Bathroom at a Glance
Who lives here: Interior designer Susan Wintersteen of Savvy Interiors and her husband, along with their daughter and dog
Location: Del Mar, California
Size: 90 square feet (8.4 square meters)
Before: The house was built in the mid-1990s, and typical of that era, it had a large tub surround, low vanities and a small shower stall. “We aren’t really bathtub people, and we were getting a hot tub for the backyard. We knew we’d never use that tub,” Wintersteen says.
The bathroom also had a small, cave-like shower stall. “We really wanted a bigger shower,” Wintersteen says.
“The windows in the shower have become one of my favorite features. I love all the natural light and being able to see outside from the shower,” Wintersteen says.
Wintersteen covered the shower surround in a zellige-inspired tile from Bedrosians. The handmade texture and subtle variety of colors in the tiles add an organic feel to the shower.
Designers often use their own homes as laboratories to test out ideas for their clients. Look to the right of the photo to see where Wintersteen added half-inch penny rounds in the grout lines between the bathroom floor’s large-format tiles. “I had never done this before, or seen it done before, so it was a real risk,” she says. It was the kind of risk designers are willing to take on their own homes to make sure it will work for clients in the future, and it paid off.
Finding a great tile professional was key. “I had the tile installer cut these lines of dots from 12-by-12-inch penny round tiles,” she says. “Good tile installers get excited about trying something new and different.”
Using a neutral color palette on the walls puts the focus on the windows. The windows also help balance the large scale of the shower. “The teak bench also helped break up the space,” Wintersteen says. “And it’s far enough from the shower head that it doesn’t ever get very wet.”
Wintersteen designed custom cabinetry for the vanity and adjacent towers. The wood is white oak with a custom white stain.
This photo also provides a closer look at the floor tiles. They’re made of digitally printed porcelain that looks like cement, another organic material.
The mirrored door at the left in this photo leads to a closet.
The faucets are from Brizo. “I like to use one-hole faucets for universal design reasons. They are so much easier to use than faucets with an 8-inch spread, and they work well in a small space,” Wintersteen says.
After relocating the shower, Wintersteen had room to install additional cabinetry for storing items such as toilet paper. A painting of lotuses plays off the rich range of greens in the wallcovering.
With their youngest daughter about to head off to college, interior designer Susan Wintersteen and her husband decided to downsize to a house about half the size of the one where they’d raised their children. With her ability to create beautiful spaces, Wintersteen transformed the Southern California home into one that felt exactly the right size for them. In the en suite bathroom the couple share, she replaced a bathtub she knew they would never use with a roomy shower stall, added lots of storage and created a nature-inspired palette that relaxes her the moment she walks into the room.
This content was originally published here.