Just Ask A Designer: Bathroom Design


Q. What do you recommend for the the front of the tub, wood or tile, I really want wood but my husband thinks tile will be more durable? Gianna

A. Wood or tile on the face of the tub deck are both durable and acceptable design options. The main difference between the two is the design aesthetic that you are looking to achieve. The tub deck itself is where the material will effect the durability. Above, the face is covered with recessed wood panels, the top is a quartz material (natural stone crushed and manufactured into a solid surface) and there is an under-mount tub. I personally love this look and the top will wear like iron.


Wood doesn’t have to be painted white, stained wood can be just as lovely if this is the look you like. The shutter detail on the face is the perfect complement to the actual plantation shutters on the windows and the rich wood color is warm and inviting.


Here a simple subway tile covers the face of the tub deck and the look is clean and simple. This top is Carrara marble which requires more maintenance than a quartz product because it is a natural stone and porous. I recommend clear soaps and shampoos, nothing with color that could stain the top. Also white candles, colored wax can stain the top as well. Below, is a combination of tile and wood with a sleek grey top for a more contemporary look.


Now that we have established that tile and wood are both good options for the face let’s talk about how you can design your tub deck to reflect your personal style. Below, for a modern organic look this gorgeous stone covers the face and deck. Natural wood on the window trim and seamless glass doors add to the design aesthetic.


For a more classic look, a wood face with a more traditional design and oversize moldings and trim to complete the look. This tub is a drop in vs. the under-mount versions we have been looking at. One is not better than the other just a different look. The mill-work is just breathtaking and the built-in bookcase adds function and design detail.


Lastly, a cottage inspired master-bath with the addition of bead-board to create the casual cottage look. The moldings and trim are just stunning here as well and are a welcomed addition to the basic cottage design details. Happy designing!


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  • Connie

    We’re planning to redo our bathroom and these examples will help.

  • http://adoreyourplace.com/ Cathy from Adore Your Place

    Send pictures if you need more advice, would love to help :)