Tag: victoriaplum.com

 

It’s a fact: Homes are getting smarter. With innovations such as Amazon Alexa, Google Home and Apple HomePod allowing us to do anything from playing music to turning off the lights without having to lift a finger, isn’t it time bathrooms played catch-up?

In terms of technology, the humble bathroom really hasn’t changed much over the decades, but all that is set to change. We asked Adam Chard, bathroom expert at VictoriaPlum.com, to give us a taste of the type of bathroom tech we’ll be installing over the next few years.

 

 

Smart mirrors

 

Whilst a wide range of new bathroom technology is now both readily available and affordable, many homeowners are still resistant to change. If you fall into this bracket, why not start small? One of the easiest ways to make your bathroom that little bit smarter is by adding an LED mirror.

Not only will an illuminated mirror bring additional task lighting (great for applying makeup, brushing your teeth), it can also be used to provide ambient lighting, which is ideal for getting the mood just right. Plus, LEDs use less energy than traditional bulbs, so it’ll save you money in the long run.

However, it’s not all about lighting. Many LED mirrors now come with smart new features, like demisters, so no matter how hot and steamy your bathroom may get, you’ll still be able to use it, even after a bath or shower. You can also find models with infrared sensor switches, meaning wet or soapy hands needn’t cause you any issues.

With technology moving at a rapid pace, expect to see mirrors that sync with your messages, emails and social media in the near future.

 

 

Don’t miss out…

 

Why should you miss out on your favourite programmes just because you’re in the tub? Now, every bath time can become a soap opera, thanks to the widespread availability of bathroom TVs.

Specially-designed to be splash-resistant, with an IX64 rating, these TVs can be used in bathroom zone 1 and upwards, which even includes your shower enclosure! They can even be positioned flush to your bathroom tiles, blending seamlessly with the overall décor.

They come with a fully waterproof remote, so there’s no worries if you accidentally drop it into your bath. Plus, with all the great sports events taking place this year, you really wouldn’t want to miss a goal, try, wicket or point, just because you had to answer a call of nature!

 

Hands-free

 

That old, reliable combination of basin and toilet hasn’t altered much over the years in terms of design. However, there are a few innovations that are challenging the traditional way we use our bathroom suite.

The motion sensor flush may be more commonly found in public toilets, where a large number of users means this option is more hygienic, however they are now finding more practical use in homes. For older people, or those with restricted mobility, a motion sensor can provide much-needed relief, meaning no twisting or awkward bending is required to flush the toilet.

Likewise, motion sensor taps are now also finding their way into domestic settings, providing a more hygienic experience all round.

 

 

Bidet toilets

 

Taking things a step further, bidet toilets may be something you immediately associate with Japan, rather than the UK, however they are becoming more prevalent.

Costing significantly more than a traditional close coupled toilet, an electronic toilet system offers the user greater comfort and control over their personal hygiene. Ideal for the elderly, disabled or those with restricted mobility, this type of toilet usually features a warm air dryer, personal sprays and self-cleaning. Some can even be raised and lowered, so minimal bending of the legs is required, allowing the user to enjoy independent living well into their more senior years.

 

Smart showers

 

Again, something that is slowly but surely creeping into bathrooms up and down the country, smart showers are taking digital showering technology to another level entirely.

With a smart shower, like the SmarTap system from VictoriaPlum.com, you can fully customise and control all aspects of your showering experience, allowing individual family members to set their own perfect temperature, flow and duration. This can even be used to set your bath running, so it’s ready the minute you walk through the door.

Not only are smart showers good for a personalised experience, they can also be used to monitor usage, which is great if you’re looking to save water caring for an elderly relative. They can also be used to spot and solve any potential issues with your plumbing, with remote access meaning no need to call a qualified expert out.

Smart shower systems are great for people with different forms of disability, as, when combined with a smart home system such as Amazon Alexa, they can be voice activated.

 

To find out more about the latest bathroom tech, head to VictoriaPlum.com and keep up with the latest in bathroom technology.

 

 

When renovating your bathroom, it pays to know what’s hot and what’s not in contemporary bathroom design. That’s why we asked Nicky Kingston, Stylist for bathroom experts VictoriaPlum.com, to give us her top 5 bathroom trends for 2018.

 

Vibrant colours

 

Remember those terrible avocado bathroom suites from the 70s and 80s? Whether it was your grandparents or even your parents that owned one, homeowners have played it safe in recent times, employing a more neutral colour scheme for their bathrooms. These days, you’re more likely to find a monochrome palette rather than anything too adventurous.

However, this is all set to change in 2018, as designers start throwing caution to the wind! With Pantone announcing “ultra-violet” as their colour of the year, expect to start seeing purples and turquoises being used as a primary base colour in bathrooms up and down the country. Gold is also a colour that has caught the imagination (which I’ll discuss later).

A very simple way to introduce a primary colour into your bathroom design is by painting a wall and adding accessories in the same shade. Towels, bath mats and blinds can all be used to great effect.

 

A gold standard décor

 

Even before Great Britain’s record medal haul at the recent Winter Olympics, gold has been touted as the colour to look out for in interior design this year. And with bathrooms there is so much you can do with this precious metallic finish!

Of course, I’m not suggesting you go overboard and end up with a bathroom that looks like it belongs to some power-crazed military dictator. There are more subtle ways to give your bathroom the Midas touch.

Chrome taps and showers have been the mainstay of bathrooms for a long while, but we are now seeing more and more homeowners opting for gold-coloured finishes. Metallic tiles are also proving popular, with golds and silvers combining to create a glittering and quite glamorous back drop to that relaxing soak in the bath. You can even add matching gold accessories, to create a bathroom design that wins hands down.

