Bathroom - The balance of Black & White

The Yin yang theory is a kind of logic, which views things in relation to its whole. The theory is based on two basic components: yin and yang in our case black and white and large and small. They combine in a complementary manner and form a balance and a certain type of energy and calm - perfect the parents retreat or master bathroom. Connecting the inside with the outside, a private bathing space.

CMDA - Designer of the Year 2017 
KBDi - NSW Small Bathroom of the Year 2017
HIA - NSW Bathroom Design of the Year 2017 

3D CAD IMAGE - Prior to Construction

Project Location: Sydney, Australia
Area: 7.6m2
Brief: The clients were adamant about their needs, the main one was to take the small cramped space with a large corner spa and transform it into a sophisticated, modern space that pushed the boundaries of a conventual bathing space, oh and by the way…. we have no budget!

  • Sophisticated and modern design,
  • Black & White colour palette but must ooze warmth,
  • Strong use of Marble or Stone,
  • Quality fixtures – without compromise!
  • Heating and good task and ambient lighting,
  • Increase the natural light,
  • Niches required for storage,
  • Large open separate shower,
  • Small amount of storage,
  • Connection to outdoor and
  • Client had a clear idea of products they wanted incorporated.

  • Very small space;
  • Small window – lacking natural light
  • Privacy issue due to being an elevated lot (from neighbouring property);
  • Clients expectation - Big Brief!
  • Black & White palette - challenging at the best of times especially since brief required calming and warm environment.
Project Description: The size of the existing space and the lack of natural lighting was the greatest challenge.
Modern bathrooms of today have to tick alot of boxes. To realise the clients brief, the space had to transform. Luckily the budget could cater to this transformation.

From the outset it was clear the window had to increase in size.  With ample garden bed on the other side of the bathroom wall (side walkway to backyard) a full height and full width window /metal box extrusion was proposed which cantilevered out into the disused garden. This made the space feel twice as large with additional floor space and brought the outdoors in, including an enormous amount of natural light! 

As the site was elevated above the neighbors’ block privacy was paramount, especially since increasing the size of the window!  To ensure privacy was maintained and coincidentally to make the outside connect internally, privacy screens were designed with an organic motif and manufactured with Core10 steel.  The rust that developed added the warmth naturally to the space within. 

Subsequently the layout was tackled. The client wanted a large separate shower, a freestanding bath and a vanity that was easy to access.  Plus the layout had to have storage for everyday bathing accessories. With the increased floor space this still small area was all that was needed to fit all the requirements of the brief in.  The bath was positioned centrally in the window and on the actual cantilever.  This enabled a large shower and toilet to be realized on the opposite wall.  It also meant that the vanity could sit between the two areas with a large round mirror above, and be the feature upon entering the bathing space.  In order to add storage the designer built up the vanity wall to allow for discreet pullout drawers with Blum tip on mechanisms and niches to be cleverly concealed behind.  It also kept the space clutter free and inline with the overall feel of a modern, chic space.

The fittings specified are the Kos Morphing range by European brand Zucchetti. They were the clients preferred product.  Not only were they quality fittings, they also complemented the black and white theme perfectly.
To compliment this theme further, black marble slabs were laid to the floor and up 1200mm high around the walls.  Contrasting this, white Corian® was clad to the remaining walls above.  This gave the space a minimal sleek foundation; grout free to soften the edges.  Mutina mosaic tiles were added to define the vanity area centrally.  They added some texture and depth to the overall feel. 

All fittings specified are quality products.  Underfloor heating and heated towel rails were installed. Lighting also plays a big part of any project but no more than here.  With the understanding that downlights would make the large glass window a mirror at night, the use of vertical LEDs either side of the vanity were incorporated.  Not only to they cast light outwards, they also light the niches and pullout drawers. Uplight spikes in the outdoor garden are on a night sensor, and act as a nightlight internally.

The final result  of this bathroom is one of many contrasts, the black and white theme, the oversized slab marble sheets and the Corian wall paneling contrast against the mini mosaic tiles to a striking effect but the biggest contrast of all is that of our thoughts; one would always presume that a black and white space would not have a real sense of calm or serenity but throw in the ingenious idea to extrude a glass & steel box into a garden space with a full height glass window and you have a space that is just that, calm and surprisingly this small bathroom feels that much larger. The light levels and connection to the outdoors gives you exactly what a private and personally indulgent space should offer you and that is personal calm, tranquility and private wellness


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