Attics can get a bad rap, written off as dark, awkwardly shaped spaces only good for storage. But the exact features that make them challenging — their unique angles and proximity to the roof — also give them the potential to be among the most stunning parts of the home.
If you've been considering an attic bathroom remodel, let these ideas be the push you've been waiting for. Make an impact by installing a skylight, adding bold wallpaper, or getting creative with mosaic tile, as seen in Tonya Papanikolov's Toronto home above.
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Jessica Harris, manager of production design at Living Spaces, told Hunker some of her favorite home decor tips for working with unusual, awkward, and small spaces in an attic bathroom. Her advice includes everything from using odd nooks and crannies for storage to installing wood paneling.
Find all of Harris's attic bathroom ideas — and more — ahead. Before you know it, you'll have the beautiful upstairs retreat of your dreams.
15 Attic Bathroom Ideas
1. Pick the boldest wallpaper you can find.
You didn't think you needed banana leaf wallpaper in your attic bathroom, but you obviously do. Here, Chango and Co. shows us how it's done. And even though this space is small, it has no lack of personality. Green board and batten lines the lower half of the room, and a wall-mounted toilet makes an appearance too, because why not?
2. Install light wood floors.
Sure, a lot of attic bathrooms have exposed ceiling beams; it's a structural thing. But this one from Kathleen Walsh Interiors has wooden beams and flooring (and a modern farmhouse vanity, too). The natural finish on the planks feels minimal and bright, which is especially perfect for attics that lack sunlight.
3. Let your skylight shine.
If your attic has a skylight, lean into it and let it be your focal point. If not, consider installing one to take advantage of natural light, as in this beautiful bathroom by @malu_homestaging. "The combination of a skylight and a shower will make your mornings much more exciting to wake up to," Harris says. "Installing a skylight in your attic bathroom is easy to do due to its proximity to the roof. This is the perfect way to welcome sunlight into the space without sacrificing privacy. "
4. Make the most of awkward spaces.
Some attics have odd or unexpected layouts. This may present a bit of a challenge, but it's also an opportunity to get creative with your design. In this small bathroom, a clawfoot freestanding tub is nestled perfectly into a narrow space, creating a cozy spot for a bath.
5. Turn the whole thing into a wet room.
This white bathroom is from Leanne Ford's very first interior design project, but she really nailed it. Most of the surfaces here are tiled (and what a great use of subway tile on the walls), making the entire space waterproof. If you have the square footage and the budget to turn your entire attic into a wet room, go for it.
6. Highlight the unique shape of your attic.
Why stop at bold wallpaper and pretty floor tiles when you can do an all-over mosaic? In this small attic bathroom, the whimsical pattern extends across the floor, around the bathtub, and up the wall, all the way to the slanted ceiling, accentuating the unique shape of the attic space. "Attics typically have very interesting sloped, angled ceilings," Harris says. "Take advantage of the eclectic characteristics by drawing attention to it!"
7. Make it moody.
Powder rooms can stand to have a good heap of character. Case in point: this moody space from Studio McGee. There's a touch of brass, a vintage-style vanity, and olive green paneled walls to end all walls. Test the decorating waters by adding only one or two of these elements in your attic remodel, or layer them all.
8. Install built-ins.
We're fans of attic storage if it's stylish. And these bathroom built-ins by Chango & Co. definitely fit the description. The subtle greige color gives an all-white space a little more depth. Plus, it can work with a plethora of interior styles from traditional to coastal to glam.
9. Get creative with storage.
If you have odd corners in your attic bathroom that are too small to do much with, use them as storage space. "I recommend a woven basket to make the most of every nook and cranny and hide away any extra toiletries, linens or towels," Harris says. In this contemporary bathroom by @nomadhomebykim, the awkward space under the sloped ceiling is used to its full potential for storage in a room that, at first glance, may not have had enough space.
10. Space out the sinks.
Double sinks don't have to share a single vanity. In this attic bathroom from David Netto Design, the marble basins sit on opposite ends of the room. And they look completely uncrowded and symmetrical.
11. Create contrast.
Crisp white walls, a rustic wood vanity, and huge black floor tiles create the perfect balance in this bathroom. The color palette is limited but not boring. If you're a fan of monochromatic spaces, try replicating this look. Just don't forget to add texture with a jute or vintage wool rug and maybe some greenery, too.
12. Keep the floor clear.
No matter the size of your attic bathroom, keeping the floor clear will always help the space feel larger. "The more of the floor that can be seen, the stronger the illusion that there is actually more floor space itself," Harris says. "This helps create a feeling of airiness and will help create more visual surface." This modern bathroom by Katy of @placefortyeight combines light flooring-colored with an open-concept walk-in shower for a space that feels large and bright.
13. Opt for decorative flooring.
Attics may have a reputation for being cold or dreary, but installing fun, patterned flooring can brighten them up. In this attic bathroom by Maryland-based K Squared Builders, a high-contrast geometric tile floor brings life to a traditional color scheme. We love the way the light from the large windows reflects off all the beautiful natural materials.
14. Use earth tones for warmth.
For an instant infusion of warmth, decorate with earth tones. In this tiny attic bathroom by Holly Ruanne Duckworth, the walls are painted a light sage green, which complements the shades of rust and slate blue in the palazzo-style tile on the floor and in the shower enclosure. The wall art, cheeky rug, and large potted plant provide the perfect finishing touches.
15. Try wood paneling.
A fully wood-paneled bathroom in your attic can create a truly warm and cozy space. This would look great in a rustic or farmhouse-style home. Plus, Harris likes the idea of paneling the ceiling because it creates visual appeal. "[This] will naturally bring the eye upward and highlight that cool detail of the space," she says.