Vanity Fair

I’m so attached to the pedestal sink in my bathroom that I was a bit surprised when a client I’m working with requested a wood vanity cabinet for his bathroom. Why would someone want a vanity?

The most obvious reason is that vanities provide storage that we all need, especially in small New York City apartments. And even the simplest wood vanity adds warmth to a bathroom finished with tile floors and walls and ceramic fixtures. It makes the space feel less utilitarian and more like a real furnished room. Now, after doing a bit of research, I’m entirely convinced.

Designers sometimes repurpose old night tables and chest of drawers to serve as vanities. Conversely, a lot of vanities are designed to look like antique furniture. I like this kind of “themed” vanity in Powder Rooms or Guest Bathrooms, which aren’t used every day. Can you imagine using this vanity everyday? I think it was once used by Napoleon.

VANITY TRADE WINDS EMPIRE

Here’s a vanity was made from an old Chinese trunk. It’s a dramatic, fantastic look that would look great in a discotheque.

VANITY COLE AND CO CHINESE CHEST

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One trend now is to use “vessel sinks,” bowl-shaped sinks that rest on top of a vanity like a washbasin. I like these but water often splashes over the edge of the bowl and it constantly needs to be wiped down. But vessel sinks have a very pretty look, like this low, round sink that’s set on a wood stand.

VANITY KOHLER BELL

Of course there are plenty of handsome, simple vanities. There’s the basic style with two wood doors below, the platonic ideal of vanity.

VANITY JAVA OAK RIDEFIELD

This simple one has three stacked drawers. It’s straddles the line perfectly between traditional and modern.

VANITY LOWES JAVA CREST

This pristine white wood vanity would look perfect in a country home.

VANITY RESTORATION CARTWRIGHT

For whatever reason, there are a lot of Shaker-style vanities. This one has an open rack below for towels.

VANITY SAGE HILL

This terribly elegant vanity was inspired by Federalist style furniture. But it’s clean, fine, ladylike lines alos have a luxurious 30’s modern kind of style. I can imagine a very spirited and beautiful young woman a la Katherine Hepburn preening in front of this piece. I guess that’s why they’re called vanities.

VANITY WATERWORKS DEMILUNE

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