Victorian Bathroom Ideas: How to Embrace Traditional Design in 2022

Victorian Bathroom Ideas: How to Embrace Traditional Design in 2022

In the Victorian era, the bathrooms of the wealthy middle class were often the optime of luxury and relaxation at home. The bathroom would take price and place in the house, with white porcelain tiles, vanity units and claw-foot bathtubs becoming the norm in the later Victorian years. Today, homeowners around the country look to Victorian design for interior inspiration. In this post, we're dishing out our top tips for bringing this style into your own home in 2022 and beyond.

What is a Victorian-style bathroom?

Vintage interior design has been popular for a number of years now, with antique-inspired interiors popping up all over the feeds of popular Instagram and Facebook accounts. Brimming with old-age character and personality, they make a welcome change from minimalist modern bathrooms. There are a few essential elements of bathroom design that create this signature style:

Decorate with tiles

First, choose some Victorian-inspired tiles. Patterned porcelain tiles are a great option to create an eye-catching feature. Our Parian tiles are perfect for this. Try tiling the bottom half of your walls or tiling just one wall to make the most impact. Alternatively, bevelled metro tiles are the perfect halfway between traditional and modern. Try using green or blue for a splash of colour, or go for plain white and let your furniture and finishes be the star of the show.

One of our favourite victorian bathroom ideas is the use of chequered monochrome floor tiles. This an impressive way to create a professionally designed interior without the designer pricetag.

Carefully balance colour

The second critical element of Victorian bathrooms is the use of colour. Victorians would tend to use muted colours to form the basis of the design, with pops of colour to create more depth. Wood-effect floor tiles, combined with wall tiles in a colour like cream or black can make a blank slate on which your furniture and appliances can shine. Alternatively, use colourful wall tiles and patterned floors, using plain-coloured furniture to tie the look together.

Complete the look with furniture and fittings

Finally, the fittings and finishes of a Victorian-style bathroom are the pièce de résistance. I think it's fair to say that no victorian bathroom suite is complete without a bath that sits on claw feet. Traditional victorian baths were often made out of cast iron, but thankfully things have moved on since then! Freestanding baths have become a hallmark of traditional bathroom design and now come in a dizzying array of colours and sizes - from luxury marble to white ceramic. The feet on freestanding baths can be as ornate as you want them to be - from classic plain chrome to scaled dragon claws.  

Using a traditional chandelier can add bags of conventional charm, while classic towel rails and a wall-mounted vanity unit will complete the look and add extra functionality to the space. To carry the theme throughout your fittings, use a consistent metal finish throughout them all - whether that's brushed black steel, copper or chrome. 

Finally, the Victorian era marked the start of the houseplant craze we see today. Finish off your interior with a pop of organic colour by using a bushy plant like a Dragon Tree (Dracaena), a Boston Fern or even a Cast Iron Plant (Apidistra), so named because of it's virtually unkillable nature and ability to survive in Victorian homes!

How are Victorian bathrooms different from our traditional bathrooms?

The main difference between a Victorian bathroom and our traditional bathroom design is that Victorian bathrooms were often very basic. They tended to have a bathtub, toilet, and sink, with very little in terms of additional fittings. The walls were often white, and the tiles were often porcelain.

Another significant difference is that Victorian bathrooms typically featured a freestanding bath, which took up quite a bit of space in the room. If you are lucky enough to have room for it, this can be a great way to add some old-style charm to your bathroom.

Victorian-style bathrooms often had a slipper bath, which was a more affordable alternative to the claw-footed baths owned by the middle and upper classes.

Letting light in

Victorian bathrooms naturally use darker colours, so maximising natural light can help to brighten up the space and make it feel more open. To do this, keep your window area uncluttered and opt for windows with thin panes. If it's a possibility, skylights offer the ultimate in unfiltered daylight. To supplement natural light, use light fixtures such as chandeliers, wall lights or pendants.

We hope that today's post has helped you conjure up an interior scheme for your own home. Whether you live in a period property or a new build, be playful with your features and decor by opting for a traditional, victorian bathroom design.


What colour were Victorian bathrooms?

The colour schemes for bathrooms in the Victorian era could be pretty varied, but often they would have dark colours such as maroon, deep green, or black. Sometimes they would also include lighter colours such as white or cream.

What are some standard accessories in Victorian bathrooms?

Victorian bathrooms include pedestal sinks, clawfoot bathtubs, and large ornate mirrors.

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