A shower or bathroom niche can help you take your bathroom makeover to the next level. The main reason for adding a niche during a bathroom remodel is that it is a practical solution for bathroom storage. With a niche or two, you no longer have to put up with annoying swinging caddies, bottles of shampoo cluttering up your shower floor, or bulky shelving in your bathroom. In essence, your bathroom is more streamlined and spacious!
What is a bathroom niche?
A bathroom niche is a recessed waterproof shelf or alcove inserted into the tile wall of a bathroom. They are typically used in the shower to hold soap and shampoo bottles but niches are also a stylish addition above a bath for holding candles or other decorative items.
Unlike a shelf that juts out from the wall, a niche allows you to use the space within a wall for storage.
Niches can be pre-formed units that are waterproofed and prepared for tile, or any other material, before being installed into the wall. Builders can also customise a niche during the framing process if you want a bigger ledge for all of your shower products.
This Melbourne bathroom reno shows how a shower niche can be a simple, elegant accent that seamlessly ties in all the other features in the room, i.e. the countertop, window frame, and bench seat.
If you want a niche to add a decorative element to your bathroom, then this is easily done by choosing an accent tile. The stunning blue glass flower design in the wide shower niche below adds a pop of colour to the large format white tile.
Sizing and placement of the niche
There are some practical considerations when planning for a bathroom niche, a few important ones are;
How big it should be? What am I going to keep in it? What is the best place to put it?
With size, there’s no point having a shower niche that doesn’t fit your taller bottles and containers, and you don’t want to have to stretch up to access it. If you’re renovating a family bathroom, then you will need to take everyone’s needs into consideration so they can reach it.
The shower niche below is a typical size and shape that works well in most bathrooms for holding body wash and shampoo etc., but there are no fixed rules for a niche as long as it suits your individual needs.
In terms of placement, design experts recommend a corner or window-side location away from direct line of view, if you want to create a seamless effect.
Decorative display bath niches
Niches can be used for decorative display, and look great especially placed right above the bath. This kind of niche can be longer and narrower if you simply want to use it to hold candles, like in the examples below.
Alternatively, a niche can take on the function of a frame and be used to house sculptures as in this eye-catching bathroom reno below.
The niches are recessed inside the wall so the space in the bathroom, that may otherwise have been taken up with bulky shelving, has been maximised.
The display niche below also shows how tile can be used as a decorative backdrop for a white vase holding an arrangement of dried grasses.
Benefits of bathroom niches
In general, a beautiful bathroom niche restores order to chaos and looks great above a bath or within a shower space.
Bathroom niches are better than shower shelves because you won’t knock them with your elbows and they are perfect for storing all your essentials within easy reach. They’re cleaner than wire storage caddies which tend to attract soap scum and rust, as well as take up precious room in your shower.
If you liked this post on bathroom niches, be sure to stay tuned to our blog for more design tips to inspire your Melbourne bathroom renovation!