He really, really wanted a bath!

In my lifetime, I have purchased 3 lovely iron claw foot tubs, for 3 different homes.  All of them, ALL of them, were via the internet. 

 Each time, I looked locally for an old tub from various antique places in the area and also looked at new reproduction tubs, iron and acrylic.

 Once, thinking I’d be uber-green and reuse the darn thing, I called a tub repair guy to see what it would cost to refurbish the tub that was in the bathroom of the 1906 Craftsman house that we bought and remodeled for our office/abode (and is now in my closet – yes, it’s a very big closet – we put a piece of plywood over it and a pretty tablecloth and it holds shelves for my sweaters.  Why, you ask, do I still have an old claw foot tub in my closet?  More on that in a bit.).

Anyway, the repair guy was kind of a pill.  He said that it would cost $1200 to refurbish the tub and that we had to do all the heavy lifting and turning of it so he could get to all sides.  Well, for that price, I got a lovely tub shipped to me from Pennsylvania!  And the sides were painted hunter green to match the accent in the mosaic floor tiles, so there!

Isn't that purdy?

So, why is this tub still in my house?  We tried to find someone to take it.  No antiques stores were interested and I finally found a salvage yard that would take it but they required that we pay the drivers for their time.  It’s on the second floor and harder than heck to get down the stairs!  And, anyway, getting it downstairs now means that we’d just be using it as a planter in the front yard. Which I thought would be fun, but my stick-in-the-mud hubby is more interested in appearances.  I wanted to put our HOMETEC Architecture sign in the tub, wouldn’t that be attractive?  No?  …well, whatever…

Not trailer-trashy at all! http://www.junkmarketstyle.com

Look at this metal tub used as a planter, it’s gorgeous.  If you want to do this yourself, here are the directions:  http://www.doityourself.com/stry/how-to-turn-an-old-clawfoot-bathtub-into-a-new-outdoor-planter

This could be lovely, in the right location.

And this one is not what you’d expect, either!  http://www.ceramousa.com   Maybe I could make this bathtub-as-planter idea work!   This one isn’t full-size, though.

This is a LITTLE tacky http://www.chicagotribune.com

The first claw foot tub I bought was the smallest tub they make, 5 feet.  Which was the pretty close to the exact size of the space it was going in – there was about ½” on each side as wiggle room.  We put the tub on a car jack and eased it into the space.  Easier said than done since the cabinets were already in place…probably not the best planning job we’ve ever done.  The poor plumber was on his back trying to get maneuver between the tub and the wainscoting we had on the wall, leaving him about 1/2” in which to work.  Looked fantastic, though – the tub, not the plumber 😉

 We bought the most recent tub from www.vintagetubs.com  I recommend buying the entire package, faucet and drain and all, so you don’t end up missing pieces.  They can help you decide what you need – with those cool circular shower curtain rods that hang from the ceiling, too.  FYI, you’ll need about 2.5 shower curtains to go around the rod, unless you buy one specially made for claw foot tubs.

 We also bought items from this company:  http://www.plumbingsupply.com 

Huge warehouse and lots of good sales, too!

Another fantastic place in our area to look for tubs is Tubz, in Fremont, CA.  www.tubz.net  They’ve have an incredible showroom filled with tubs you can actually get in and test (waterless, of course…and shoeless, I might add). 

Soaking tubs are popular, too.  You shower off first, then sit in the tub to soak.   Here are two cool pics of those:



Ahhh...tempting, isn't it...

And tubs can get very expensive!  This one at www.VintageTubs.com costs about $5,000!!!  You better be takin’ a LOT of baths – which reminds me…don’t forget to upgrade your water heater!  A friend of mine said that they couldn’t fill the tub all the way until they replaced the water heater to a larger size.  A tankless one might be the best thing for you.  It heats up the water on demand rather than continually heating up water that you aren’t even using.  Here’s a copy of one…the cheapest one on the Lowe’s website.  Prices ranged all the way up to about $1500.  You have lots of options depending on your usage needs.  And its so much more energy efficient than keeping a huge tank of water heated up all the time.  Win-win!  You get to be ‘green’ AND clean!

Here is a site with 6 uses for an old bathtub:  http://blisstree.com/live/6-uses-for-an-old-bathtub/?utm_source=blisstree&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=b5hubs_migration

Any ideas of your own?  Send pictures!

Oh, don’t forget…please let a pro do the job!   www.diyfail.com     😉

TP holder is...where?!??!?!?