Be part of the Qanvast Trust Programme!Find out more
RM50K Qanvast GuaranteeRM50K GuaranteePersonalised RecommendationsExclusive PerksPerks
Find out more

Got An Old Bathroom? This Trend Can Help You Save Costs

April 13, 2018

We get it - a bathroom should be a clean, renewing space. After all, it is the place where you wash off the cares of the day. However, things aren't always going to be picture perfect, especially as the years go by and wear and tear sets in. But if you're thinking your bathroom's in need for a major overhaul, this major 2018 bathroom trend might just be a godsend.

We're talking about the concept of Wabi-sabi! A Japanese philosophy that focuses on embracing everyday imperfections and seeing its beauty, this trend is all about working around the 'flaws' around a space, making small updates that bring a touch of rustic authenticity. Great news if you have a lived-in or second hand space! Here, we check out 4 low-cost ways to bring the 'Wabi-sabi' style into your dingy bathroom:

1. Update Old Tiles with Decals

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, White Tiles
Save to Qanvast Board

Interior Designer: Urban Home

Most bathrooms in Malaysia (especially older homes) probably wear white or blue ceramic tiles, a popular style from the 80s right up to the late 2000s.

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, Floor Decals
Save to Qanvast Board

Source: Pinterest

Nowadays however, we see more homogenous tiles and in contrast, ceramics appear dated. Still, if your bathroom is fitted with ceramic tiles, you don’t have to hack and replace them! Instead, simply add to its old-school charm by shining them and adding decorative decals. There are a huge variety of styles available online these days, such as hip, Peranakan tile stick-ons.

2. Give Old Hardware a Second Chance

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, Cement Screed Wall
Save to Qanvast Board

Interior Designer: X Two Concept

So if you’ve bought a second-hand home, chances are you’ll inherit older fixtures in the bathroom and elsewhere. However, when incorporating Wabi-sabi - if it's working, don't change it! Old, rusted fixtures may hold a gritty, rustic charm that adds tons of character to your bathroom.

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, Exposed Sink Pipe
Save to Qanvast Board

Interior Designer: Yong Studio

Instead, (for hygiene's sake) simply give them a good cleaning/polishing and you’re all set! There you go - money saved on hardware.

3. Improve the Lighting Instead

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, Hanging Pendant Lights
Save to Qanvast Board

Interior Designer: Dot Works

As you’ve probably noted, the Wabi-Sabi concept has no standard rules or colour schemes. Instead, it's about being creative and making necessary upgrades that can improve your everyday living. In this case, it could be simply installing lighting fixtures at vital spots. Not only does dim lighting make it hard to navigate around your (rather slippery) bathroom, it can make the space look dingy and unkempt.

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, Built In Vanity Mirror Lights
Save to Qanvast Board

Interior Designer: Surface R

Consider brightening up the space by fitting task lighting at both sides of a sink mirror or adding an electric lighted mirror. These upgrades don't require much structural works and won't majorly change the entire aesthetic of the bathroom. It does however, improve the lighting situation and enhance utility.

Another suggestion is to allow natural light to enter the space by clearing your windows from any obstructive decals or treatments.

4. Enjoy the Space

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, Undersink Storage
Save to Qanvast Board

Interior Designer: Seshan Design Sdn Bhd

Lastly, you can (and should) appreciate the space and fill it with accessories that give you maximum utility! Think about ways to enhance or refine the natural design. For instance, if you lack storage and space, fit in an under sink storage unit (great if you have a pedestal sinks) that would help fulfil your storage needs without taking up too much space.

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, DIY Cloth Sacks
Save to Qanvast Board

Source: Pinterest

Also, don’t be afraid to DIY when it comes to such accessories; Wabi-sabi concepts often showcase a ‘home-made’, recycled-and-reused appeal. So if you are into weekend art projects – go ahead make your own baskets, rugs, racks and soap dishes!

Wabi Sabi Bathrooms, Indoor Air Purifying Plants
Save to Qanvast Board

Source: Apartment Therapy

Add a little natural charm with a couple of potted plants too - get air-purifying ones like spider plants, weeping figs or snake plants for fresher air.

Love this idea, but have no clue how to make it work?

An interior designer can really come in handy! A professional interior designer can help you achieve your Wabi-sabi décor philosophy with maximum functionality - while still respecting the natural integrity of the space. Request for a quote here, and we can match you up with 5 interior firms, based on your budget and style.

Meet interior designers. Get quotes. Based on your requirements, we will recommend you up to 5 firms with the Qanvast Guarantee. Get Free Quotes

Preparing the next article…