There are certain jobs that when they come your way, you’d be stupid to turn down.
- Ryan Reynold’s snog instructor
- Chief sleep tester in a mattress factory
- Quality controller at a gin distillery
- Head lilo tester at an inflatables shop in the Maldives
So when Geberit got in touch with the proposition of another such job I was all over it like gravy on a Yorkshire pudding. The challenge was to design my dream bathroom. Erm yes please. No holding back they said, go wild, they said, put ‘you’ all over the bathroom they said. Presuming they meant my personality and not my actual body parts I set about pulling together my wildest bathroom fantasies. Think marble, pattern and fluffy towels you dirty lot!
The concept was simple. One beautiful Geberit bathroom styled two completely different ways. A chance to show off the versatility of the cabinetry. I was chosen for my bold punchy love it or loath it design which left a space for my design opposite. Somebody who could boss those neutrals into shape. Ding ding, into the ring steps Malmo and Moss, the yin to my yang, the rhubarb to my custard, the purveyor of all things rustic. Like the Cagney & Lacey of the interior design world, Malmo came armed with pampas grass and vintage shutters, me with brass fittings and velvet, both of us ready for action. Things were about to get serious, let the transformation commence…….
Swiss brand Geberit are top of their proverbial class when it comes to quality. Responsibly made, reliable and durable products which just add to the long list of delights that Switzerland have offered the world. Lindt chocolate bunnies, the army knife, the fondue (I mean what doesn’t taste better dipped in melted cheese) and Velcro – who knew?
Geberit chose the Xeno² range. A sleek modern design with clean lines and intelligent storage solutions. Featured in my dream bathroom was the washbasin with cabinet, mirror, side cupboard and wait for it…….the piece de resistence, a ridiculously fancy shower toilet. Yup you heard right, a toilet that leaves your bits and bobs as fresh as polo mint in a wind tunnel*. I’d never experienced one before but trust me, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. I’m a convert.
The range features clever design features such as illuminated mirrors, soft close doors (not just for a kitchen ya know) and washbasin cabinets with integrated lighting. Along with a toilet that comes with its own remote control and app, that’s a recipe for one perfect bathroom right there.
As expected, I immediately shunned the neutrals and headed straight to the opposite end of the colour chart. I wanted to go deliciously dark for this project to show how something as simple as a paint choice could totally transform a room. I wanted something cocooning, luxurious, something that felt like you were walking into a big hug. For me black is the perfect colour to do this. Dramatic and a lot less terrifying than you might think. Just like that old faithful little black dress, black is a really reliable colour to use in a room and it was guaranteed to make the bathroom furniture sing. Not literally, I’d send a singing toilet straight back to Switzerland, fondue or not!
So whilst Malmo was no doubt wafting around the wevet, worsted and wimbourne, I was on a mission to find the most perfect black shade. Dulux rich black came up trumps.
What black does need is something to soften it. I stumbled upon this incredible wallpaper designed by Pearl Lowe and created by Woodchip & Magnolia. Like eyes meeting across a sticky dancefloor, I knew that I’d found ‘the one’. The sumptuous black paint and floral wallpaper was paired with Dulux’ sweet nougat in the window recesses. Booooom, in your face Malmo!
Now, I’m not a fan of bathrooms being too bathroomy. It’s a room that you spend a lot of time in (especially if you are my husband and it’s round about kids bedtime……….). My one design rule when it comes to wash rooms is to decorate like you would any room in the house. Make it comfy, make it cosy, put accessories in that you wouldn’t expect to find in a bathroom. I chose three hero pieces. First up was a big snugly velvet chair because we all need a buddy to sit and chat to us when we’re in the bath, right? Next I chose a bar cart which as well as looking ‘bob on’ provided great storage for towels and good looking accessories (all of the less than instagrammable bottles will be safely hidden in the cavernous storage units of the Xeno² range). My last piece was the incredible pendant lights from Tom Dixon. If you’ve tried to source stylish bathroom lighting before you’ll know that it’s as hard as finding a toddler who doesn’t need their nose blowing. These marble lights are IP44 bathroom rated and also look incredible. I also happen to think that a touch of marble has to be sneaked in to every bathroom.
I’m a huge fan of biophilic interiors, the concept of connecting our home environment to nature. The easiest way to start is by introducing plants into the home. The bathroom is the perfect place if you’re a bit of a plant killer like me. The humidity means that you can get away with a spot of forgetting about them.
