Size isn’t everything
reading time: 5 minutes
For small bathrooms, interior design has to create functional, convenient solutions. Angeletti Ruzza use every centimetre of space with compact, precisely designed solutions, while Francesco Lucchese goes for free, independent forms, often starting from the washbasin.
The bathroom is the room that has evolved the most, not only in the home, but also in public and HoReCa spaces. Its transformations have involved not only its finishes and furnishings, but above all the way the space itself is conceived. In this evolution, ceramic materials have acquired new forms and fresh developments can be expected. We ask designers who have been designing bathrooms for years to tell us about the imminent scenarios.
“Even the smallest spaces can be exploited down to the last centimetre with precise, intelligent interior design solutions. Taps become a furnishing feature that adds light and distinction to the room, and the ‘skin’ of coverings used offers the opportunity for sensory and design experimentation. Ceramics, in the form of both sanitary fixtures and coverings, have proven their worth as versatile, safe materials: not only hygienic and functional, but expressive and creative too. Nowadays, there is a great demand for contact with ‘nature’, with an ‘outdoors’ that is not man-made. In the future, ceramics may also acquire new functions that exploit their ability to transmit heat.
The bathroom has become a living-space within the home, a place where people can have fun, relax, read and think. It’s therefore gained in softness, with more fabrics or fabric effects: decorated and colourful, more feminine and cosier, with a mood that expresses the tastes and personality of its users. No longer a room used to show off social status, the bathroom now responds to our need for our intimacy and gentleness, and a place where we can be happy.”
“In the last ten years, I’ve noticed that three areas of the bathroom have tended to develop along different lines: the washbasin with free, independent form; the bidet and toilet sometimes separate from the rest for greater privacy; and iconic bathtubs and showers with a sculpted look. At the same time, products of different types have been developed to meet the needs of large and small interiors. My You&Me collection, designed for Hatria in 2002, focused on the concept of equipping a bathroom within one square metre of space. Its design springs from a study of ergonomics within this room, which led me to place the sanitary fixtures on a diagonal axis, to optimise the use of space. The products’ dimensions created two categories of spaces, sometimes in association and sometimes strongly differentiated. But the washbasin area plays the primary role in setting the bathroom’s style!
Porcelain stoneware offers a vision of nature which is becoming more and more “real”, since thanks to the state-of-the-art production process, it can reproduce marbles, stones and woods with great accuracy, and protect the environment. But empty stylistic gestures must be avoided. Today, the diversified application of material in new contexts offers fresh aesthetic challenges, which must be faced with a renewed strategic vision and a mindset suited to the world of design.”