Forward Thinking


Designer Ann Sage transforms a traditional Tudor bathroom into a modern charmer

The upper arched bathtub wall is covered in Sand Dune by Fireclay while the lower is Adobe. The fixtures are by Rejuvenation. Photos by Monica Wang.

It’s fair to say that designer Anne Sage’s passion for design began from a very early age. “I’ve been around design my whole life; my first renovation project was when I was ten years old and helped my mother tile our powder room! Today I approach design with the goal of enhancing quality of life for my clients through both beauty and function, and I love how each project takes on a life of its own based upon the history of the house and its environs, the personality of my clients and the unique needs of the situation.” She had this philosophy top of mind when renovating the sole bathroom inside a 1923 Tudor-style home that still had many original details. “It’s not a large bathroom—just 8′ by 8’—but we knew we could make it much better and a more attractive use of the space than was being done!”

Fixture by Rejuvenation. Photos by Monica Wang.

With the goal of maintaining some of the existing character while enhancing the overall functionality and style, Sage began the overhaul by replacing the old vanity with a new floating double-sink vanity from BOXI by Semihandmade (in the Oat slab style) that allowed for more storage space and changed the visual lines of the wall. “I love the way a floating vanity frees up floor space to not only make the room seem bigger but also to make the bathroom easier to clean,” she notes. Next they updated lighting throughout. “Three sconces from Rejuvenation over the mirror make tasks such as brushing teeth and applying makeup much easier (they’re also such an aesthetic statement and are inspired by lighting from the same era that the home was built),” says Sage. “We also added a fourth sconce to the nook where the toilet is placed; there was previously no lighting in that alcove at all, so it’s a huge improvement to be able to see in there!”

The arched ceiling allows for privacy while creating a design moment for the globe light from Rejuvenation. Photos by Monica Wang.

By far one of the most charming details that placates both the historic attributes and modern day trends is the arched ceiling details over the toilet and bathtub. “When I was researching bathrooms from the era that the home was built, I learned that arched motifs like the ones in this space were quite common,” she notes. “We decided that incorporating the arches into the new design was the perfect way to pay homage to the era! And in fact, Michael Clarke, the founder of Pulled (who provided and coordinated all the labor on this job) pointed out that the shape of the arches could be made even stronger by rebuilding the arch over the shower.”

The Snow White grout color by Polyblend pulls the tiles together. Photos by Monica Wang.

“And then, of course, tiling those arches was a huge feat. It was such a pleasure to see the tile design in my mind come to life before my eyes,” says Sage. “I was drawn right away to the palette of the Fireclay tile we chose—it pays homage to the home’s art deco roots while also feeling current—but choosing the size and layout of the tile definitely required more thought!”