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If you have a taste for antique bathroom furniture you can acquire it in two ways.

First, due to popularity of antiques, there is a large variety of reproductions available of all the more beautiful antique styles. However, if you have been bitten by the antique collector’s bug and are addicted to the real thing, you will have to join in the hunt and race to find precious originals.

Second, there are collectors, restorers and dealers where you can buy your antique bathroom furniture.

Reclaimed Antique Bathroom Furniture

Many genuine antiques have been reclaimed and rescued from old demolition sites, and have been restored to their former beauty. Bathtubs and bathroom sinks were frequently of cast iron, strong and durable.

Old, stained, chipped and otherwise damaged enamel is not a problem to restorers. By heating up the cast iron until red hot, several layers of powdered vitreous enamel can be built up on the surface. These items of re-enameled antique bathroom furniture will be as durable as they were originally, as long as you don’t use harsh, abrasive cleaners on the surfaces. You may be lucky enough to get hold of a genuine porcelain item of furniture, but these are very scarce and valuable. If this requires restoring you need to get hold of a real expert to do the job.

Antique Bathroom Furniture Ideas

After the days of ritual baths in religious places, and Roman social baths, public baths became available. They were usually large wooden tubs in public bath houses.

Home bathtubs began as portable tin tubs that were hauled out and set before the kitchen fire on a Saturday morning. Each family member had to take turns to have their weekly bath.

In wealthy households, hot and cold water was carried upstairs from the kitchen by servants. These were poured into comfortable ‘sitz’ or hip baths for the ladies of the house.

Later permanent claw foot baths were installed, as plumbing was installed in homes. The first antique bathroom furniture came into being.

History of Antique Toilets

Toilets have a really interesting history. The first flush toilet was invented in the 1600’s and one was presented to Queen Elizabeth of England. She was shocked and horrified and refused the gift.

The inventor was so ridiculed that he abandoned his invention and it was two hundred years later before someone else tried this stunt again. He was more successful, but still caused fainting fits in ladies who passed by his shop window who saw toilet bowls openly displayed.

The first indoor toilets were decorated bowls, which fitted into a commode in ladies’ dressing rooms. They had a hole in the center and a bucket underneath. These received the nickname ‘thunderbox’ by the Australians, who didn’t mince words. For a long time toilets were situated out of doors for hygienic purposes.

After this, as plumbing became more advanced, the bowls were flushed by a high level cistern, by pulling a chain to release the water. These were sometimes called ‘a washdown closet‘. Even then, these water closets were located outside the homes. It took longer still before they were included in the bathrooms as part of antique bathroom furniture.

History of Antique Showers

The earliest showers were ‘canopies’ which fitted onto the bathtub and contained body spray bars. They look like a semi-circular screen inside which you stand so that the water doesn’t splash out of the bathtub. They sometimes have an overhead showerhead as well. They are available, in ‘tall’ or ‘short’

Later, pipes were run up the wall with a showerhead over the bath and shower curtains stopped the splash into the bathroom.

Bathroom Faucets

Traditional bathroom faucets are available in a huge variety of styles and metals as reproductions. If you are looking for originals, brass or nickel faucets were made in various dimensions for baths or sinks. They are usually the ‘star’ shaped kind with a white enamel disk in the center labeling the faucets ‘hot’ or ‘cold’. Among the first mixer units antique bathroom furniture, is the ‘H-stand’ that stands beside the bathtub holding a mixer unit within reach of anyone in the tub. It is fastened to the floor.

A lot of the pipe work in the past was of lead and posed a health threat. Today antique style plumbing, but in brass, copper, nickel or chrome, replaces these old pipes and still blends well with. antique bathroom furniture. As much of the plumbing in antique bathrooms needs to be exposed to be authentic, these metals, which are more attractive than lead, enhance the look of the bathrooms. The typical black Victorian pipes and faucets are now available in darkened bronze.

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