Creating a vintage look for your bathroom

Creating a vintage look for your bathroomcredit

The vintage look is certainly a popular one to adopt, and there are a great deal of elements and intricacies to consider when it comes to exactly what style you’re trying to recreate. Pebble Grey take you through some of the aspects of planning your perfect vintage bathroom.

Bathroom sink with splash back of triangular shaped tile splash backcredit

Plan in advance

You probably already have a good idea about your own likes and dislikes when it comes to bathroom décor, and we’re specifically aiming to create a vintage look. So how do we take that from your mind to reality? The first step is to figure out exactly how much room there is with which to work. Now, that isn’t to suggest that it’s impossible to create a stylish and welcoming vintage bathroom with limited space. Only that resorting to some ingenuity in using the available space might be necessary.

The second thing to consider is exactly which style you prefer to emulate, as this will dictate the fittings and décor in which to seek out. Do you want a more rustic, old-fashioned style with authentic wooden furnishings and striking marble highlights? Or a fantastically vibrant 70s style room filled with bright complementary colours?

Decorative centrepiece

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A particularly striking design choice in a vintage bathroom would be decorating your bathroom around one specific furnishing, so that it comes to function as the centrepiece of your bathroom. This can work regardless of the exact era you intend to replicate.

Authentic wooden panelling for either your floors or walls will make your bathroom feel much more inviting and warm over more clinical white bathroom tiles It will stand out beautifully, and won’t limit your available space by any significant amount. With traditional baths slowly taking a back seat to showers in the modern day, a claw-footed free-standing bath will also work in any vintage style as your centrepiece. That said, you can choose to customise this a little.

Most styles will fit in an old-fashioned bathroom, but a vibrant coloured bathtub can function as the centrepiece of a 70s style bathroom just as well. If you prefer this approach, you could also consider, instead of lots of collaborative colours – like pink and yellow together – having a mostly plain yet stylish bathroom, with the bath being central and standing out as your one dazzling splash of colour.

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Make use of what you have

However, many houses simply don’t have the space to make such bold decorative statements. If you find yourself lacking in space for something like that, look elsewhere to draw attention. For example, an elevated-cistern toilet with pull chain can even add to the appeal of a vintage bathroom.

Storage can always be a concern when it comes to decorating a smaller bathroom, but there are still options available to you. Modern bathrooms often make use of reflective metals like chrome in their furnishings, so when planning your vintage design, look for copper and brass to fit perfectly. With that in mind, over a modern vanity unit, opt for a traditional pedestal sink flanked by coloured cabinets that complement the sink.

When it comes to designing, everyone will have a different idea of what will constitute their own perfect bathroom, so planning out the space and décor long in advance will ensure that you’re left with a room that is perfect for you.


Selecting the perfect bathroom vanities for your bathroom

brown bathroom with twin wooden bathroom vanities

The bathroom is amongst the most important rooms within a property, and one of the most vital aspects of the bathroom is your chosen bathroom vanity or vanities.

Bathroom vanities are multi-purpose pieces of furniture that are often used to conceal unsightly plumbing. A bathroom vanity also serves as a cabinet, so you can use them to store toothpaste, soap, razors, aftershaves and any other toiletries you may wish to keep out of view.

Furthermore, a bathroom vanity can also be used as a foundation for a bathroom mirror, though the mirror won’t be in-built or connected to the unit. As such, your bathroom vanity can act as a centrepiece for the entire space, so you need to choose wisely to make sure you select the perfect option for your bathroom.

Compact bathroom vanity

How to choose the right bathroom vanities

Firstly, be sure to choose a bathroom vanity of an appropriate height. The majority of bathroom vanities are manufactured at a standard 30-inch height, and whilst this may prove suitable, it could pose problems if you’re either particularly tall or especially small – you don’t want to be crouching or stretching when brushing your teeth! A good way to determine the best height vanity unit for your needs would be to visit a local home improvement store and to compare different sized units in person. From there, you can look for components of the same size online if you would prefer, where you’re likely to find a much wider choice. Also, you’ll have to think about the height of that bathroom mirror that will be located above your bathroom vanities for the same reason.

