Renovation Stories: Ensuite Inspiration

Inspiration image via Pinterest

The ensuite is actually the smallest room we’re tackling in the next stage of our renovations, but probably the one room that has caused us the most headaches, planning, but also excitement along the way.

After remortgaging from the renovations earlier on in the year, we knew we wanted to split the large front bedroom and incorporate an ensuite into it, as there was so much space (and most other updated houses on the street have already done this). With the baby on its way, our thoughts are to treat the front bedroom as almost a studio flat – thinking we’ll spend a lot of time in here!

Our ensuite moodboard via Pinterest (you can follow me here).

We’ve made the decision to go with brass hardware this time, something I had always regretted not going with in the large bathroom, as time restraints held us back. However, it proved so tricky – not sure why it is so hard! Everything brass is basically double the price, super shiny, not the right shape or from the US. We ended up buying a lot of items from Chinese suppliers via Amazon, and found this article by Design Soda quite helpful!

After finding brassware so difficult (but perservering!), we’ve decided to stick to what we know with the tiles – hexagonal mosaic floor tiles from Topps we had in our last ensuite (mainly because we loved them and didn’t feel we got to enjoy them for long enough before moving!). But we are doing a wet room this time rather than a shower tray – wish us luck – but with a step into the shower, something I’d loved in hotels like Artist Residence (where I get most of my style inspo from!).

Image via Rue Mag

We loved the idea of encaustic cement tiles, however, they’re no cheap feat…we decided against Bert and May, which were way out of our price bracket, and found some via Ripples Bathroom (most will have seen on Instagram Stories but if you haven’t, I will save until they’re finished as they are rather wow!). Still pricey, but we’re compromising by just having one wall of fancy tiles and then the rest with cheaper white metro tiles. But again, instead of going classic we decided to do herringbone for something new – it’s starting to look great, but a word of warning if you go for this: your tiler will hate you.

The start of the herringbone tiles.

The picture we showed our bemused builders…

Also, encaustic tiles come with their own woes: we have a big booklet of instructions with sealant, grouting etc and they’re extremely heavy and thick – let’s hope it’s worth it!

Feature tiling inspiration…

There are definitely things that went out the window after endless internet searching – a brass edged radiator/towel rail for one (we ended up just doing black to save money and time trawling), the marble trim skirting (couldn’t justify another expense) and a marble sink (I’ll keep that for my Pinterest dreams). But we’ve always known the dream house is as much about compromise than it is about perfection!

This room is definitely a bit more out of our comfort zone of a plain monochrome bathroom that I’m used to, we have a lot more going on in this room but I am really looking forward to seeing it all come together…

Stay posted on Stories for updates over Christmas…

1. Tiles: £29.95 per sq metre, Walls and Floors

2. Polished bronze shower set: £92.66, Amazon

3. Storage basket: £16, Ikea

4. Metal mirror: £19.50, Marks & Spencer

5. Hand towel: £6.99, H&M Home

6. Marble soap dish: £10, Marks & Spencer

7. Metal storage: £19.99, H&M Home

8. Metal towel rail: £30, Ferm Living at Amara

9. Toothbrush holder: £3.99, H&M Home

10. Bathmat: £17.99, H&M Home


  1. Can’t wait to see this finished, it’s looking good! Loving the sound of brass fittings (loving all brass at the moment)!
    We have a wet room too, there is an imperceptible slope in the shower so the water runs in the right direction. We don’t have a shower curtain or glass door, this was so the best decision (you don’t get that warm to cold feeling that you normally get, even in a lovely warm bathroom). Surprisingly we don’t splash water all over the place, our view was that we could always put up a shower curtain later if needed!

    1. Oh this is good to know – we went for the step as it’ll be a small space – but more worried about leaks (mainly because we’ve had them everywhere else!)….they’ve done a lot of tests so hopefully it’ll be okay!

  2. We had several plumbers tell us we couldn’t have a wet room but it just took the right plumber who said no problem. We have a step as well with glass in ours. We are so pleased it with. I have no doubt yours will be gorgeous, looking forward to seeing the photos.

  3. I am in love with the tiles feature wall, I have seen a couple of images on Pinterest too, such a great way to use the special tiles without the price tag. I stayed in a hotel recently and was contemplating the step up ‘wet room’ style. Does this only work if you have a longer shower space? Or can it be done with the typical square sized shower? Like you, our ensuite is the smallest room in the house and takes some serious planning.

    I love your house renovations and your IG stories, I share some of ours too and people really get involved with sharing opinions which I love.

    P.S. The tile shop suggestions are literally a Godsend! Thanks

  4. Hi Alex, I love love love what you’ve done with this bathroom. Coming to this late but I’m going spare looking for brass fittings for the shower and hope you can help. Brass taps, shower head etc. not too hard to find but I can’t find a shower enclosure (frameless style glass) in brass (rather than shiny, thick gold) anywhere?! You seem to have found a miracle seeing the finished result on Stories! How did you do it? Thanks x

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