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Bathroom vanity mirror placement

Linda f
20 days ago

Building a new house and contrary to almost everything I see, I made the decision to have only one sink in an 8' vanity in the master bath and just to confuse the issue further the sink is not centered but rather approx. 3 ft from one side of the vanity (so someone could add another sink to the other side in the future). I did this because the bathroom will not be shared (separate bathroom for hubby) and I like all the counter space on one side. But am now dealing with mirror and lighting placement. I am thinking my best option is to have a huge mirror covering most of the vanity (i.e. maybe 7') and 2 separate lights centered on each side - one over the sink and one over the empty side (the electrical is set up for 2 lights above the mirror). Anyone have any thoughts on this or better ideas would be great.

Comments (20)

  • G W
    20 days ago

    In a previous house I did a similar sink set up, but made the mistake of having a single smaller mirror over the sink, with vanity light above. Made the rest of the vanity much less useful. Your idea sounds better.

  • bpath
    20 days ago

    My parents “his and hers” bathroom was like that, Mom’s side had exactly the setup you described, and it worked well.

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  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    20 days ago
    last modified: 20 days ago

    Where is the bathroom plan that shows the vanity?

    Where is the cad drawing of the vanity itself?

    Is it between two walls in a niche? Or it floats ?

    It is not our job, to imagine what you have. You have to show it : )

    I would say that an 8 foot run of counter top with one sink, is not too attractive, and seems an unnecessary amount of bath and grooming junk out on the top and not stored. A lot of visual clutter.......why?

    It is also unclear why you'd worry about the "next person" adding a sink as you build for you.

    Show the plan.... and a better idea may present itself, such as a counter top tower, allowing EYE and hand level , easy reach , no clutter options.

  • kandrewspa
    19 days ago

    DH and I are empty nesters. We have two full baths so we each use one of them. It's a luxury to not have to share which I enjoy. We moved into this house four years ago and both bathrooms have double sinks. We remodeled the primary bath and left it with two sinks even though we technically only need one. I agree that 84" would look strange with only one sink. I suggest you just put in the second sink for resale, or pare down the vanity to 60" (with a 24" inch linen tower). 60" is generous for a single sink but then you'll have something that won't look lopsided. Although the picture below cuts off the linen tower, I believe this is what I have described.


    Yarrow Point Shingle Style--Remodel & Decor · More Info


  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    19 days ago
    last modified: 19 days ago

    This is exactly what I am talking about. If you both aren't in the bath at the same time? Fine for a single in 84 inches. WITH additional storage as that much counter top is going to look..not good, and your sink will look like a tea cup within it. Yes and thanks above, that is exactly what I was talking about.

    I have a client where I forced it onto her a few years back, and she loves it. Nearly identical, just a reverse of tower to left.



    Another way?!

    Same 84" size and to each his own crummy counter clutter :) nicely out of sight and handy, Complete with electrical inside for the tooth brushes to charge. .....and hair dryers remain plugged in/stored as well.



  • Linda f
    Original Author
    19 days ago

    Thanks to all for your input. Just to clarify, the vanity is actually 100" (so even bigger) and custom cabinetry is already built and on the way & I'm not prepared to spend even more on additional cabinets. So, I can't cut down on the cabinet size and as you can see in the attached pic I already have a linen tower. At this point I am really just looking for how to handle the mirror and lighting (electrical already in for 2 overhead lights). I have attached a picture from the floor plan for master bath. I also attached a bathroom pic from my previous home with the same off center sink and a 7' counter - clearly an odd layout but I guess I liked and tried to replicate without thinking the whole thing through.



  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    18 days ago

    We shall repeat. The cabinet order had a plan. That plan shows every detail of drawer, door, in inches. You NEED to show it, the entire 100 inches .

    Nobody can be accurate help without it.

  • Linda f
    Original Author
    18 days ago

    This is what I have for vanity cabinet drawing


  • Karenseb
    18 days ago

    If your 21 inch cabs are separate pieces, I would put two of the 21 inch vanities to the right of the sink. then center your mirror over the sink along with the sconces. If you have room, you could add a wall between the 2 cabs to the right of the sink.

    I think I like the sink closer to the tub

  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    17 days ago
    last modified: 17 days ago



    You had this, and you got used to it. I doubt the toilet placement even met code with the adjacent open shelving, the mirror abruptly ends.........why? I see a make up mirror in a corner, can only assume you used the potty as a perch, lid down?

    It is human nature to get used to something, even something NOT great as this was, and how may I ask, did two people use this set up, simultaneously?!



    You repeated the scenario of the single offset sink - which set you up for awkward, as you are finding out, mostly due to the wide width. Offset can work, but not at this size and single sink. It may be "convenient", but it isn't pretty.

    This can be both. I'd encourage you to inexpensively add a wall , lose the 21" drawer base, and give the vanity some symmetry. Also good lighting, attractive lighting with three recessed and two eye level sconces.





    I might normally give you three options. There aren't any that look good: ) other than this, especially given dollars and value added in looks.

    Bonus is you can add a pretty table for soaking supplies, minus that 21 inch drawer base. You STILL have 60 inches of counter top for junk, ( 30" each side of sink) as there is no way your sink was wider than 21 inches!



    Handy to your float boat, below.... and were I you? I'd add a tv to the tub side of that new wall: )








    19 inches, 59.00 bucks



  • acm
    17 days ago

    OMG, Jan -- she loved what she had before and so she replicated it! Who cares what YOU would do!!! Symmetry is not the be-all and end-all. I also don't care about counter space, but it does have a luxurious feel if it's just open like that!


