Design tips from the owner of Essex’s new bathroom store


11:13 a.m. September 7, 2022

11:30 a.m. September 7, 2022

A contemporary and stylish bathroom can transform the look of your home.

We meet Paula Callaway, owner of bathroom specialists Ripples, who reveals the secrets to creating your own bathroom paradise.

Ripples has just opened its brand new showroom in Saffron Walden, where you will find plenty of inspiration for your own space.

1. Consider different types of lighting

Lighting is crucial for any space in the home, but the bathroom in particular can be dramatically transformed with well-placed lighting. Despite what you might think, lighting isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach – incorporating different layers of lighting into the space will enhance the functionality of your bathroom.

The first thing you should consider is the lighting required for general use or for cleaning – all bathrooms will need ceiling lights or a central light, both of which are recessed into the ceiling and provide a standard amount light throughout the room.

The next level to think about is direct lighting, either on the walls on either side of the mirror or inside the mirror itself. This is more intimate lighting, useful for makeup, skincare or just getting ready for the day. I would recommend opting for side installations rather than on top to create minimal shadows.

Hiring a designer for your bathroom can help bring your vision to life, sourcing the best products and creating a functional space for you to enjoy.
– Credit: Ripples

The last step, but just as important, is mood lighting. It sets the tone for your space and how you feel when using it. Low-level lighting is essential here, especially for bathrooms with baths or baths. You can achieve a softer look with accent lighting or a strip light under the cabinets. Make sure there’s a separate switch to create a quieter experience, undisturbed by bright lights for early mornings or late evenings.

2. Add a pop of color

While many modern bathrooms feature a neutral palette with grays, blues, whites and blacks, incorporating a pop of color is a great way to create a unique and engaging space.

If you’re a little apprehensive about which route to take for your color palette, here are some options to consider for your space:

  • Adding a freestanding bathtub offers the opportunity to add a focal point to the room by painting it a different color.

  • Vanities can often be designed using a custom color service, allowing you to create a cohesive color scheme for multiple cabinets and drawers in the bathroom.

  • Keeping plants in your bathroom not only creates a calmer environment, but it’s also an easy way to add a splash of color to any design.

Gold tap in pink bathroom designed by bathroom specialists Ripples in Saffron Walden

Adding a splash of color to your bathroom is a great way to create a unique and engaging space.
– Credit: Ripples

3. Work with a designer

While Instagram and Pinterest offer a limitless source of inspiration and ideas for our home spaces and decorating, translating that into real design that suits the plumbing, electrical and layout of your home can be tricky without professional help.

Ripples designers can work with you to combine your ideas and nest your vision to create your dream bathroom. Working with a designer will allow you to create a functional space that meets your needs while matching your desired aesthetic.

The designers also take the stress out of finding the items for your space. They’ll know a wide variety of brands and products and be able to find the ones that work best for you, so you can focus on the more enjoyable parts of the project without hassle.

4. Allow enough time for the project

A bathroom takes around three weeks to install on average, however product delivery times can take longer (sometimes up to eight weeks) which can delay the final result.

Many customers may be surprised at how long it takes, but a professional and expert installation team will take every precaution to ensure the project goes smoothly. This often requires stripping the part and starting from scratch to create the best possible result.

Cabinets designed by bathroom specialists Ripples in Saffron Walden

Vanity units can be designed using a bespoke color service, allowing you to create a cohesive color palette for multiple cabinets and drawers.
– Credit: Ripples

5. Include underfloor heating

Underfloor heating can make a huge difference to your bathroom experience, especially if you’ve opted for tiling, as it creates comforting warmth all year round. Heated tiles can help dry out the water in the shower.

For those looking to go the extra mile with their bathroom, the heater can be installed on the walls and on tiled seating for a luxury spa-like experience from the confines of your own home.

Ripples are expert bathroom specialists with over 40 years of experience creating bespoke bathrooms.

Visit or contact 01799 934225 to book a design consultation with a specialist bathroom designer from the Saffron Walden showroom.


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