Old Hollywood POWER ROOM Inspirations from ALL ABOUT EVE
As a Designer, there is SO much to love about the film set designs during the “Golden Age” of Hollywood (from the 1920’s to 1950’s) that you often have to watch them in slow-mo to really absorb the intricate work and brilliance that went into each film. One of my all time favourite films is All About Eve (1950), an American classic drama starring the beautiful legends Bette Davis (at her VERY best), Anne Baxter, George Sanders (another FAVE of mine) and a fresh-faced Marilyn Monroe (in a small but brilliant role that comes off so fresh & powerfully).
What I love about this iconic film is that it’s all about women being beautiful, glamorous, powerful, in-control (and yes, even a little crazy!) and that is exactly what I see in the powder room designed by Ric Owens Planning and Design that was inspired by All About Eve. I love Owens’ concept of an old-meets-new glitzy powder room that is NOT afraid to make a glamourous and bold statement. What gives it an unexpected twist is the sink that is placed in the middle of the room. (Yes — it is possible!) It just shows us that we are powerful and in control of our own design fates. I can just picture Bette Davis standing over the sink with her hands clutching both sides and her eyes piercing into the mirror in front of her, DARING the image to be anything less than spectacular. LOL
I know what you’re thinking… how can you put a sink in the middle of the floor? Don’t you need a mirror or a wall or something; at least for practicality? Well, the mirror is positioned on the wall facing the sink… in fact that the mirror takes up the entire wall and gives the space an elegant, theatrical touch. Notice the beautiful detailing on the mirror (all with hidden storage space). Chic AND practical… don’t be afraid to be daring, unexpected, and break the mould.
Another design element to think about to achieve an All About Eve-style powder room is to make it look similar to a dressing room of a Golden Age Theater Star. Combine both elements together (dressing room meets powder room/ bathroom). What this means is that the boudoir should be a main element to the space. I love the look of a glass boudoir (Lady Gaga would approve) pair with a stool or a bench made with a soft, luxurious fabric that looks expensive and make sure to add LOTS of mirrors, gilding and silk draperies.
For colours, I would recommend white, black, deep reds, gold, pinks and lots of metallic. A strict black-and-white room would also be a chic choice and very “old Hollywood”. Tip: When choosing colours and design, you can even think of your space as a set design for a black-and-white film.
For sexy powder room furniture, pick classic silhouettes that give off a contemporary feel. I love the look of a crystal chandelier in the bathroom, but be sure to use an oversized chandelier (or you can group many smaller chandeliers in clusters). Everything should be very elegant and over-the-top because you want to depict the pageantry element of Hollywood.
For the energy of the space, think Art Deco meets modern flare. You want to design a bathroom that is reminiscent of a dressing room fit for a Broadway star without losing the function and practicality of a powder room. Bring in some global touches to show what a smart, sexy and worldly person you are… I recommend incorporating eclectic pieces from world travels like ethnic patterns, natural materials or even a splash of animal print.
Don’t forget to add FRESH flowers into the space (because any famous Broadway star would have flowers in her powder room…White Casablanca Lilies or all white Parrot Tulips are a beautiful choice). Finally, add in some sleek black tiles and hand hammered and polished hardware fixtures to finish off the room. Don’t forget to bring your Joie de vivre