Did you just return from a weekend escape to a luxury hotel or resort and miss that bathroom finished out in wood? There were softly gleaming walls, a highly polished two-sink vanity, and knotted floors. Is a bathroom full of wood finishes right for your home? More and more homeowners are making it happen.
Wood Bathroom Design: A Trending Choice for Today’s Home
The warm, natural tones of wood make it a timeless option for home decor, no matter in what decade you were born. After spending the past ten years living with interior designs in shades of gray, white, and metallic accents, you may be searching for a more natural look for a bathroom that welcomes you to relax, breathe deep, and spend time decompressing. Wood used as a material for walls, floors, cabinetry, and even tubs is a growing trend that embraces the past and the future.
The Soft Feel Of Wood Under Your Fingers and Toes Appeals to Everyone
Are the surfaces in your current bathroom cold and hard? Tile, porcelain, and stone may be durable and functional, but they struggle to create a warm oasis perfect for a long soak.
A wood bathroom floor gives your toes something soft and warmer to step on after a hot shower. A butcher block countertop adds a natural element to your morning toilet. Exposed wood beams in the ceiling lend a rustic appeal to your lakeside cabin.
Calming Aroma of Natural Wood Adds a Positive Element to Your Bathing Experience
Some of the more common woods used in wet applications include cedar, teak, and hinoki. Not only do these woods feature naturally occurring resins that help to fight off rot, but they also emit a spicy scent. Do you smile whenever you open your grandmother’s linen closet? That happy scent memory probably features the smell of cedar. Imagine adding that aroma to your morning shower without the use of sprays, oils, or chemicals.
Which Woods Work Well in Bathroom Design
You are sold! You can’t wait to create an ensuite that wraps you in the organic look and feel of wood. Can you chop down an old pine tree and use the lumber for floors? No, not really. Durable hardwoods such as oak and maple are a better option but come with some maintenance challenges.
Teak is the preferred choice and has become less expensive and more readily available in recent years. It has graced the deck of boats and yachts for centuries. It features a dense grain and natural resins that provide water-resistant properties. Cedar is another good choice and can be found as domestic lumber in America. The Japanese have used hinoki wood for their ofuro soaking tubs for thousands of years.
However, you can use even soft pine to craft a custom vanity that will not be subjected to regular soakings when it is properly sealed and protected from moisture.
Can Wood Last as Long as Traditional Bathroom Finishes?
Will a wood bathroom design begin to rot in just a year or two? No, it won’t unless you make an effort to ignore daily cleaning and maintenance. When properly sealed and maintained, a hardwood floor can last up to 25 years in a bathroom. Wood cladding used for walls and ceilings can last decades longer.
Controlling the humidity in the bathroom is important to prevent premature aging. An exhaust fan will reduce excess moisture that can soak into the grain of the wood and cause expansion and warping. Wiping up water spots on the floor helps to maintain the seal. At the same time, a desert climate could allow the wood to dry too much which leads to cracks. In those instances adding a humidifier may be recommended.
Will a wood countertop outlast a tile version? Not likely. But it should retain its elegant appearance and function until it is time for the next bathroom renovation.
Where Can You Use Wood in a Bathroom Design?
If you imagine a European-spa-inspired space for your bathroom, it may feature walls and even a ceiling finished in wood. Is that possible? Yes!
Ceiling and Walls Wrap You in Soothing Organic Tones
When properly sealed and cleaned, your bathroom ceiling can feature chunky exposed beams or polished panels. While the ceiling may get splashed now and then, it rarely gets soaked. The same applies to the walls outside the shower. Although, refer back to the Scandinavian sauna tradition, and you will see that you can enclose your bath or shower in aromatic lumber.
Modern Flooring Options
Contemporary trends for home flooring have introduced the beauty and durability of engineered hardwoods. While the surface is the same oak, maple, or bamboo appearance that you love in older homes, the hidden support structure is better designed to withstand the constant changes in moisture and temperature associated with bathrooms.
Soaking Tubs and Steamy Showers
If you ever traveled to Japan and experienced a deep soak in an ofuro, you probably wondered at its wooden construction. Yes, you can build a bathtub entirely from wood. The extra moisture from filling it with water helps the seams to swell and seal. A quick wash every week and careful maintenance to remove potential splinters bring you a unique and traditional bathing experience. Wood walls in the shower? That can happen, too.
Schedule an Appointment to Plan Your Timeless and Elegant Wood Bathroom
Now that you know it can happen, our team of professionals at Columbus Bath Design are here to make it all come true. Bring your vision for a stunning new bath, and we will work with you to execute a plan from start to finish. Call us today for your personal in-home consultation.