From Drab To Fab: How To Make Your Bathroom An Instant Classic
Traditional bathrooms need not be so predictable.
Add interest by experimenting with different fixtures and fittings and shunning the all-white look in favour of colour.
Embrace a pedestal
Pedestal basins fell out of favour for a while – but they’re starting to look just right again, and it’s easy to see why. They have a period feel and simple lines, and this classic design effortlessly hides ugly pipework. Choose one with Victorian or Edwardian detailing for extra period points.
If you have the space, two pedestals side by side can look particularly magnificent. And they work perfectly teamed with traditional bevelled mirrors.
Photo: Alex Armistead/Etre
Say yes to panelling
A vintage-style wallpaper teamed with tongue-and-groove panelling gives this compact bathroom a cosy feel. Swap slick modern lights for a more decorative chandelier, to keep things traditional.
Treat yourself to a clawfoot tub
A roll-top, clawfoot bath is the ultimate in timeless luxury, but it’s equally at home in modern schemes. For an indulgent, traditional look, team it with wallpaper, plantation shutters and a marble-topped vanity unit. Painting the sides of the bath a dark colour, like French navy, also adds to the traditional period feel.
Photo: Aston Matthews/London bathrooms
Slip into a slipper
Freestanding baths come in all sorts of shapes and sizes these days, but the slipper bath offers a special kind of indulgence. Originally a Victorian design, it features a higher back at one end, which provides support as well as privacy when you sink into the bubbles and relax. It’s the traditional bathtub of choice if you love a touch of opulence.
Photo: Tim Barber/Victorian bathrooms
Revel in heritage hues
We tend to go for white, but colour can make a big difference in the bathroom.
Art Deco-style space sports mint-green that instantly transport you back to another era.
Note a slim black tile border is a classic traditional feature. When it comes to bathroom wall lights, it may be worth taking the time to source ones that match your look.
Opt for a washstand
A classic washstand can elevate a plain basin into something more interesting while adding a sense of space. It works perfectly with vintage-style taps, chequerboard floor and subway wall tiles. A hexagonal mirror and shaded, armed wall lamps also add a traditional touch.
Photo: Jame French/Minton Young
Try a two-piece loo
The modern toilet trend may be for hidden or boxed-in cisterns, but a two-piece loo can actually look very homey and has something of a country house air about it.
A black toilet seat always looks smart and grounds an all-white scheme. And large marbled floor tiles could work well.
Celebrate black and white
Black and white tiles have long been a sign you’re in a traditional period bathroom. A border of black, on walls, the floor or both, adds a focal point and is elegant, timeless and chic.
Photo: Greg Hadley/Braswell Design+Build
Select crosshead taps
Bathroom showrooms may be filled with taps that are part water deliverer, part modern sculpture, but crosshead taps have an instant heritage flavour and work well with washstand-based or pedestal basins. While you can buy more modern, angular crosshead designs, consider classic curved edges for comfort and traditional style.
Source: Cheryl Freedman, Domain.com.au / Houzz
Hero image: Fox Group / Domain.com.au