Hilary Farr Recommends Doing This If You Have A Bathroom Off Of The Dining Room

Some floor plans can feature an odd detail that doesn't exactly make sense. Access to a bathroom from a dining room is a strange detail that most people, including interior designer Hilary Farr, would prefer not to have. In Season 2 Episode 6 of HGTV's "Tough Love with Hilary Farr," the designer struggles with an older home that has a door to the bathroom in the dining room. Farr explains that having this door in the dining room is unappealing and unappetizing. The solution is to make a door that doesn't look like a door at all. "It's got to be a hidden door. So it's either gonna have shelving for display on it. It's going to be a lovely framed mirror. Whatever that is, it will not look like a door," Farr tells her contractor.

Also, because Farr does not want the door to look like a door, it can't have a handle and has to have a push mechanism to open and close. You can purchase hidden doors and the hardware to install them. Hidden Door Store has a variety of styles and can be customized to fit your home's aesthetic. The Secret Bookcase Door starts at $2,999 and is similar to what Farr used in her designs. Another option for a dining room is the Wine Rack Secret Door, which has shelves to place wine bottles and starts at $3,529. For a door without storage, there is a panel option starting at $2,750.

The bathroom must be insulated

Beyond concealing the door to the bathroom from the dining room, Hilary Farr had another concern: the sounds coming from the bathroom. "It has to be fully insulated," Farr says. "I'm serious. I mean, here you are, 'Hey, how are you? Would you like a little bit more of this? How about some more cake?' Woosh. The toilet flushes." Farr has a point that the sounds coming from the bathroom can ruin the mood set in the dining room and even the appetites of the people eating there. Plus, people tend to want privacy when they're using the facilities.

Essentially, if you have a bathroom off the dining room or another more public area of the home, you want to soundproof it. This provides privacy both in and out of the bathroom. Materials like soundproof insulation, fiberglass, or cotton batt inside the walls will help ensure sounds stay inside the bathroom and provide privacy from those in the dining room. As for effectively soundproofing the door, you can use seals on the edges and door sweeps on the bottom to help dampen noise that may find their way through those small cracks. These are the best options if you're not going to purchase a thick or solid wood door, which is also a good option for soundproofing. Afterward, you want to ensure it works by flushing the toilet or speaking to see if you can hear from outside the bathroom.