From Egyptian palaces to the top floors of Trump Tower, gold has featured prominently in the interiors of the most powerful people for over five thousand years. Seen as a symbol of wealth, power and divinity in numerous cultures, gold was reserved for the elite and places of worship until the nineteenth century, when a resurgence in the popularity of gold leaf led to it being used more widely in artwork, architecture and interior design.
The popularity of gold interiors continues today, however unless you had the money or the inclination to recreate the Palace of Versailles in your own home, it is more common for gold to accent and elevate a space, rather than eclipse or distract from its less luxurious features. Without contrast gold can lose its allure and becomes almost garish, which is where white comes into the equation. While gold brings warmth and depth to your design, white is cooling and creates a greater sense of space, which balances beautifully with gold to create an elegant and inviting environment.
Depending on the ratio of white to gold, this balance can be tipped in either direction, achieving a variety of tones to suit your individual preference. In this article, we will explore the many ways you can bring white and gold into your bathroom, from existing examples of white and gold bathrooms, the most effective way of using white and gold in your bathroom, to examples of fittings and accessories that lend themselves to this luxurious combination.
What Does A White and Gold Bathroom Look Like?
With such a visual topic on our hands, we thought it would be appropriate to provide you with some images of white and gold bathrooms to introduce you to the aesthetic, as well as to give context to our discussion. This section will showcase four white and gold bathroom designs, each one different from the next and accompanied by our summary of how white and gold are being used to achieve the unique tone of each space.
This first bathroom is a perfect example of how gold can be used to elevate functional objects within a predominantly white space. Pairing the gold mixer taps with the gold handles and gold feet of the white double washbasin unit enlivens this clean yet sanitised fixture, while the gold trim around the edges of the mirror and its white light switches brings some warmth to this brightening but otherwise cool centrepiece.
Other inclusions of gold, such as on the corner of the step leading up to the bath, the bracket for the shower screen and the covering for the shower drain, create cohesion without compromising on the crisp atmosphere that is being championed in this bathroom. The marble floor tiles are also particularly noteworthy, as while their colour is in keeping with the primarily white scheme, our association with marble as a luxury product similarly complements the gold elements of the design. It is for this reason that marble appears frequently in bathrooms that share this aesthetic.
Our second bathroom sits at the opposite end of the spectrum to our first. Large gold wall tiles enclose either side of the space, while smaller gold tiles blend with darker shades to create a captivating mosaic that borders the white framed window and accents the bottom of the white freestanding bath. Enhanced by the strip LED lights along the top of the mosaic and the inset shelving, the gold features culminate in a splendid glow such that bathers can bask in an opulent glow the moment they enter the room.
Whereas gold in our first example elevated the white space, the white fittings in this bathroom provide contrast for the splendour of their gold surroundings, the sleek uniformity shared by the toilet, bidet and basin unit magnifying the grandeur of the mosaic feature wall. Note the recurrence of the marble floor tiles, bridging the gap between the gold walls and the white wall mounted fixtures to unite the palette of the room.
This bathroom demonstrates white and gold working in perfect harmony to create an extravagant setting that still feels bright and fresh. The white and gold striped tiles that feature along the back wall, around the bath and behind the toilet bounce warm light into these intimate areas, enhancing the experience while they complete their bathroom rituals. This is balanced by the white and gold spotted tiles above the toilet and the double washbasin unit, which reflect cooler light onto these more clinical areas to assist with handwashing and cosmetic task. Assigning purpose to the colours in this manner is an effective way of distributing colour within the room, without compromising on the overall feeling of luxury in the bathroom.
Gold brassware and accessories adorn white fixtures and furniture as in the first image, however this bathroom designer has gone one step further to include white elements in the design of the gold fittings. White handles are paired with gold taps, white soap dispensers and tumblers sit inside gold trays and white shades top the gold light fixtures, these subtle touches highlighting the functional relationship between each object while strengthening the cohesion of the space.
Our final bathroom undoubtedly leans into the opulence of its gold design, however we have chosen to highlight it for its use of white and gold to elevate a centrepiece, which in this instance is the large hot tub at the back of the space. Four pillars stand in the corners of the hot tub and while their bases and cornices are plated in a deep gold, their white shafts draw our attention down to the white acrylic tub, celebrating this feature which might have otherwise been lost in the middle of so much gold.
Marble makes a return in this bathroom, however it has adopted more of a gold hue than in our first two images. More so than in any of our previous examples, this bathroom designer has embraced gold in their scheme, while the marble ensures that enough of a white tone is present that the white elements in the space to relate to the rest of the design.
When Does White and Gold Work Best?
While the previous section might have given you some inspiration for your own white and gold bathroom, we hope that it will have demonstrated how versatile this colour scheme can be. There is no right or wrong way to use white and gold in a space together, as long as your design remains consistent across the space, for example if your basin taps are gold, then your bath taps should be gold too. In this section, however, we are going to outline the best way to utilise the white and gold colour scheme in your bathroom, while providing you with some context to deepen your understanding of our opinion.
