The bathroom should be somewhere that we can escape to, a place of peace and calm where we can lock the door on the outside world. With many different bathroom design schemes out there, it is the classical look we frequently turn to for the perfect blend of luxury and comfort.
So what exactly do we mean by a classical bathroom?
Defining classical. Any classical interior scheme takes its style cues from days gone by, when a relaxed opulence and hedonism ruled. The mood of a classical bathroom can be shaped by ancient Roman and Greek themes, using imitation Doric columns, acanthus leaves and mosaics, or it can reflect more recent historical ages such as French Napoleonic or Italian Baroque periods.
Yes, classical bathroom style really can be cherry picked from all the best bits of interior design history – it is entirely possible to mix and match ideas from across the ages, with the exception of really contemporary styles. Forget ideas of modern wet rooms in polished concrete and minimalist styling – a classical bathroom does not hold back on the glamor and unashamedly embraces the best from times past. Some may prefer to call it traditional, but that term lacks the gloss and high style often associated with ‘the classics.’
Get the look. There are easy ways to introduce classical style into the bathroom. Begin with choosing sanitary ware with a traditional feel, such as pedestal sinks. Freestanding claw-foot tubs add instant glamor, as do gold or burnished brass faucets. Colors in classical bathrooms tend to be muted shades of cream, gray, white and gold. Materials such as marble, stone, Tuscan tile and mosaic give the quietly luxurious touch we are after. Walls painted in rich, muted tones work as the perfect backdrop to a theatrical scheme – for added authenticity try out some of the superb historic shades widely available. Ornately decorated traditional wallpapers can also bring a historic feel to the bathroom, designs with Chinoiserie, French Toile or classic English William Morris overtones are all worth consideration.
Classic windows. For pure drama and theater in the bathroom, look to the windows. Classical bathrooms demand special treatment with lavish drapes in rich fabrics. Go overboard on the drapes that frame the window, opting for rich swags and tiebacks. For privacy fit subtle low cost vinyl blinds, and then dress the surroundings for maximum impact.
Finishing touches. Clever use of accessories underlines a bathroom’s classic credentials. A well-chosen set of antique prints in black and gold frames can look stunning. Mirrors in gleaming mahogany or ornate gilded frames set the tone for a classic scheme, as do lamps with crystal and glass shades. Breathe boudoir bravura into the room with a carefully placed antique armchair upholstered in sumptuous crushed velvet. For bespoke vanity units and towel storage, re-purposed French style furniture works wonders – paint it in muted colors and embellish with gold detailing for maximum effect.
So, when it comes to putting together a classical bathroom design the rules are, there are no rules! Just select the best ideas from yesterday’s interiors, throw in a large slice of luxury and a side order of comfort – and a classical bathroom is born. And remember, the real beauty of this bathroom style is that it won’t go out of fashion.
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