“How high should you make tile wainscoting in a bathroom?” is a question that someone asked me recently.
Of course, I had to chime in with my two cents worth on wainscoting ideas – since we just dealt with this issue ourselves.
I don’t think there really is a standard answer – but there are a few things to consider.
Wainscoting is a protective covering for your wall. While it may look pretty, it really is designed to be functional.
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Why Use Wainscot in a Bathroom At All?
Wainscot is covering for your wall – typically the bottom 3 to 4 feet. It can be made of any material, but the most common in bathrooms are wood or tile.
Although it is very decorative, it is functional as well as pretty. It serves to protect your wall from wear and tear.
Before we remodeled our bathroom, the wall beneath the towel bar was streaked with moisture lines caused by water dripping off of people’s hands as they reached for the towel after washing.
What an eyesore!
What Material is Best for Wainscot?
If you want to put your wainscot to work for you – your choice of material will be important. Wood is nice – and if you paint it with a nice moisture resistant paint, it should hold up for a good amount of time before you need to repaint.
Tile wainscoting is a great option for a bathroom. It requires no painting and you just wipe off to clean.
Since our space was really small, we were also able to keep the cost down. Because, tile can get expensive. Just sayin’.
We used a simple white subway tile wainscoting in our small bathroom and it looks gorgeous. The pictures that I include here don’t do it justice.
How High Should Tile Wainscoting Be?
We made our decision somewhat scientifically. Here are the factors we considered:
- You will want the wainscot to end underneath your lowest counter height wall outlet or light switch. Otherwise you will need to cut holes in the wainscot to accommodate the outlet or switch.
- If your wainscot is tile, then it can serve a dual purpose by working as the backsplash behind your sink. If it is high enough.
- Make sure that the wainscot is not so high that it interferes with any mirror or wall hanging above it.
For our bathroom, I went with a 42 inch high white subway tile wainscoting. And I made sure to meet all of the above criteria.
Once that beautiful wainscot is attached to your wall – you will have a hard time convincing yourself to drill through it.
We bought a freestanding toilet paper holder instead of a wall mounted fixture for this exact reason.
And if you also have a tricky situation of having a window in the shower area like we did – then these tips will help you deal with that too.
What is the Best Option for You?
Good wainscoting ideas for a bathroom include a wood beadboard style or tile. It should be both beautiful and functional.
If you use wood, it should be away from a direct water source (like the faucet or wet towels) because maintenance will be difficult.
If you have any bathroom remodeling tips to share – let’s hear ’em. Leave a comment below.
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