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Thirties nostalgia – glamour for remodeled bathroom

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Refurbished bathtub and recycled tiles give new bathroom old history

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Traditional bathrooms are often sacrificed in a home renovation, and more often than not it is because owners are not entirely sure how to make the look work for the 21st century.

It's a conundrum that designer Debra DeLorenzo CMKD, CMBDNZ has often confronted. The secret, she says, is to opt for a calculated mix of new and old. For example, in this renovated bathroom in a 1930s house the designer mixed contemporary tapware and accessories with an original claw-foot bathtub and a transitional painted vanity cabinet.

"The bathtub was refurbished and painted black on the underside to coordinate with the black-and-white theme of the bathroom," DeLorenzo says. "The legs are painted silver, echoing the color of the fixtures and fittings, and adding a touch of glamour. Because there was no room for a master ensuite bathroom in this house, I wanted this bathroom to be something quite special."

The pièce de résistance in the bathroom, however, is the flooring, which features ¾in-thick marble tiles left over from a conservatory refurbishment in a nearby historic house.

"The black-and-white palette makes the bathroom very classical," says the designer. "And it provides a neutral backdrop for the glamorous Nina Campbell wallpaper, which can be changed easily to completely transform the look at a future date. It means the owners won't need to update the entire bathroom – the white wall tiles and marble floor will have a long life."


DeLorenzo says the legs on the vanity give it a furniture look that is reminiscent of an old washstand. The curved corners on the basins and a linen cupboard are also in keeping with the traditional character.

Other features of the bathroom include a large shower with a half wall that conceals the toilet from the entry.

First published date: 18 September 2012

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Credit List

Bathroom designer Debra DeLorenzo, CMKD/CMBDNZ, DeLorenzo Design
Builder B&G 2010
Vanity Lacquered, with Absolute Black granite top
Basins Roma 52
Faucets Tube basin mixers and
Albany bath faucetsTub Refurbished
Shower enclosure Alicetown Glass
Shower fittings Progetto
Toilet Lagina
Bathroomware supplier Plumbline
Flooring Marble tiles
Wall tiles White gloss
Wallpaper Nina Campbell from Estilo
Lighting Sterling chandelier and Crystal Cup light from ECC
Electrician Dynamic Electrical
Plumbing supplies Zip Plumbing