Bathrooms are having a moment, the perfect small-scale canvas for homeowners and designers looking to imbue a stand-alone room with colour, texture, and personality. Whether the goal is bold, relaxing, or sophisticated, there’s a tile for that. Pretty and practical, tiles are being used on floors and walls alike to create a one-of-a-kind experience. With a dizzying array of choices, the sky’s the limit. What are you waiting for?
Here, a look at five recent project that have seen Ottawa designers make creative tile choices, transforming this oft-ignored room into the most-talked-about space in the house.
When a unique factory-turned-residential-space in Centretown came onto the market, a discerning buyer quickly snapped it up. He then called Serina Fraser of Clear Interior Design, asking the interior designer to oversee a full renovation that would honour the building’s roots by returning it to a rawer state. She relished the opportunity, embracing a pared-down aesthetic that incorporated the client’s love for Japanese architecture.
The powder room condenses this vision into one intimate space. “People sometimes ask me, ‘Why concentrate so much energy on a powder room?’ but I see it as a little pocket of experience,” she explains. Custom millwork in the powder room plays on the clean lines of Japanese design, as does a neutral palette that pairs shades of charcoal and black on the walls and floor with a creamy maple counter. That counter tapers to a point because the room is irregularly shaped, narrow at the entrance and widest at the back.
That unconventional shape led Fraser to start playing with the angles, carefully matching the concrete Ciot tile on two walls. The third wall is clad in a black woven wallpaper that references Japanese textures. Three pendant fixtures add mood lighting, the glass slit up the side so that the downlighting is complemented by a side glow emphasizing the concrete tile. And the shelf above the toilet? Its triangular form casts a unique shadow along the corner. The owner plans to source glassware for the shelf, an homage to the origins of the space as a glass factory.
Whimsy is provided by the mirror over the vanity, the curves of the acacia wood contradicting the linear and geometric motifs all around it. “It was a much-loved piece that belonged to the client’s former house,” says Fraser. “He wanted to take it with him, and this was exactly where he wanted it to be.” It’s just another injection of personality into this one-of-a-kind retreat.
Glamour is the name of the game in this stunning ensuite renovation from Veronica Martin Design Studio (above). The luxe wall and floor look like marble but are actually porcelain tile from Ciot.
“Porcelain is really changing the way we design these days,” explains Martin. “The realistic representation of natural materials, but with more durability and ease of maintenance, is a game changer for my industry.”
Polished nickel accessories add warmth, matching well with the gold tones of the pretty crystal chandelier.
The goal was a spa-like master bathroom with a dash of personality. Jamie Winters of Amsted Design-Build delivers with a bold purple mosaic floor tile inset with a strip of grey to break up the uniformity. Tree tiles, which the owners found in Montreal, have been used to create a mini portrait.
This chic powder room (above left) is at once playful and peaceful. Julia Enriquez of Astro Design Centre clad one wall in an elegant porcelain tile from Portugal that she sourced at Euro Tile & Stone. The Caesarstone counter provides a subtle counterpoint.
(Above right) Designer Bailey Delanty of Tego Design & Renovation Centre created a modern-glam look with a mosaic that combines three hexagonal glass tiles — smoky, clear, and textured — interspersed with a brushed-aluminum tile. A floating Corian counter in Deep Mink completes the look.
For the owner of this Manotick home, these porcelain tiles recalled the Moroccan and Mughal designs she admired. Designer Heather Tardioli of Laurysen Kitchens helped with the design, choosing simple cabinetry and soft quartz to allow the floor and tub to take the lead.