When I created my house To Do list at the start of the year bathrooms didn’t feature on it. Why? Because, quite simply, kitchens and bathrooms tend to be the most expensive rooms in a house to re-vamp so, whilst I’m no fan of the kitchen and bathrooms in my house, I just couldn’t justify ripping them out and starting from scratch when they were perfectly functional (the picture below shows what the main bathroom looked like when viewing the house before we moved in), just not remotely to my taste. 
bathroom - pre moving in
Then the problems started. First with the sink in the main bathroom being incredibly slow to drain, but surely nothing a little sink and plughole unblocker couldn’t fix. Or so I thought. After a week or so water starting bubbling up into the shower tray in the en-suite bathroom. Dirty, brown, stinky water. After a couple more weeks I gave up on constantly trying to scrub clean the shower in the en-suite, closed the door on it and just stopped using it. A little while later I noticed some water coming through the ceiling of the living room which is directly below the main bathroom.

Fast forward a couple of months and I now find myself in the position of having zero functional bathrooms in the house. After ripping off the sides of the bath and having several exploratory poking around sessions trying, and failing, to find some kind of blockage I realised I needed to bite the bullet and call in a plumber. Because having a bathroom that looks like this is taking the shabby chic look a little too far…

The bad news: the previous owner was some kind of “builder” who clearly fancied himself as a plumbing expert as well. *insert eye roll here* The short-ish story is that all the pipework has essentially been put in incorrectly and therefore isn’t draining as it should and never will drain as it should – it all needs taking out and re-doing.
The even worse news: the previous owner has boxed in quite a lot of the pipework (including all the pipes that exit the house) and then tiled over it with no way to access it – so the only way to sort out the pipes is to rip out all the boxed in parts, which means ripping out a huge chunk of tile as well.
The SO BAD IT HURTS news: the plumbing for the main bathroom and en-suite are all connected so not only will I have to replace the main bathroom the en-suite will also end up being ripped to pieces and need replacing too. I’ll pause here to let you all have a little sympathy cry for me…

In the midst of dealing with the news like the mature sensible adult that I am and in no way sobbing like a baby and moping around the house, I read about the room makeover contest Tile Mountain are currently running. With the prize being vouchers for Tile Mountain it couldn’t have come at a better time so, here’s my entry…

bathroom inspiration

When I was gathering my inspiration pictures for the bathroom they all seemed to fall into two distinct categories; a luxe marble look and a more classic subway tile, often with a statement floor. You can see more of the pictures that inspired me on my Pinterest Board.

I’ve created a mood board for each look to help define the look I’m going for in both the main bathroom and the en-suite and illustrate my ideas a little more clearly.

First up is the main bathroom. For this I’m going for the luxe marble look that I’m obsessed with. 
Main bathroom mood board
There’s nothing about this concept that doesn’t make me want to do a happy dance. From including niches to store frequently used toiletries to amazing wall to wall marble effect tile.

The tile I’ve picked out is the Calacatta White Italian Porcelain tile from Tile Mountain, as shown in the three pictures on the left of the mood board. It’s seriously stunning – I just want to be able to pick up those pictures and magically make them my bathroom right now. The look of Italian Calacatta marble has been replicated in this tile and the end result manages to both scream luxury whilst still being subtle.

I’d bring in some warmer wood tones in the sink vanity worktop and add in a statement sink, like the one shown above from Superfront. Brass taps, handles and fittings will complement the tile and keep the luxe look.

For the en-suite, I’d go for a classic white tile paired with some amazing floor tile to inject a little personality and keep the space from being too bland.

En-suite bathroom mood board
My tile picks for the en-suite are Tile Mountain’s Matt White Metro Wall Tile. I love the look of a classic metro tile and an expanse of all white tile on the walls will help to ensure that this small room still feels light and bright. I’m tempted to perhaps add the wall tile in a slightly more unusual pattern.

Metro tile layout ideas

Image credits – left: Tile Mountain on Pinterest, right: Apartment Therapy


I love the idea shown above on the left, that I spotted on one of Tile Mountain’s Pinterest boards, of having the tile in the shower going in both horizontal and vertical lines on the wall. I’d probably opt for white grout to keep the design subtle but it would be a little bit of added interest to the room. I’d also consider adding the tile in a herringbone pattern as shown in the image on the right from Apartment Therapy.

As for the floor tiles. I’m struggling to decide which I love more. The Marrakech Bellisa patterned floor tiles or the Apollo Hexagon tiles in Black. I adore the simplicity of a monochrome black and white look but there’s just something about the pattern of the Marrakech Bellisa tiles that means I can’t stop looking at them. I love the idea of interjecting a little bit of a Mediterranean / Moroccan feel into the bathroom and these are certainly attention grabbing. If I’m wanting to go for an eye catching statement floor then these would definitely do that. There are some great images on the Tile Mountain Pinterest boards and this image, showcasing the Marrakech tile makes me lean more towards this look as the room still looks bright which is a really important consideration for me given how small the en-suite is. As much as I love monochrome bathrooms I can’t help but worry that a black floor may not be the best choice for my space as it receives very little natural light. Decisons, decisions…

As for the rest of the en-suite, I’d pick a small wall mounted sink without a vanity or pedestal to make the most of the limited floor space in the room and opt for wall mounted taps so as not to overcrowd a small sink space. If I did go for the Marrakech Bellisa floor tiles I’d definitely grab some of these gorgeous hammam towels to pick up on the colours of the tile.

A huge thumbs up to Tile Mountain for all the awesome inspiration I’ve found whilst creating this post and good luck to everyone who is entering the contest.


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