    Anyway, Linda, to your actual question. I would do a large mirror like you had previously. Don't think of your counter as offering Future Potential Second Sink, as anybody who wanted two sinks would need to start over with cabinetry to get a second sink base anyway. The main advantage to a large mirror (framed or unframed) is giving a sense of symmetry to the larger portion of the vanity. But if you prefer a medicine cabinet or a mirror with sconces as in the example posted by @kandrewspa , then you can do a smaller one, and then balance the longer end with a nice piece of art. In either case, scale the lighting to the mirror, I think.

  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    17 days ago
    last modified: 17 days ago

    "7 minutes ago

    OMG, Jan -- she loved what she had before and so she replicated it! Who cares what YOU would do!!! Symmetry is not the be-all and end-all. I also don't care about counter space, but it does have a luxurious feel if it's just open like that!"

    ......................

    I must be confused?

    If she wanted a replica of what she had in a previous home, don't you think she might have simply replicated it?

    Or was she asking how to give what she created a better, more logical look?

    Which, if you read between the lines, is what I said. Do I think what she copied and reproduced was great design? No, not at all. Maybe the OP didn't think it was as great. : ) as you suggest. Mmmmmmmm?

    She asked a community what they would do. So you go ahead and put your two cents in, okay? Add a drawing if you like, tell her exactly where to put the lights, and what size mirror etc. Which is what she asked.

  • Linda f
    Original Author
    17 days ago

    Thank you ACM. You are correct I was just asking for opinions on mirror and light placement. I do not plan to rip out cabinets, add walls and TVs. And I did like my previous bathroom but it is over 30 years old (and it did in fact meet code). I did not use the toilet as a perch for the mirror but rather had another magnifying mirror on an arm on the opposite side.

    I usually just look at houzz info when it pops up from a google search and do not post questions and I think I will stick to that. People usually seem to be pretty courteous. Jan, thanks for trying to help but this has been a little rough for me. Building a house is already enough stress.

  • Mrs Pete
    17 days ago
    last modified: 17 days ago

    Building a new house and contrary to almost everything I see, I made the decision to have only one sink in an 8' vanity in the master bath and just to confuse the issue further the sink is not centered but rather approx. 3 ft from one side of the vanity (so someone could add another sink to the other side in the future).

    You're making good, functional choices. I'd go with a vanity-wide large mirror (framed), which will mean you'll have plenty of light reflected and a view of yourself whether you're "working" over the sink or over the counter top.

    seems an unnecessary amount of bath and grooming junk out on the top and not stored. A lot of visual clutter.......why?

    No, by allotting for plenty of drawers, you'll assure a clean counter top.

    I need to see the vanity for sure and I have been married for over 60 yrs and have never had 2 sinks and have never missed one but I sure like counter top .

    I've only been married 34 years, but I've also never had a duplicate sink /never wanted a duplicate sink ... but I do like drawer space.

    anybody who wanted two sinks would need to start over with cabinetry to get a second sink base anyway.

    Probably true.

  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    17 days ago
    last modified: 17 days ago

    I don't lie to paying clients, and my free advice here is the same . Truthful. Sorry!

    If you love it as is? No law , and nobody here says you must change a single thing.

    When you ask......you get answers, suggestions and the reasons for them . In this case? One very considerate of resources, and lighting and mirror. All are suggestions. Based on this:

    "Building a new house and contrary to almost everything I see, I made the decision to have only one sink in an 8' vanity in the master bath and just to confuse the issue further the sink is not centered but rather approx. 3 ft from one side of the vanity (so someone could add another sink to the other side in the future). I did this because the bathroom will not be shared (separate bathroom for hubby) and I like all the counter space on one side. But now I am dealing with mirror and lighting placement.

  • PRO
    Diana Bier Interiors, LLC
    16 days ago

    Seems to me that if you loved the original bath with its vanity mirror and lighting, then just replicate what you had. Why change any of the layout at all? Just install a large mirror and lighting over it as shown in your photo.

    And I can't imagine what jurisdiction would sanction a toilet butting up against a vanity the way your original bath was. Looks like there's maybe 6" between them. That wouldn't meet code in my town, but we don't know where you are located.

    I've been reading these Houzz situations for many years now. So many design dilemmas arise here due to poor planning. A layout without regard to lighting, mirrors and electrical outlets invariably leads to "what do I do now?" And a lot of angst and hand wringing. Which could have been avoided with advance planning.

    And that's why many pros here can't hide their frustration--we've seen it over and over, and it's totally avoidable.

  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    16 days ago

    Off topic, but it is refreshing to see someone planned space around a freestanding tub.

  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    16 days ago

    I do believe this has become my favorite add on.



    Baffling to me, over and over and over? When someone, anyone, pro or not.....

    takes the time to ask for more information, to draw, scan, post a solution ?

    How often the response is a head bash from the community, anger from the op, because everything is just fine as it is. If so, sign me curious as to the ask !

    Pretty amazing and further proof that when something is freely given and is dollar free ? There is a human tendency to give it zero value.

    More great advice has been contributed, on this site than any other. Pro and non. It's the internet, and YOU the poster must sort it out.

  • AnnKH
    16 days ago

    Jan, I dislike clutter, so I would much rather have drawers for "bath supplies" than stuff sitting out on a table or open shelves.


    Our last house had an offset sink in a 6' vanity, and I loved the large expanse of counter space (for a while we had a 10-gallon fish tank there). The mirror ran the length of the vanity.