A Transcendent Bathroom in Ojai

A seamless addition allowed for this master bath, imagined as a ca. 1930 upgrade.

“This is the last piece in our collection,” the film-director owner remembers thinking when the family first toured the house. For years they had been collecting Monterey, Stickley, and Arts & Crafts furniture; American pottery and Grueby tiles; and native art including Navajo rugs. The aging bungalow, built during the 1910s, was designed by famed architect Myron Hunt. The client was the Midwest industrialist Edward Drummond Libbey (Libbey Glass Co.), who used the place as a hunting lodge. Built of redwood, with board-and-batten construction inside and out, it boasts a front door and beams embellished with Chumash Indian motifs, a massive stone fireplace, and many original fixtures.

The room once known as Mrs. Libbey’s suite is now the master suite. With approval from the Ojai Historical Commission, the owners reconfigured the space, adding about 500 square feet to accommodate this bathroom, which was built with period amenities.

The bathroom offers one of the best views from the house, especially for someone soaking in the tub.

William Wright

The bathroom offers one of the best views from the house, especially for someone soaking in the re-enameled tub—discovered in the backyard, being used as a horse trough.

The capacious room has the feeling of bedroom converted to a bathroom in the prewar era. Vintage bits of furniture contribute to the layered, evolved sensibility.

The capacious room has the feeling of bedroom converted to a bathroom in the prewar era.

William Wright

With slim legs, exposed plumbing, and a streamlined marble top, the double sink seems to float in the room, allowing full view of the floor and wall.

The hexagonal mosaic tile with grey grout is both practical and evocative of the period; it’s softened and enhanced with a green border and an Arts & Crafts rug.

Be Inspired…

Rejuvenation’s ‘Foster’ bathroom sconce.

This simple sconce with a clamshell glass shade is a classic design of the times. Rejuvenation’s ‘Foster’ bathroom sconce is shown in polished nickel with
a 4″ opal shade. rejuvenation.com

Bauer Pottery was resurrected in 1998 to reproduce Bauer’s California designs of the 1920s–1950s. The 18” ‘Rebekah Vase’ (also in 12″ and 22″ heights) is shown in Parrot Green. Vase #213, designed by Fred Johnson in 1934, is shown in Aqua; it’s 8″ tall. bauerpottery.com

Spanish Revival end table by Bushere & Son Iron Studio.

Bushere & Son Iron Studio handcrafts hardware, lighting, and tile and iron products. Reminiscent of work from the late 1920s, the Spanish Revival end table is made of wrought iron with contemporary California tiles by RTK Studios; 29″ tall and 19 ” square. bushereandson.com

Stickley’s ‘Prairie Sand’ rug.

Reminiscent of both Southwest indigenous work and the leaded-glass designs of Frank Lloyd Wright, Stickley’s ‘Prairie Sand’ rug is of Himalayan wool, hand-woven in Nepal; available in multiple sizes and as a runner. stickley.com 

Tags: bathroom OHJ December 2020

By Old House Journal

Founded in 1973, Old House Journal is the original authority when it comes to old-house restoration, traditional house styles, period kitchens, bath & kitchen restoration, DIY projects, gardens & landscaping, and more-- from Colonial and Victorian through Arts & Crafts and Mid-century Modern homes. 

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