While renovating our bathroom, we plumped for a rather luxurious free-standing tub. We didn’t initially plan to have a bath at all; in fact, I had my eye on a walk-in shower for our small bathroom instead. But when the January sales came around and we found a suite for only £300, we couldn’t really pass up the deal. The bathroom suite comprised of a lovely loo, sink and all the taps, traps and bits ‘n’ bobs, as well as a spacious freestanding bath.
The thing that clinched the deal for us was that, although the bath is wider and deeper than most standard baths, it is about 10cm shorter. This meant it would fit into our bathroom across the width, leaving us more space in the middle of the room. The tub has a flat back so that it can be mounted against a wall and allows for a shower to be fitted above it.We plumbed in our bathroom over the course of 9 days (have a look at the horrid before pics here) and stood back to admire our handiwork. That’s when we realised that we’d need a different kind of shower screen than we’d had in the past. You see, the thing with freestanding baths is that water can escape on all sides (well, apart from the back against the wall). The simple glass screens we’d used in the past wouldn’t work this time!
I’ve been doing my research and I found a lot of inspiration for freestanding baths on Pinterest. I’ve come across a lot of vintage-looking Victorian style roll-top baths with lovely showers above them. I think enclosed shower curtain rails are a sensible and rather romantic-looking way to keep the water inside the tub.
Another aesthetically-pleasing option is to replace a bathtub with an L-shaped or P-shaped shower bath, which has more room at one end for showering. You can find these at Royal Bathrooms, which is offering a great deal at the moment.
That said, I really like how a central shower looks when the shower curtains are pulled back to the ends of the bath. It’s like the bathtub is a theatre stage with curtains either side. Even so, I’m not sure how this kind of rail will look above our bath, because the design we chose is a lot more contemporary than these classic roll-tops.
The key to installing a shower head over a freestanding bath is enclosing the space to minimise splashing. It doesn’t matter whether the shower is at one end above the taps, or in the centre of the bath. Either set-up will need a circular, rectangular or oval shower curtain rail in order to ensure that all the water is kept inside the bath when the shower is running.
I’ve decided that I’m not going to be without a shower any more. I haven’t been able to use the big rainfall shower head at all since we installed it, for fear of flooding with bathroom with overspray! So I’m going to sort out a rail and curtain as soon as I can. Watch this space for an update very soon..!
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