessories and other items that will contribute towards this style will be a lot easier.

One thing you may be concerned about is the longevity of such pieces in your bathroom, and the effect that steam and water may have on them. “Ceramics stands-out as the most ideal flooring as steam as water won’t damage it along other accessories. It’s however so important to treat wooden accessories with care and wipe water up immediately,” adds Raafat.

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Edition 10

Bathroom Textures



Although striving for uniqueness in bathroom design may be a headache, the answer is on wall effects writes, Shrinal Patel

Bathroom design can be hopelessly mundane: Every bathroom must include the same elements – toilet, shower/tub, sink – in a configuration that will prove convenient. So, striving for individuality in bathroom design can definitely prove difficult. Though variety in sink, cabinetry and lighting design can add some flavor, with tubs and toilets, it’s hard to be original. Adding texture to the walls with a sea sponge, trowel, or paint roller just may be the answer.”

“Bathrooms are typically the smallest rooms in a home, and the wall space in these areas allow for some bold decorating decisions. Textured walls add interest to the space and can transform the room. A stucco look will complement a brightly-coloured Mexican theme, while a gentle sand texture can complement a beach-themed bathroom. Applying texture to the walls is a two-day project.”

Notched Trowel

A notched trowel can be a terrific way to add texture to your bathroom walls. ?”Apply a thin coat of drywall compound” ?to your wall. Then, take a notched trowel and get creative. You can swirl the trowel lightly through the wet compound in a vertical or horizontal pattern. Create intermittent texture by leaving untextured space between designs, horizontally, vertically, or both. Or, simply press the trowel into the compound at regular intervals for an interesting effect. Depending on the size of the area you want to texture, this job can take some time, but if texture is what you are after, it may be well worth the effort. Alternatively, you can determine what type of pattern or design you like and have a contractor handle the job instead.

Sea Sponge

What could be more fitting for a space where water is in frequent use than a sea sponge texture on the walls. ?The gentle irregularity of the sponge texture can prove soothing and add an element of nature to your bathroom. You can find sea sponges at drugstores, natural food stores, department stores or big-box retailers. Once again, spread a thin layer of drywall compound over the wall surface, then go to work. You can create rows or columns of your sponge’s impressions. You can alternate using two or three different sponges: As each sea sponge will create a different impression, your design will become varied, adding visual appeal. You might even use one sponge at the baseboard and ceiling and another to create impressions in the intervening wall space. You are limited only by your own imagination.

“Painting a wall with a sponge gives the wall an interesting texture that you can’t achieve with regular painting techniques. Using this sponge texture technique also allows you to layer various colours on top of each other to get the exact shading you want for the room. Though sponging a wall is a simple process, it does take longer than traditional painting.”

baseboard and ceiling and another to create impressions in the intervening wall space. You are limited only by your own imagination.

“Painting a wall with a sponge gives the wall an interesting texture that you can’t achieve with regular painting techniques. Using this sponge texture technique also allows you to layer various colours on top of each other to get the exact shading you want for the room. Though sponging a wall is a simple process, it does take longer than traditional painting.”

Paint Roller

If you are looking for a one-step solution, the paint roller technique might be for you. It is up to you to use a regular paint roller or a textured roller. Dip your roller into “thinned-out drywall compound,” and draw the roller across the wall. You may want to use both a plain and a textured roller effect, in alternating rows or columns. You might consider creating one effect in the tub or shower and a different one near the sink. And you might decide to leave parts of the wall without texture.

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Edition 10

Bar and wine cabinets



Its all about Style, Class and Beauty With modern living, bar and wine cabinets are very essential especially in open plan houses writes Sally Aganda

If you want to add a special feel to your bar, then bar cabinets are an absolute must. They not only add functionality to your living area but also help you entertain in style with their beautiful fixtures and fittings.

When buying bar cabinets, remember that not all bars are the same so there is bound to be a difference in design and style. Actualizing the right bar cabinet calls for one to involve a professional interior designer as he or she will bring that added value and grace to your home.

