“To create a modern version of the Victorian bathroom, we have to dream a little.”
The Victorian House Book – Robin Guild
Victorian bathrooms are distinguished by the tasteful design elements typically found in the awe-inspiring homes of the Victorian era.
While modern bathrooms are minimalistic and innovative, Victorian bathrooms are showy and magnificent. The design is distinctly different, focusing on beauty, grandeur, and comfort.
The fixtures and fittings in a modern bathroom are stylish, practical, minimal, and hassle-free. But a Victorian bathroom is different – it exudes elegance and luxury.
Imagine a freestanding bathtub decked up with matching bronze taps. It’s simply elegance personified!
- What Is Victorian Bathroom Style?
- Victorian Bathroom Design Ideas
- How Do I Make My Bathroom Look Victorian?
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What Is Victorian Bathroom Style?
Victorian bathroom style refers to a popular design in the Victorian era, spanning 1837 – 1901, the period of Queen Victoria's rule over Great Britain. These styles of bathrooms symbolise the bathrooms of the wealthy.
Numerous gorgeous innovations in hardware design took place during the Victorian era. Since the styling of Victorian bathroom elements is absolutely timeless, you can’t go wrong with it.
Affluent Victorians brought together their most marvellous patterns, fancy fixtures, and intricate detailing to devise the lavish designs that are still being recreated to this day. These grand and opulent bathrooms were truly elegant.
The key characteristic elements of Victorian bathrooms include freestanding bathtubs, taps, ornate features, Victorian colour schemes, and tiles.
Victorian Bathroom Design Ideas
a. Small Victorian Bathroom Ideas
While Victorian designs are elaborate and more suitable for large bathrooms, they can still work remarkably well in small bathrooms.
Maximise Space and Embrace Light
- Wall-mounted fixtures: Utilise space-saving wall-mounted bathroom fixtures to free up floor space. You could also include a bit of brass, one of the staples of Victorian-era bathrooms. So, a wall-hung double basin vanity unit with brass basin taps would be the perfect choice to maximise space and give your bathroom a characteristic Victorian-style look.
- Corner solutions: Maximise awkward corners with corner sinks, storage cabinets, or even small bathtubs. All these fixtures are ideal for making excellent use of a compact space.
- Mirrors and Light: Hang large ornate mirrors to expand the room and reflect light visually. Opt for vintage-style chandeliers or sconces for added charm. Short hanging pendant lights are a great option too. Look for genuine Victorian-era pieces with decorative or patterned glass, as they would lend a perfect balance to your bathroom.
- Clawfoot tub: If space allows, incorporate a classic clawfoot tub for a statement piece. Choose a smaller footprint version for a better fit. The claw feet elevate the bathtub off the floor, saving space and adding a touch of splendour.
- Mosaic tile accents: Add pops of colour and pattern with Victorian-inspired mosaic tile borders or detailing to add warmth and interest to your space. Setting this off against a matching floor will create a stunning Victorian aesthetic.
- Ornate hardware and taps: Elevate the space with vintage-style brass or gold taps, drawer pulls, and towel hooks. These finishing touches will make your Victorian bathroom appear more magical.
b. Modern Victorian Bathroom Ideas
Longing for an elegant bathroom that balances timeless Victorian style with modern functionality? You can think of statement pieces like freestanding tubs reimagined with minimalist lines. Seamlessly integrating smart bathroom technology would also blend the best of both worlds.
Blend Modernity with Classic Charm
- Sleek fixtures: Combine classic shapes with modern finishes like matte black or chrome for a contemporary twist. The hallmark of Victorian brassware – shower heads, pillar taps, basin taps, and more – is its lustrous finish.
- Walk-in shower with patterned tiles: Patterned tiles add a sense of timeless elegance, especially inside a walk-in shower. Hence, choose a walk-in shower with Victorian-inspired patterned tile floors or accent walls for a modern interpretation.
- Freestanding tub with minimalist lines: A freestanding tub is a natural centrepiece because it’s the most luxurious furniture piece in your bathroom. Hence, incorporate a modern freestanding tub with clean lines to balance the ornate Victorian elements.
- Smart technology: Embrace modern conveniences with smart taps, towel warmers, or heated floors. Smart technology fixtures can be easily installed in a Victorian-style bathroom.
- Bold pops of colour: Incorporate a contrasting accent wall in a deep teal or emerald green for a modern yet Victorian nod. Brighter shades of colour work especially well in bathrooms with large windows, as they let in plenty of natural light.
- Mixed metals: Mixing metals is a great strategy to add visual interest and depth to your Victorian bathroom. You can play with mixed metal finishes like gold electroplating and black matte hardware for a modern and edgy touch.
How Do I Make My Bathroom Look Victorian?
The Most Popular Colours for a Victorian Bathroom
The colour schemes for Victorian-era bathrooms could be wide-ranging. But the most popular colours are dark shades such as maroon, black, or deep green. Some popular light colours are white, grey, beige, or cream.
These colours will give a vintage aesthetic and pair beautifully with white sanitary ware and period prints. Styling a room based on a colour scheme is a low-cost way to create the desired atmosphere and ensure your finished room is something to be proud of.
Wood-effect floor tiles, combined with wall tiles in a colour like cream or black, can make a blank slate on which your furniture and appliances can shine. Alternatively, you could install colourful wall tiles and patterned floors and add plain-coloured furniture to tie the look together.
The Best Products for Creating a Victorian-Style Bathroom
Victorian bathroom ideas are plentiful. Detailed below are six premium products that can help you to quickly create a Victorian bathroom style.