 

 

Get smart

 

No longer just a niche interest of gadget-obsessed geeks, smart homes have really begun to take off in a big way. With millions of Amazon Alexa devices snapped up over the past 12 months, coupled with Apple’s new HomePod, it looks like many of us are finally embracing smart technology to run our homes. With this in mind, it is now the bathroom’s turn to take advantage of this new technology.

Digital showers are certainly getting smarter, with the ability to set a constant temperature and even switch easily between different outlets. However, homeowners are now demanding more from their bathroom experience.

New smart bathroom systems, like VictoriaPlum.com’s very own SmarTap, are now providing people with a personalised experience that can be controlled via their phone or even through voice activation. These smart bathroom systems not only help save water and energy, they also update automatically so features can be added and improved well into the future.

 

Funky floors

 

Boring flooring will become a thing of the past in 2018. Many people are now tearing up their tired old lino and jazzing things up with a feature floor.

The best way to approach this is to use feature tiles. There are so many different designs, patterns and colours to choose from, you’ll be spoilt for choice.

Victorian style tiles are popular, with ornate patterns that look elegant, whilst geometric patterns can be used to complement a multitude of styles, like Art Deco. Your tiles don’t even need to be rectangular or square in shape. There are many interesting shapes you could try like hexagons or even circles.

Choosing a coloured grout instead of the usual white is another way to funk up your flooring. Use a black grout to make white tiles stand out or choose a shade that works with your main bathroom colour.

Wood effect tiles will give the natural appearance of wood without any of the maintenance issues that real wood can bring.

 

 

Green for go

 

As well as getting smarter, our homes appear to be getting greener, with house plant sales at an all-time high.

Many modern homes have very little in the way of green space, and for those living in urban flats, the situation can be even worse. Therefore, it’s hardly surprising that many of us are using our green fingers to great effect when decorating our home interiors.

The benefits of houseplants have long been appreciated, but it is only in recent times that their use has seen a revival. In the bathroom, you can create a totally tropical look and feel by adding plants that thrive in warm and humid conditions. Aside from the usual suspects, like Spider Plants and Aloe Vera, why not add a Kentia Palm which thrives in low light or a Boston Fern which loves moisture. If you’re short on surfaces, add some hanging planters instead.

 

Get the look

 

Head to VictoriaPlum.com for more great bathroom ideas.

Victoria Plum small bathroom Smart Walnut

 

In this guest blog, the team at VictoriaPlum.com explains how to make the most of a small bathroom.

 

2.4 metres x 2.7 metres.

According to a recent survey of VictoriaPlum.com customers, this is the average size of a UK bathroom. If you think about it, that doesn’t really give you much to work with in terms of floor space, being not much bigger than a king sized mattress.

Striking a balance between style and practicality is the bane of the bathroom fitter’s life. On the one hand, the homeowner is looking to achieve a certain look and feel, but on the other hand, the actual size and shape of the room can throw a real spanner into the works, turning a grand plan into something quite disappointing.

But, before you think it’s all doom and gloom, there are some tricks of the trade that you can employ, to leave your bathroom feeling bigger than it actually is. Follow our tips below to make the best use of every square inch.

 

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Always look on the bright side

 

Forget smoke and mirrors, if you really want to create the illusion of space in a small bathroom, light and mirrors are the winning combination. The aim is to bounce both natural and artificial light around the bathroom, turning a gloomy space into one that is welcoming, and there are a number of ways you can do this.

The easiest method is to place a large mirror on the wall adjacent to the window. If the bathroom you’re renovating doesn’t have a window, a full length mirror could be a great option to boost any interior lighting. Mirrors with LED lights are superb, providing additional task lighting when applying makeup or putting contact lenses in. You can even choose between warm and cold light to create a particular ambience.

 

Lighten up a little

 

A dark colour scheme can immediately make a small space feel oppressive, so you’ll need to make sure any tiles, paint or even wallpaper you use are of a sufficiently light shade. However, whilst fairly bland colours like beige, cream or light brown spring to mind, there are ways you can inject a touch of personality and contemporary style into proceedings.

These days, monochrome colour palettes are proving incredibly popular, and one of the reasons for this is that they work well with small bathrooms. Whites and light greys keep things feeling clean and uncluttered, whilst a border or mosaic pattern can break up any design that appears a little too plain.

When choosing your wall or floor coverings, gloss tiles can add another reflective surface into the mix, enhancing both natural and artificial light.

 

Victoria Plum small bathroom fairbanks

 

Don’t get cornered

 

The corners of a bathroom are often the most underutilised space in the whole room, however you can turn them to your advantage. With a corner toilet, basin or quadrant shower enclosure, the tricky corner can be put to serious use.

By fitting a corner installation, you can overcome issues caused by radiators that need to be positioned along a wall. Or, to solve the problem another way, there are now even heated towel rails that fit into corners, giving you greater heating options.

 

Vanity project

 

Many homeowners don’t think creatively enough when it comes to installing a basin or bathroom suite. Whilst the traditional pedestal basin is still a very common choice, the vanity unit is gaining popularity with its smart combination of storage space and style.

Thanks to space-saving designs that are just over 200mm in depth, you’ll find plenty of vanity units that fit a small space. If you really want to squeeze every last inch out of your floor space, why not consider a combination unit? By combining the toilet, basin and vanity into one easy-to-fit unit, you not only provide extra storage space, but you’ll save both time and money too.

For great space-saving inspiration, you can head to VictoriaPlum.com and discover even more small bathroom ideas.

 

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