What about the red vinyl floor and the gold paint together? The more the confrontation is shifted, the better. Natasha Landers, founder of interior design firm Until Lemons R Sweet, added a small downstairs toilet during the expansion of her terraced house in Walthamstow, east London. Until recently the ceiling was – shock horror – white, but she found the perfect pot of gold paint (from Scottish brand Craig & Rose) to make it as interesting as the reclaimed brick wall and copper pipes. already exposed. “It bounces light around the room, which is good for a windowless space,” she says.
Landers restrooms ring with the rest of his strikingly decorated house. It is when the WC is treated as an aesthetic universe apart that the interior designer Christian Bense leaves you perplexed. He wrote an ironic article on his award-winning blog, The Basic Principle (thebasicprinciple.com), titled “The Downstairs F ** ckin Loo,” where he believes there are two schools of thought with this piece: 1) the owner with a quirky idea that isn’t bold enough to try out the theme around the house, so they relegate it to the smaller room, and 2) the show-off that fills the room with ‘gimmick and whimsy’, only to make an impression on their guests. “The competition is well and truly underway,” says Bense. “The downstairs toilet has almost become a litmus test for who we are as adult owners. Have we done enough with our lives if no one comments “I like your toilet, baby” every time you have guests? “
Whatever look you decide to channel, there’s the downside that if all goes wrong it’s a little box you can shut yourself off – until you’re ready to pick up the brush again. But avoid a common misstep that assumes that because space is small, everything else should be too. In fact it is the opposite. “When people think of small rooms, they put small things in them to make them look bigger. In fact, it accentuates the fact that it’s a small room, ”says Landers. An oversized mirror, for example, is a step in the right direction (and will reflect the fabulous wallpaper you’ve no doubt chosen). Bense is a ‘categorical no’ on any type of floor mat: ‘They are disgusting’. Lighting should also be soft and forgiving – reserve the high wattage required for eyebrow hair removal for the upstairs family bathroom.
The last debate lies in the semantics of this space. Bog? It is not shameless. Lava? Too familiar. Barlow went to the “powder room”. “The locker room just seems a little depressing. The toilet is not considered correct… the powder room covers a multitude of sins.