Shabnam Gupta of The Orange Lane in Mumbai, delves into her client diaries to showcase unusual ideas that will make your washroom go from plain to conversationalist
Mixing the old with the new: Do you fancy old world charm but also want to make your space look hip? Mix and match textures, objects and materials to get the best of both. “I created a faux vault look with the ceilings in exposed concrete and used old sewing machines as the counter base. A contemporary basin with wall faucets was added to contrast this. I played with wall and floor colours too, keeping them bright and attractive – river-washed black Kadappa stone on the floor juxtaposed with onyx marble on the walls. For the doors, we antiqued the wood and sandwiched cotton lace fabric into the glass panels to create some drama”.
Plating up the space: Flea markets and bazaars can sometimes throw up some amazing finds to add a touch of collectibles to your powder room. “For a home in Pune, we created a distressed finish on the walls. An eclectic mix of milk jars, plates and other quirky objects were collected from Chor Bazaar and Pune markets, and created into a collage on the walls”. Pick objects and build around it to create a cool space – don’t hesitate to keep adding more as you find them. Retain the sanitary ware in elegant white tones so as to standout from your old market finds.
Doodle drama: If one is willing to go all out experimental, then drawings on the walls are sure to be a talking point! “For a space that doubled up as a guest washroom of a media centre, I picked a geometric black-and-white marble flooring, and fittings in black, white and gold. The walls were in a dull gold too, on which we created a black line artwork, by an illustration artist. It was a way to add some wicked humour and chutzpah to the space”. Create a story; go wild with the pen…grab the guest’s attention by placing characters at strategic points – above the mirror or near the door. Don’t go too grunge…keep it refined and fun!
Playing with materials: The powder room is the best space to experiment with unconventional materials. If you choose to ditch the regular surfaces of marble, tile or stone, you can use concrete instead. “For one home, we cast concrete on the walls – gravel and textures formed part of the finished product to give it a unique feel. A rough cut, thick block of wood was used for the basin counter also allowing for storage niches below. Embossed POP panels above added a finish, blending the ceiling with the wall”. Play around with materials and you’ll find a mix that perks up the space!
Don’t restrict material use to those that can be hosed down
Design dry areas as extensions of the wet areas
Embossed, textured or coloured IPS works great for dry areas
Stone and river-washed marble are great for wet areas
Don’t forget to completely clad wet areas
Shabnam Gupta, Principal Designer, The Orange Lane, Mumbai
“I’ve always found peace in the unconventional, and a method to the madness of passionate design. I look at each of my projects as a visual delight, letting originality flourish while creating timeless stories, one exclusive and artistically endowed space at a time.”
Text: Compiled by The Blue Pencil Design Company
Images: Courtesy Shabnam Gupta