I write this during London’s 2nd lockdown in the face of the Covid Pandemic. It’s safe to say it has changed the way we live forever, permeating every aspect of our lives. Home has always been a place to retreat and find solace, but now its purpose is all the more imperative.
So I present my Bathroom Guide 2.0 with all of this in mind.
One of those lockdown days when I was stressing over the many things on my plate, a friend gave me an amazing analogy that clicked instantly. They asked me to think of myself within a box sharing the tight space with all my worries and tasks. Then they asked me to imagine taking the lid off… it’s a perspective shift that continues to make my fears and frets feel somehow smaller and more manageable.
I perceived a similar sense of liberation when we were finally able to remove the ceiling in the master bathroom and create a glass ceiling over it. My new bathroom has quickly become my personal sanctuary.
Here are a few takeaways from the recent bathroom renovation to create that sense of wellness at home:
Open it up
This is one of the most important tenets of my design philosophy: bring the outdoors in. Extend the windows, knock down the ceiling. Our bathroom is basically a glass box that opens up to the sky and overlooks our garden with its lovely London Plane tree and our glorious old wisteria as it changes through the seasons.
Give it the love it deserves
Treat this space like any other well-loved space in the home and invest in beautiful materials and finishes. For me, that’s where a bathroom brand like drummonds comes in, with modern detailing and classic shapes, not to mention strong scale. From their “shamrock” showerhead (3 round showerheads, fused into one, standout shamrock shape) and cast iron tub with claw feet, down to their heated towel racks, which sport a hefty radius, everything about their collection makes a serious statement in scale, which i absolutely love. In their bespoke silvery “antique nickel” finish, they elevate the room with pretty details and flounces, giving the whole space a sense of value and importance.
Make use of light & air
A freestanding tub will give the room a sense of space and movement. Meanwhile, white marble walls, sinks, etc., bring in the light and lend airiness. I tend to go for “white statuario” for my own home with it’s subtle grey veined texture as i like to keep it bright creating a gentle sense of serenity and balance.
It’s all in the lighting
The bathroom has many uses – makeup in the morning, spa time in the evening, etc., – It should have just as many lighting options. I tend to go for a lighting system with at least four options, bright for getting ready to go out, medium for a quick check in the mirror, low & romantic for a relaxing evening in the tub, night lighting, and more. I also recommend suggest a pir light movement sensor for night lighting for those who don’t want to have to think in the dark.
Create a space for reflection
Mirrors aren’t just key in making a room appear more spacious, they also reflect the light from outdoors and make the room sing. In the morning, the room is showered in daylight. In the evening, on starry nights, the space twinkles.
They also work to reflect and amplify the mix of textures and finished in the room. The brushed nickel hardware and textured white marble dance across the room when reflected in the mirror.
Treat the senses
Whether the tranquil sounds of the ocean or classical music, the inclusion of an aquavision television in the bathroom is a good choice. For the morning news or to watch netflix whilst relaxing in the bath surrounded by low lighting and candle, it’s a great addition. I often watch TV in the bath with a good glass of wine. I’m currently hooked on “The Undoing” with Nicole Kidman and Hugh Grant.
Shower in positive energy
A room can be beautiful but it’s nothing if its function is lacking. In my renovation project I made sure we got the nuts and bolts just right and so I was delighted with my first shower under Drummonds Shamrock head, not just because of its standout design, but because of the truly simple advent of great water pressure.
They say the negative ions from splashing water can have a profoundly beneficial effect on mental health. When I shower in the morning I feel as though I’m under a glorious waterfall, and it’s all down to the rather unglamorous but oh so necessary water pump!
Create an escape
Bath time has forever been my most treasured escape, even more so during lockdown. And so I’ve made an effort to make it all the more luxurious. At night I make sure to set the mood with scented candles, and spoil myself with a special blend of bath salts, bath oils and body creams. Making the seemingly small effort to incorporate a few special treats in the bath tends to pay back two-fold, resulting in a good night’s sleep and a spring in my step the next day.
In my quest to treat the bathroom as any other room in the house, I’ve found it the perfect spot to place a small but meaningful collection. My mother gave me a shell heart from our home in New Zealand, which I proudly display along with pieces of green glass and special shells I’ve collected on my travels.
I also like to set the mood to that of the season using small accessories such as candles and decorations. For example, I choose musky scented candles for the winter-time and softer, sweeter scents for the sunnier months.
Finally, don’t shy away from a bit of grandeur for this space. I chose a large and ornate floral chandelier for our master bathroom to give the room the gravitas I believe it deserves.
Love Alison x