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A Buyers Guide to: Freestanding Baths

In the late 19th Century the freestanding bath made from cast iron lined with porcelain, or copper was seen as a very luxurious item, that only the wealthy would be lucky enough to own.

Technological advances have led to freestanding baths becoming available in a wider range of materials in beautifully sculpted designs in a plethora of sizes offering a much broader choice at affordable prices. This is a result of the successive development of manufacturers to help reduce prices and make more efficient use of materials. The freestanding bath is not only a luxury to own, they are a superb investment for your property offering great appeal to potential buyers.

Soaking Up the Luxury

The presence of a freestanding bath provides a centrepiece and gives an immediate feeling of style, quality and can make a big impact in both the modern and traditional bathrooms. A huge advantage to a freestanding bath is the ability to coordinate with the décor of the room and the rest of your home. Freestanding baths can be built into a wall or in a corner, included in an en-suite or even with a shower built over.

Whilst many freestanding baths feature a more modern design, the essence of the traditional freestanding Victorian inspired bath remains timeless, and a great option for those looking to create a transitional bathroom style bridging the gap between the traditional and the modern. If you have a vintage theme throughout your home, you could have modern fittings in your bathroom to match this style. Similarly, if you have a modern style home, you can still have a freestanding bath that fits in with the rest of your home.

Many freestanding baths are extremely easy to add your own personal finishing touch to, as they can be easily painted to match your walls, tiles or bathroom accessories. Pioneering paint suppliers Farrow & Ball and Laura Ashley offer a stunning range of paints in a spectrum of colours suitable for painting freestanding baths. If you are intending to paint your baths outer, we would recommend that you check it is suitable to do so first with your baths manufacturer.

 

The Classic Roll Top Bath

The roll top bath is a freestanding bath with edges that curve at the ends forming a beautifully curved lip to provide a more comfortable bathing experience. Many traditional roll top baths are double skinned, made from thick acrylic sheets sandwiched together, reassuringly solid, providing excellent thermal properties, keeping your bath water warmer for longer and the surface of the bath warm to the touch.

Roll top baths are available in an extensive variety of styles and dimensions to meet various design needs. Typically, roll top baths are very deep, making them luxurious and comfortable for people of a wide range of sizes. In order to follow true Victorian fashion, the roll top bath would be elevated on feet (known as claw feet) which help to keep the floor dry, reduce the risk of mildew and rot from building up underneath and allow access for easy cleaning.

There is something ever so indulgent, yet thoroughly deserving about sinking into a roll top bath and letting your cares dissolve with the bubbles. At Drench we have an extensive collection of traditional roll top baths in modern and traditional designs from manufacturers such as Burlington, BC Designs and Arcade at terrific prices, the roll top bath is modern day luxury we can all afford.

 

The Slipper Bath

The slipper bath is an iconic style bath tub that originates from the Victorian era. Alike the roll top bath the slipper bath features a rolled top, following traditional form the bath would be raised from the floor on four feet. A variation of the slipper bath is the double ended slipper bath, also known as a boat bath.  A classic slipper bath is oblong in shape, and from the side it actually looks vaguely like a slipper. The slipper bath features one end which is slightly deeper than the other with a slight dip in the middle, the shape of the bath allows for extra support allowing you to bathe and relax in comfort.

The slipper bath in the Victorian era was made from cast iron with an enamel coating. Nowadays slipper baths are available in a variety of materials including acrylic and steel, whilst many modern slipper baths feature classic traits of 19th century styling, slipper baths are now available in a range of designs to suit not only traditional but contemporary bathroom designs.

With the slipper bath, taps are typically located at the shallow end to encourage the bather to use the deeper end designed to provide a more lounging support.  Depending on one’s size, he or she may be able to lie down in the bath, or sit up using the gently sloping back as a support. At Drench we offer a stunning range of modern and traditional slipper baths from leading manufacturers such as Charlotte Edwards, Clearwater and BC Designs. We also have our very own Drench brand double and single ended slipper baths offering uncompromised quality at superb prices.

 

Double Ended Freestanding Baths

Double ended baths are great for sharing a bubble bath with a loved one, designed to accommodate bathers facing in either direction. Some are actually specifically designed for this purpose, and are made extra long to ensure the most comfort. Tall bathers sometimes seek out such tubs so that they can stretch out fully in the bath. Typically both ends of the bath are identically sloped to provide back support, making it comfortable for the bather to sit and lounge in the bath. Double ended baths offer double the luxury ensuring optimal levels of relaxation and due to their design require less water to fill them.

Double ended baths are available in an array of materials including porcelain, acrylic, metal and even wood. Typically the double ended bath is oblong in shape, although some may feature sweeping curves and divots designed to make bathing more comfortable, and to create a desired stylish look. At Drench we offer a large range of double ended freestanding baths featuring striking designs, in beautiful finishes to suit both traditional and contemporary bathrooms.

 

Freestanding Bath Feet, Cradles and Plinths

Some modern freestanding baths come with an art deco inspired cradle, plinth or coordinating pedestal. Elevating your bath of the floor allows access for easy cleaning it would be a shame to ruin the look of your beautiful bath with a layer of dust and other stuff lurking underneath it.