 Get stylish

Wine Cabinet 2There is no clear-cut method that teaches you how to buy a classy and stylish bar cabinet. But yes, you can consult an interior design consultant – you will get to know what sort of bar cabinet you should go for and selection of a good piece. Sometimes, however, it’s better to go with the flow and customize one that speaks uniquely to you rather than banking on technical knowledge.

Most bar cabinets normally have a small refrigerating unit that is ideally suited for storing things that require refrigeration There are few bar cabinets available in the market that contain a special compartment, which not only holds wine but also keeps it chilled. Of course, it is not really obligatory for bar cabinets to keep the drinks cool. Their main purpose is to store and protect the wine bottles without getting them damaged.

In addition, make sure that the compartments in bar cabinets have decent space to store the wine. The best bar cabinets are those that have a shelf, tailor made for storing shot glasses and specialty liquor bottles.  Many individuals prefer bar cabinets with holders that store wine glasses upside down.

The style, class as well as the beauty of bar and wine cabinets all go together to make your living area more attractive and elegant. Thus, it is advised that you choose the bar cabinet very carefully keeping in mind the décor and theme of your living space.

Styles and Designs in Wine Cabinets

Wine CabinetIf you want to keep your wine bottles in good condition and avoid getting them damaged, bar and wine cabinets are the best choice for storing them safely and conveniently. Another good thing about wine cabinets is that they do away with issues of sedimentation or deposition. In other words, the flavor of wine remains the same and even after months or years you still get the same wine you bought.

When we talk about the styles and designs in wine cabinets, there is nothing better than having custom wine cabinets designed according to your taste. Not only are they affordable but there is also a wide variety to choose from.

The best part about custom wine cabinets is that they can be fitted in a kitchen or living room décor according to individual needs and space without any hassle. Don’t opt for too large or oversized wine cabinet as it can ruin the overall look of the bar and affect the décor of your area.

Choosing Bar Cabinet Designs

A wine cabinet is a very convenient as well as a safe storage place for storing fine wines. It is also an attractive piece of furniture that adds more spirit and life to the room with its design and finish. However, in order to make your room livelier with a bar cabinet, it is important to choose wisely and pick the right bar cabinet design; that is, one that looks good and serves its purpose too.

Types of Bar Cabinets

Wine Cabinet 1There are a wide variety of bar cabinets available in the market. You can customize keeping in mind your taste.  As the market is full of different kinds of bar cabinets, it’s easier to indulge the assistance of a professional interior designer to give you ideas.

Here we have put together important information that will tell you about the types of bar cabinets available and how to best put them to use. Types of bar cabinets means the distinctive way in which the bar cabinet has been constructed as well as the unique features it offers.  This information will help in making a wise choice in customizing the best bar cabinets for your home.

There are 3 main types of bar cabinets namely:

  • Traditional bar cabinet
  • Transitional bar cabinet
  • Contemporary bar cabinet

Traditional bar cabinet

This type of bar cabinet is made up of hardwood, either mahogany, meru oak or mvule. You can also incorporate wood veneer finishes as they also have a traditional feel. This type of bar cabinet may not have a front door. A custom engraved traditional bar cabinet will surely impress your guests with its elegance.

 Contemporary bar cabinet

If you have modern décor in your home, try incorporating this type of bar cabinet as it is not only functional but also looks very stylish. These bar cabinets are made from acrylic finished doors coupled with glass and marble. It has arch shaped top, glass shelves, an area for storing wine bottles and a locking door that allows you to protect the wine bottles and keep them safe.


The wood used in making these bar cabinets is either walnut, pine or oak. These cabinets also provide space for keeping stemware, a table top for corking, serving and plenty of storage for wine bottles. It is an ideal choice for your bar.

All the above types and guidelines not only refer to the style or the design in which bar and wine cabinets are available; they also help you to select the best product to suit your needs, while meeting your décor requirements, storage and in keeping with your entertaining.

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