Case study: Modern love

Devon & Devon

Statement pieces and expert styling combine in an Art Deco bathroom that feels brilliantly authentic

Art Deco might have been around for almost a century, but its appeal shows little sign of fading. The combination of strong geometrics, elegant curves and high-contrast monochrome feels as distinctive, modern and desirable as ever, and it can lend an interior a real sense of sophistication. Sometimes, in a bathroom, for example, just adding one or two elements of the style can be enough to get the desired effect, and there are plenty of reproduction taps and sinks around to do just that. But when the owner of this home, a 1930s period property in Highgate, north London, wanted something rather more distinctive and authentic for her master en-suite bathroom, she turned to Devon & Devon, a bathroom company set up 25 years to focus on classical design aesthetics.
Stephen Wickes, the project designer, took on the task of putting together a design that would be practical and efficient yet which would also have all the luxury and glamour synonymous with the style. “The overall Art Deco feel is one of the key features of this en-suite, which is beautiful yet functional at the same time,” he explains.
Although at just over three metres long the space was not particularly generous, the client felt that it should still have a sense of sophisticated grandeur. To achieve this she was prepared to sacrifice the bath for the sake of a walk-in wet-room-style shower. A sheer sheet of glass acts as the shower screen; with nothing to interrupt the visual flow from one end of the room to the other, it very effectively increases the sense of space. One of Art Deco’s principal materials, chrome, has been used to good effect here, in the shower rose, thermostatic mixer and accompanying long hose. But this area is otherwise unadorned, a deliberate move on the part of the designer: keeping this area of the room minimal was a good way to avoid the risk of pastiche – walk-in showers were hardly the norm in the 1920s and ’30s, and there is little in the way of original fittings to act as a guide.


This is just a taster, you can browse the full article with more stunning photography on pages 80-83, issue 107.

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Brief To renovate an en-suite bathroom in a 1930s home and make it feel like an integral part of the period property.
Works required The room had to be water-proofed before any decorative work could begin­, since the shower area is effectively a wet room.
Biggest challenge Keeping the style consistent across the whole room without letting it turn into a pastiche of the Art Deco aesthetic.
Budget £10,000 +
Designer Devon & Devon
Photography Jake Fitzjones
Words Judy Diamond