Pixelated Pop in a Classic Bath
This bathroom could turn me into a morning person – the graphic and sunny space that
De Meza + Architecture + Interiors designers Gregg De Meza, Jennifer Gustafson and Michelle Nelson created for this year’s San Francisco Decorator Showcase.
The fresh colors and crisp cabinetry enticed. But it was the dance of a black-and-white pixelated mosaic that drew us in like fish to a sparkly lure. The whole-space tile design culminated in this witty shower-surround.
“We decided to take cues from the traditional elements and finishes of bathrooms of the home’s era (circa 1929) and turn them upside down to create a fresh and modern solution that works well today,” said the designers.
“Instead of trying to recreate the past by using black and white porcelain tile, we created a custom glass mosaic pattern that is truly unexpected. We started with the back wall of the shower, drawing inspiration from a photo of a French staircase that used tiled words on
“Taking that idea a step further, we envisioned a ticker tape effect repeating a message spelled out in pixelated type.”
“The floor and adjacent wall pattern was designed to create movement in the space and to also draw attention to the back wall of the shower,” said the designers. “Having the tile pixelate from diffuse white to concentrated black worked like a charm…”
“We brought our concept to Helena Jausas of Spec Ceramics, who represents Trend Tile USA,” said the designers.
“Working with Helena and Trend, our design was translated to the module size of the tile we selected. The tile was hand-set on 12” x 12” mesh sheets, each sheet individually numbered and a template was provided to the tile setter as a map of the room to use during installation. J & A Stone & Tile did an amazing job expertly setting this really complicated pattern.”
“We wanted to create a design that could prove that modern design can live easily within a traditional envelope,” said the team. The original cabinetry was maintained and enlivened with a fresh coat of white (Benjamin Moore: Superwhite I-02). New polished-nickel hardware coordinates with fixtures that have a traditional feel, but in a streamlined,
The new vanity carries the detail of the original cabinetry, but with contemporary interior drawers and floating installation.
A smart solution is the medicine/display cabinet.
“The original, small medicine cabinet was replaced with a larger custom one that has a sliding mirror that floats over the shelves so that it’s possible to hide away clutter and while leaving open space for displaying decorative objects,” said the design team.
The room’s color palette blends sizzle and respite. “Wanting to offset the high contrast of the black and white glass tile, we found a soothing gray-blue (Benjamin Moore: Smoke 2122-40) to help give the eye a place to rest.”
“The pop of citrine (Benjamin Moore: Lemon Grove 363) gives a bit of visual interest in small doses to add life to the space,” said the designers. It delivers a joyful surprise when you pull out the cabinet drawers.
If you lived here, by the time you scrubbed and primped each morning, you’d have to be in a good mood. We couldn’t stop smiling.
Want to see the kind of transformation a focused team can bring about in six weeks? Check out these Before shots:
Designers Gregg De Meza, Jennifer Gustafson and Michelle Nelson can be reached through De Meza + Architecture + Interiors, in San Francisco, CA.