Are you crazy for antiques? We have many clients that own luxury homes that find beautiful items, sometimes separate pieces of furniture like a dresser that they feel would look cool in their bathroom. Or they may find kitchen cabinets that they fall in love with. They ask us if they can convert these magnificent older heirlooms into cabinets under a bathroom sink. In this article, we discuss important considerations when looking to undertake a bathroom conversion project such as this.
Are Antique Furniture Conversions for Bathrooms Common?
We at RG Plumbing Inc. are starting to see this quite a bit. It’s definitely a growing trend in luxury homes. It can really make a bathroom into something special and unique, because of the distinctive nature of the piece being converted into the room.
How Do You Start a Project Like This?
Homeowners will often go to antique shops, rummage sales, flea markets, yard sales and find amazing antique furniture that they love, and want to use it in their bathroom. They are often looking for dressers, armoires, kitchen cabinets, hutches–anything you can imagine in a bathroom.
What’s Different About the Plumbing Process?
Typically we plumbers would access the water line through the floor for a sink in a bathroom. But these pieces of furniture have legs on them, and they’re elevated above the floor. So we’ve got to plumb them, bringing everything out of the wall–not through the floor like we normally would.
We are very careful with these types of projects; not everything will work.
What Can a Homeowner Be Looking for When Antiquing?
When looking for interesting furniture for your bathroom, a healthy dose of common sense is in order. Your bathroom furniture is going to have a sink or sinks in it. It’s got a drain and water lines going to it. So you usually can’t have drawers. Often clients will buy kitchen cabinets and try to put them in a bathroom, not realizing that the drawer under the sink won’t function. The sink hangs 8 inches below the counter. The next drawer can’t move either because it’s going to hit the drain.
If I’m Really in Love with a Piece, but There Are Obvious Problems, What Can be Done to Make it Work?
Although there are limitations to what can be done with certain furniture, a good carpenter can go a long way. We’ve seen them build drawers around the sinks and drains, allowing the drawers to open and shut. And you also have to plumb for that. Each piece is different. If it’s a highly custom project like this, working with very experienced plumbing service contractors is going to be essential. This is why so many homeowners have come to us to work on these very specialized systems.