Part 2: Faucets and Sinks
These are necessary components of any bathroom and shouldn’t be underestimated when considering their aesthetic contribution to the total bathroom design. Sometimes, it’s the perfect faucet and sink combination that leaves the greatest impression!
Faucets: Faucets come in four basic configurations: widespread (8-inch), Centerset (4 inch), Single Hole, and Wall Mount. The first three options are mounted on the sink deck. If a sink has holes for a faucet that will remain in tact for the final design, make sure to measure the span between the centers of the two outermost holes to define which style is needed.
The configuration isn’t the only faucet decision to consider; finishes and style are equally as important. There is a wide variety of these in the market in all price categories. So, whether the design is contemporary, rustic, traditional or traditional, there are faucets that will certainly fit the specified budget and design style . It goes without saying to coordinate the sink faucet (s) with any adjacent tub and shower faucets. In additional, don’t forget to incorporate the same finish in the accessories (towel hooks, rings, rods, commode handles, etc.) to achieve consistency throughout the room. Oftentimes, I specify a different brand of accessories than the faucets, which is perfectly fine as long as the looks coordinate and the finishes are similar.
Sinks: There are so many wonderful sinks available today that it’s quickly becoming one of my favorite things to select in a bathroom. People generally don’t think too much about them in a master bath or a secondary bath, but they can be very dramatic with the right combination of bathroom components. Lots of times, powder baths or ½ baths can become a focal point which creates the perfect amount of drama (i.e. vessel sinks, taller faucets, custom drain solutions). Before selecting the bathroom sink(s), consider which type works best for the clients’ needs.
Size definitely matters…make sure your sink is the right size for your vanity top or room space. When remodeling a small bathroom, a pedestal sink or wall mount sink will preserve maximum space and keep an openness to the room. When remodeling a master bath, think about how this sink is used every day. For example, a really high vessel sink may not be the best option for this space when you are trying to wash your face (high splash factor) and their accompanying faucets usually have lower water pressure (based on the more decorative faucets typically selected for vessel sinks).
Let’s review a few basic sink characteristics:
Self-Rimming Sink: (AKA: drop in sink)
Pros: This is popular because of their low price and ease of installation. They can be used on any type of countertop material.
Cons: can be difficult to keep the countertop clean.
Pros:These have a seamless look; and they’re fairly easy to keep clean since there are no protruding lips.
Cons: Undermounts can only be used with specific countertop materials (granite, marble, limestone, quartz, etc) and they’re a little more expensive than self-rimming sinks. However, most good stone fabricators provide under mount sinks for a very modest fee when using their services.
Pros: Available in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. They also, take up less space, making them ideal for a small bathroom or powder room. You can achieve a nice contemporary or industrial look with wall mount sinks.
Cons: These are devoid of storage space, so some creative storage solutions will be necessary. It also usually needs to be braced in order to hold the weight of the sink.
Pros: Vessels are available in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and materials (natural stone, glass, porcelain) and can be a form of artwork in and of themselves. These can make a very bold statement in the bathroom or be a subtle compliment to the balance of the design. We use them often and I love the fact that you can mount them at various heights to fit your functional needs best.
Cons: Their raised edges may be easy to damage or chip if used roughly. Glass sinks can reveal plumbing or vanity contents below, so an alternative drain décor (such as river rocks) is a great way to mask the unsightly areas.
Pros: These sinks often feature a small surface for a few items. They take up less room, creating a sense of openness, so it is ideal for a small bathroom or powder room.
Cons: Pedestals don’t offer storage space.