In this post, we present more answers from Jennifer Snider, The McKnight Group’s interior designer to questions we frequently get about church building projects.
One of the key elements of good church interior design is making a positive first impression, as we shared in an earlier post in our series. This is just as important in a room that isn’t meant to stand out at all—the restroom.
If you’ve ever wondered, “How should we update our restrooms?” when working on a church remodeling project, the following information from Jennifer is for you.
Seeing Your Church Building’s Restrooms with Fresh Eyes
One of the difficulties with becoming comfortable in your church building is that you begin to take things for granted. You walk into the restroom, take care of business, and walk out again, not paying much attention to how things really look because you’ve been in there dozens of times before.
This becomes an issue when your church restrooms get cluttered or aren’t well cleaned. You might not notice such things … but your members and guests will.
We always suggest that you regularly walk into the restrooms and really look around—with the eyes of your guests, as it were. This allows you to better see something that might need to be addressed or to recognize when a deeper cleaning should be scheduled.
Leaving Themes Outside the Restroom Door
Restrooms are more likely to feel clean and nice if there is minimal décor. We will show one slight exception to that rule, but for the most part, you don’t want a thematic focus for your restrooms.
Instead, the church interior design goal is for your restroom to feel welcoming without having it stand out. You don’t want to decorate it like the restroom at your grandma’s house. The restroom is not the reason guests come to your church in the first place, so don’t feel as if you need to make a big statement with your décor.
Restroom Church Interior Design Examples
This first image, from Parma Baptist Church, shows an example of an updated restroom. Prior to the renovation, the restroom was mauve—everything from the tiles and toilet partitions to the countertops. The color scheme was clearly dated, so we came in and replaced the mauve with a neutral color. We also expanded the size of the stalls, to give people more room to maneuver.
The restrooms at Cypress Wesleyan also have a neutral tone and feel to them. In this case, there was a little bit more room in the budget, so they placed porcelain tiles partially up the wall, both inside and outside the stalls, as you can see in the back of the picture. This dresses up the room a little while still retaining a clean, neutral feeling in the space.
Here in the restrooms at Evangelical United Methodist you can see that they have extended their Tuscan theme into the restrooms. They have done it very simply, however, just upgrading the mirrors and adding a single painting to the wall. This allows the restroom to retain its clean appearance, while subtly tying it into the rest of the church building.
This final church interior design example is the restroom at Blue Grass United Methodist. These church leaders chose to invest more in their restrooms, installing granite countertops and placing porcelain tiles all the way to the ceiling on every wall.
Glass tile adds a decorative feature without making the space feel cluttered. If your budget can handle upgrades like this, your restrooms can really shine, clearly showing guests that you’ve invested in their comfort.
One final note about restrooms. If space allows, it’s wise to incorporate a family restroom into your church interior design. This allows moms and dads with young children, as well as adults with older parents, to have more privacy. It also demonstrates to guests and church members that their welfare and comfort are important to the church.
More Questions? We Have More Answers!
We hope you are finding this Q&A series helpful. Please return soon for answers to other commonly asked questions. And to learn more about all aspects of the church building and remodeling process, check out our i3 webinars—simply visit our website and sign up. They’re free, so you have absolutely nothing to lose (except maybe a few questions).