Black Forest Decor

The rustic bathroom

This Old Outhouse - Not Our Idea of a Rustic Bathroom!

When we're talking about the rustic bathroom, most of us don't want to revert to the old outhouse... especially in the late fall, winter and early spring! Here's a collection of privys from Michigan's Upper Peninsula with accompanying hilarious song!

From primitive to luxurious - the choice is yours!

A true friend should be like a privy, open in necessity. Proverb

Accentuate the truly rustic or go for a touch of elegance when you are decorating a bathroom with rustic overtones.

We'll talk about both.

First - the modern conveniences

As romantic and rustic as an outdoor shower or a cute little biffy sounds, most of us will opt for indoor plumbing, hot and cold running water, and a more traditional bathroom. But there's lots you can do to create charming country bathrooms that feel connected to nature.

For example, a rustic bathroom will likely have wood or warm-colored walls and tile, stone, or wood floors. The new laminates are a good looking option but you have to be sure the laminate you choose will withstand the dampness of a bathroom and occasional spills.

We've had a slate look laminate in our cabin's rustic bathroom for five years and it's held up well - but we're also very careful about mopping up any water quickly.

Elements in the rustic bathroom can include

If you like solid color towels, go for rich burgundy, forest green, or chocolate brown. If you prefer patterns you can get wildlife, nature, moose, bear, and fish towels and accessories - sometimes with matching wallpaper borders.

Use wicker or wire baskets to keep your sponges, shampoos, and cremes handy near the tub or shower. Have a basket for magazines.

When planning your lighting, don't forget a lodge style night light so it's easy to find your way to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

Outhouse (privy, biffy)

Talking about a rustic bathroom... it doesn't get much more rustic than an outhouse!

You may have an outhouse at your retreat by choice or by necessity. Some considerations are to have it close enough to allow easy access, but far enough to minimize any odors. An outhouse can be a health risk - it must be a suitable distance away from any freshwater well or the waterfront to minimize risk of contamination and disease.

rustic bathroom

Can an outhouse make a design statement? Of course! Starting with the door - the classic has a small crescent moon-shaped hole for ventilation and to allow a bit of light - you can have a custom designed door cut-out, hang a wreath, or have pots of flowers or an arbor framing the entrance.

Inside, have some fun decorating. The cabin we spent many years at while our children were growing up had a two-hole outhouse complete with a welcome mat, a chandelier, key to the city, and a variety of framed prints.

One lady told me about an outhouse her family owned that had a beautiful, ornate screen door, and that contained a set of the Encyclopedia Britannica. You'd need a screen door if you planned to stay in an outhouse long enough to read from the encyclopedia!

Outhouses must be movable when the pit fills up. Depending on the size of the pit and the amount of use, this can be fairly frequent, possibly even yearly.

Outhouses can be used year round but in very cold climates a heater (what we used to refer to as our "bun warmer") makes the visit much more enjoyable.

Do you have an interesting outhouse photo or outhouse story? Send it to us.

Outdoor showers

Imagine having a shower surrounded by trees or vines, wild flowers, and singing birds. Sounds wonderful, doesn't it!

Your first consideration is plumbing. Some use the sun to warm their water, others have hot and cold water lines coming from the house. Having access to warm water outdoors makes other things possible such as washing off kids and pets when they've spent a day outdoors. You will need good runoff so water doesn't seep into your dwelling.

Next to plumbing, privacy should be your top consideration when designing an outdoor shower - unless you are so far out in the wilderness that it just doesn't matter!

The outdoor showering season ends when overnight temperatures drop below freezing as your water lines will be at risk of freezing.

You may want lights for nighttime bathing and motion sensor lights to brighten pathways to your biffy.

Portable Toilets

For some, portable toilets offer options for use of the cabin or lodge in the "off" season. We drain the pipes to winterize our place, but still like to use in on occasion during the winter.

For others, running water and plumbing are not available.

In these situations, a portable toilet may be a good option.

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We love these!

Very classy, yet with a definite rustic bathroom feel!

Price Pfister T42-YP0U Ashfield Lavatory Single Control Lav, Rustic BronzePrice Pfister Ashfield Lavatory Single Control, Rustic Bronze

Copper Bear Sink
Copper Bear Sink

Black Forest Decor

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