The Bathroom Idea Book


Walk through a bathroom showroom and you'll see that today's bathroom is more than a sink, tub, and toilet in standard white. With so many options, there are lots of decisions to be made on the way to creating your perfect bathroom. Whether you're remodeling or building new, The Bathroom Idea Book can help.

Written by a professional builder and bathroom remodeler, The Bathroom Idea Book is packed full of ideas, along with tips and advice to help you: design your bath; choose ...

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Walk through a bathroom showroom and you'll see that today's bathroom is more than a sink, tub, and toilet in standard white. With so many options, there are lots of decisions to be made on the way to creating your perfect bathroom. Whether you're remodeling or building new, The Bathroom Idea Book can help.

Written by a professional builder and bathroom remodeler, The Bathroom Idea Book is packed full of ideas, along with tips and advice to help you: design your bath; choose fixtures, floor and countertop materials, lighting, and ventilation; and plan for accessibility. With over 400 photos and illustrations, The Bathroom Idea Book is your guide to the perfect bathroom.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
When your bathroom needs an overhaul, how do you pick out the materials that will work best for you? In this book, noted home design writer Andrew Wormer leads us, step by step, through defining and decorating bathrooms. Whether you’re remodeling a main bathroom to keep up with a growing family or creating a master bath for your own private luxury, Wormer’s suggestions will point you toward suitable solutions. “Creating a new bathroom isn’t rocket science, but it is more complicated than it used to be,” says Wormer. But with this book, you’ll have the ideas and information you need to design a stylish bathroom that works.
Library Journal
Similar to Joanne Kellar Bouknight's The Kitchen Idea Book (LJ 1/99), Wormer's new work comprehensively covers bathroom design, from the planning stages to choosing cabinets, countertops, fixtures, flooring, and light. For each choice, he sites advantage and disadvantage of each. What makes this book especially useful are the numerous photographs illustrating how all these materials have been used in actual bathrooms. This book will be well suited for public libraries and interior design collections. Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781561583942
  • Publisher: Taunton Press, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/28/2001
  • Series: Idea Book Series
  • Pages: 176
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 11.82 (h) x 0.47 (d)

Meet the Author

Andrew Wormer is a contributing editor to "Fine Homebuilding" magazine and the author of "The Builder's Book of Bathrooms" (The Taunton Press) and "The Bathroom Idea Book" (The Taunton Press). An experienced builder and bathroom remodeler, Andrew lives in Ferrisburgh, Vermont.

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Table of Contents



Defining the bath
Family/general-purpose baths
Master-bath suites
Children's baths
Guest baths/powder rooms
Bathroom planning
Elements of good design
Organizing the space
Accessibility and safety


Taking a look at style
Period baths
Contemporary baths
Natural finish materials
Tile and stone
Glass and metal
Other materials
Synthetic materials
Solid-surface materials
Paint and wallpaper


Bathing fixtures
Tubs and whirlpools
Tub/shower combination units
Manufactured showers
Custom showers
Faucets and sprays


Toilets and bidets
Toilet options
Vanity-mounted sinks
Wall-hung sinks
Freestanding and pedestal sinks


Vanity options
Medicine cabinets
Other cabinetry and storage
Shelving and special storage


Looking at lighting
Natural lighting
Artificial lighting
Doing it with mirrors
Climate control


Saunas, steamrooms, and spas
Alternative spaces

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The average family bathroom is arguably the hardest-working room in the house. People come and go at all hours of the day and night, water gets splashed around, the air gets humid enough to grow mold and peel wallpaper right off the walls. No wonder the bathroom is also the most frequently remodeled room in the house.

Time was, all this activity took place in a nondescript, utilitarian room not much bigger than a closet (remember the term water closet?). After being fitted with a tub, toilet, and vanity, the roughly 5-ft. by 7-ft. space that evolved out of the post­World War II building boom just didn't offer much room for design creativity. For several generations of new homeowners, having a hand in the design of their home's bathrooms didn't mean much more than choosing the colors. A major overhaul meant new vinyl on the floor, a new vanity, or maybe new pink or blue fixtures instead of the old white ones.

