Choosing an Old-World or a New-World Style for Your Bathroom Remodel

bigstock-bright-bathroom-in-baroque-sty-79570444Figuring out what decor to use for a bathroom remodel depends on the decor of the rest of the house. It’s usually a good idea if the style of the bathroom complements or at least doesn’t clash with the rest of the house’s public rooms. Following are some tips to consider when deciding between a traditional bathroom and a modern one.




A Traditional Bathroom

The traditional bathroom that many people grew up with is actually rather Victorian. These bathrooms are distinguished by their gentle color scheme, with white predominating. The toilet, sinks, and tub are nearly always bright white, and the tub is often a free-standing tub with claw feet. The floors are covered with black and white hexagonal tile or penny tile, while at least one area of the wall can be clad in subway tile. Floors can also be made of hardwood that’s treated to withstand the bathroom’s humidity or covered with area rugs. Area rugs in these bathrooms are frequently in the Oriental style.

Beauty is a Priority

Some traditional bathrooms have wainscoting and wallpaper above it. The wallpaper often has abstract, floral design, and the homeowner needs to find the type that can bear up under the bathroom’s heat and humidity.

Other aspects of a traditional bathroom are fixtures of brass or some kind of gilded metal. The sinks have widespread faucets, with one handle used for hot water and the other for cold. There is often a pedestal or console sink. Pictures are hung on the wall, usually with a nature theme. Again, the homeowner needs to have these pictures framed in a way that protects them from humidity and light.

Storage spaces can be ornate enough to be displayed in the rest of the house. Roomy bathrooms can accommodate highboys full of towels and other sundries and vanities can be ornately carved. The hardware in a traditional bathroom is often beautiful, with cut glass knobs or finely wrought brass pulls.

A Modern Bathroom

Clean, straight lines typify many modern bathrooms, as do a good amount of glass and metal. Glass partitions separate the shower from the rest of the bathroom, and some bathrooms have very large, fixed windows to let in natural light.

Many modern bathrooms have lights with clear glass. In some bathrooms, natural light is not only provided by a window but by a skylight.

New Technologies

Advances in plumbing technology also inform a modern bathroom. The temperature of water, its pressure, and even its lighting can be controlled by the computer. Gooseneck faucets can be fit with motion sensors, or be able to be pulled out.

Tubs in modern bathrooms can be free-standing, but they are more often drop-in tubs which can have sharp or rounded corners. Cabinetry is often frameless or has flat panels, with simple bar pulls.

Neutral, Colorful or Both

Concrete and stone are also popular in modern bathrooms. Newer technologies have saved concrete from being gray and featureless. Now, concrete can be highly polished and resemble natural stone. But some homeowners like concrete walls or floors in their modern bath to be gray and featureless.

There is room for bold colors in a modern bathroom. One wall in an otherwise neutral space can be filled with brilliant blue glass tiles.