Small bathrooms present a number of challenges when it comes to storage and organization. With limited space, every inch must be utilized efficiently. This is where small bathroom vanities play an essential role. A well-chosen small vanity can maximize storage, create an uncluttered look, and enhance functionality in a petite powder room.
What to Consider When Choosing a Small Bathroom Vanity
Selecting the right vanity is key to creating a beautifully organized small bathroom. Here are the most important factors to keep in mind:
Take measurements of the wall space and look for a vanity that will fit in the allotted footprint without crowding the room. Allow for doors and drawers to fully open. An ideal small vanity will utilize all available horizontal space.
Assess your storage requirements. The number and size of drawers and cabinet space should be sufficient for towels, toiletries, grooming products and other bathroom necessities. Features like pull-out trays, interior organizing systems, and slide out hampers maximize space.
Small vanities are commonly available in ceramic, porcelain, stainless steel, engineered stone, solid surface, acrylic, wood, and laminate. Consider factors like moisture resistance, durability, ease of cleaning and aesthetic appeal. Wood stands up well in humid bathroom environments when properly sealed.
Look for a style that aligns with your overall bathroom design, such as contemporary, traditional, rustic, etc. Also choose finishes and hardware that coordinate with other features and fixtures in the room.
Sink and Counter Space
A vessel sink is a popular choice for small bathrooms because it saves counter space. Wall mount faucets are also ideal. Be sure to have enough counter area for essentials like soap, lotion, candles, etc.
Small vanities range widely in price. Determine how much you want to invest and find options in your target range. Consider longevity and quality as well as cost.
Small Bathroom Vanity Ideas
Here are some smart small vanity solutions to maximize style and functionality in a compact bathroom:
A narrow freestanding vanity doesn’t take up wall space and can easily fit in a tight footprint. Stylish turned wood legs add flair. Include closed storage cabinets and open shelving.
Wall Mount Vanity
Wall mounted vanities with floating shelves create an airy, open look. Include drawers for out of sight storage. A coordinating wall mirror can double the sense of space.
For a truly minimalist look, consider a pedestal vanity with no storage space. The small footprint and airy open design work especially well in tiny half baths. Use wall cabinets instead for storage.
Make the most of unused corner space with a custom angled vanity design. Include a corner sink to save inches. Pull out shelves and drawers provide handy storage.
Recessing a vanity into the wall hides some of the bulk while still offering storage. Floating shelves on each side keep the area looking light and open.
Mix and Match Vanity
Opt for an ultra-narrow vanity paired with matching wall cabinets. This provides closed storage and display space while still leaving room to move around.
Choosing the Right Sink for a Small Vanity
The sink is a defining feature of any vanity. For petite powder rooms, space-saving sinks are a must.
Vessel sinks sit atop the vanity surface, leaving more room for toiletries and decor. Glass, metal, and ceramic styles make a stylish statement in small baths.
Without a built-in countertop, wall-mounted sinks give the illusion of more square footage. Plus, they allow for narrower vanities.
With a minimal footprint, pedestal sinks are ideal for maximizing every inch. Look for compact size scales with rounded basins.
Make use of wasted corner space with a triangular sink basin. Combine with a corner vanity to eke out every bit of usable area.
Oval or Round Sinks
Compact oval and round sinks take up less length than traditional rectangular sinks, a plus in a small vanity setting. Modern styles are sleek and shapely.
Choosing a Small Vanity to Fit Your Bathroom Layout
Bathroom layout, plumbing, existing features, and traffic flow all impact what style of vanity will work best.
For a narrow galley layout:
Consider a wall-hung vanity to open up floor space. Floating shelves provide storage without crowding the room.
For a bathroom with bifold or pocket doors:
Measure to allow doors to fully open. A wall-mounted or recessed vanity will keep the center open.
For a bathroom with one sink:
A small single vanity with cabinets below maximizes storage. Built-in drawers allow for folded towel storage.
For a Jack and Jill bathroom:
Two identical small vanities placed back to back share plumbing yet allow privacy for each room.
For a bathroom with a window:
A narrow vanity below the window maximizes light. Be sure the vanity doesn’t block window access.
For a bathroom with old plumbing:
Furniture-style legs allow flexibility in placement. Customize based on the plumbing layout.
Small Bathroom Vanity Ideas for Specific Design Styles
Vanities with finishes and details tailored to a specific design style pull the whole room together.
Small contemporary bathroom vanities:
Clean lines, recessed handles, neutral colors, and materials like chrome, glass, and high-gloss lacquer give a sleek modern look.
Small traditional bathroom vanities:
Fluted columns, arched detailing, raised panel doors, molded edges, and vintage-style hardware have an elegant classic style.
Small cottage bathroom vanities:
Painted or distressed wood, visible grain, apron-front sinks, and decorative hardware give a casual, farmhouse feel.
Small rustic bathroom vanities:
Rough-sawn wood, galvanized metal, leather hinges, and hammered copper sinks complement Southwest or mountain style rooms.
Small modern farmhouse bathroom vanities:
Crisp shaker style doors paired with materials like marble, brass, or blackened steel put a contemporary spin on farmhouse.