1. Traditional Bathroom Suites
A traditional bathroom suite package comes with all the accessories needed to recreate historical splendour in your bathroom. This package includes a freestanding bathtub, basin, and toilet.
Your budget need not be a constraint because these great value bathroom suites are available in a wide price range – £315 to £939.
The key advantage of a traditional bathroom suite is it allows you to achieve classical elegance with refreshing modern simplicity. A luxury freestanding bathtub and close-coupled toilet are the default accessories.
You have three options to choose from for the basin – a pedestal basin, a wall-hung vanity unit with an in-built basin, or a floor-standing vanity unit with an in-built basin.
The fixtures in a traditional bathroom suite exude elegance, sophistication, timelessness, and charm – the essential attributes of a Victorian-style bathroom.
The period-style woodworking and the classical panel detailing of the vanity unit complement the opulent dimensions of the ceramic basin.
The design of the beautiful roll top or freestanding bath is comfortable and curvy. A traditional bath shower mixer tap enhances the Victorian-era appearance.
The close-coupled toilet is the perfect timeless essential with an eco-friendly, hygienic rimless design that requires less water to clean the bowl.
2. Traditional Freestanding Baths
Victorian bathroom ideas aren’t complete without a freestanding bath, as this accessory can add a touch of glamour to even a dull bathroom.
When it comes to classic style transformation, you can count on a freestanding bath to transform your space into an iconic Victorian-era bathroom. This highly progressive period in British history presents you with inspiration for dozens of timeless freestanding baths.
The main feature of a freestanding bath is it will easily fit into a small bathroom.
Compact size is a decisive factor, as bathrooms in modern homes are small. Interestingly, the smaller dimensions of modern bathrooms are perfectly in line with bathrooms of the Victorian period, which were small and narrow in scale, as well.
The detailed traditional feet of a freestanding bath delivers a classic British look that echoes period chic throughout. (Some models come without feet and sit flat on the floor.) It’s a value-for-money buy as it combines durable construction with an extended manufacturer’s guarantee.
3. Traditional Toilets
While a modern designer toilet is fantastic, time has not had any effect on the Victorian style.
The most prominent feature in a Victorian bathroom was a high-level toilet. So, the simplest way to achieve a Victorian-inspired bathroom design is to install a toilet with a high-level cistern.
The distinctive feature of a high-level toilet is that its cistern sits high on the wall, and the toilet pan is connected to it by a flush pipe. For flushing the toilet, you use the pull chain attached to the cistern.
The striking high-level design of traditional toilets exudes timeless class and Victorian artistry. Made of the highest quality vitreous china, these toilets are durable as well as stylish.
An affordable alternative to high-level toilets is low-level toilets. In this design, the position of the cistern is significantly lower on the wall.
A low-level toilet would also be the right choice when you don’t have enough height in your bathroom to accommodate a high-level cistern. With this toilet, you can still create the traditional appearance of a Victorian-style bathroom, adding instant impact and elegance.
4. Traditional Bathroom Taps
To create a genuine Victorian-inspired bathroom, you must choose traditional bathroom taps for your basin and bathtub. Taps are an important piece of the puzzle. Getting them right will make it easier to capture the look you desire.
Traditional bathroom taps are all about fine craft and the inviting feel they exude.
The variety on offer is endless – traditional basin pillar tap, dual lever basin mixer, 3-hole basin mixer tap, basin mono mixer tap, long nose bath pillar tap, freestanding bath filler tap, bath filler mixer taps with levers, bath shower mixer tap with handset and hose, traditional gold bath pillar taps, bath shower mixer deck, and more.
Instead of the modern mixer tap, choose two taps in an ornate style. Don’t buy taps that have a contemporary, sleek, or angular design. Choose chrome taps with lasting appeal to keep on theme.
Besides intricate details, the Victorians loved flattering designs and extravagant patterns. Hence, select taps in which these characteristics are emphasised. Look for taps that add a final, fashionable finish to your bath and basin.
A washstand or wash basin stand offers a distinct Victorian-era look, exuding class and lasting sophistication. The main value of this accessory is its aesthetic appearance. This accessory is also functional and saves space.
Washstands are made of chrome, low carbon steel, or aluminium. Premium models are available in gleaming polished nickel finish. These decorative pieces have remained virtually unchanged for close to 150 years.
A wash basin stand will help you maintain the historical integrity of your bathroom by capturing true Victorian-era splendour. This authentic minimalistic piece will make your bathroom light and airy, and the space will no longer feel crowded.
Select a traditional basin to go along with the sculpted pillar legs of your wash stand for a complete finish, ensuring your bathroom gets a grandeur touch.
6. Traditional Towel Rails
A traditional towel rail is another accessory that can bring a true-to-life Victorian-period look to your bathroom. The classic and sophisticated design of these utility pieces accentuates their beauty, evoking a striking appeal.
Plenty of Victorian bathroom ideas abound, where these aesthetically-pleasing pieces are used to reproduce the true magnificence of the Victorian era. But you really need to pick an intricate and artfully designed towel rail to create a Victorian-style bathroom.
The traditional design of these towel rails makes them an ideal central heating radiator. Also, the polished chrome-plated or gold-plated finish gives this accessory an attractive and traditional look.
The wide range means this accessory will match different styles of decor. Hence, you will easily find one that will complement the other accessories of your Victorian-style bathroom.
Shop Victorian Bathrooms
We are sure this in-depth blog post has been an educative trip through the colourful universe of Victorian-style bathrooms.
Bathroom City offers various Victorian-style bathroom products that can fire up your imagination. Our friendly team is always ready with innovative bathroom ideas that will help you achieve your Victorian bathroom dream.
Contact us online or over the phone. We look forward to your email or call!
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