News from the Block, Innovate Building Solutions Blog
News from the Block, Innovate Building Solutions Blog
Bathroom, Kitchen, Basement Design & Remodeling Ideas for the Nicest Home or Business on the Block
Bathroom, Kitchen, Basement Design & Remodeling Ideas for the Nicest Home or Business on the Block

5 Tips to Brighten up and Open up a Guest Bathroom

Walk in shower with glass blocks in a guest bathroom remodel in Columbus Ohio


Frank and Sandy Hicks are no strangers to the remodeling process. They have completed many projects on a part-time basis in the evenings and weekends during the 44 years Frank served as a full time air traffic controller. I was so impressed with their custom home with an open floor plan in the countryside in Lancaster Ohio. This home is a testament to Sandy’s interior design inspiration and Frank’s construction expertise.


Although Frank and Sandy’s home is beautiful their needs and styles have changed during the years they have lived in this home. They had grown tired of their dark, cedar-lined guest bathroom with a small 3’ x 3’ fiberglass shower in the corner of the room. As Sandy said to me, “The time had come to lighten up and brighten up this space.” Using Sandy’s eyes for design and Frank’s knowledgeable construction hands learn 5 tips you can use to brighten up and open up your guest bathroom and create a spa-like atmosphere.


  • Tip 1 – Create a walk in shower to open up the space – What many people may not realize is it is possible to create a walk in shower in a small space. In this project Frank had a 55” wide space for the shower along with an alcove space to the right of the entry. Before making a trip to a Columbus home show Frank thought it would not be possible to open up the shower and eliminate the need for a door. As Frank said, “At the show I was impressed with the look of the curved glass block shower wall system with a low curb stone solid surface shower base.

Curved glass block shower wall with white subway tile in columbus ohio

It was nice to see I could use a curved glass wall and get rid of the need for a door. This new shower is also easy for guests to get into and low maintenance.”


Low profile curb in a solid surface shower pan with glass blocks
Low profile curb is safer for guests!
  • Tip 2 – White subway tile shower and bath walls – The white subway tile reflects light fabulously and provides a traditional and classic feel which blends well with the rest of Frank and Sandy’s home.


Shower alcove with white subway tile provides a decorative nook for a guest bathroom in Lancaster ohio
This decorative nook also provides more room to get into the shower
  • Tip 3 – Mirror, mirror on the wall – Another sound idea Sandy had to create a spa-like environment and provide a brighter space was to use a decorative sea shell mirrors on the wall. I think it’s cool how the glass blocks are reflected in these mirrors.

Decorative sea shell mirror with glass block wall reflection

  • Tip 4 – Moisture resistant LED can lights– Being able to flood the room with light – or just provide softer night lighting can makes all the difference. In this project Frank used moisture resistant can lights with long-lasting LED sealed bulbs which are controlled by 4 separate switches. These lights add to the open and airy feeling of the room.

Puck lighting in a guest bathroom with a walk in glass block curved wall

  • Tip 5 – Carrara marble floors and trim – Nothing conjures up a traditionally elegant look like white and grey Carrara marble. Frank and Sandy not only used this for the bathroom floor but also as decorative rope trim, for a recessed soap and shampoo niche and also as a “baseboard” in the shower – very cool!

Recessed niche with Carrara marble around white subway tile ina shower

Which of these 5 tips do you like the best? Please comment or call the numbers below for more insights on bathroom remodeling and the use of glass block walls or stone shower bases.


For more information on the glass block shower system or stone solid surface walls or bases Call Innovate Building Solutions on a nationwide basis (877-668-5888) or for a local project their divisions including Columbus Glass Block (614-252-5888), Cleveland Glass Block (216-531-6363), West Side Glass Block (216-398-1020) or Mid America Glass Block (513-742-5900) of Cincinnati or Dayton and Akron (330-633-2900).


Mike Foti

President of Innovate Building Solutions a nationwide supplier and regional (Cleveland and Columbus) remodeling contractors. Some of our product lines include glass counters, floors, backsplashes, glass blocks and grout free shower and tub wall panels

Comments (6)

  • Lillian – thanks for your input. A clear glass enclosure can certainly help to make a shower feel bigger than a framed wall with tile. The more “open” a shower is the larger it feels. Let us know if we can help further.

  • Thanks for bringing to my attention that a walk-in shower is an option, even for a small bathroom. My husband and I are going to be remodeling our guest bathroom, and there isn’t a lot of space in there, so we want to give it the most open feel possible. Perhaps it would be a good idea to have a walk-in shower with a glass enclosure to make it seem larger.

  • Justin – there are several keys and approaches to make a walk in shower work. The first is to design the entry to be large enough to get in but not too big to let the water out. One way to help keep the water in is to use a curved wall (glass blocks are a low cost way to do this) or a shower screen which can have a door which can pivot to help keep the water inside the “wet area.” Another way is to design the bathroom as a “wet room.” Wet room systems are where you create a “one level bathroom” where the entire space is waterproofed. If you want more in depth information about walk in showers give our company a call at 877-668-5888.

  • Thanks for the ideas. I am hoping to remodel my bathroom soon. I definitely want to get rid of my old shower door, but I had not thought about having a walk in shower entry. How do you keep that from flooding the rest of the bathroom?

  • I really love the use of glass in this bathroom. I’ve always been a fan of the glass tile, and the way it’s used in this shower gave me some great ideas about how I’d want to use it in my own bathroom. I’m planning a remodel, and have been talking with some glass companies about what I’d need, so thanks for giving me the idea!

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