The vanity is the anchor of your bathroom. It determines the flow of the space and sets the tone for the design of your space overall. But how do you determine the type of bathroom vanity you should go with?
From choosing the right size to picking the style that you love, the amount of bathroom vanity options can be overwhelming once you start looking. To help you make the best decision for your space, check out our bathroom vanity buying guide below.
Choosing the Size of Your Bathroom Vanity
Choosing the size of your vanity is one of the most important design decisions you will make because it impacts the overall function of your bathroom. You don’t want to end up with a vanity that’s either too big or too small because it will ruin the functionality and design of your bathroom altogether. It doesn’t matter if it’s a beautiful vanity if it’s too small or too big for your space!
Choose the size of your vanity based on comfortability and ease of use. You want there to be enough room to navigate around your bathroom and comfortably use each feature. No one item is more important than the other- the toilet, vanity, shower, and tub are all important and need to have equal access and ease of use.
Vanities for Small Bathrooms
If you have a smaller bathroom, consider choosing a smaller vanity so the space doesn’t feel overwhelmed and crowded. In this instance, a larger vanity would actually make your space feel even smaller. To make a smaller bathroom feel larger, a floating bathroom vanity is a great option because it will leave empty space undeath and create the illusion of more space.
Vanities for Large Bathrooms
If your bathroom has an open floor plan with a large tub or shower space, consider choosing a larger vanity that’s similar in size. This will make the space feel even and balanced, like one item isn’t outweighing the other. In larger, open bathrooms, a larger vanity will make the space feel full and complete. A smaller vanity would simply look weird and draw attention for all the wrong reasons.
Whether you have a small or large bathroom, vanities occupy a lot of visual weight in the space. You want this visual weight to be balanced between your bathtub or shower, toilet, and remaining empty space. When there’s a balance to your space, your design will feel cohesive and relaxing instead of cluttered and chaotic.
Types of Bathroom Vanities
There are a variety of bathroom vanity types to choose from, and you’re sure to find one that matches the design, size, and functionality of your bathroom. Let’s explore a few common types of bathroom vanities.
Wall-Mounted Bathroom Vanities
Wall-mounted bathroom vanities are often chosen for their sleek and modern design. Also called floating vanities, they are mounted to the wall and have an open space underneath them. They offer a streamlined, high-end look that can make your space feel larger due to the empty space they leave underneath.
Freestanding Bathroom Vanities
Freestanding bathroom vanities are one of the most popular choices. This type of bathroom vanity is easy to install, offers ample storage, and is available in a variety of styles and sizes. They also typically do not need to be anchored to the wall, which means they can support different water supply line scenarios.
Freestanding bathroom vanities are available in single or double vanities, meaning you can choose this style in the size your bathroom requires. They provide ample storage options, including drawers and open storage for bins. They also offer under-mount sinks and drop-in sinks. The design options are seemingly endless with this type of bathroom vanity.
Corner Bathroom Vanity
This type of bathroom vanity is most commonly used in smaller spaces where there might not even be enough room for a single vanity. These space-saving vanities are available in both wall-mounted and freestanding. This means that even if your space is too small for a traditional vanity, you don’t have to sacrifice design when you choose this corner style. Even though this type of bathroom vanity is small, it provides more open space for other important areas of the bathroom while still providing the needed function of a sink and storage.
Bathroom Vanity Materials
In addition to choosing the size and style of your bathroom vanity, there are still many additional bathroom vanity materials you need to make a decision on. This includes the sink, countertop, fixtures, and base materials. From brass fixtures to walnut bases, there are a seemingly endless amount of options to design with. Let’s explore a few of the available options for each one.
Bathroom Vanity Bases
After choosing the size and location of your bathroom vanity, one of the most important design decisions you’ll make is what type of vanity base to have. Whether you have a more traditional style or a more modern style, there are so many different types to choose from. Offered in a variety of materials, you’ll want to choose the one that fits both the design and function of your space.
Bathroom vanity base options include:
- Craftsman style: Craftsman-style vanities are typically made from solid wood. These vanities are heavy due to their construction, and they offer a beautiful and traditional appearance for the bathrooms they occupy. Popular options include red and white oak. Stains are usually chosen that give the wood the desired color but still show the beautiful natural appearance of the woodgrain.
- Mid-century modern style: The Mid-century modern design style continues to remain a popular choice for homeowners today. Bathroom vanities in this style are typically made of wood with clean lines.
- Glamorous, modern style: If you’re looking for a more modern bathroom vanity design, you’ll want to choose a base that offers clean lines, a straightforward appearance, and high-end materials. Material options can include brass fixtures and stainless steel bases.
Additional bathroom vanity styles include traditional, industrial, farmhouse, and more. With so many design options available, you’re sure to find one that matches your design style.
