Redefining Spaces: A Look At Modern Industrial Bathroom Trends

Published by: Kevin Sears

28th September 23

Bathroom Ideas

Reading Time: 6 mins 36 secs

Inspired by converted warehouses and elegant loft spaces, the industrial bathroom trend blends modern convenience with traditional aesthetics for a look that can be adapted for any home.


From exposed brickwork to glossy tiles, the industrial style plays around with contrasts. By emphasising simplicity, function is at the heart of the design which allows the room to be both practical and elegant.


Industrial bathrooms have a reputation for cold impersonality, but modern takes on the trend play with materials and colour for a more personal effect. 


To help you understand the style, we’ve put together this complete guide to industrial bathrooms. 

Understanding the Industrial Bathroom Aesthetic

The industrial style draws its inspiration from converted factories. These old warehouses and work buildings were transformed into lofts and apartments while retaining many of the key industrial elements. The overall style was casual, relaxed, and cool.


Industrial bathroom aesthetics retain many of the components of the original warehouse setting. Key features include exposed brickwork, natural materials, strong lighting, and a minimal colour palette. 


The easy and open style of the industrial bathroom brings a relaxed luxury to the home, and always emits a sense of freedom and clutter-free openness. 

The Appeal of an Industrial Bathroom

There’s an open and untouched feel to the industrial bathroom, pairing natural chic with understated luxury. This chic raw aesthetic offers a balance of modern and classic that keeps the design fresh and evergreen - meaning, your industrial bathroom won’t go out of fashion anytime soon.


Although “raw” can have uncomfortable connotations of “unfinished”, that’s not what the industrial bathroom is about. Raw edges are paired with sleek lines, for a design that has an unassuming style.


The Bauhaus might have had its heyday at the beginning of the 20th century, but its ideals still resonate today; the industrial style understands the importance of blending form and function. Exposed brick and piping celebrate functionality while their simple forms are a key part of the overall design.


This balance of form and function also means that industrial bathrooms have the benefit of being highly usable. 


The industrial style isn’t as limiting as it might at first seem. While minimalism might be the first impression, there are ways to elaborate on industrial design. It’s a surprisingly versatile aesthetic.

Expert Insights on Modern Industrial Bathroom Trends

Industrial design draws inspiration from the past, which means many of the trends are timeless. Metallic finishes are a real eye-catcher, especially when paired with materials such as steel and wood. Look for sleek lines offset by softer touches that help tone down sharp edges and colours, and provide a softer sensory experience.


The Statement Piece


A key trend in industrial bathrooms is the statement piece - this should be either the bath or the shower, emphasising the blend of form and function. The minimalism of the rest of the space really brings your attention to this centrepiece, allowing it to be appreciated in all its glory. If you have the space, a freestanding bath is the perfect execution of the trend.


Brickwork and Tiling


Exposed brickwork has long been a hallmark of industrial bathroom design. Bricks bring to mind chic New York lofts, the type that Andy Warhol would live in, adding a touch of cool to any home. 


More recently, subway tiles might be displacing exposed brick as the preferred industrial bathroom decor. Available in white, subway tiles have a softer and more adaptable finish than exposed brick.


To balance the brick, tiling, and metallic touches, the softer industrial look embraces natural materials. Playing against the cold lines, natural materials add warmth to the interiors. Consider a wooden vanity unit or some hardy houseplants.


Lighting


Lighting is key to enhancing the darker elements of industrial design. If you can, install big windows with steel frames to capture as much light as possible. If natural light isn’t available, hidden light fixtures are bright without cluttering the design. 


Modern industrial bathroom trends allow for personality to sit alongside warehouse-style inspirations. Materials are key to forming the base of the trend and with a minimal background in place, you can experiment with some really unique touches.

Industrial Bathroom Ideas


Now that you understand the essentials of industrial design, let’s explore how the trend looks in the space. 


Subway Tiles


 

Subway tiles have become one of the biggest trends in industrial design. The strong and repeating lines of the subway tile act as the perfect backdrop to a sleek industrial design. Pair with brushes brass fittings for a classical touch that brings fresh colour into the space. 


For a twist on the trend, stack the tiles vertically. This new layout can add the impression of height.