Whatever ratio of white and gold you choose for your space, it is crucial that gold is always the hero colour. Throughout history, mankind has had a reverent relationship with gold and we believe this respect should still be present in modern design. From the pharaohs of Ancient Egypt who likened gold to “the skin of the gods”, the European churches throughout the Middle Ages who used gold almost exclusively to adorn religious artefacts and images of heavenly Jerusalem, to the French monarchs of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, whose abundant use of gold for jewellery and in architecture shaped the fashions of the world, the importance of gold is rooted in worship and deserves to be featured centrally in your design.
That being said, gold should not be so prominent in your bathroom that your white fixtures begin to look like an afterthought. While gold is perfect for making a statement, such as gilding the frame of an ornate mirror or an elaborate light fitting, without white to temper the resplendent quality of gold it can become overpowering, creating an intimidating rather than inviting space or seeming incongruous with the rest of your home.
Ultimately, the white and gold colour scheme lends itself to larger rooms, which can accommodate large or even multiple gold centrepieces while having enough white space to create contrast, elevating the gold elements without dominating the design. Smaller spaces can also benefit from the scheme, provided they are appropriately lit such that any more modest gold elements are accentuated as they reflect their warm glow around the room.
White and Gold Bathroom Accessories
If the white and gold colour combination is appealing to you, but you are unsure how to begin introducing elements of the scheme into your bathroom, adding a few gold accessories to your white space can be a good place to start. Getting a grasp of how to balance your gold elements with your white in smaller areas should help you to develop enough confidence to commit to larger compositions within your bathroom and our website has numerous gold accessories that are ideal for making this first step towards a more luxurious bathroom design.
If you wanted to combine your white and gold scheme with elements of the traditional style bathroom, the Heritage Vintage Gold Pipe Shrouds shown below are an innovative way of showcasing your pipework while embellishing your white tub with a touch of splendour.
While these additions may seem too slight to make a difference within your space, adorning less prominent parts of your bathroom with accents of gold can achieve an attention to detail that makes your space altogether more inviting. Then once you are satisfied with your accessories, you can start to consider how gold can feature more centrally in your new design.
White and Gold Bathroom Fittings
When it comes to incorporating white and gold through your bathroom fittings, half of the work has already been done for you. With white being the standard finish for most baths, basins and shower trays, it allows you concentrate on finding the perfect gold brassware to complete your design scheme. As in the previous section, we have included some of the products available on the Sanctuary Bathrooms website to give you some inspiration.
Continuing with the traditional style, the elegant pipework of the Heritage Glastonbury Vintage Gold Bath Shower Mixer is augmented by its gold plating, while the white handles of the tapes, mixer valve and shower handset soften the functional parts of the product, reducing its ornate appearance and making it more accessible to bathers.
A similar design ethos seems to have inspired the Heritage Glastonbury Vintage Gold Shower Kit, as gold covers the length of the slide rail as well as wall mounted shower head, while white handles adorn the mixer valve and shower handset. An oversized panel behind the valves really elevates the product, providing a large mirrored surface that would bounce golden light around your shower enclosure.
It is important to have confidence in your bathroom fittings as, whereas accessories can embellish a room and continue a theme, bathers are constantly interacting with their fittings, often making them the focus of their bathroom experience. If you are content with your chosen fittings and have a clearer understanding your developing scheme, then it is time to truly embrace gold into your design.
White and Gold Bathroom Tiles, Walls and Surfaces
While most bathroom renovations tend to focus on updating the products within the space, when trying to incorporate a new colour scheme into your space, the background decorations should be at the forefront of your mind. As we discussed in our earlier section on different styles of white and gold bathrooms, the walls and floors are crucial to achieving cohesion across the design and can bridge the gap between your white and gold components.
Creating texture with your chosen walls and floors is vital to avoid the flatness that is sometimes present with plain white surfaces. As we have already noted, marble is excellent as creating consistency between white and gold elements in your space, however it is additionally perfect for lending some texture to your floors or countertops.
While our second example of a white and gold bathroom had a feature mosaic bordered by larger gold tiles, having a single wall of gold tiles is an ideal way of creating a gold statement piece without overwhelming your scheme. Covering the wall furthest from the entrance to your bathroom with gold tiles could also give the impression of a larger space, as in addition to its reflective quality, gold is exceptional at creating depth.
Things to Consider When Designing A White and Gold Bathroom
Until now our exploration of white and gold bathrooms has made exclusive reference to the pure white and yellow gold aesthetic that inspired this movement in bathroom design. It may then surprise you to hear that off-white colours and varying shades of gold are complimentary in same way. So as we reach the end of our article, let us leave you with some final thoughts on how to balance different shades of white and gold in your bathroom.
Perhaps the most popular alternative shade of gold is rose gold, which has been adopted by phone and computer manufacturers and is starting to appear more frequently as a finish on selected brands of brassware. More metallic in its colouring than yellow gold, it is best suited to neutral shades such as grey, off-white with green or off-white with wood tones.
Some designers believe that certain off-white colours provide better accompaniments to yellow gold than pure white, stating that the warmth from the gold and coolness from the white creates too severe a contrast. If you share this opinion, then perhaps an off-white warmed with red or brown would provide a more appropriate backdrop to your bathroom.
White and Gold Bathrooms Ideas, Photos and Images
White And Gold Bathroom Help & Designs
If you need help creating a white and gold bathroom space, or want to see how it will work in your space, contact our friendly team or book a 3D bathroom design appointment with our design team. They can advise on how to use gold and white to its full effect, as well as bringing your bathroom to life.