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Dark tiles line the interior of this small room, but a vanity light box and bright green tub ensure the mood is never sombre


Accepted convention says white surfaces will make a small room look larger. But there are other ways to achieve the same effect.

Architect Tim Dorrington, the designer and owner of this remodelled bungalow, opted to wrap the entire bathroom in grey-brown tiles.

"When an entire room, including the floors and ceiling, features the same material, it creates a sense of space," he says. "These tiles were chosen simply because we liked them, but we have used several techniques to make the space feel larger."

Positioning the shower next to the tub within an open wet area meant there was no need for a space-consuming shower stall. Utilising a clear glass wall to separate the vanity also ensured the space wasn't compromised.

A cantilevered vanity light box has a multi-purpose role to play. As well as bringing valuable light into the room, its long, horizontal axis helps to accentuate the length of the room. It also provides a shelf for personal items, both next to the vanity and within the shower area.


The freestanding tub further enhances the sense of space – its apple-green enamel adding a playful element. Other materials are limited to Meranti plywood, used for laundry doors and shelving.

First published date: 22 June 2007

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Credit List

Architect Tim Dorrington, NZIA, Tim Dorrington Architects (Auckland)
Builder Straight Line Building
Vanity Custom acrylic light box
Shower fittings Paini Cox mixer; Hansgrohe Rainbow slide shower
Shower enclosure Custom fixed glass screen from Sauvarins
Tub Great Baths
Tiles Jatoba Cinza Ferro mosaics from Artedomus
Laundry doors and shelving Meranti ply with clear seal
Accessories DCS Nicko Alto heated towel rail from LG Carder