Exposed Brickwork

Bringing to mind NYC lofts in the most stylish Tribeca spots, exposed brick has long been a key component of the industrial bathroom. Exposed brick acts in contrasting terms — the overall feel is rough, while the colours bring warmth. Pair with minimal designs, to prevent the room from looking overcrowded.


Bathtub


 

The bathtub should be the focal point of the room. Matte black makes a powerful statement and will allow you to introduce softer materials elsewhere in the room, while metallic hardware adds a luxury feel.


Shower

For bathrooms without a bathtub, the shower becomes the focal point. A steel-framed door echoes the windows of old warehouses and draws the eye straight to the tiles decorating the shower space.


Free-floating fittings are a popular choice for creating an industrial finish and can be used to create a statement bathroom. Choose a brass, copper, or gold finish so the fittings stand out.


Lighting

Light is essential for highlighting the subtle details of industrial design and celebrating contrasting textures. Reminiscent of warehouses, large windows allow light to flood the room. Use a steel frame for a final industrial touch.


If you don’t have large windows, hidden lighting can be used to add brightness to your bathroom. Spotlights and strip lighting can be easily incorporated into the furniture without disturbing the chic aesthetic.


Marble


Natural marble enhances the luxury of an industrial bathroom. The flowing lines of the natural material soften the clean shapes found elsewhere in an industrial design. For smaller spaces, pair marble with simple shapes to maintain a sleek finish. For larger rooms, consider emphasising the marble effect with wooden vanities.


Small Bathrooms

The simplicity of the industrial style is ideal for smaller bathrooms. Use industrial bathroom accessories such as brass fittings and steel frames to introduce the aesthetic without overwhelming the space. 


Pairing these simple fittings and units with smaller tile patterns creates texture in the bathroom without overpowering the space. 


Materials

An industrial bathroom in a large space should still lean towards minimalism. However, with more room to play with, strong materials can really shine. Stone on the walls, floor, and furniture has a powerful effect and a raw luxury. Pair with wicker and wood touches for a warmer overall impression.


Colour

When it comes to colour, industrial bathrooms tend to lean towards black, white, and grey, with red and brown introduced via brick and wood. But monochrome isn’t a necessity. The occasional splash of bright colour can allow your personality to take centre stage. See how a yellow-fronted cabinet adds new layers to this design.

Conclusion

Industrial bathrooms combine modern and traditional for a timeless style. As it celebrates clean design, any size of home can be inspired by the industrial. Using industrial bathroom accessories adds a warehouse touch in small spaces, while large bathrooms can lean into the strong materials that define the trend. 


Functional and versatile, try incorporating the industrial trend into your next bathroom refurbishment. At 34 St John, we can help you define your industrial aesthetic with our extensive modern bathroom collection. Contact us today to find out more. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Ideal Colour Palette For An Industrial Bathroom?

Industrial bathrooms typically work with a limited colour palette. White and black are prominent with shades of grey adding a subtle touch. Splashes of colour come from metallic fittings and wooden furnishings, while red brickwork can add warmth.

How Can I Blend Modern Amenities Into An Industrial Bathroom Design?

Industrial bathrooms blend modern touches with a traditional style. For a balanced design, choose amenities with sleek and simple lines, instead of decorative finishes. Avoid shiny chrome finishes and use steel, brass, or gold touches to maintain that vintage appeal.

What Are The Essential Features Of An Industrial Bathroom?

Industrial bathrooms feature strong materials, crisp lines, and a blend of form and function. Classic features of an industrial bathroom include exposed brickwork, subway tiles, steel frames, bright lighting, a statement bathtub or shower, and free-floating fittings. 

What Are Some Current Trends In Industrial Designs?

Current industrial design bathrooms are celebrating the contrasts of the style. On the one hand, bright white bathrooms with subway tiles, large windows, and marble counters emphasise an elegant industrial design. 


However, a darker industrial bathroom uses stone, black fittings, and steel finishes to create a look that’s both overwhelming and luxurious. For a personal touch, add a punch of colour to a cabinet.


Ready to discover how to make the industrial trend your own? Browse our stylish range of modern bathroom designs to find out more.

Kevin Sears

About Kevin Sears

Kevin Sears is a bathroom and interior design blogger here at 34 St John. He creates original content utilising his extensive knowledge of the bathroom industry and latest trends.

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