Chapter 6 – Bathroom
Believe it or not, you can add vintage chic to your bathroom, even if you’re not planning on buying all new fixtures and fittings.
6.1 – Bath
Bear in mind, that if you are going to be sourcing a bath from a salvage yard or vintage fair, chances are it will need cleaning up and more often than not, re-enamelling. Re-enamelling needs to be done well, so it is best to hire an expert to do it.
There are lots of options for buying vintage styled bath tubs new, but they are rather costly compared to doing up an older bath.
The greatest option for a vintage chic bathroom is a free-standing, roll top bath. If you’re willing to put effort and work into a bath, then you will be able to get a good deal on a more ‘worse-for-wear’ one, which will need a fair amount of attention.
Although roll tops look amazing, there are other styles which work just as well too! It may sound terrible, but tin baths look beautiful in a vintage styles bathroom. We’re not talking the ones that are only big enough to sit upright in, we’re on about the fabulous ones with high backs; fit for royalty!
Even if you’re using your existing, fitted bath, you can style it up in different ways to give it a vintage chic look by using quirky taps or changing the simple side panel to something beautiful.
Making it your own
To get your bath to be as beautiful as it possibly can, you can paint the outside of it with a soft colour and even paint the feet if you fancy. Of course this only applies to roll top baths, unless you try something new with a fitted bath; you can source bath feet at fairs and markets too, so this could be an option.
If you do have a fitted bath, a way to bring a touch of glamour to your bathroom is to have mirror cut to the size of your bath panel. Mirror will make the bathroom seem bigger and will look so chic!
6.2 – Sink
A great place to look for vintage sinks is a scrap or reclamation yard, as well as keeping an eye out for old buildings being refurbished. Sometimes it is possible to salvage a whole bathroom suite, if you’re really lucky!
The styles you will be looking for are usually quite large and deep. Depending on what you’re after, the pictures below will help illustrate the options.
Even though many people see coloured bathroom suites as dated, they can be the perfect look for a chic and fabulous vintage bathroom. Choose soft shades of pink, blue, cream or green; fawn and beige will probably look quite dowdy and not very inviting.
6.3 – Taps
Choosing vintage taps and fixtures is a way to bring style, without doing something as drastic as getting a new bathroom suite.
For your bath
Vintage fixtures which work really well are headset style taps with a mounted shower attachment, also taps which come directly from the wall can look stunning!
For your sink
Taps with added details, such as raised ‘Hot’ and ‘Cold’ labels and 4 pronged tops with bobbles on the ends, are perfect for a vintage sink. They are rather hard to describe in words, so take a look at these images here:
Whichever style you choose, make sure they’re nice and shiny by keeping them clean. You can use lemon to clean taps, as the acidity will lift away soap scum and keep them sparkling. You literally just need to cut a lemon in half and use that to rub the taps and any other elements such as plugs and showerheads.
6.4 – Windows
In a bathroom, you want your privacy and if you’re not lucky enough to live across from a remote field or mountains, then you will need to consider this in the planning of your window covering.
As we mentioned in the Bedroom section, we love plantation shutters! They are so elegant and versatile and work great in bathrooms as they give so much privacy while still letting light in. Plain white shutters are the best in a bathroom to keep things looking fresh and clean.
This option will need to be fitted by someone who knows what they are doing. An expert will measure up your window to the millimetre to make sure your bespoke shutters are perfect.
Blinds can be the perfect option for a bathroom with limited space. Also blinds are usually pretty waterproof (to protect them from condensation/damp in windows) so are perfect for a bathroom.
Simple roller blinds in a soft colour or patterned Roman blinds for a bit of extra opulence, are both possible ideas for your vintage chic bathroom.
If your bathroom’s windows aren’t frosted, then purchasing and fitting a film to your window is really cost effective and still lets light through. There are a vast range of different types to choose from; including opacity and a choice patterns.
Frosted glass will give you enough privacy to not need any other coverings for your window. Leaving your window free of anything will make the most of natural light.
If you prefer to dress your window, then you could opt for a simple drape of sheer fabric or some gorgeous vintage lace. Bear in mind that your bathroom will need to be very well ventilated to have a fabric curtain or lace.