Monday, June 4, 2012

Decorating With Claw Foot Tubs

In 1883, both the Standard Sanitary Manufacturing Company (now American Standard) and Kohler began the process of enameling cast iron bathtubs to form a smooth interior surface. Kohler’s first clawfoot tub was advertised as a “horse trough/hog scalder, when furnished with four legs will serve as a bathtub.”  Not a very auspacious beginning! However, by the late 19th century the clawfoot tub was considered a luxury item . There are 5 styles of clawfoot tub. We will look at some othe these styles in the pictures below.

Clawfoot tubs come in 5 major styles:
Classic Roll Rim
Slipper Tubs - where one end is raised and sloped creating a more comfortable lounging position. 
Double Slipper Tubs - where both ends are raised and sloped.
Double Ended Tubs - where both ends of the tub are rounded.
Pedestal Tub - Pedestal tubs, unlike all the styles listed above, do not have claw feet. The tub rests on a pedestal in what most would term an art deco style. Evidence of pedestal tubs dates back to the Isle of Crete in 1000 BC.

The trend today, though, is shifting back to the elegant style and luxury of a soaking clawfoot tub. Old cast iron versions can be very expensive.  True antique clawfoot tubs are still considered collectible items.   Modern technology has contributed to a drop in the price of clawfoot tubs, which may now be made of fiberglass, acrylic or other modern materials. Homeowners are tearing out their dime-a-dozen built-in tubs and replacing them with reproduction roll rim footed tubs. 
If you are lucky enough to have an original, consider painting it a color, cover the outside with mosaic tiles or even mirrored tiles. Create a one of a kind treasure to make your bathroom have that "wow factor". New reproduction clawfoot tubs are chosen by remodellers and new home builders. Much like the Western-style bathtubs, clawfoot tubs can also sometimes include showers. Now available in both the classic cast iron or lighter weight acrylic styles, clawfoot bathtubs are produced in a variety of styles and finish options. I love claw foot tubs and can't recommend them enough. Get one and make your bathroom an elegant relaxing retreat.

This is a bath designed by Lisa Farmer Designs. The old claw foot tub was marbleized in green and then burnished in gold. The rim is gold leafed and sealed with polyurethane. The fabric backdrop features French script and topped off with cream colored feathers.

An over all picture of the room. The wall treatment features wallpaper, border, and leopard fabric.

A beautiful bathroom featuring an elegant pedestal tub, antiques accessories and a soft color scheme. Who couldn't relax here?

Beautiful old claw foot tub painted aqua. The detailing is stunning and the shell legs...well what more can I say!

Lovely claw foot and pedestal tubs with pretty towels and necessities. The large mirror behind the tub is a great statement piece. Chandeliers are so nice in the bathroom!

Grey blue painted claw foot and architectural elements make this a very pretty French Country bathroom.

Fabulous copper  pedestal slipper tub with faux marbled walls and columns and antique furnishings just shouts luxury.

Shabby Chic bathroom at it's best. Beautiful claw foot slipper tub, embellished lacy curtain, and unique lighting make this a  vintage delight.

Classic white tub and white accents are so elegant against the exotic wall mural.

Claw foot tubs do not have to be white. This one painted yellow is so bright and cheerful. The yellow and white striped tented effect in the trompe l'oeil painting is the perfect compliment.

The arches and columns of this trompe l'oeil wall treatment give the feeling of a Roman bath. It is the perfect background for this pedestal tub.

Pink bathrooms are so feminine and pretty. Hang lots of mini chandeliers over the claw foot tub for a  lighting statement. Don't forget the bath soaps!! Incorporating architectural elements in you bathroom design is a great idea. Remember you can always paint your claw foot a pretty color. Make your bath a romantic refuge with  lots of pretty accessories. Love the bubbles! So whimsical! Napkin rings for your washcloths is an elegant clever idea.

This fabulous bath features a roll top claw foot, slate floor, and a stained glass window to die for!

So many beautiful elements in this bathe. Of course the silvered  claw foot is center stage but the Venetian  mirror, antique sconces, marble backsplash and crystal chandelier are lovely ladies in waiting.

Basic black and white can't be beaten. The checkerboard floor is a perfect accent for this 
French Country bath. The black slipper tub is exquisite and the vanity, the perfect touch.  Lovely tropical bath with white claw foot tub and zebra rug is a dream space.

The must have accessory for every bath!!
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