Monday, September 7, 2009

Chandeliers……Brightening Up the Bathroom

In the desire to create the mood for a luxurious and romantic style bathroom, what could add more elegance or glamour than a beautiful chandelier over a sensational soaking tub?

imageThis alluring space gives it a feeling that is both classic and modern. Rozanne Jackson Interiors.

Bathrooms that I have done in the past, where some were remodeled completely and others with just a couple of touches here and there to give a fresh look to the space usually included a chandelier over the tub. If the space allows, adding a chandelier can create a huge impact without a lot of cost …

So imagine my dismay……when my bubbles  image……and by that I don’t mean the relaxing ones that surround you while you are soaking in the tub.  I mean the kind that burst when you hear something you don’t want to, when I met with a contractor recently and he was the first one that ever said to me “that it is a really dumb idea and he “prefers NOT to install them over the tub…..ever”.  Thankfully (insert huge sigh of relief),  the disappointment was short lived, for I spoke with another contractor (who was still not overly thrilled about the idea) said there can be an alternative solution (see Safety tips below) in allowing this to be a safer installation.  He did mention that he does still hesitate about the idea because of the thought of how homeowners can be quite irresponsible.  IE: They might “fill the tub, stand in the water and decide to change the light bulbs”. Who does that?!  Scary! No one would be that clueless……would they?  Luckily not the clients I have had the pleasure working with.

At this point, I have to admit my curiosity is now peaked to know I’m not alone to see if anyone else likes the glamorous look and feel of chandeliers over tubs. So……I decide to check my files/images/Google/magazines/blogs to confirm the answer…. and well, of course they do! Actually, there are many that seem too, especially in southern bathrooms, where they are not uncommon due to having fabulous architecture and high ceilings they are blessed with.   imageAtlanta designer Amy Morris, created a sophisticated sanctuary by adding a 19th-century French mirror and the show-stopping amethyst-embellished French chandelier from Edgar-Reeves.  The chandelier sparkles like fine jewelry.

Many desire their bathrooms to be turned into luxurious rooms where they can recharge, indulge or have a place to escape to. Can you blame others for craving some lavishness in their life by adding an exquisite chandelier to their private retreat?  I certainly can not.

image   image
The very talented Barry Dixon chooses different styles of fixtures in creating refreshing spaces with unique style.   

This opulent chandelier in a room designed by Nate Berkus makes this space feel like the perfect space to escape to.  

MetHome0909pg 96Clean, sleek and sophisticated with elegance all rolled into one. Met Home Sept. 2009 

 Renovation Style Mag pg 62 summer 2009 Renovation Style Magazine Page 62 Summer 2009  The original vintage chandelier was relocated in this house from the foyer to over the vintage claw and foot tub. Pure Perfection.

The right light fixture, whether it be a chandelier or perhaps a pendant, cannot only add to the style of your room, but it can also make all of your other special details in your bathroom truly stand out. 8 master bath stand alone porcelain tub barrel vaulted ceiling lantern fireplace
If you’re thinking about having a chandelier in a bathroom, but don’t want it directly over the tub, consider putting it at one end of the tub, or in front of.  Also, you don’t have to use it in the traditional way, with one large chandelier hanging in the middle of the room you could use two chandeliers over a vanity or one of medium size.

image Designer Elaine Griffin Juxtaposing materials and styles adds interest to this sophisticated space.

Safety First
Attention to aesthetics in the bathroom doesn't diminish the importance of safety. Electricity and water are still lethal companions, and nowhere do they mingle more closely than in the bathroom. Always consult a certified electrician before tackling even the simplest lighting project.
   The National Electric Code requires all new outlets to have GFCIs, (ground-fault circuit interrupters).  Even fixtures that are going to be within a certain distance of the tub or shower (usually extends 3ft  horizontally, and 8ft  vertically from the bathtub top rim and the shower stall threshold, though local codes vary) should be "wet" or "shower-location" rated. 
   Put any of the light fixtures located above the bathtub and / or shower stall on a GFCI protected circuit…
   A circuit breaker GFCI (installed in a panel box to give protection to selected circuits) serves a dual purpose - not only will it shut off electricity in the event of a "ground-fault," but it will also trip when a short circuit or an over-load occurs.

So……we ask ourselves…….
Would you be willing to break the rules (if there are any) to create your enchanting retreat?


  1. Those bathrooms are stunning! I love the look of free standing tubs!

  2. I'm in heaven looking at these images. The Amy Morris and the Nate Berkus rooms are my favorite! We have an old, cold cast iron tub that I hate taking a bath in. As a result, I haven't had a bath at home for about 12 years! Isn't that shameful!? Loved this post. Oh...and thank you, thank you...for those sweet comments that you left on my post today! It's comments like that that make me want to keep blogging!

  3. gorgeous bathrooms!
    thanks for your sweet comment today!

  4. Changing a light bulb while standing in a tubful of water. Maybe, someone somewhere. Sipping too much wine whilst soaking? Silliness, I know.

    A chandelier over the tub. How decadent. Rather than looking up at the white ceiling I could be looking at a sparkling chandelier. Lovely. I want to move into one of those bathrooms pictured above.

    I really loved your comment. So kind ! Thank you.

  5. Wow - what a beautiful collection of pictures! I love the Amy Morris bathroom, and the Nate Berkus one is a close second.

    I have a boring light over my bathtub, but I definitely want to have a special lighting element in the bathroom in my next house....

  6. Hi
    I did my master bath with the idea that a chandelier would hang over my tub! then the horrible reality of "safety" came up. It still sits in a box on the floor near the tub. Do you know of any wet/shower rated chandeliers??
    (love your blog!) Laurene

  7. Laurene, next post I will do on UL rated fixtures, hopefully I will post soon. :). And, talk to your local certified electrician about putting it on a dedicated GFCI breaker.

  8. Hi, awesome write-up and pictures! I love it!
    Just wondering, are there any man that like this chandlier look in the bathroom? I am currently renovating my bathroom and I have also bought a chandlier for the bathroom similiar to the Amy Morris picture. However, I am concerned whether this look is too feminine? My husband did not comment on it, but I feel bad when a friend commented that Chandeliers are a fad and its too feminine skewed especially in a bathroom. I somehow agree with her that a house should look "gender neutral" if you are a couple. Any views on this?

  9. Men can love this concept too, absolutely! Actually, I just finished up a master bath remodel where the chandelier is one of the favorite elements for the home owners. BOTH the husband and wife love it! :) Don't feel bad....go with what you love and makes you happy.

    Keep your eye out for an upcoming post of some more fabulous bathroom designs with chandeliers that I will be doing soon.