Jun 02, 2021,

#MySanctuary Series: ‘How to’ design your home sanctuary

In our first Design MySanctuary Q&A, we spoke with Swedish Interior Designer, Mia Horton.

If 2020 has taught us anything, it is how important self care and finding that all important me time is. The pressures of homeschooling, forced remote working and spending prolonged periods indoors have added to the strains of everyday life. The bathroom has become a place where we go to reboot and relax – a home sanctuary. With so many of us having more time and budget to complete home improvements projects, we’ve asked three interior designers to share their top design tips on how to build your perfect bathroom sanctuary at home.

In our first Design MySanctuary Q&A, we spoke with Sweedish Interior Designer, Mia Horton.

Meet the designer:

Name Mia Horton, Mia Horton Interiors and Design

Follow me on: Instagram @mia.horton_interiors_design

Design Experience I’ve been a designer for 17 years, and running my own Interior Design company since 2018.

What would you say is your typical style and design ethos?

I was born and raised in Sweden so I think my Scandinavian roots mixed with living in Manchester for half of my life comes through in my designs.

For me, the design has to be practical – I like picturing what it will be like living in the space before committing to a layout, to make sure it’s not just beautiful but also works for the people who live there.

I’ve worked in design for a very long time and naturally have a good eye for what the finished room will look like. I’m also an artist so colours are key in everything I do – it’s all about using the right amount and in the right places.

Arysto Colour Brushed Brass

Favourite Arysto Colour finish: Brushed Brass

Designing #MySanctuary: Luxurious Cleansing

Over the last year in particular, the bathroom has become a personal space where we can go to unwind and relax and get some much needed ‘me-time’. Which key design trends or themes can help inspire people looking to create their own personal spa and home sanctuary?

The connection between water and well being is well documented – and for me, it’s about creating a luxurious cleansing experience with spa-like features. Waterfall shower heads and walk-in showers can help to create an indulgent showering experience, while stylish brass fittings and fixtures add an elegant opulence. I have just finished working on a project for a family with three children, so they have a busy house. For their en-suite, they wanted a place where they could escape – so we have designed a space that includes over sized features to give them a sense of openness and light.

The room features a very large tub and walk-in rain shower. The details are important too – the shower area needed to have a high glass shower screen to prevent any over spray.

mood board with Arysto Colour

For this particular client, an elegant yet classic look was important for their home sanctuary space. The floor and walls feature porcelain marble effect tiles with dark blue herringbone as an accent colour, complemented with stylish brushed brass details. It was key to match the shower screen fittings with the taps and trims. We fitted MERLYN’s new Arysto Colour shower screen in brushed brass to complement the taps. It has been really exciting seeing the room come to life.


What are your top three tips you would give homeowners looking to achieve the luxurious cleansing look at home?

Don’t throw all your ideas into one room. You might love some cool, trendy tiles now, but will you love them just as much in 5 years? Bathrooms are expensive to change – that’s why I love keeping a classic and elegant look that stands the test of time and add accessories that can easily be updated. Love blush pink? Add some towels in your favourite shade.

The devil is in the detail! Spend money on quality fittings that will age well. Matching the shower screen to the taps was key to completing the look in this particular bathroom. Making sure that the grout line was perfectly positioned under the shower screen makes the space feel more considered. The underfloor heating, although not visual, also played a big part to achieve that home sanctuary feeling – it’s tricky to make a space feel luxurious if you walk on cold tiles.

Add life and depth to the room. In this overall light bathroom, we put the darker tiles at the end to add depth to the room. Plants are an easy way to add life to any room. If your bathroom lacks natural light you can cheat with artificial – you can buy some very realistic artificial plants now.

learn how to complete a breast check

What advice would you give to homeowners looking to transform their own bathroom into a home sanctuary?

Make sure you plan the space before starting the project. The current layout is not necessarily the best and sometimes the smallest of changes can make the biggest difference. Does the door open the right way? Could the shower be in a different place? I know it’s the boring part of creating a home sanctuary, but it’s really important to get the basics right. In Sweden there are a lot more regulations in place to ensure bathrooms are protected from water. My strongest advice is to always use HardieBacker boards, or equivalent cement boards, before tiling a shower area. If you have the opportunity to play with height, then do. In this scheme we could only have double height in one part of the room, but it really adds a different dimension to the space.

Who inspires you at the moment? Are there any ‘platforms/social handles’ you love and recommend budding designers to follow?

I love the work of Interior Designer Catherine Wilman (@catherinewilman.interiors) at the moment. Her London designs are the epitome of style and there’s a real air of elegance around her work. I particularly like the period properties she brings back to life. I tend to use a bit more colour in my work, but I absolutely love her style. I would also recommend following @roseandgreyinteriors on Instagram. It’s a local interior shop to me, but they do most of their trade online. It’s nice to follow an account that gives inspiration but also allows you to buy what you see.

Looking for some more design inspiration? Check out the previous post in this series:

How to design your own home sanctuary – with Irish Interior Designer, Emma-Louise Hood.