Today, a stroll through a bath showroom or a quick look at some of the bathrooms featured in this book proves that those days are long gone. Forget great rooms and kitchens; bathrooms are the new frontier in home design. Working couples, traditional, blended, and extended families, the young and old and physically disadvantaged--we all have greater expectations for the places in which we live. We want our bathrooms to be beautiful and functional. Easy to clean. A refuge from our busy lives. In response, bathrooms are getting bigger, offering more features, using a wider variety of better materials, and becoming more fun to look at and more pleasant to spend time in.

If you're planning to create a new bathroom or remodel an existing one, you're looking for ideas that will help you transform this room from the merely utilitarian to a personal space that fits your needs. That's where this book comes in. Think of it as a guided tour of some of the most beautiful and creative bathrooms being built today. The tour guides? Some of the best designers and architectural photographers in the business.

Bathrooms today are asked to serve many different functions, from the most mundane to the almost spiritual. My 10-year-old son uses our bathroom as a refuge, a quiet place to read where his younger sister can't bother him. She, in turn, uses it as an entertainment center, a place to apply lipstick and nail polish to her 5-year-old face and fingernails (and different parts of the bathroom itself).

When I'm not picking up after the both of them in there, I'm thinking about ways that it could be improved. What if the lighting were better, more flattering at the vanity, not quite so bright over the toilet and dim in the shower? What if there was better storage for clean towels and more hooks for the wet towels lying on the floor (as well as some device that would automatically pick them up)? How about shelves for the books my son loves to read, more drawers for my daughter's brightly colored cosmetics? What if there were a built-in step stool, or a lower sink, or a bigger mirror so that she wouldn't have to climb up onto the countertop? What if the tub had a handheld shower as well as the fixed showerhead, making it easier to clean both my daughter and the tub afterward? And while we're at it, why not get rid of that crummy shower curtain?

My musings about bathrooms aren't exactly idle ones; I build them (among other things) when I'm not writing about construction. Not long ago, I contracted with some friends to renovate one of the bathrooms in their house. Although I approached this particular job with some trepidation (working for friends and relatives is always a potential disaster), everybody seemed happy with the finished result. But one of the things that irked me was that I had few visual references for some of the ideas that I was trying to convey to my clients. While we did finally manage to filter out ideas from previous projects, magazines, and manufacturer's product catalogs--all good sources to refer to--I know that this book would have been extremely helpful in the design process.

Like my friends, what you're looking for is ideas; that's why you've picked up this book. What you'll find here are different approaches to bathroom layout, styles, and colors. You'll learn about different finish materials. About different kinds of fixtures. About cabinetry and storage. Even about lighting. Some of these ideas will seem pretty esoteric--how many of us with children will rest easy with a glass sink in the house, for example?--while others may seem pretty mundane. The point is, there are dozens of details that go into making a successful bathroom, and what works in one situation might not be appropriate in another. What you are holding here is a compendium of details, ideas that look good and work well together. Ideas that just might work well in your bathroom.

This isn't a book about wildly impractical, pie-in-the-sky bathrooms for the rich and famous (although there are some of those as well). These are, for the most part, working bathrooms (rather than stylized spaces) designed by professionals for a wide variety of clients and intended to express different ideas about the different elements that go into each bathroom project. Chances are, you'll find some ideas that correspond with your own notions about what is important in this most personal and intimate of spaces. Other ideas you'll reject outright. In either event, you should find plenty of inspiration, as well as practical and essential information, for planning your own bathroom.

Large, small, or somewhere in between, there's a bathroom in here--or some part of it--like the one that you're thinking about. Now is the time to stop dreaming about that new bathroom and start doing something about it.

Copyright © 2001 by Andrew Wormer

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