You also need to remember that your vanity unit is not simply to look at, but to use as well. It’s all well and good selecting a bathroom vanity with a stunning timber finish, but you have to make sure it’s up to scratch with regards to an appropriate level of storage space and overall functionality.

Glossy bathroom vanity unit

The size of your bathroom vanities is another crucial element to consider; height is an aforementioned massive factor, but the width of your unit must be thought about too. You’ll only have a specific, limited space available to situate your bathroom vanity, so you should look to secure the perfect size and not waste any of the available area. Should you select a vanity that’s too long, you could encounter problems such as blocking off a portion of your toilet or another bathroom fixture.

Take into account the shape of the bathroom vanities you require as well. For instance, you may be looking to install a space-saving corner unit if your bathroom design will allow it. You must decide on your exact requirements, and also ensure there’s sufficient space to open and close the bathroom doors. Many people in the past have bought and installed vanities only to later discover that their doors will not fully open or shut without making contact with a wall, shower or other component within the bathroom.

Ultimately, it’s extremely important to perform thorough research before selecting the perfect bathroom vanities for your bathroom, and to have an idea of your exact requirements from the unit. Colour, size, space, storage capacity and accompanying fixtures such as mirrors all need to be considered. From there, you can set about purchasing the ideal bathroom vanity for your space.


Get their look: Pink House bathroom

Pink House bathroomcredit

Whilst looking for a room to feature in this week’s ‘Get their look‘ feature, I came across this bathroom. One word… WOW!  It belongs to lifestyle blogger and journo, Emily Murray. Her award-winning blog, The Pink House, is full of really inspired and inspiring interiors.

The first thing that caught my eye in this photo was that super wallpaper – exotic, opulent and just so beautiful. The colour-matched brass taps, towel warmer and light give the room a sumptuous feel – Cleopatra herself would be delighted at taking her ass’ milk bath in here!

On further inspection, you’ll see how well she has designed and fitted a really, really awkward space. The bathroom is located in the eaves of the house; while all the interesting sharp angles look attractive, it meant that she had to install a ‘kneeling’ shower in the compact space. Storing the ablutionary accoutrements of a family of four hidden away in the custom-built under-sink unit keeps the surfaces clutter-free. The Pantone pink espresso mug of flowers gives a knowing nod to The Pink House.

Pop on over Emily’s blog to see all the before & after photos and read about this successful bathroom redesign. You’ll really love her writing style and turn of phrase.

  1. Overton wall light with prismatic glass globe
  2. Osborne & Little Derwent wallpaper, charcoal, W5796-01
  3. Farrow & Ball ‘Down Pipe’
  4. Ceramic melon knob
  5. Bath fittings
  6. Evnille towel warmer
  7. Pantone 7432 bone china mug, Raspberry Crush
  8. Grubby Cow zesty hand wash (300ml)

Get their look: Pink House bathroom | H is for Home

3 ways to find vintage bathroom fixtures & accents for your home

Green vintage bathroomcredit

If you’re always looking for unique and memorable ways to update your bathroom and you want to do something completely different to what you’re used to, you might want to consider going vintage. There are several ways you can go about sourcing vintage bathroom fixtures for your home and it really all depends on where you live. From searching online, to antiquing and attending estate sales. You’ll have your hands full by the time you’re done with your search.

Antique hand basin in front of Delft pottery-inspired wallpapercredit


This may not be something that you’d normally consider but think about it. Who may have more of an inventory of old, broken, or thrown away bathroom fixtures than your local plumber? If you’re looking for super deluxe vintage finds you can search for a plumber Boca Raton or other neighbourhoods with higher than average income demographics. If you live in the state of Florida that is one way to go way outside the box.

