Bringing Downton design decadence into the bathroom

Sunday marked the return of period drama Downton Abbey to television screens and to celebrate the arrival of the decadent drama we’ve been indulging our love of all things Downton. Here at Pebble Grey we‘re Downton Abbey fans as much for the décor and design inspiration as for the programmes illicit encounters and social commentary.

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Our product range has always carefully bridged the traditional and modern because that’s what our customers tell us they like, but in this Downton-inspired post we’ve headed firmly down the classic route and explored the items, accessories and features you could bring into the bathroom to create your own Abbey-esque space.

Of course, because of its age we know that it’s very unlikely that a house such as Downton would have been built with indoor bathrooms - for most this was still very much the time of the chamber pot. However, there are many elements of Edwardian design that can be incorporated to bring the 1920s into your bathroom. If you want your bathroom to take on elements of Edwardian and Victorian design, you may want to include some of these items:

A solid freestanding ceramic bath harks at years gone by and adds a touch of glamour. Look out for roll top and claw foot designs for a more luxurious look.

Pedestal basins add a regal Victorian touch while retaining practicality.

Bronze-look taps and bathroom fittings are in keeping with the design of the day, just make sure you keep them well polished if you don’t have servants to do it for you!

Wooden panelling and flooring is very Victorian, though it can leave you feeling cold underfoot. If you do decide to plump for wooden floorboards or even vintage tiling, underfloor heating can make your bathroom more welcoming and comfortable.

Indoor toilets were not common during Victorian or Edwardian times, but if they had been fitted they would have been likely to be high level cistern toilets that echoed the long and elegant feel of pedestal basins.

The walls of Downton Abbey are adorned with some fabulous printed wall papers, though bringing this look wall to wall in your bathroom may be a little overpowering. Instead consider making a feature wall or introducing some of the delicate and intricate prints with a border to the top or bottom of the wall.

Why not introduce other grooming elements to your bathroom so that it can double as a lady’s dressing space? A beautiful mirror on a dressing table, or a vase with flowers can help what can otherwise be a very minimal look to look warm and elegant.

Which items from the Downton Abbey household would you most like to have in your home? Do you prefer modern or vintage-styled bathrooms? Let us know your thoughts below.

20 September 2012
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