Kid-Friendly Classic Bath with Lasting Appeal
Timeless architectural details form the backdrop for a fun, functional children's bath with lasting appeal
"They grow up so fast!" That parental refrain takes on new significance when the redo of a kids' bath is on the agenda. So when Joe and Lynn Kirincich of Wayne, New Jersey, decided to tackle the bath in their 1973 Colonial shared by their son, 4, and daughter, 6, "We were aiming for longevity," says Lynn, "a room to suit them now and when they're teens."
Shown: A new vanity with a sand-colored marble top gives each child a sink and storage space. Glossy white paint on the tall wainscot is nick- and fingerprint-resistant.
Vanity cabinet and mirrors: Bertch
While the existing space was dark and drab, it was of ample size and the plumbing locations worked well. Enter designer Jennifer Vreeland McDermott, who found a vanity with two sinks that would help keep the peace and with deep drawers that made above-the-sink storage unnecessary. As Lynn says, "Kids reaching up for a medicine cabinet seems like an accident waiting to happen." Wainscoting adds architectural interest, while double sconces brighten the space. Fun fish prints on the watery-blue walls complete the look—for now. "As the children mature, they can update the room with color and pattern in towels, rugs, and accessories," adds McDermott.
Just as nice, says Lynn, "getting ready for bed has become a smoother, quicker process."
Shown: The single vanity and tiled floor had seen better days, and the room desperately needed light.
Dark faux-wood ceramic tile planks provide a welcome contrast to the white wainscot. Equally dark grout is key.
Homeowner tip: "Splurge on some artwork for the walls! It's the kind of small detail that really ties a room together." —Lynn Kirincich, Wayne, N.J.
Contractor: G&L and Sons, Cedar Grove, NJ; 973-857-3553
Paint: Farrow & Ball's Lulworth Blue (walls), and Benjamin Moore's White Dove (wainscoting and trim)
Paintings: Seawall ARTifacts
Separate sinks and cabinet storage put an end to squabbling. Extra elbow room in the tub/shower makes bath time more comfortable.
1. Exchanged a single sink for a 6-foot double vanity with two undermount sinks for easy cleanup.
2. Put a new commode in the old location; a soft-close lid means no more slamming.
3. Swapped a folding closet door that pinched little fingers for a pair of sliders.
4. A pressure-balance shower valve prevents accidental surges of too-hot or frigid water.
5. Scrapped the fiberglass tub/shower surround for tiled walls; added a deeper, wider tub.