It’s no secret that residential design has come a long way in the last 200 years. Building materials have changed, closets are bigger, and kitchen appliances are now smarter than their owners… But lately we’ve been circling back in a wave of nostalgia. In recent years we’ve seen the resurgence of vintage kitchen and bath fixtures, the growing popularity of reclaimed wood, and other trends that celebrate furniture and building pieces that remind us of the past.
One such trend rooted in the past is adding a bathtub to the bedroom. While it might seem like a preposterous idea, many of the first bathtubs were installed in the bedroom, as few homes in the 19th century had whole rooms designated for bathing. The first bathtubs were claw foot tubs made of cast iron and porcelain, and these expensive fixtures were strictly reserved for the upper class. Today, a free standing bathtub still evokes a luxurious bathing experience for homeowners that it once had hundreds of years ago, only today that bathtub feels timeworn and charming.
We’ve collected images of some wonderful bath-in-bedroom ideas.
Consider the bedroom above. This freestanding, double-slipper tub is perched right near the French doors leading out to this bedroom balcony. While surprising, it also adds a kind of cozy, quaint charm to this waterfront space. Besides, there’s not a lady on Earth who wouldn’t want to take a leisurely bath when you’re looking at this view!
This modern-meets-country bedroom in Australia was designed by Chelsea Hing. The sleek shape of the bathtub, which perfectly fills out a bay window, contrasts the antique-style chandelier and wide plank wood floors of this charming cottage. While this tub is very modern in shape, its location certainly suggests that you aren’t just in an average country home.
The all-white color palette of this bedroom gives the space an inviting feel, and the whitewashed wood paneling and cabinetry complement the more traditional style of this bathtub, with it’s vintage fixtures and rolled lip.
It’s certainly fitting for a bathtub to make its way into the bedroom, as a freestanding bathtub isn’t just for utilitarian purposes. Just like a chaise lounge or a comfy arm chair, a bathtub is a place to relax, unwind, and even read a book; when a bathroom makes its way to the bedroom, we’re reminded that a bath is a luxurious experience rather than a daily task.
In Fall of 2008, the design world went crazy over J. Crew President and Creative Director Jenna Lyons’ Brooklyn brownstone. One of the most iconic spaces to come out of her featured spread was her black bedroom, painted with chalkboard paint. In the space, only a partial wall separates the bedroom from the bathroom, and the black-bottom claw foot bathtub with brass hardware is framed by the archway between the two rooms. While this bathtub may not technically be in the bedroom, it’s about as close as it gets!
Here we find yet another claw foot bathtub with a black bottom. Coupled with a rustic wood ceiling and wide plank flooring, this tub certainly brings romance and drama to the space.
While we might not all be ready to turn a bathtub into the focal point of our bedroom, we should all remind ourselves that your home should be customized. It should suit your needs, and if you long for a relaxed soak every evening before bed, then by all means, bring a bathtub into your bedroom!
See more inspiration and ideas in our Places series here on the Apron Blog.