2017 Trends in Bath

Designers often rely on the 2017 Kitchen & Bath Design Trends Report, completed by the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), to compare how their local design preferences compare to national trends. Based on the annual member survey, the NKBA expects to see the following top 10 overall bathroom trends this year:

  • Style: Contemporary and transitional-styled bathrooms have overtaken traditionally styled preferences. Shaker style is gaining on traditional, while mid-century modern is emerging. Asian fusion is a niche design, but design professionals who recommend it plan to do more of it in bathrooms.

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    Shibui 1/2 x 1 Herringbone in Sevres Blue Silk used in on a bathroom floor. Designer: Lisa Michael Interiors. Photo: Jessica Glynn Photography.
      • Color: Whites, off/whites and gray are by far the most popular bathroom color schemes. Blue is emerging, with younger design professionals leaning more towards violets and purples. Stainless steel is niche and emerging.
    • Cabinetry: Linen storage cabinets and wood vanities are the most commonly used bathroom storage solutions. Floating vanities and open shelving are popular and increasing in popularity. Toilet topper cabinets are declining in demand. “We’re beginning to see more sleek designs over the more furniture look in the past,” said one survey respondent.
    • Tile: Ceramic tile flooring is most popular, but high-quality vinyl appears to be emerging thanks to waterproof technologies now available.
    • Sinks: Undermount bathroom sinks are most desirable, with requests for vessel sinks continuing to wane, as well as pedestal sinks. Trough sinks are emerging.
    • Showers & Tubs: More than half of NKBA members surveyed said they eliminated a tub or whirlpool in a bathroom remodel over the course of the past year. Yet half also specified a freestanding tub during that same period, and 60 percent expect to specify more of them in 2017. While tub/shower surrounds are maintained and updated when they already exist in a home, they are not being added to new bathrooms or completely remodeled bathrooms.

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      Agate 1 x 1 Firenze Pearl used in a bathroom.
    • Fixture Colors: White fixtures are trending up, while bone/bisque colored fixtures are trending down. Brushed brass and gold are emerging faucet finishes; designer faucet colors, while still quite niche, are emerging. “Everything is very bright and airy in terms of color trends,” said one survey respondent.
  • Amenities: The most popular amenities for the bathroom are in the arena of safety and comfort: e.g., comfort heights, shower seats, lighting in showers and no-threshold showers. Also prevalent in many bathroom designs is the addition of power outlets located directly in drawers or vanity cabinets to unobtrusively power blow dryers, curling irons, shavers, electric toothbrushes and more. Emerging amenities are smart toilets, smart toilet seats, music in the shower, easy maintenance features, and radiant floor heating. Distributed video and audio and wiring pathways for future integration are still niche in the bathroom, but emerging.

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