Susan Van Meter
Can a bathroom be Luxurious and Sustainable?
Can we really use the word sustainable with the word luxury in the same sentence, surely they are complete opposites to each other?
Here at our London-based residential interior design practise, we believe that home owners still want luxurious interior design for their homes and always will, even if there is a move toward less expensive and opulent interior design. There is still no reason homes cannot be sustainable and luxurious. The push towards sustainable products for interior design is on it's way, slowly, but it is coming, and, is not always easy to find. This is one of the ways SVM Interiors can help. We have done the research and leg work already, we know where to find and source the right products that fits your brief but doesn't cost the earth!
So, can we make better choices when we come to redesign our bathrooms that don't cost the earth?
Yes, we can - we call it "Sustainable Luxury"
What does sustainable mean in relation to residential interior design?
Creating homes with an emphasis on the health and wellness of families, individuals, and our planet, by using design principles, products, and materials that help reduce the use of chemicals, pollution, waste, and energy consumption.
What does luxury and luxurious mean?
A condition of abundance or great ease and comfort, a sumptuous environment. Something adding to pleasure or comfort but not absolutely necessary and normally expensive. An indulgence in something that provides pleasure, satisfaction, or ease.
As a London-based sustainable luxury interior design practise, we have a focus on "keeping it Green". The property we are working on at the moment is in Belgravia, a rather lovely part of London. Part of our project brief is the redesign of 7 bathrooms. The client is also keen to use sustainable products where possible. And, as we know, every little helps toward keeping ourselves and our planet healthy.
In this project, one of the bathrooms is large and more luxurious than the others; the other bathrooms are smaller and the brief is different (I'll cover these in a different article).
🌿 Still, just because the client expects a luxurious final look and feel does not mean we have to compromise by using products that are not manufactured with respect for the environment.
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WHAT TYPE OF PRODUCTS ARE OUT THERE?
🌿 There are companies in the marketplace that have adopted manufacturing processes and use materials that are helping to minimize damaging environmental impacts on our wonderful planet. Unfortunately, it's sometimes difficult to find them.
On the interior redesign of these bathrooms, we are fortunate enough to have already researched this and have a database of suppliers and manufacturers that tick these boxes for our clients. Below is a samples board for the main bathroom.
* All of our newly interior designed bathrooms have heated floors, this is fairly standard nowadays, the upfront cost is more but there are long-term savings. If you have a tiled floor it's a must-have in the UK climate!
Below are 3D renders we provided to the client to give them a feel for the space. The marble is not marble, it's large-format porcelain tile which is very popular at the moment, doesn't cost the earth, and is kinder to the environment. Even if your space is small, the large tile can make it look bigger, with fewer grout lines. (P.S. we changed the mosaics and quartz to more sustianable options, not shown on the spamples board)
These tiles are from a company called Porcelain Tiles UK. They specialize in luxury sustainable tiles.
The book match tiles on the rear wall are huge at 1.5m wide x 3m in length, you do need a skilled installer, someone who is used to handling them, surprisingly the tiles being thin at 6-9mm, is extremely strong. Why use real marble?
The quartz material on the vanity unit and forming the WC housing is from Quartforms a German company that have invested and committed to sustainable procedures and practises.
🌿 Of course, the best selling point is the tiles are EU Ecolabel and LEED-certified. The tiles are made in Italy where I have also found bathroom sanitaryware manufacturers such as Catalano, see my article. 👇
🌿⭐️ 5 STEPS FOR CREATING A SUSTAINABLE BATHROOM - STEP 2 SANITARYWARE ⭐️🌿
The EU Ecolabel helps you identify products and services that have a reduced environmental impact throughout their life cycle, from the extraction of raw material through to production, use, and disposal. Recognized throughout Europe, EU Ecolabel is a voluntary label promoting environmental excellence which can be trusted.
The EU Ecolabel is awarded according to ecological criteria agreed on by experts, industry, consumer organizations, and environmental NGOs and verified by independent third parties.
LEED® certification provides independent, third-party verification that a building project meets the highest green building and performance measure. All certified projects receive a LEED® plaque, which is a nationally recognized symbol demonstrating that a building is environmentally responsible, profitable, and a healthy place to live and work.
The LEED® program encourages the adoption of sustainable green building and development practices and promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in five key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection, and indoor environmental quality.
🌿 There really is no excuse not to use materials that have been created responsibly and ethically. We will see more and more of these products enter the market as it's what homeowners want: To create homes that don't cost the earth.
If you would like more information on designing and creating your dream bathroom, contact me here it will be my pleasure to help you.
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