Cape Town based interior design creative and behavioural specialist – Kim Williams believes that all great bathrooms are instrumental in our ability to self-soothe…

She is convinced that well-planned and thoughtful design can enhance our experience of a space and contribute positively to our mental well-being.

Bathrooms are a quintessential example of a space that, with intuitive and considered design, have the potential to be functional, beautiful and significant in reducing our anxiety. By designing a soothing environment, we can create an oasis for us to retreat to, relax in and revitalise our souls after a long day.

Consider storage

Storage is essential in keeping an uncluttered space for the myriad of practical items like lotions, beauty products, soaps and shampoos you may have.

Begin by identifying everything that the shower needs to store, and then implement the ideal sized in-shower storage and avoid annoying bottles falling all over the place.

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Having a linen cupboard to store dry items like toilet paper and towels, as well as the normal vanity storage, is always a bonus if one can find a nook for it.

Kim Williams Bathroom design tips (Image supplied)

Bring nature in…

Plants work so well in bathroom spaces and the naturally occurring ambient humidity from the steam of a shower is perfect for a wide array of tropical and sub-tropical plants including orchids, peace lilies, ferns and even air plants.

They add a wonderful connection to nature, soften materials like marble or tile and add a gentle aspect of colour.

Use soft textures

Soft textures underfoot protect feet from surprisingly cold tiles and add a touch of luxury.

Every bathroom needs a bathmat but depending on the size of the bathroom, don’t be afraid to use more than one, or explore different shapes like a round carpet in the middle of a bathroom

Kim Williams Bathroom design tips (Image supplied)


Many people under-style their bathrooms, leaving them with a stark or incomplete feel. Simple elements like small decorative shelves for face cloths, diffusers and plants can make the world of difference.

Decanting oils and salts into pretty bottles can make a unique feature, add a spa-like element, and be arranged around a bath area to be both functional and aesthetically pleasing.

Mix and match

A combination of tiles in a bathroom creates a wonderful pattern even if they are all in one colour, and by using different shapes can create subtle interest. It is also a great way to create a feature area or wall with a smaller budget – one can combine cost-effective and expensive tiles to give a sense of elegance without the expense.

Kim Williams Bathroom design tips (Image supplied)

Think about seating

Having either a built-in shower seat, an ottoman or even a little bench to rest a towel on is always a nice touch and adds an element of luxury to a bathroom even in a much smaller space.

2020 brought a design revolution in what we want from our spaces as we all spent more time in our homes. Overall people have a greater desire to be more connected to nature, to warm up their spaces with earthy tones and soft textures and to add pops of energising colour.

Kim Williams Bathroom design tips (Image supplied)

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