Classic bathrooms – 10 of the best

See classic bathroom decorating ideas. With our expert decorating advice you can give your bathroom a classic makeover.

1/10 Focal Point

White bathroom mirror with frech basin and cream walls

(Image credit: Future PLC/Mark Luscombe-Whyte)

Consider the first thing you see when you enter the room; it might be the bath, but you don't want it to be a loo. Here, a French-style console basin with a decorative mirror above it has enough substance to draw the eye, yet still feels delicate and elegant.

Serpentine double basin
Water Monopoly
White coral mirror Oriel Harwood at Francis Sultana
Floor Namibian Cream marble from H&L Marble

2/10 Small Pleasures

White bathroom with mirror on the wall

(Image credit: Mark Luscombe-Whyte)

A vast bathroom is not a prerequisite to be successful with the classic style. Here, well-chosen fittings make the most of a compact space. A pair of wall lights make a real feature of the vanity area, providing a far more flattering light than a standard overhead option.

Similar mirror
Graham and Green
Similar wall lights
Nicholas Haslam

3/10 Mirror Mirror

White bath and marble walls

(Image credit: TBC)

Mirror is a fantastic material to use in the bathroom; it is splashproof and easy to clean, and its reflective qualities improve the sense of space and light. In this bathroom by Camhall Interiors, which featured in the February 2012 issue of Homes & Gardens, designer Alison Papworth has teamed it with marble and a freestanding bath to create an Art Deco mood.

Bathroom Discount Centre
Hindley Antiques
Marble (floor and walls)
Platane, 07736 082990

4/10 Floor Show

White basin and loo with dark wood floor

(Image credit: TBC)

You don't necessarily need the vast, sweeping space afforded by the Galassia bathroom shown here. Its beauty is in the sharpness of the individual pieces with that gorgeous dark herringbone floor as a foil. Engineered wood flooring will be fine in any bathroom where splashes are mopped up immediately but, if in doubt, opt for similar styles in high end vinyl or porcelain tile.

Mirrors and basins
Similar floor
Classic Parquet
Similar sofa
Lucy Willow

5/10 Dark & Handsome

Black and white tiled bathroom with free-standing bath

(Image credit: Andreas Von Einsiedel )

Working in the classic style doesn't mean you have to be a slave to the past. Bringing together traditional elements in a new way will create character but offer all the functionality of a modern bathroom. The play on classic black and white tiles here, used as panels and teamed with brass fittings, has something of the gentleman's club feel about it.

Similar tiles
Original Style
Similar bath
Antique Baths of Ivybridge
Reclaimed bathroom fittings

6/10 Bath Central

White tiled bathroom

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Young)

Freestanding and roll-top baths are designed to take centre stage. If you want to combine with a shower, opt for traditional style fixed head shower and fit a circular rail. This all-white scheme allows the classic shapes to really shine.

Similar tiles
Fired Earth
Similar bath
The Albion Bath Company
Similar shower rail

7/10 Just Add Pattern

Bathroom with bold patterned wallpaper

(Image credit: Mark Luscombe-Whyte )

A complete refit can be expensive but you can transform a bathroom with standard fittings by simply adding pattern. Most wallpapers can withstand the moisture if the room is properly-ventilated, but avoid using paper directly behind very wet areas such as baths or basins, or cover with a perspex sheet to create a splashback.

Cactus in Meadow Green by Neisha Crosland
Similar mirror
Judith Green Mosaics
Similar basin
The Albion Bath Company

8/10 Stow Away

White bathroom with two mirrors and basins

(Image credit: Mark Luscombe-Whyte)

Built in furniture is a boon in any room but here, a decent run of painted cabinetry hides a multitude of lotions and potions, and provides a generous vanity area. Shutters are an ideal window treatment, adding to the style and providing instant privacy.

Venetian mirrors
Graham and Green
Designed by Kate Bingham
Made by Chelsea Construction

9/10 Hot Favourite

Copper bathtub with fireplace and large sash window

(Image credit: Future PLC/Darren Chung)

Where space allows, architectural features such as a fireplace are great for adding character, plus, of course, the promise of bathing by firelight. The pewter finish of this bath tones with the fireplace and is set off beautifully by the warm tones of the wooden floor, the blind and the caramel coloured tiles.

Lonsdale bath
Water Monopoly
Silk stripe in mocca bronze, Prêt à Vivre
Similar fireplace

10/10 Modern Classic

Black and white bathroom with large white window and free-standing bath

(Image credit: TBC)

Classic is never out of fashion but an updated version will feel smart and fresh. In this room, the fittings might be modern, but they are matched by traditional pieces such as the mirror, shelf, pedestal table and, indeed, the Georgian window to give a very balanced design.

Ceramica Flaminia
Alessi Laufen
Quadrato towel radiator
Similar tiles
Mandarin Stone

Would you like more ideas for bathrooms? Visit our dedicated ideas page or, for the latest from the team, follow us on Facebook and Twitter

Thea Babington-Stitt
Managing Editor

Thea Babington-Stitt is the Managing Editor for Ideal Home. Thea has been working across some of the UK’s leading interiors titles for around 10 years.

She started working on these magazines and websites after graduating from City University London with a Masters in Magazine Journalism. Before moving to Ideal Home, Thea was News and Features Editor at Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc and Country Homes & Interiors.