Easy Installation Of Your Recessed Soap Dish Niche

Porcelain shower niche finishing ideas

There are two ways you can finish your porcelain shampoo and soap holder into your ceramic tile wall. Beside the quick and easy standard "surface mount" you can "build in" the shampoo holder.

porcelain ceramic shampoo holder Overlayed bull nose shampoo soap niche dish shel shower shelf install

Standard Surface Mount

Built in, recessed face
Standard Surface Mount
easy install niche corner caddy recess it shower-niche-installation (7

Leave 11 5/8 x 11 5/8 opening, after grouting install dish, with silicone, tape and stick. Know where the studs are. Cut hole when niche height is reached. Install niche after tiled, grouted and sealed!

Cut backer board for face to sit flush with backer board. Bullnose tile half way over edge of niche. Know where the studs are. Lay tile until niche height is reached, then cut hole.  
Link to Flickr for installation of a two compartment niche, same as a 1 or a 3 compartment!!

Link to Flickr for time lapse pictures of this type of installation!!!!!!!!!!

Link to Flickr for installation of a two compartment niche, same as a 1 or a 3 compartment!!

Locating your Shower Niche Height

Each side or center under the shower head at eye level is my choice, but you may have other considerations. Bathing in the tub, pipes, reach issues, windows or stud locations may all affect your desired niche location. Studs in non bearing interior walls generally can be moved to accommodate your new niche.

Locating shower niche height*shower niche height

Bathroom shower tile niches located at eye level, in front of you, a convenient height to reach and above the water splash.


Install the porcelain shampoo soap shelf after the tile is up, grouted and sealed.

installing  recessed niche in tile

Since these tiles are 13" inches wide and the dish 12 3/4" square, we could not center without a sliver showing so we centered the niche in four tile. If you tile your shower with 12" x 12" tile, these niches will cover one centered tile nicely.

Rough opening cutouts for niches:

Large recessed niches- 11 5/8" x 11 5/8" x 3 7/8" into wall. Overall 12 3/4" x 12 3/4". Interior opening approx 11" x 11"

2 compartment niche- 5 3/4" x 13 1/2" x 2 3/4" into wall. Overall 7 1/8" x 15". Interior opening 5 " x9 3/4" and soap opening 5" x 3".

Soap only niche - 5 5/8" x 4" x 2 3/4" deep into wall. Overall 6 1/4" x 4 3/4". Interior opening 5 " x 3 1/2" x 2 5/8".

Shower niche installation

Before concrete boarding your shower walls note stud locations and where you intend to place the niche. Concrete board and lay tile to height of bottom of niche, then cut out 11 5/8 x 11 5/8 opening with sawzall, finish tiling. This way you cut the hole exactly where you want it. Located at an eye level height, your shower niche shelves are at easy reach and out of shower head water spray.

Evan Daniels Hunter Fisherman Good Guylots of toiletry storage bathroom

Notice 1x3 siliconed to back wall, blobs on back of shelf and beads of silicone both around the inside of the opening and on the shelf itself. The trick is to have the blobs on the back just touch the back boards and not to have a lot of oozing out where the unit touches the tile.

Carefully!! place your jam stick without much pressure on dish checking for level, couple pieces of tape and carefully silicone the edge now or the next day after the initial set.

*Be careful not to bang the corners of the dish when you have it out before install, this is porcelain and the corners will chip. Always keep the dish in the original box up until the final install. Do not force the dish if your rough opening is slightly small. It helps to have the bottom of the rough opening smooth and level. Blow all dust away before applying a generous amount of silicone to the inside of the opening, around the inside rim of the dish and a slight bead on the face of the tile where the flange rests. Carefully remove any silicone welling out from flange silver tape and or wood stick into final position (level) and let set over night. Final silicone edge caulk the next day.


Recessed shower shelf in existing tile wall

existing tile niche installation*porcelain tile layout

Yes you can retrofit any of my recessed niches or crown in existing tile installations with a 4" diamond grinder and vacuum backup. Best to know where your existing studs are located or possible mechanical lines. We are cutting porcelain tile here which is very hard but not a problem for the 4" grinder.

When laying out for your niches or ceramic crown, figure a general location, tile to it and then do your final cut out. I find myself always off by an inch or so, cut when you get there.
Always skip setting your accent tile if they are small tiles as they will not support the courses above. In the picture we set for a 3" wide accent, set the boards, laid the large tiles above and will return to set the accents, ceramic crown and niches last.


Recessed Preformed Shampoo Shower Niches

preformed soap niche recess*shampoo niche holder

Silver duct tape sticks very well, leaves little residue and can be used for the initial silicone set of your preformed shampoo shower niches.


Moving the shower head line for symmetrical installation of one piece ceramic shampoo niche


Evan Daniels cuts shower head water line to offset for one piece shampoo niche. This way we can get exactly a symmetrical location for the niche below the shower head at eye level height.


Layed out for soap shampoo niche to miss pipe,studs and hit center line of shower head. Daryl Davis cuts carefully with sawzall or diamond 4" grinder, back up with vacuum for dust control or use a fan in window.


Finished centered shower shampoo niche at eye level. The finished bathroom remodel.


Dual recessed shampoo niches with centered tile accent strip at eye level under shower head.

dual recessed porcelain shampoo dishes*dual shampoo soap dish shelf porcelain niche*

Framed in non bearing wall, open an area larger than needed to make hitting layout easier. Centered placement of Moen Eva shower valve, shower rod and handheld shower head. We layed out for the niches to be centered on the accent strip at approximately eye level.

best small bathroom tub review*best shampoo niches how to diy recess it noble

This Aker SBF 3260 is a great soaking tub for a 5ft space with a tile flange. No skirt means you are able to have a nice tile work front.


Built-in recessed face, one piece porcelain niche installation.

shampoo niche instructions diyerBuilt in recessed ceramic niche*

Flush niche installation using standard bull nose ceramic tile over lip of one piece niche. This is much more work than a standard installation but does looks nice. Still 1/2 the work of custom niche. Matte almond colored 3 compartment niche.

Flickr time lapse photos of this installation, use the slideshow button at the top right corner to view in progression.


Framing non bearing shower head wall for dual ceramic shampoo soap niches

Its best to make opening larger than you need and also to know how your tile layout will hit your niches.

 one piece niche shampoo soap shelf

Large ceramic one piece recessed shampoo soap shelf for your bathroom shower area, sanitary and easy install. Surface mounted.

Accent height shower

Both the ceramic shelves and glass tile accent strip set at eye level on bathroom shower head wall, the perfect location for toiletry storage.


Gloss white recessed shampoo niche*matte alomd recessed soap shelves

Gloss white recessed 3 compartment and dual 2 compartment shampoo soap niches.


Framing for locating side by side bathroom shower tile niches

shower niche framing

Niche framing on shower head wall for locating niches at eye level. Non bearing wall. We have been locating shower valves closer to shower door for easier reach.