Lifestyle » Vol. 33

Bathroom luxury

Looking to transform your bathroom into something with the look and feel of a bygone era?

There are certain things to keep in mind when picking the right piece of furniture to get that period-style look and feel in your bathroom. The look of an antique-style vanity can be perfect focal point in a lavish period-style bathroom. Interior designers at offer some tips to make your bathroom design complete.

Be lavish

It is important to keep in mind how lavish (and often exclusive) the bathroom space used to be. Antique bathroom vanities, such as the Antique Cherry Vanity by Legion Furniture, that combine exotic wood and carved detailing with elaborate hardware and decadent, parlor-style shapes would make a great centerpiece in a period-style bathroom.

Go curvy

Traditional bathroom vanities are often quite similar to more contemporary bathroom cabinets ~ long, rectangular and static. In a way, that makes them invisible. Even with very lush woodwork, it’s still visually a storage space. To really make a statement with antique bathroom vanities, one needs to think a little outside the box, opting for rounded units, such as the Antique Walnut Vanity from Legion Furniture. Simply clipping the corners and giving the vanity a little curve acts as a little visual surprise and can help turn the vanity into a focal point of the bathroom.

Stand free

Another thing to look for is an antique vanity that echoes other types of furniture. Especially in the days before indoor plumbing was common, bathroom furnishings weren’t constrained by the location of the plumbing. So a bathroom vanity that looks freestanding, more like an elegant table or chest than a cabinet, would be a great choice. Try to include a beautiful vessel sink, such as the Semi Circle Vanity from JSG Oceana, to evoke an antique washbasin while helping to make the bathroom vanity a more interesting focal point.

Dresser-style vanities work in a similar way. The Dresser Vanity by Legion Furniture, for example, is about as wide as an average cabinet (and much heftier than a real dresser), but the curved edges and dresser-style hardware set it apart. Even if those drawers only ever hold rolled-up towels, the style makes a great basis for a lavish, period-inspired bathroom and a great prop to help bring back the slow, sophisticated ritual of bathing and dressing of bygone days.

Come into the open

Some vanities, such as the Dark Cherry Vanity by Legion Furniture are made for decoration and accessories. Open-shelved bathroom vanities make a perfect platform for little trinkets, and this one is perfectly suited to small antique glass bottles or even a silver soap tray. While the vanity itself is simply adorned with delicate, beaded carvings and tooled, spindly legs, the space afforded by the open shelves gives plenty of room to customize and emphasize that antique bathroom decor.

Get colorful

To really take the period-inspired bathroom to the next level, it might be time to throw woodwork out the window. Authentic antique design relied not only on wood but also on color, texture and pattern. The Aquarelle Vanity by Sterling is relatively simple when it comes to the woodwork, but is unique and eye-catching in almost every other way. The slightly distressed teal finish is the perfect to pair with luxurious upholstery and window dressings. At the same time, the silver paint adds a little flair and takes the place of floral carvings typical to antique bathroom vanities. Finally, the vanity has a sassy, unconventional shape and antique-style feet and molding, which make it a perfect, lavish focal point.

For a truly decadent bathroom, the Jakarta Vanity by Sterling offers stained glass-style paneling and a matching vessel sink. The simple ebony finish makes it easy to pair with a wide variety of materials and styles, but the pane-style peepholes and rich color make it a perfect pairing with vintage décor.
The simple difference between typical antique bathroom vanities and ones suited for a truly lavish style is, quite simply, the “wow” factor.

For more information, visit

Comments are closed.