I am a little bit in love with it, in the day with the window open and birds singing, at night with the low glow of the ceramic lamps. It's been a labour of love, what with the dresser that I (rather foolishly) decided to paint and hand decorate.
We wanted a monochrome palette to work with the Cole & Sons Woods wallpaper we've put up on the landing and which you pass by as you enter the room (of which more later), so the dresser was painted with a chalk paint in charcoal. From there I hunted high and low for a very simple, oval basin to sit on the marble top and echo the shape of the glass fronted decorative design - Fired Earth Nagoya was the only one to fit the bill and it's cool, composite surface sucks up the light, just like the chalk paint.
I'm afraid I have yet to take a good picture of the shower, but it is a doozy - big, strong and fabulous. The tiles are Fired Earth Carnival Ramon, charcoal grey grout. Black handles and hinges on the frameless glass shower enclosure tie it all together. The walls are French Grey Pale and the woodwork French Grey by Little Greene Paint Library.
Final touches, though there are more to come, include a triptych mirror from Refound Objects, a vintage First Aid box and a lovely battered barn star from Beyond France. Dressed with pebbles collected at Lantivet Bay in Fowey on a very special day with the best of friends.
It all started so innocently; my fondness for Pinterest lead me to believe that a vintage dresser with a basin would be the perfect thing for our new bathroom. I didn't want a regular sink and stand and we couldn't afford a really lovely cabinet from a posh bathroom shop, so a bit of upcycling seemed just the ticket. I browsed Etsy for several weeks until a very likely looking, marble topped dresser came up at the right price, it all seemed oh so simple...
Fast forward three months and I am now the proud owner of a dresser and basin that's taken me many, many hours of labour and more stages than Glastonbury. It's nearly there now, so I thought I'd share how I did it, in case you were foolhardy enough to consider it yourself!
Take one vintage, not antique dresser. Buy it online, get it delivered and then decide that, on closer inspection, it's looking a little more shabby than chic. Don't panic, you can simply spruce it up with a little chalk paint! Take it to pieces to prep for paint and realise that you really don't like the fabric backdrop. Decide that it would look much better with a distressed mirror backdrop, spend hours trawling the web for somewhere that makes and cuts same, get some quotes in, turn very pale and reconsider. Remember that you used to consider yourself pretty tasty with a paintbrush and think, how hard can it be to come up with a simple botanical design and paint it on? Spend every spare minute you have over the next three weeks painting and fretting that you have bitten off more than you can chew whilst thumbing flower books for inspiration. Make a random, Charlotte's Web inspired decision to add in a spiders web which makes the whole design look less Angie Lewin, more James Herbert. Paint it out and start again. Eventually decide that more tinkering is unlikely to improve it; stop painting. Get someone to cut an oval of glass for it, based on a cardboard cut out you've provided. Get the cut glass back and realise you probably should have remembered that drawing around a shape would make the template bigger than the original thing. Borrow power sander to make required hole bigger, to fit the now too big glass. Ensure power sander breaks the dresser in three places. Take deep breath, ask a friendly carpenter to help you fix with wood glue. Conclude several months of trawling the world for basins that echo the shapes of the dresser only to find one that is nearly as expensive as the original dresser. Buy a tap you're not convinced about. Send off to a professional to cut holes in marble, get a plumber to plumb in and voila, simplicity itself!
With all the time and money spent a trip to a posh bathroom shop would probably have proved to be a bargain, but I am glad to be able to put my own little stamp on this project.