light over tub

lori_inthenw_gwJune 2, 2012

Imagine a smallish bathroom. You enter and there is a vanity to your left, toilet to right. Keep walking through a curbless shower and there's the tub next to the far wall. I have an aversion to overhead lights and don't really like a brightly-lit shower. I sometimes like to read in the tub. Was thinking of a wet-rated sconce on the wall above the tub, but couldn't find anything I liked, mostly the "bulkhead" style and a little too much of a nautical look. Should I simplify and just have a small recessed fixture above the tub? If it were pointed to wash the wall, the reflection might be enough to read. Between that and the sconces at the vanity, would that light the shower area enough?

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lori-- Sounds pretty cool! Without seeing the dimensions of the space, I can't say if you'll have enough light--my guess would be, no. But then again, I'm a fan of light. My rule of thumb is put as much light in as you can and put them on dimmers and/or separate switches so you can control the amount of light at any given moment.

For the shower/bathtub area-- what if you did more of an ambient lighting with rope lights around the perimeter of the room. You could put up a beefy piece of trim -beefy enough for the rope lights to be strung on top and be pretty much concealed. You could then put them on a dimmer switch so if you wanted brighter light for reading in the tub you can have it. If you just want soft relaxing light, you can slide the switch and have it too. Depending on how you do the ceiling in the shower area, you could do 2 separate areas this way. You could do different colors and use it as chromatherapy in the shower and ambient light/chromatherapy in the bath.

You could always do a light in the exhaust fan too.

Can't wait to see drawings & progress pics! Hope this helps!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2012 at 12:39PM
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Thanks, there will be pics someday, but it will be a while. This is new construction and a fairly contemporary interior, so there is not much ability to add trim without it drawing too much attention to itself. I know what you mean about the ambient glow type of light, though-- our current MBa has upward facing tracks on top of the horizontal beams and the light bounces off the cathedral ceiling. I guess I'm trying to sort of replicate that feeling, but in a really different room, which is why I'm having a hard time visualizing it. I'm a big fan of dimmers, though!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2012 at 5:36PM
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I'll second the vote for more lights with dimmers. We will have 2 recessed lights above our bathtub and a 3rd one in the adjacent shower. All will be on a a dimmer. Recessed lights aren't very stylish, so I'm also putting a large pendant in the center of the room (not over the tub) which doesn't have to be bright -- but will hopefully be stylish.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2012 at 12:39AM
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Before giving it too much thought, you might want to consult your builder, city inspector or an electrician. There are specific rules for what can be located directly above a tub. Generally, they have to be recessed or flush mounted unless you have a very high ceiling.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2012 at 8:48AM
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Thanks, billl-- I have looked at the codes, also have professionals involved. (Good thing I didn't have my heart set on a chandelier! Just kidding, it's not that kinda house and I'm not that kinda person.) The ceiling in that room is 9 ft. I was thinking I would have to go with a properly-rated ceiling fixture or if I used a sconce it would have to be for wet areas (outdoors, essentially).

    Bookmark   June 5, 2012 at 12:12AM
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We decided to put a light in our shower at the last minute and are very glad we did. Better to have it and not need it than to wish it was there and it isn't. Course, there's always flashlights and candles!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2012 at 8:30AM
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Code requires lights over shower or tub be rated for wet (not just damp) locations

    Bookmark   June 5, 2012 at 1:35PM
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