I am regularly approached for "a word" of design advice. What would YOU do in this and that case?
This is not a rare occurrence and as flattering as it is to be asked, giving advice for a space you usually have not seen is not exactly like driving blindfolded but it does feel a little like driving without a rear view mirror; not really impossible, but pas très comfortable. 

Hence, my column: 
au secours! 

I will post  general advice in answer to non site-specific questions I have been asked. You may participate, of course. That would be so much fun. Just keep it relatively general, if you could. 

Diana: I would like to do something special in my bathroom;  I want a luxurious feel, something one might find in an old European hotel. What would you do?

Funny you should ask; I have done just that in my last major project. My client and I decided to put curvaceous marble back splashes behind all the sinks and a matching one around the master bath tub. The showers received marble covered walls and the floors were done with different size marble tiles in each bathrooms. Heaven!
If you want to have just a touch of luxury, concentrate on the back splash. Dress it in marble give it an elegant curve, then attach the faucets to the wall for a clean vintage effect.
But before I start, a very important piece of advice: to avoid a Las Vegas type of feel in your bathroom, whether you chose to add marble accents or to clad it in marble from head to toe, ask your supplier to hone the stone, taking the shine out of it and leaving just a sheen, thus giving your bathroom a patina you will undoubtedly love. 
To go even more luxurious, choose a matching marble sink and nickel plated pillars, faucets and hardware. The rounded lines of the back splash lends the allure of the luxury hotels of Italy in the early part of the 20th century. Think Venetian palaces or Lake Como villas.

This is a stunning example of coordinated sink and back splash, with lanky nickel plated legs, classic faucets and reproduction antique accessories.

The style of the sink itself and the choice of marble determines the final feel of the bathroom; here one classic the other more modern, yet cut from the same type of stone.

Coordinating a sink carved out of a single slab of marble, a simple uncut slab back splash and matching marble shelf brings cohesion and minimalism to these two bathrooms.

This type of ogee shaped molding is ideal if you want to soften a plain back splash made of large marble tiles. 

The bathtub can be decorated with the same curvy marble surround adding a touch of extravagance to the whole room.

Stopping the marble at half wall is stunning and allows more freedom for wall colors- keeping the walls in the color family of the marble chosen gives a more unified look, however. *note the square border detail at the top of the marble back splash, the coordinated baseboard and the contrasting 1" tiles on the floor. Great workmanship. Magnificent result.

A ceiling height marble treatment of the wall brings a richness reminiscent of oriental hammams.*note that in this image the actual back splash is made of tiny glass tiles.

The epitome of luxury if you have the wall for it, is to have a skilled artisan carve the marble slabs to resemble a modern "roman" bas-relief. Pure opulence!
images z-about, linenandlavender, roman william, jill sharp, design shrine, houseandhome, thisisglamorous, drummond-arch, kitchenandbathideas.

I do hope this helps. 
If you have a design question you want to ask me, do not hesitate to let me know in the petit commentaire below. I'll happily run to your secours!
au revoir.


  1. What fabulous bathrooms. Pure luxury.
    I will buy a lottery ticket today so I can afford one of those or all of them. "Hey! you never know!" as the ad for New York Lottery says.

  2. BONNE CHANCE! get a house with 10 bathrooms while you are at it...

  3. love marble, this is a great post!

  4. Im drooling over here! I need to win the lottery too..get me a ticket :)

  5. Merci Mesdames, for the visit. I adore marble, I have relatively modern versions in my bathrooms. I now would love a bathroom with marble floor to ceiling and marble moldings and cabinets with opaque pale jade glass doors famed in nickel...one can dream...

  6. these are ALL gorgeous. you can never use too much marble in a bath in my opinion

  7. Hello There,

    this is really very nice blog and looking very nice. this blog is very helpfull for shopping .. we want come back on this blog...

  8. Anonymous22/7/14

    finally someone with style. merci beaucoup for the inspiration