Of all the rooms in the house, the bathroom is the one in which you would least expect to find rough-and-ready reclaimed wood. Life in the 21st century demands easy-to-clean, quick-wipe surfaces, which is why most bathrooms are clad entirely in ceramic, stone and vinyl. So what was the thinking behind the project on these pages, by Glasgow-based company Nest?
One consideration was environmental impact. Chief designer Dene Happell is well aware that eco-friendly in a bathroom usually means a low-flow shower or a grey-water WC, but he wanted to show that recycled timber was both a wonderfully effective way to help the environment, and a way to add character, warmth and texture – all usually missing from the smallest room in the house.
He was helped by the fact that the family who own the property were already experienced upcyclers of old furniture and keen to extend this trend throughout the whole house. Their enthusiasm pleased the designer: “We often find our clients are reluctant to consider using old timber, but when we show them images of previous projects they are usually soon won over,” he says.
The timber in question is old scaffolding planks, sourced from Glasgow Wood Recycling. “They have a great range of timbers that we use regularly in different projects,” says Dene, “and our joiner loved working with the wood. He carefully cut and installed the planks at precisely the right height – the clients had specifically requested somewhere to rest a glass of wine while in the bath! He built a small storage unit from the same wood for under the sink, and then the timbers were lightly sanded and sealed with several coats of lacquer.”
The tiling around the shower was also given a slightly unusual treatment, being laid in a herringbone pattern rather than straightforward horizontal lines.
The clients were thrilled – even though the process, from stripping out to final fix, took over three weeks. “It helps that Nest is both a design and build company – our clients really appreciate that we’re with them every step of the way.”
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You can browse the full article on pages 90-92, issue 104.
The brief To modernise and improve a dated and badly laid-out bathroom, removing the old sanitaryware and installing a new contemporary suite. At the same time, to add a sense of character to the room by making use of reclaimed and repurposed materials.
Designer Nest, 0141 586 8324
Photography Ross Campbell
Words Judy Diamond