Bathrooms in caravans tend to be bland, beige rooms, ignored when we think about design because of their pokey dimensions…and because we’re not exactly entertaining guests or watching movies in there.
And yet precisely because bathrooms are small and occupied only briefly, the humble bathroom offers caravan owners an opportunity to flex our creative muscle. The most lived-in rooms in a caravan - living areas, bedrooms and kitchens - need to be more crowdpleasing and neutral, but caravan bathrooms are the perfect spaces in which to experiment with bright patterns, bold colours and quirky themes. And if you’ll allow me to become a little bit philosophical about bogs, bathrooms are also places where we snatch a few precious minutes of solitude and solace when we’re entertaining family and friends, so I believe in making them a visual breath of fresh air, as well as a place for us to catch our breath.
1. LOOK UP
I’m not sure I can think of a faster, cheaper way to transform a small room than wallpaper, and wallpapering a bathroom ceiling is a brilliant way to bring in a lot of pattern and colour to a tiny room. The ceiling is the largest uninterrupted canvas in a bathroom, so make the most of it. I’m a huge fan of Glaswegian design brand Timorous Beasties (timorousbeasties.com) and their vaguely gothic wallpaper patterns, such as their Coral Cork wallpaper that will survive a slightly damp shower room. Just make sure you opt for a smallish repetitive pattern so that you get the full effect in a small space. https://www.timorousbeasties.com/shop/view-product/coral-cork-wallpaper?item=10841
2. TRY ON A THEME
Because bathrooms are small, any design decisions have a more concentrated effect, and it’s therefore much easier to create a distinct, immediately recognisable theme. So if you always fancied filling a room with (real or faux) foliage for a botanical effect, or you have shells and reclaimed driftwood or other seaside treasures you’re desperate to show off with a marine theme, go for it. When we designed our three-bedroom Willerby Bluebird, Club Jupiter, last year, we replaced the standard toilet and silk with a vintage pastel set (easily sourced on eBay for buttons) for a glamorous 1960s Palm Springs holiday home vibe that might have looked a bit old fashioned if we’d extended this colour palate and theme to a larger space.
3. CREATE A CORK MEMORY PINBOARD
Bathrooms are also great places to stick up postcards, notes and other nostalgic holiday souvenirs that might look a bit tatty elsewhere in the caravan. In Club Jupiter, we knew that the smallest bathroom - the cloakroom toilet - was the ideal space for a cork board where we could pin notes from family and friends and other guests, polaroid pictures and other colourful bits and bobs. Good hosts keep their guests entertained, even when they’re on the toilet…