Vintage decorated men's cloakroomcredit


You can go online and type whatever it is that you’re looking for into your search bar and chances are you’ll be greeted with a ton of options in lots of different price ranges. Popular sites like eBay are great for finding pre-owned or used bathroom fixtures. There are also sites that specialise in only vintage fixtures. You can search for specific components by decade or by style. These sites are super easy to use and make sourcing exactly what you want quick and efficient. Just be sure that you’re purchasing your vintage items from a reputable site.

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Antique stores

Antique stores are another excellent way to find vintage pieces for your home or office. Antique stores are usually overflowing with so much inventory that you can often get whatever you need at extremely low prices. Another great benefit of antiquing is that you can usually bargain with the owner and get good deals if you are buying more than one or two items. Another plus is that you’ll often find one of a kind items that no else that you know will have. If this sounds like your Sunday afternoon dream come true, you’re not alone!

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Estate sales

If you live in or near an affluent section of town, there may be estate sales that occur in your area. Estate sales are usually the best way to find vintage goods that may even be super rare at a great price. Some estate sales occur because of the passing of an extremely wealthy person that had no more living relatives. Other reasons for estate sales include divorce or the need to downsize. Either way, the person holding the estate sale is usually motivated to sell as much as they can. What does this mean for you? You can make the most of a motivated seller and arrive prepared with your best offers for the items that you want to take home.


Modernise Your Bathroom in 6 Easy Steps


house bathroom / wetroom

One of the most expensive home makeover projects can be the bathroom. Things such as demolition, fixtures, hardware, flooring and plumbing can cost a fortune. An out-dated bathroom is unsightly and could have other hidden issues.

Take this opportunity to give your bathroom a makeover. Don’t break the bank but take the time to recreate your bathroom with modern, yet efficient features.

Blue painted bathroom

Step 1

Start with paint. This is always an easy and inexpensive way to freshen up your bathroom. Whatever colour you choose, you want to be sure that it’s perfect for the space. Anything overwhelming, too light or too dark can be an eyesore. Typically for the bathroom, clean and fresh hues are used. If you aren’t sure, stick to neutrals: grey, taupe, white, beige, etc. Most importantly, don’t be afraid to go bold!

Wood-panelled bathroom

Step 2

Your shower. How old are your tub, shower and tiles? Are you stuck with soap scum build-up that just won’t go away? Chipped tiles? Now is the time to fix all of that. If you’re going to splurge, splurge on a wet room. A wet room is convenient, cleaner and safer than a traditional bathroom. Using a wet room kit, you should easily be able to install the proper equipment. It fits perfectly in small places, accommodates those with mobility issues and increases the overall value of your home. Wet room shower kits, drains, waterproofing and other features are easily accessible – another benefit. It might cost you a little more up front, but it’s sure to pay off in the long run.

Masculine dark coloured bathroom

Step 3

Wall décor. Everything in your bathroom will generally focus around the mirror, so make it special! Find a mirror that is functional but makes a statement. It should complement the modern style you’re trying to achieve. If you decide to hang anything else, keep it simple and sophisticated. Glass shelves are a functional and modern way to keep your bathroom updated and organised.

Marble bathroom with corner bath

Step 4

Lighting. Take your time when it comes to the lighting in your bathroom. There are many modern options available to you that will fit within your budget. Keep in mind that it is a bathroom and the lighting shouldn’t be too harsh but, rather, soft and relaxing. This is one room that should be well lit. If you’re displaying art work, adjust your lighting around it to draw attention.

Blue and white bathroom with open shelves of towels

Step 5

De-clutter the space. One strategy for updating your bathroom is getting rid of all the clutter. Add storage if needed, but clean off the counter space. Store things in drawers and cabinets. The key to modern design is cleanliness and organisation.

White double bathroom sink

Step 6

Pay attention to detail. Giving your bathroom a makeover can be as simple as replacing the hardware. Items such as towel racks, shower curtains, knobs, etc can really date your space. This strategy is simple and cost-efficient.

