Antique Bathroom Fixtures
When you think of antique bathroom fixtures, the first things you may visualize are the ball and claw bathtubs. The classic roll top claw foot bathtubs were manufactured in England between 1880 and the Second World War. These are the eras of the Victorian and Edwardian styles. Very few of the remaining bathtubs are identical and many have interesting histories. Any originals that can be found are rescued and restored and are very valuable.
However, due to the popular demand for them, some beautiful reproductions are being made and can give your bathroom the Victorian or Edwardian ambiance you are looking for at a more affordable price.
There are many retro styles of décor, among them such as Dutch Colonial, American Colonial, Quaker, Victorian, Edwardian and French Country styles. We select a few here to talk about.
If you choose one of these styles, there is a lot more to your décor than just the fixtures and the fittings that go with them. Here are a few ideas for displaying your antique bathroom fixtures.
Victorian Bathroom Fixtures
In Victorian bathrooms the plumbing was typically exposed. Even the hot water heaters were visible and they were often of brass and quite impressive machines!
The commonly used tiles of the time of Victoria were white, square tiles with much smaller black square tiles in between each four white tiles, so that the effect is white squares and black diamonds.Strictly speaking, toilets should not be considered antique bathroom fixtures to be included in bathrooms until fairly recently. Plumbing and sewerage systems were still fairly new, and to the old timers, toilets with their bad smells and unattractive appearance still belonged outside.
In time they were installed in small rooms a short way from the house, and then, shocking! and daring! they were attached to the outside of houses, accessible via verandas or porches. Later they were brought inside, but kept separate from the bathrooms in their own little rooms. It is only in the last 50 or 60 years that they have increasingly become part of the bathroom itself. However, retro or not, a bathroom today is not complete without its toilet, even for a Victorian look. So you can install all your antique bathroom fixtures, including toilet, in one room. For Victorian décor you can have a high- level cistern complete with chain.
Victorian lighting was unimaginative and was usually a stark light bulb hanging from a wire with a simple white metal circular shade in those advanced homes where they had electricity. In homes without electricity lamps were used as well as candles.
Edwardian Antique Bathroom Fixtures
The Edwardians loved their woodwork, so include as much of that as possible with your Edwardian antique bathroom fixtures. Even your bathtub and toilet can be surrounded with wood, and as for your vanity, console or cabinet sink, here you can go to town with deep, rich wood and intricate craftsmanship.
You can include all manner of carvings, fluting, fretwork, turnings, pilasters and mirrors. Beautifully wrought brass handles and hinges go with these, as do heavy brass candlesticks, brass and glass lamps and chandeliers. Electricity was becoming more common during these times and in electrified homes there was normally a fairly elaborate central ceiling light, or pretty Tiffany lamps.
French Farmhouse Antique Bathroom Fixtures
In actual fact this is not a genuine antique phase in history. It is more a charming, homely retro décor that has developed recently with an amalgam of the old farmhouse look, cozy cottages, and French country house. It is almost a nostalgic dream of country living and relaxed ambiance mixed harmoniously with undeniable chic and style. You’ll find baskets of herbs and flowers cheek by jowl with exquisite hand painted porcelain bowls and oil paintings.
Yes, I am still talking about the bathroom! You can even have chairs with cushions in amongst your French Farmhouse antique bathroom fixtures. The bathroom fixtures aren’t true antiques or even reproductions, but have an eclectic antique style of their own. The antique bathroom fixtures, although old fashioned, tend to be plain and utilitarian rather than ornate, and the cabinets painted, sometimes with really lovely bauernmalerei artwork of a fairly simple kind.
Different shades and tones of green are very popular for a cool country look, but this is not a rule. Warm browns and creams are good too, as well as blues, mauves and violet. There are sometimes accent splashes of red or yellow, but the look can be described as restful rather than colorful.
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