Black and white – Black and white tiles have long signaled that you’re in a traditional period bathroom. A border of black — on walls, the floor or both — adds a focal point and is elegant, timeless and chic. Also note how the vintage cast-iron radiator is painted to match. The console sink is another stylish traditional touch.
Shell – Give a coastal style half-bath an elegant upgrade with an oversized shell sink basin. You can find an authentic one if you’re willing to hunt, but be prepared for a hefty price tag. Composite reproductions can save money but won’t look as genuine. Tip: If you do find an authentic shell, the edges can be sharp and dangerous. Ask your contractor or builder to carefully file them down so your sink is safe.
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Slipper tub – Free-standing bathtubs come in all shapes and sizes these days, but the slipper version offers a special kind of indulgence. Originally a Victorian design, it features a higher back at one end, which provides support as well as privacy when you sink into the bubbles, wallow and relax. This luxe room ups the traditional look further with a wall of oil paintings, a Victorian-style towel rail and a gleaming wooden floor. I love the floor-length curtains too.
Washing machine. This powder room goes to show that pretty much any sturdy vessel can become a sink. This antique washing machine needed little adjustment to serve as a sink in this beautiful space. Many old-fashioned appliances can have marred and damaged finishes. If you’d rather not embrace the patina, find a specialist to refinish the surface to a shine.
The original materials in Houzz user jons112’s guest bathroom certainly weren’t his style, but the wood subfloor underneath the outdated tile posed a much greater problem: years of water damage from damaged cast iron plumbing. He hired a contractor to completely gut the small bathroom and give him a blank slate. With a $9,000 budget, he turned the once-dingy yellow and brown tiled space into a classic and bright guest bathroom that still fits the style of his 1923 home.