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RANGE REVIEW: DECORATING


SPACES STATEMENT


It is often the smallest room in the house but consumers are keen to put their stamp on their bathroom. Heritage Bathrooms head of marketing Jo Ebdon-Muir talks us through the key trends in the category and the opportunities for retailers.


What are the key decorating trends in bathrooms? Now, more than ever, homeowners are looking to take complete control over the features that form the overall look of their bathroom. For example, compared to four years ago, 53% more consumers say they would prefer to visit a retailer themselves and buy their own showers, instead of seeking a tradesperson to do so on their behalf. This provides a huge opportunity


to retailers, particularly those who can cater to a ‘mix and match’ approach, as increasing numbers of consumers use this increased control to blend both traditional and modern styles in their bathrooms. Industrial chic-influenced products are proving to be particularly popular with homeowners, with this type of styling offering a minimalist finish, whilst retaining an element of traditional, period design. In addition, consumers are


increasingly focusing on wellness and relaxation, leading to a rise in demand for bathrooms with spa-like qualities. This goes to explain the growing preference for bold and dramatic bathrooms, which have an indulgent, high-end feel. Homeowners often now opt for bathroom products in darker shades, including matte blacks, to achieve a calming yet opulent space. Statement


remain popular with homeowners who want


to


freestanding achieve


spa-like


relaxation in their own home. However, there is also growing demand for statement and limited- edition showers, as consumers look to make the shower the focus of the room, particularly in smaller spaces. With new-build homes becoming smaller, younger consumers are turning to statement showers and smaller freestanding baths to


www.diyweek.net baths


achieve this relaxing space. Mixed metallics is another key


bathroom trend, which is gaining momentum with our customer base. We’re seeing that consumers are increasingly opting for brassware in a variety of shades, including gold and bronze hues, in addition to classic chrome and are combining different shades to produce a sleek, on-trend finish.


What opportunities does this


create for retailers – how should they look at shaping their offer? The preference for mixing styles, shades and materials is on the rise and retailers should look to ensure that their offer is broad enough to cater for this demand. Products that can be tailored by the customer offer an excellent opportunity for retailers to address this craving for customisation by giving the buyer the option to personalise the colour of the product to match their own preferences. A wide range of brassware options


will also be key, as customers look to mix and match their appliances. We’ve seen a growth in demand for rose gold and bronze appliances, including


statement remember washstand


and taps, something that presents a huge opportunity for retailers. It’s important for retailers to that


consumers are


increasingly shopping for a range of different spaces and are looking for a different experience in each room. Whilst customer focus in the main bathroom will often be on keeping the space practical and tidy – making fashionable wall-hung vanity units appealing – retailers should not discount spaces, such as the cloakroom or en-suite. When speaking to customers about these


spaces, remember that en-suite’s should be all about


providing a refreshing space for a couple to relax and refresh after a busy day. The revival of the cloakroom, meanwhile, means it is no longer a place to throw your muddy wellies or hang your coat. Instead, it is increasingly being used as an area to impress, with homeowners incorporating features such as bold and bright wallpapers. Retailers should also consider how they can adapt their offer to customers who are shopping


for the smaller spaces frequently seen in new-build homes. Smaller freestanding baths, baby basins and corner and wall hung toilets are likely to appeal to those who have a restricted space but still want to create a beautiful bathroom design. Those with smaller rooms are


also increasingly likely to


look for statement appliances, such as limited edition taps and showerheads, in order to create a high-end look.


08 MARCH 2019 DIY WEEK 11


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