Finishing touches were added with a chunky knit cushion, tactile rug, brass and marble shelves, pampas grass (not stolen from Malmo) and beautiful towels from Christy.
The day didn’t start very well. If you saw my stories that day, you’ll remember the van of doom that had to be hired to transport all of the props to middle England. There was the smell of fart, the shiny patch on the seat which will have seen the crotchal rub of a thousand sweaty truckies and an alarm that went off when you hit 68mph. Fuelled by coffee and purely mouth breathing I spent 3 hours entirely in the company of my own thoughts (broken radio). It was truly terrifying. The only way was up though and things definitely got better after I arrived. I walked in to what had been transformed into my dream bathroom. Beautiful rich black walls and the wallpaper of actual dreams, I was like a kid in a sweet shop. Obviously I had a play with all of the gadgets and gizmos which left me wondering how on earth I was going to survive with a toilet whose only feature was a flush in future?
In my head I had imagined two separate sets. Me poised in one dripping in pattern and fluff and gold accessories, Malmo in the other armed with sheepskins, dried hydrangeas and hammam towels. I pictured a klaxon and the furious rush of us each trying to out instagram the other. Sadly her shoot had been the week before so the only battle was the internal one I had with myself to not cock up my lines when being filmed (FYI I didn’t win that particular battle, check out the outtakes at the end).
All in all a cracking way to spend a day ‘at work’. A full day styling my dream bathroom? Some days I want to punch myself in the shins I’m so lucky! Having said that, I was bought swiftly back down to planet Earth with the realisation of another 3 hours on the shiny crotch patch.
So, here we are, my finished dream bathroom along with me tenderly tweaking flower buds and gently placing towels. Just like I do every day in my real life bathroom, I promise.
You can find out more about the battle…….I mean project then click here to go to the Inspired By Geberit page
Despite me being a bit of a neutral hater, I absolutely love Malmo’s bathroom. My Scandi influence only goes about as far as the consumption of IKEA hot dogs so I rather surprised myself with how much I like it. I would happily while away hours soaking in that tub/hiding from my kids.
Nice one Malmo.
If you want to find out more about Malmo’s dream then click here
I can’t leave without talking about a few of the features that I discovered on shoot day. Without being up close and personal with the product, you just don’t get a proper feel for the range.
Motion sensor lighting
These were on the washbasin cabinets and on the toilet. A soft light that is activated as you get close. The perfect way to guide you where you need to be, especially important in the middle of the night.
The Varicor basin
Who knew that a basin would leave me wanting to rub my face all over it. It feels like nothing I’ve ever touched before. Sleek and clean yet soft and silky to touch. Get yourself into a showroom to go give it a rub. You’ll love it!
Yep, I said it, I’m raving about flush plates but I genuinely mean it. I’ve long raved about the devil being in the detail, those all important touch points are so important. Geberit offer a phenomenal choice when it comes to flush plates, a recent visit to their HQ showed an entire wall of choice. This one is slate and looks sensational.
The range offers some cracking storage options. I’ll admit to rushing both of our home bathrooms. The builders were circling like vultures, reminding us that they needed it imminently so we caved and pretty much threw it together. We bought poor quality fittings and added no storage in our family bathroom. As a result it permanently looks like a towel bomb has gone off. In my next house project (don’t tell Mr Peach) I will invest in acres of storage to hide my veet, waxing strips and pantene bottles.
I love a good mirror. This isn’t because I’m vain it’s because a mirror is a great design feature. It will reflect light around the room and take on the appearance of whatever is opposite. If you are going to have a large mirror, make sure you plan what will be reflected in it. If you have a bold wallpaper on the wall facing it, you will have a ready made framed piece of art.
So there we go, a little glimpse into some of the work that I’ve been doing with Geberit over the past few months. It’s been a blast so far and I’m delighted that there is more to come. Watch this space. Now, I’m off to punch myself in the shins again.
And if you’ve watched the official video here.
I offer you a big fat dose of reality…………
*Thanks to my lovely yet useless kids for the what can only be described as ‘appalling’ inspiration when I asked them to help me with my phrases.
Me…….’Kids, what’s the first thing that comes into your head, as fresh as a…………..’
fresh as a squeak
fresh as a frog
fresh as a peach
fresh as a kipper
fresh as a fingernail
fresh as a sandwich
fresh as a storm trooper
As you were kids…..
This blog post is part of a long term paid partnership with Geberit. All view are my own
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