Small Double Vanity Ideas
Two petite vanities can double function and storage in a larger bathroom. Here are some small double vanity ideas:
- Two identical vanities placed side by side work well with shared plumbing and electrical.
- Opt for floating double vanities with out of sight storage drawers to maintain an open look.
- Place vanities on opposite walls with decorative floor space between. Great for Jack and Jill baths.
- Use contrasting styles, like one traditional and one modern, to add visual interest.
- Incorporate two sinks in one longer vanity for a cohesive built-in look.
DIY Small Bathroom Vanity Ideas
With some skill and creativity, you can build a customized small vanity. DIY options include:
- Repurposing a flea market dresser by cutting down to fit and adding a sink.
- Using wall cabinets with a wood plank top as a makeshift floating vanity.
- Building a rustic style vanity out of reclaimed wood barn beams.
- Turning an antique buffet into a vessel sink vanity with charm.
- Adding plumbing to a garage sale find nightstand for an eclectic look.
Small Bathroom Vanity Storage Solutions
Lack of storage is one of the biggest complaints in a petite bathroom. Get creative with these storage solutions:
- Incorporate soft close drawers with built-in organizers for toiletries.
- Use a tilt-out vanity tray inside the cabinet for hassle-free access to essentials.
- Opt for pull out hampers that keep laundry hidden.
- Install adjustable shelves in wall cabinets for stacked towels.
- Add a narrow freestanding cabinet for linens and backup supplies.
- Undermount the sink for extra surface area. A sliding tray keeps items accessible.
Small Bathroom Vanity Lighting Ideas
Proper vanity lighting is essential. Consider these flattering options:
- Vertical LED light bars on each side of the mirror provide even illumination.
- Swing arm wall sconces flanking the mirror adjust to direct light where needed.
- A pair of modern pendants centered over the vanity make a striking style statement.
- A line of low-profile recessed lights built into the mirror frame eliminate shadows.
- Floating shelves with integrated lighting add both form and function.
- For a no-fuss option, choose a vanity with built-in lighting around the mirror.
Small Bathroom Vanity Ideas on a Budget
There are many affordable small vanity options to suit all price points:
- DIY using an inexpensive laminate cabinet with a pre-cut countertop and drop-in sink.
- Look for a quality vanity secondhand and give it new life with paint, hardware and a fresh sink.
- Opt for a modular system with mix-and-match cabinets to save on custom options.
- Consider a ceramic pedestal sink without a cabinet base for significant cost savings.
- Look for bargains on salvaged and scratch-and-dent vanities that function perfectly.
- Purchase a big box store vanity on sale or with coupons and customize to your taste.
With clever design choices and compact styles, small bathroom vanities can make an outsized impact. Select space-savvy sinks, maximize every inch of storage, and choose finishes tailored to your decor. The result is a petite powder room that’s both functional and beautiful. With just a little creativity, even the smallest bathrooms can take on a spa-like feel.
Frequently Asked Questions About Small Bathroom Vanities
What are the most popular styles of small bathroom vanities?
Some of today’s most popular styles for small bathrooms include floating vanities, pedestal sinks, wall-mounted vanities, corner vanities, recessed vanities, and freestanding vanities. These minimally styled vanities open up floor space and give the illusion of more square footage.
How much storage should a small bathroom vanity have?
In an ideal small vanity, the cabinet and drawer space should be maximized to hold all essential bathroom items. Well-designed drawers, pull-out trays, tilt-out hampers, and other smart storage solutions keep everything organized.
What size vanity works best in a half bath?
For a roomy half bath, look for a narrow single vanity around 20-24 inches wide. Make sure it allows at least 21 inches of clearance from the vanity to the toilet. For a truly tiny half bath, a wall-hung vanity frees up precious floor space.
What depth is standard for a small bathroom vanity?
The standard depth of a bathroom vanity is usually 21 to 24 inches. However in small bathrooms, consider more shallow options around 16 to 18 inches deep to save on valuable square footage.
Should I get matching his-and-hers vanities in a master bath?
Two separate but identical small vanities can be an excellent use of space in a master bath while still allowing privacy. Floating double vanities are an especially streamlined, modern option.
What small vanity height is best for kids?
Standard vanity heights may be too tall for children. Look for a narrow vanity in the 24 to 26 inch range or install a step stool so they can easily reach the sink.
How do I add storage to a small bathroom without a vanity?
If you have a pedestal sink or other style without a vanity, add wall mounted cabinets. Narrow floor cabinets, corner shelves, over the toilet racks and drawer organizers also help maximize space.
What small vanity colors make a bathroom look bigger?
Light, bright colors like white and soft grey give the illusion of a larger vanity and more spacious room. Dark colors tend to make a small space feel more closed in.
Can I put a small vanity in a closet so it doesn’t take up bathroom space?
Yes, designing a closet with plumbing allows you to use the vanity without crowding the main bathroom. Just be sure to meet local building code requirements.
Final Thoughts on Choosing the Perfect Small Vanity
The key to selecting the ideal small bathroom vanity is focusing on your available space, storage needs, design style and budget. Take time to browse the many options available today in compact styles and choose carefully based on what works best for your unique bathroom. With smart planning, even the tiniest powder room can take on a luxurious feel. The right petite vanity creates a space that is both stylish and supremely functional.
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