Don’t burn a hole in your pocket with expensive renovations. Use these 6 easy tips to get your bathroom looking and feeling new again.


Author, Rylie Burns, is an experienced Content Creator for Wet Rooms Design. Her passions are writing, home renovations, modern bathroom design and puppies.

5 mistakes you’re (probably) making in your bathroom design

White contemporary bathroom designcredit

We all think you don’t want a large, free-standing bath in a small room. But sometimes, it’s the smallest (and quirkiest) of design decisions that can actually do the most injustice to what should be the best room in the house. Illuminated Mirrors lists some of the most common bathroom design mistakes and how to avoid them.

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Not considering the colour/material of your towels

Ok, ok. It sounds like an odd choice, but linens and towels are actually one of the biggest causes of bathroom chaos – not because theyre left on the floor, but because of their colour. Darker shades can leave pieces of fluff absolutely everywhere meaning, while your room might look gorgeous when guests arrive, one rub of wet hands and bits of dark material will make even the newest of suites look grubby. Consider the fluff your different towels will leave, as well as the material they’re made of when buying – a small decision, but one you’ll be grateful for when it comes to the weekly clean.

On the other end of the scale, dazzling whites only stay dazzling for a brief length of time when they’re used as much as a towel is. Opt for shades of cream or muted colours – not only do they bring a statement to your room, but they also save you cleaning/replacement costs in the future.

Illuminated bathroom mirror

Putting mirrors in the wrong place

We’ve all heard the age-old trick that a mirror can add more space, right? However, where you put the mirror is as important as putting it up itself. Consider the places where light is most likely to hit, and avoid placing opposite dirty laundry or parts of the bathroom that need a touch of repair. Reflecting dirty areas of the room or piles of washing will make your room feel smaller and more cluttered – try and position your mirror so it reflects the brightest and lightest areas – whichever feature you wish you had double of (bar the toilet) is always a good start.

Illuminated bathroom cabinet

Poor lighting

Linked directly to the above, insufficient lighting is one of the biggest crimes you can make in your bathroom – it adds a grubby touch to even the cleanest of rooms and makes doing make-up, shaving or general pampering near impossible. It’s a particular problem in rooms with dark features making things like your mirror (in the right place) and clever additional lighting vital. For example, when choosing a cabinet, consider options that come with in-built LED lighting – a small touch, but something that makes a real difference to dark rooms (and as they’re energy saving, your electricity bill too!).

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Not considering storage

What’s a bathroom without all the lotions, potions and general commotion that makes us look beautiful? Male or female, we’re all guilty of storing a few too many bottles at the side of the bath or on shelves – however, all these wonderful items can make your bathroom look smaller, dirtier, more cluttered and generally less of a haven. Consider proper storage when you’re designing – making it a feature, rather than a necessity.

Wicker baskets, for example, can look beautiful in the right style of room while metallic, cool cabinets can hold a huge amount in more modern rooms. Think of your theme and what storage can be linked to it – nautical bathrooms, as an example, could really be brought to life using faux fishing crates. Be creative and don’t be afraid to experiment – you can always remove storage solutions if they don’t work!

Louvred windows providing bathroom ventilationcredit

Bad ventilation

No matter how nice the bath potions used, a poorly ventilated bathroom will always smell damp and be a haven for mould. One of the most common offences in the bathroom lies in lack of airflow – either ignoring an extractor fan or a good old-fashioned window. Consider where you can have your ventilation source before any other design or you’ll pay the price in a worn looking bathroom fairly quickly. While a window wide open is always the best trick for a touch of fresh air, consider a) what you’ll do when it’s freezing cold and b) the amount of dirt the open window will bring in. Having a proper think about small niggles like this before finalising any designs can increase the longevity of your brand new suite and avoid any issues in the long-term, keeping your bathroom beautiful for longer.

Your bathroom should be the best room in the house. A few simple changes can make it just that – no matter how big it is. Consider light, air and space and you’ll be onto the best path with a room you can enjoy for a long time.