Anatomy of a Tim Barber Room

I rent a perfectly nice townhouse built in the early 80s, with a not-so-perfectly nice master bathroom.  It’s basically an awkwardly shaped powder room with a shower, including a cultured marble counter top on the laminate vanity and a mixture of metals between the faucet, light fixture and hardware.  And every time I walk in the bathroom I dream of having a bathroom just like the Room of the Week.

I picked this particular bathroom because I think it’s luxurious, but not over the top, and can give the average homeowner some good tips for bathroom design.

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click on image to enlarge

LIGHT: A bathroom needs multiple sources of light.  Overhead lighting for general illumination.  Task lighting by the mirror so you can see what you’re doing up close.  And, if you’re lucky, natural light to make it bright and sunny to start your day each morning.  One little trick with the lighting…it’s pretty traditional to put your lighting above the mirror, but place the lighting to the sides of the mirror to illuminate your face from the front.

EMPHASIS: Even bathrooms need a focal point, and the vanity is the perfect place.  In this bathroom it’s created using symmetry.

COLOR: A neutral color palette (mostly white) makes for a very crisp, clean bathroom.  In this bathroom all of the colors, white, gray and black, are found in the large slabs of marble on the walls of the shower.

RHYTHM: If there was only one black element in the room it would seem out-of-place.  Instead, there are black elements around the room (the shower, the floor, the ceiling, the window).  The pieces scattered throughout the room creates rhythm to the design.  The other accent colors like the metallic light fixtures are also spread around the room.

BALANCE: The shower in this bathroom is fairly large, but it doesn’t seem too heavy in the room because tub is in the same scale.  If the tub was a smaller, or not built-in to the room and surrounded by the marble ledge, the room would seem unbalanced.

HARMONY: There is a subtle theme in this room, stripes.  The boards on the ceiling create stripes, there are stripes on the curtains, beadboard on the walls read as stripes, the black checkerboard pattern on the floor creates a striped outline around the floor.  Though subtle, the stripes harmonize all the elements of the room together.

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