How are vanities put together?

LinelleDecember 23, 2013

Do vanities usually come as a single unit, or are they made up of components, like kitchen cabinets?

I'm still thinking about updating my bathroom. My current vanity is about 56" wide with a single sink. I just want one sink in there. I could go 55-57 for the vanity but that's about it. I need the counter and storage space it provides.

Do I look for a complete vanity that size, or do I consider a sink unit and two on the sides? Then are there face pieces that cover the seams and make it look like a unified whole piece?

The attached photo is what I currently have and I like the storage, although I would consider making the sides all drawers.

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Yes, vanities are constructed in separate pieces that are then screwed together just like kitchen cupboards. However, many vanities are sold as one unit, ie you might just pick up a pre-made vanity that is already joined as one piece.

I'm going to show you two pics of my basement guest bath. It is 48" wide, I picked as small a sink as I could find to minimize the size of the sink base, and maximize the size of the drawers. Our carpenter put an extra side piece on the outside side and gave us a filler piece for next to the wall. You will note that we had the sink base doors go all the way up to the counter, that way we can easily reach anything under there. We had a pull-out drawer made and I love it, all my cleaning supplies, big shampoo bottles, etc. fit in there and are easily accessible.

We are starting to plan our last BR and I will shorten the present counter down from 78" to about 58" or so, to incorporate a linen tower. Like you, I value counter and storage space over an additional sink, but am thinking of locating sink to one side to create a longer counter space. We did that in our previous home to accommodate changing and bathing babies, and to give enough space to dry out sweaters, etc. Babies all grown, but maybe if I'm lucky, it will be able to handle grand-babies!

    Bookmark   December 23, 2013 at 5:27PM
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Your width is probably not standard - meaning you need custom or a bank of separate cabinets attached to one another with filler(s) to close gap(s) on either side. Cabinetry is available both ways.

If you select stock cabinets you can select either 30 or 36 inches in height. Custom can be designed to fill your space in its entirely and of any height you wish.

I've linked our MBR which was updated a year ago. The cabinet was constructed by a local cabinetmaker and we went with 34" overall height as we felt 36 was more than we would find comfortable. Everything is 3/4' plywood or solid maple, stained and finished inside and out. Amazingly, the final cost was less than stock cabinets and we have many features not otherwise available.

Hope this helps. Good luck with your remodel.

Here is a link that might be useful: Master Bathroom

    Bookmark   December 23, 2013 at 5:38PM
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I think they can be either way. I have a 60" vanity going in as I type and it is one unit built frameless. But I have known of others using kitchen cabinets. The typical bathroom vanity I believe is 21" deep where as a kitchen cabinet is 24" deep. So there is one difference. Sometimes the vanities are a few inches shorter too, but not always.

Your vanity looks like one piece to me because of that top rail.

You don't have much depth there at the door. How deep is your current cabinet?

Edited to state that as I was in my bathroom watching the cabinet go in while I was typing (multi tasking) I was late in my posting, and several other post illustrated so well what can be done.

This post was edited by enduring on Mon, Dec 23, 13 at 17:44

    Bookmark   December 23, 2013 at 5:40PM
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Thanks everyone for your helpful info and suggestions. In the meantime I went to a few online cabinet sites and figured out that they can indeed be made of components with filler, end panels, etc. Is $1500 about right?

I want to keep the basic exterior dimensions: 55" long, 30" high (not including counter), 21" deep.

enduring, there's a good 6" between the door opening and the vanity, but 21" is plenty deep, since they're currently cabinets and a lot can hide from me back there.

raehelen, your advice about minimizing the sink and false front underneath is very helpful. I love your backsplash.

fnmroberts, your bathroom is gorgeous! There are a lot of complete vanities out there, but not so much in the size and look I want.

It's funny. I always called this the "guest bath." Now I see most people would call it a "hall bath." It's in the hall, so I can live with it. My master bath (en suite) is half the size of this one, but if I don't use the bathroom in my bedroom, who else will? :)

    Bookmark   December 23, 2013 at 7:07PM
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We special ordered a 36" cherry Kraftmaid vanity from HD. I am not one to buy cabinetry over the internet because I'm particular about drawer and finish quality. We picked our door style, stain, drawer configuration (3 side drawers) and added a base valance and decorative side trim. We paid $1100. It took three weeks to come in.

We originally planned to use the 15" Kohler Caxton sink, but the salesperson said it was too small for a standard vanity. Our fabricator told us the oval sinks are never perfectly oval, so unlike a kitchen undermount, they cut the sink opening to overhang the sink slightly, so you lose an inch there. If anyone washes their face or handwashes clothing, you probably need at least a 17".

    Bookmark   December 24, 2013 at 9:38AM
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We had an issue such as yours (non-standard vanity size in the original) when we went to redo our upstairs bathroom. I ended up with a 36" vanity and a 12" set of drawers, but in retrospect, I should have used a 36" vanity and the 18" set of drawers to reach the 55" I had to work with. Oh well, less space to clutter up!

Ours, btw, came from HD, but were Master Bath brand. They make two levels, one of plywood and one in particle board. We chose the plywood except in the upstairs medicine cabinet, which had to be the "lower end". No matter, it was still beautiful and done in a decent wood.


    Bookmark   December 24, 2013 at 4:30PM
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