When you go all out for a new spa-like walk-in shower, don’t forget to add a personal touch with a built-in custom shower niche or seating. The tile that makes the walls and floors (and even the ceiling!) of your new Madison WI shower special works its magic everywhere.
What exactly is a “niche?” It has many definitions including something as simple as a shelf. It’s also called an alcove, hollow, recess or nook. Or maybe you’ll like “hidey-hole” or cubby hole. Whatever you call it, in a shower it’s a handy spot to store whatever you need – shampoo, body wash or a fluffy luffa.
A built in spot like that sounds great, doesn’t it? As you plan for this personal touch of convenience, consider several basic elements:
- How big or how small? Carefully consider what you’re likely to put in your new space – large bottles of shampoo, soap or shaving items? Better to go bigger than expected and wish you had more space in a few weeks, right?
- Shape? Do you want a large, long horizontal ledge niche or a square one? Maybe one square and one rectangular? One big, one small or two the same size? Maybe three?
- How high off the shower floor? How many different sized people will use the space? Do you want to bend to pick up soap? Or, do you want to have to reach to shoulder-height for a bottle of cream rinse? And, at whose should-height?
Including built-in spaces in your new shower not only adds convenient storage, it adds style to the design. Your decision involves combining practical storage with good design. Do you let being practical overshadow getting creative? You have so many options there’s no wrong answer.
Explore Options For A Custom Shower Niche
When you remodel your bathroom, add a new shower or upgrade an existing space with new tile, you have many options. You can create cubby-holes of whatever size and shape you want. Of course, to include a niche recessed into the wall means modifying the basic structure, too.
While fine-tuning your plans, consider these points:
- Horizontal or vertical design? A horizontal installation increases storage space significantly, but the wall behind it will need serious reinforcing. A horizontal niche can be small or it can stretch the length of a wall. A vertical niche – one taller than it is wide – can be installed between wall studs so it doesn’t need as much reinforcing. It too has very few size restrictions – you can go floor to ceiling if you want. The taller the niche is the more shelves it has room for – but the more difficult reaching top and bottom shelves might become. Don’t forget, you’ll be handling your things with shower spray making everything wet and slippery.
- Size matters! How many personal care products are really necessary in your shower? As you plan for a neat, well-organized spa-like shower take an inventory of what you really need at hand all the time. To keep things tidy and more attractive, wouldn’t it be better to bring things in with you as needed? With handy spots to put them, of course. Creating a space to hold everything you might use in a shower – including what every member of the family using the space might use – defeats the purpose. Are you creating a place to relax and enjoy the experience or another storage cabinet? Find a compromise between what you need and what you might use.
Walk-in Shower Design – Be Practical Or Think Style?
When it comes to the final plan what gets top priority, practical layout or stylish accents? Think about how you’ll use your new shower. Will you be in a hurry to get going or relaxing and enjoying the experience? If you’re planning for the early morning “get the day started right” mode, practical design and niche placement is certainly a top priority. You want everything within easy reach.
When you’re concerned with symmetry and design, placement, size and shape of the installation is critical. A custom shower niche becomes both functional and aesthetic. Consider installing two or three niches of different sizes and shapes. Create a pattern like wall art. Using contrasting tile shapes and colors on the back wall of each niche accents the installation.
As your plan comes together have you considered a spot for the most important element in the shower – you? A great way to further the custom design of your new shower is to add a bench. Again, tile makes a great platform – with many options with textured finishes so the bench seat isn’t too slippery. Benches are simple and practical. They can be small corner installations or wide enough to cover a whole wall. Or a combination in a spacious walk-in shower. Wouldn’t it be nice to have place to sit and let a rain-style shower head wash away a hectic day’s stress?
Choosing Tile For Your Custom Shower – Try Ceramic Tile
A custom shower niche or bench is an integral part of the shower space. Selecting the right tile making it both functional and attractive requires thought. Sure, you can use the same tile you’ve selected for the entire shower, but do you want to? Do you want to add a personal touch? You have dozens of choices.
Ceramic tile is the No. 1 choice for showers because it comes in so many slip-resistant forms. Large sizes are ideal for walls and bench seats – including wood-look planks. Smaller, mosaic tiles make excellent shower floors because they provide better footing. Designers recommend building around a curbless shower design whenever you can. Not only because they look really cool, but because not having to step up and over anything is much safer.
There’s always a chance water will collect inside a niche or at the base of a shower seat. That’s another reason one of the many ceramic tiles is a wise choice – they’re extremely water-proof. In addition, mold, mildew and bacteria thrive where water pools. Ceramic tiles are inhospitable to bacteria – there are some with antimicrobial properties baked in. Tile is a healthy choice.
Your new shower should reflect your personality. Ceramics come in so many sizes, shapes, colors and textures you’ll have no problem letting your inner spirit shine.
Planning A Custom Shower Niche – Go Where The Pros Go
Close your eyes and imagine how great your new walk-in shower will be. Choosing the right layout and tile is a challenge, but it can also be fun. You get a chance to explore choices and options you may have never dreamed existed. Including shower niches and seating is one of the most important details in most bathroom remodeling plans. When you’ve worn out pages of your favorite design idea magazines and “shopped” all the remodeling TV episodes, it’s time to go where the pros go.
Molony Tile is the go-to source of tile for the area’s top contractors. In addition, our staff readily assists ambitious do-it-yourselfers any way it can. Molony’s experienced and skilled craftsmen have provided tile for high-end jobs throughout the Madison area for more than 70 years.
Is there a new spa-like walk-in shower in your future? Explore all your options. Call 608-268-8453 or email us to make an appointment to visit our unmatched showroom. You’ll find tile of any size, shape and color to make your custom shower niche a reality in your Madison WI home.