apron front sinks in the bathroom: one trend, two ways
if there’s one thing that’s undeniable, it’s that apron front sinks are having a huge moment in the bathroom space right now. there’s not much more than I enjoy more than shaking up the traditional with a completely unexpected element, and that is exactly what’s going on here. farmhouse sink in the kitchen? timeless, but it’s been done. farmhouse sink in the bathroom? fresh, fun, and oh so functional. brand new.
a few years ago, farmhouse sinks were literally the hottest thing on the kitchen market, but plateaued in popularity. I couldn’t be happier that they’re coming back with a vengeance in the kitchen, and taking bathrooms along with it. the proof is in the pudding, and that classic cast iron farmhouse sink from kohler that we all know and love is the single best selling sink in the entire world. as a universe, at least we can decide on what sink we like best. naturally we should put it in the bathroom, too.
before I go too much deeper, I get asked a lot about the purpose of apron-front sinks. are they more functional? do they provide more basin room? is there anything exceptional about them asides from their look?
in short, no to all the aforementioned. the main purpose of an apron-front is for the look of the protruded apron through the cabinetry. these sinks do generally have significant volumetric capacity and a large basin area, but it is almost standard for sinks nowadays to provide equal or more room in under-mount or drop-in configurations. in the kitchen, you will find that an apron-front has nearly identical functional capabilities in an under-mount, but those don’t typically require the special cabinetry accommodations that an apron front does.
as for the bathroom however, it’s a much larger change to go from a standard under-mount to an apron front. it’s also a pretty big commitment, as it dictates a large part of your cabinetry design, and you can’t retrofit a regular undermount if you decide to swap it out later on.
however, in the bathroom, an apron-front sink would be absolutely functional and fantastic if you fill up the basin often for shaving, face washing, etc., or just like a deeper basin, which I find many do. these types of deeper sinks also virtually eliminate the potential for splashback, which I also find is a huge deterrent for many clients when choosing both their sink and faucet.
both unfortunately and fortunately, farmhouse sinks have also gotten a rap for being just that: farmhouse (style). that couldn’t be further from the truth, so we’ve compiled two inspiration boards that utilize some of our favorite farmhouse sinks to show that it can be used in both a contemporary style, as well as a more rustic interior setting, so you can get both the look and the functionality that you want.
1 | led pendant: unlike the standard “bulb pendants” that are everywhere right now, this pendant is etched on the inside of the glass sphere for perfect light dispersion, and it is led so it will live basically forever. best of all, it’s color tunable, so you can adjust your lighting to reflect your best self.
2 | robern profiles 24” x 40” matte black medicine cabinet: if you’re in the market for a medicine cabinet or mirror and haven’t looked at robern yet, you’re seriously missing out. this particular style has a stunning brushed black aluminum frame and is virtually impossible to tell it apart from a decorative wall mirror. it even has integrated usb ports and outlets. best of all, robern is a completely american made company and their products are made completely from anodized aluminum. that’s something we can definitely get behind.
3 | glass mosaic: I’ve always had a penchant for glass tile, but it’s especially stunning with a gilded/foiled back that adds extra dimension. this emerald color is so gorgeous against the pearl concrete sink and rose gold finishes.
4 | towel ring: the epitome of contemporary chic, a pure design in a stunning yet understated rose gold finish.
5 | faucet: the purist collection from kohler is one of my all time favorites in its understated simplicity. the rose gold finish is also pvd, meaning it will never patina, scratch, tarnish, etc., and will remain looking like new forever.
6 | quartz: if you’re an avid delight of design reader, it’ll come as no surprise that I’m a huge cambria quartz proponent for so many reasons. you can read me fangirl about it here. anyways, the bentley cambria is stunning, contemporary, and totally worth looking into.
7 | cabinetry: plain and fancy cabinetry is our new cabinetry obsession. they can create virtually any colored finish your heart desires and they have seemingly endless door styles. visit their website for more information!
8 | hive hex mosaic: speaking of comebacks, the quintessential 50’s white porcelain hive mosaic is hotter than ever.
9 | cabinet pulls: a standard bar pull in rose gold is uber minimalist chic. the kohler rose gold is soft yet trendy enough to spruce up nearly any vanity color - especially on this to die for emerald color.
10 | concrete sink: native trails is also a favorite brand of mine, and this apron front sink in pearl nativestone - their proprietary material of concrete mixed with jute fibers for extra strength - is the perfect example why. rest assured that these sinks won’t chip or stain due to the pre-applied nano sealant, either.
1 | pendants: another fixture that’s about to have a huge moment is bundled pendants (they could - and might - have a trend watch of their own!), like one showcased here. an exceptionally fun take on a traditionally rustic design.
2 | medicine cabinet: I have a hard time choosing anything but robern for medicine cabinets (see above), as they’re literally the best around and have customer service that’s as good as the product. quality cabinets are nearly impossible to find with a frame, so this is my absolute go-to.
3 | slate hex mosaic: what’s more rustic than rust? a slate hex mosaic is extremely “now” but with a quintessential “farmhouse” material. perfect for an all-wall backsplash.
4 | hand towel bar: there are so many oil-rubbed bronzes and antiqued bronzes and vintage bronzes on the market that it’s nearly impossible to differentiate between them all. having seen most of them, kohler’s is my favorite by far, as it has the perfect amount of copper highlights and a dark bronze base, with a subtle touch of brushing to it, but is far from overdone. the shape of the bancroft towel bars in particular are also a favorite, as they have more of a squared-off edge instead of the standard round, so towels don’t slide off them. 10/10 highly recommend.
5 | faucet: also the kohler bancroft; this is truly a transitional farmhouse style faucet. in the kohler oil rubbed bronze, it fits in perfectly with the copper apron sink and slate tiles. the chunky lever handles are also amazing to use and aren’t too feminine, but aren’t overly masculine, either.
6 | sink: question - what’s more rustic than a hand-hammered apron front copper sink? I’ll wait.
7 | granite: this. granite. oh my god, this granite. brushed finishes hands down my favorite, so naturally I want my entire home made of this. the “fantasy black satin” picks up copper tones with deep blues, grays, blacks, and the rust that couldn’t go more perfectly with this color palette.
8 | cabinetry: plain and fancy cabinetry is at it again with a custom-gray tone. I was 100% serious when I said the finish colors were literally endless.
9 | cabinet pulls: as for another item that’s having a huge moment right now, if you haven’t seen leather pulls and handles with rivet fasteners, you’re living under an interior design rock! these somehow manage to turn any vanity into a seemingly hand-crafted artisan specialty.
10 | daltile metal fusion porcelain tile in bronzed copper: so porcelain’s great…in theory. but I am extremely particular about the porcelains I recommend. this one has the perfect tones, as it’s a rust-ish texture with metal tones, but I mostly love it because it’s not trying to appear as it’s something it’s not. printed porcelain can appear extremely pixelated - one of my BIGGEST pet peeves, but this is printed at a super high dpi, which I appreciate. this porcelain’s a go.
take a look at some of our other favorite picks for apron sinks in the bathroom, then let us know what you think! would you go for it?
x - mk