Designing our shower niche was something I spent an unusually long time thinking about. It could stem from the fact that we came from zero shower niches, just the smallest triangular shelf in the corner (worst, worst, worst) of our previous shower that we supplemented with one of those over-the-shower arm caddies. I was over the moon at the thought of ample, simple, built in storage in the shower, but the more I looked into it to see what was standard–I learned shower niches were anything but one size fits all.
Here are a few different kinds I found (and loved!)
1. Wall-mounted shelves. I love this option and if we did a marble shower or even a marble slab threshold I would absolutely consider a couple of wall to wall narrow shelves made of the same material as the threshold. So cool and unique and practical and functional. If you don’t currently have a niche–this could be an add-on option, too!
2. The Accent Niche. I think the accent niche can get dated quick if not executed correctly, but I ran into so many truly striking examples like the one below that work. I think the key is thinking about do I want this to be the focal point in the shower and if so, why? Maybe it’s to tie in another element of the bathroom or to break up a large span of tile.
3. The Obscure Niche. I thought I was completely against a pony wall, and then I discovered how amazing they could be for hiding all you soap! How perfect is that niche location?
4. The Super Tall Niche. I saw a few of these really tall niches that at first glance make no sense at all. It’s not like anything is a.) that tall or b.) going to be able to float in mid air to fill up that space. But in the case below, the tall niche works as a functional niche and a design element as it mimics the shape of the shower surround. Really striking.
5. The Double Niche. Hi, you’re popular. Lots of really good examples of this guy. Each person could have their own niche, or my personal favorite was a shorter niche (for razors and loofahs) paired with a taller niche for shampoo! Smart!
6. The Asymmetrical Niche. If you have an architectural or design element in your bathroom that’s off-centered, using a niche to balance it, like in the example below, makes it not only look intentional but g-o-o-d!
7. The Long and Linear Niche. Spanning the full wall, or a large portion of it, these niches are long and squatty (but linear sounds better, huh). The plus side? Plenty of room for everything, even if you go more narrow.
After looking at a lot of examples, I knew what I basically wanted: Something long and linear, so that nothing was stacked behind anything else. (Moving slippery bottles of soap around to grab my razor wedged behind one gives me shower anxiety like no other.) And speaking of razors, I wanted it at a nice height to double as a ledge for me to prop my leg up on while shaving, and Chris wanted it high enough that he didn’t have to bend down so far to grab his shampoo. The other must have was no weird tile cuts. If we could pick any size niche that we wanted (which we could, we were starting from scratch!) then why would we pick one that makes it so our niche doesn’t accommodate full tiles? So to recap: 1. Long and linear. 2. Just the right height 3. No weird cuts.
I went searching for answers–like, how tall should a niche be? And how deep? I polled our audience on instagram stories, I asked the owners of all my favorite niches I had pinned. I WAS DEEP INTO THIS! In the end, you gotta do what works for you! We measured our shampoo bottles and realized, for us, anything over 12″ was excess. We went 4 tiles high (just over 12″) and 4 tiles long (just over 36″) and 1 tile deep (3″)–no weird tile cuts. This accommodated every bottle we could find in our home–even the girls’ bulk shampoo.
We’ll talk more about the tile next week (floors are going in today!!). It’s just over 24″ from the ground which is a comfortable height for me to prop a leg up and shave and not too low that we have to bend down and grab a bottle. Luckily, the only wall that would work in our shower to put the niche on was the window wall (so that decision was clear)–the right side wall housed a pocket door, so there was no cutting into that. And the left side wall held all 6 of our shower controls, and that felt like enough of responsibility for that wall.
Which kind of niche do you have in your home? Or maybe it’s one that I didn’t cover? When I was talking a lot about niches on InstaStories (I swear it was for dayyyysss), so many people sent amazing examples. Feel free to leave a link in the comments!
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