At Elevations by Zeeland/Standard, we partner with industry-leading cabinet manufacturers in order to provide our clients with high-quality bathroom vanity options. Shiloh Cabinetry is one of the largest independent cabinet makers in the United States, and they offer a family-owned customer experience, a wide selection of customizable colors and finishes, and a comprehensive 10-year warranty. Contact our cabinetry experts to learn more.
Choosing a Sink for Your Bathroom Vanity
Before you choose a sink, you’ll want to make sure you’ve already decided whether your bathroom vanity will be single or double. This will determine the size of your sink and how many sinks you need.
After you know whether you’re installing a single or double vanity, you can choose the type of sink that fits your design style. A few common sink styles are:
- Undermount: Undermount sinks are a common choice for bathroom vanities, and this type of sink is mounted underneath the countertop material. This smooth installation style leaves a clean appearance. Also, with this type of sink, the sink and countertop materials are typically made of different materials. This allows for even more customization in your bathroom vanity design.
- Console: Console sinks are separate from the rest of the vanity countertop material. However, they take up the majority of the counter space. This type of sink leaves little room left for fixtures, hand soap, and other common bathroom counter staples. They’re not meant for providing ample storage, they’re more of an intentional design look.
- Recessed: This type of sink is integrated into the countertop material. The sink shape is formed into the countertop, typically with a slanted surface area where the water can run down into the drain. They’re usually more shallow, offering a basin for quick hand washing or teeth brushing. Recessed sinks offer a very sleek and modern look.
- Drop-in: Drop-in sinks are installed from the top of the counter, and they leave a lip of material while the bowl sinks in below the counter. A hole is cut for part of the sink to drop into, and the lip of the sink remains on top of the counter. This helps minimize spills and splashes.
The type of sink you choose will depend on the size of your vanity, how you plan on using your bathroom, and what your design style is. For example, you probably wouldn’t choose a console sink for your master bathroom because it wouldn’t leave you much counter space to store everyday-use items. However, in a powder bathroom where you want to have a unique design, you might choose a recessed sink for its unique and impressive appearance.
There are a variety of countertop materials to choose from when designing your bathroom vanity. A few popular options include:
- Marble: Marble is a beautiful option for your bathroom vanity countertops. However, keep in mind that this material is more porous and therefore stains more easily. This might be a high-design option that’s more suitable for bathrooms that are used less often than high-traffic spaces like your master bathroom.
- Quartz: Quartz is a highly durable option for your bathroom vanity. In addition to being highly durable against stains and heat damage, quartz is also available in a variety of patterns and colors.
- Granite: Granite is another durable option for your bathroom vanity countertops. When sealed every year as recommended, it can provide the moisture and stain resistance that your bathroom requires.
Elevations by Zeeland/Standard proudly partners with Cambria Countertops to provide high-quality materials and exceptional customer service. Quartz countertops from Cambria offer unmatched heat resistance, striking beauty, and protection against moisture. Contact our countertop experts to learn more about your bathroom vanity countertop options from Cambria.
Additional Considerations when Choosing a Bathroom Vanity
In addition to considering size and materials, check out these considerations when choosing your bathroom vanity:
- Where is the plumbing located? Before choosing the placement of your new vanity in your new bathroom space, take note of where the plumbing is located. Especially if you don’t want to make expensive changes, you’ll need to position the vanity in a place that’s already accessible to hot and cold water lines and drainage lines. If you’re starting from scratch and don’t mind paying a plumber to move the lines, then you have more freedom in the placement of your vanity. What’s possible depends on an expert plumber’s opinion and your budget.
- Where are you placing your faucet? When choosing the style of your vanity, you’ll want to consider where your faucets and fixtures will sit. While most options are located within the vanity, you are able to mount your fixtures on the wall and free up additional counter space. However, of course, this means that you will most likely need to hire a plumber to professionally install your fixtures.
- Are you looking for an all-in-one solution or a separate vanity base and countertop? Some vanities arrive as one prefabricated vanity set with the countertop attached to the base. Others provide them separately. When they’re provided separately, this means that you’ll most likely have more customization options when matching your desired vanity base with countertop materials. Depending on what you’re looking for, this is an important distinction when shopping.
- What height should your bathroom vanity be? Depending on how you intend to use your bathroom, the height of your vanity will vary. For example, the desired height in a master bathroom might be different from a kid’s bathroom or powder room. A bathroom vanity in a master bathroom is typically 36” high, while a vanity in a guest bathroom used by both adults and children can be 32-34” high.
- How do you plan on using the space? If you are installing a bathroom vanity in your master bathroom, you’ll probably want to choose a vanity that offers more storage in the way that you’re going to use it. For example, if you need shallow drawers for makeup and toiletry products and deeper drawers for extra storage.
Find Your Dream Bathroom Vanity at Elevations Design Studio by Zeeland/Standard
From countertops to cabinetry, our friendly experts at Elevations are ready to help you build your perfect bathroom vanity. Contact us to get started.