Feet

Traditionally to elevate a freestanding bath claw feet would be used, nowadays there are many styles of feet to choose from including ball and claw feet that can be safely bolted to your bathroom floor in an array of finishes including cast iron, chrome, anthracite, brass and antique gold, bath feet tend to be designed to fit individual baths and are not interchangeable so it’s important to make sure you get the right feet to fit your bath.

Cradles & Plinths

Wooden plinths, originating from Japan offer a more contemporary style. Whilst many bath plinths come tailored to fit the individual design of a bath, there are some universal bath plinths available. Bath plinths come in an array of finishes including white and black gloss, wenge, oak and walnut available in various sizes. Clearwater baths offer a stunning range of freestanding baths with a cradles inspired by simplistic oriental design. Another contemporary finish to the freestanding bath is to have the bath supported by a metal cradle. Metal cradles are ideal for providing a clean-lined minimalistic look.

Plan out Your Bathroom Space

Freestanding baths can be situated with the length going along a wall but aesthetically they need space at each end to show off their contours. A freestanding bath allows more visual space around the tub and gives it a centre stage design. If you are considering centring your freestanding bath, it is important that you plan out your bathroom carefully to make sure that the dimensions of your proposed bath and any bathroom furniture fit the room with enough room to open doors and manoeuvre yourself.  Also don’t forget to think about aesthetic issues such as exposed pipes and how you plan to incorporate a shower, either over the bath or as a separate facility if this is something you are considering.

Think About Weight

Having a freestanding bath can cause implications where weight distribution is concerned. It is most certainly worth having your floorboards and joists inspected by your builder or plumber to check that they are suitable to bear the weight of your proposed bath. It’s not just a question of how much the bath weighs when it’s empty but when it’s full with water and a person. It would also be beneficial to speak to your plumber about locations of plumbing and pipes in relation to the joists and to check the clearance area under your proposed bath, in some cases you may need to make room below floor level for a waste pipe.

 

Freestanding Bath Taps

In the Victorian era indoor plumbing was starting to be introduced, baths were filled using large pans from the kitchen so it was not uncommon to find homes with no hot running water. Not having taps fitted to a freestanding bath remained a positive with the introduction of freestanding bath taps in the latter Victorian era. Nothing will compliment your freestanding bath like a set of freestanding bath taps; freestanding bath taps give an added dimension to the bathroom aesthetic.

Freestanding bath taps allow you to be able to enjoy a romantic bath with your partner, without arguing who has to lie against the uncomfortable, sharp and awkward taps, as they can be placed at your convenience outside of the bath. This also allows your plumbing and water supply to have a little more leeway in terms of installation. We offer an extensive range of freestanding bath taps at Drench from leading manufacturers such as Crosswater, Hansgrohe and Vado offering long guarantees for your piece of mind. Freestanding bath taps are available in a plethora of modern and traditional designs.

 

Deck Mounted Taps

Deck mounted taps can be fitted onto the wide edge of a freestanding bath and they're great if floor space is at a premium and you're unable to use a built in valve. Deck mounted taps are available in a wide range of modern and traditional styles that slot into pre drilled holes of a freestanding bath. Deck mounted bath taps can be in the form of a mixer or a bath shower mixer with up to 4 holes.

Wall Mounted Fillers & Spouts

For a sleek and stylish way to fill your freestanding bath a wall mounted filler can look absolutely stunning especially when using waterfall type spouts, however, you'll need a wall mounted valve built into the wall and to position your bath close enough to the wall so that the taps can reach. Bath spouts are available in a range of lengths giving you the option to have the bath a distance away from the wall if you so wish. Wall mounted bath fillers and spouts offer the added benefit that they hide unsightly pipe work providing a minimalist look.

 

Overflow Bath Fillers

Overflow bath fillers serve a dual purpose, filling the bath and the ability to stop the bath from over filling as water emerges from a hole on the underside of the overflow. The water flow is controlled by a set of valves mounted either onto the bath or by a manual or thermostatic valve mounted on the wall. Overflow bath fillers are inherently stylish and are available in various designs including round and square, ideal for adding a little wow-factor to your bathroom.

Bottom Filling Waste Fillers

Adverse to the normal way of filling your bath, are bottom filling waste fillers such as the stylish Digital Bottom Filling Bath Filler from Crosswater that fills your bath silently with water flowing downwards filling up your bath from the bottom up. A separate valve is required in order to send the mixed water to the waste filler. Bottom filling waste fillers are one of the most stylish ways to modernise your bathroom and forego the traditional bath tap.

Bath Wastes and Plugs

When purchasing your freestanding bath it is worth noting that some of our freestanding baths come with a waste or over flow filler, and some do not. At Drench we offer an extensive range of bath wastes suitable for freestanding baths including pop up wastes, plug and chain wastes, pop up wastes, plug and chain wastes, pop up cable wastes, click clack wastes and more. Click clack wastes are most popular for freestanding baths as they offer a more minimalist look.

Finally, the finer details make a big difference. Why not compliment your new freestanding bath with new bathroom furniture or bathroom accessories from Drench, your bathroom specialist.

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