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Open Bathroom Vanities: A Sleek, Simple Style For A Modern Bathroom

Discussions about bathroom vanities often revolve around functionality – about size and shape or the quality, quantity, and variety of storage. But as important as it is to have a vanity that’s intuitive and usable and that fits the way you use your bathroom, today I’d like to put all that aside and talk simply about style. In fact, I’d like to talk about a type of bathroom vanity that, on paper, actually sounds pretty impractical: open bathroom vanities, which have a simple frame construction and almost nothing in the way of storage.

Prado Open Bathroom Vanity From Avanity
Prado Open Bathroom Vanity From Avanity

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Generally speaking, I tend to be a tad utilitarian. I like things that are well designed and efficiently organized, and I love items that are designed to do more than one thing. So it might seem surprising that I’m drawn to these supremely simple vanities. After all, they have very little storage capacity (if they have any at all), nor are they particularly compact, meaning they aren’t even a svelte alternative for a small bathroom. The appeal in open bathroom vanities is entirely in their unique, sleek, and minimalist appearance.

Zenia 36 Inch Bathroom Vanity With Ceramic Integrated Sink From RonBow
Zenia 36 Inch Bathroom Vanity With Ceramic Integrated Sink From RonBow

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Which, perhaps, is exactly why they appeal to me. Open bathroom vanities may not have a complex design or lots of creatively hidden storage, but they’re utterly elegant in their simplicity. Perfect for a modern design, open bathroom vanities are all slim straight lines and hard angles, which works perfectly with a stark modern decor. And while they don’t afford much (if any) hidden storage, the open white space in the center of the vanity creates an open, clean space that can give a modern bathroom a nice artistic vibe.

Palermo 36
Palermo 36″ Wood Bathroom Vanity Cabinet From Ronbow

Many open bathroom vanities have a simple shelf at the base, and while you probably don’t want to use that shelf to pile a hair drier and bottles of shampoo, it makes a perfect surface for display. In the case of a smaller vanity, that might mean a single simple statue. With a larger, more traditionally styled open bathroom vanity it might mean showing off an old fashioned shaving kit, antique glass bottles, or even artisan soap, natural sea sponges, or any assortment of decorations. This is a little less than perfectly practical, but it creates a unique opportunity to re-envision your bathroom vanity as a statement piece rather than a utilitarian cabinet.

Amanda Bathroom Vanity Set With Vessel Sink From Wyndham Collection
Amanda Bathroom Vanity Set With Vessel Sink From Wyndham Collection

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It’s this sleek artistic style that I love about open bathroom vanities. And as simple as the vanities themselves are, they make an impressively nice way to display a very ornate vessel sink. Like a simple display pedestal, basic open bathroom vanities offer a distraction-free, neutral wood base that can give a highly decorative sink the appearance of a museum display. Whether you choose a natural stone sink, a hand painted glass one, or even a hand-hammered copper sink, a simple bathroom vanity can actually help highlight the beauty of a one-of-a-kind signature vessel sink.

Loft 30 Inch Bathroom Vanity From Avanity
Loft 30 Inch Bathroom Vanity From Avanity

Open bathroom vanities with slatted bases make an excellent pair for spa-style bathrooms. Not only does the open style and abundant white space give them the spacious, breezy feel that spas are so well known for, but the slatted design also meshes well with a wet, steamy atmosphere. Many high end spa bathrooms are starting to use wood plank floors in their showers, to give a little grip and a more natural look and feel to the bathroom, and along with slatted wood benches and other wood accents, these slatted wood bathroom vanities are a great way to complete the look.

Zenia Open Bathroom Vanity From RonBow
Zenia Open Bathroom Vanity From RonBow

If you love the look but storage is a major concern, look for an open bathroom vanity with some kind of simple base. In addition to being great for display, these are also often just the right size for small decorative wicker storage baskets. This offers a nice way to have a little private storage even in a vanity that doesn’t have any built in. With or without tops, these baskets have a casual vibe to them that can give your bathroom a relaxed, laid back feel. If you’re too squeamish to leave out your hair spray and curling iron, consider packing a basket with rolled up towels or even toilet paper. Not only does this create a cozy spa vibe, but also keeps the necessaries out in the open and easy for guests to find.

What do you think of these open bathroom vanities? Do you like the look, or would you miss the storage?

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