Form, yay! Function, boo!
June 16, 2008 3:40 PM   Subscribe

Our new place has a Clawfoot bathtub and Im having trouble adjusting to the clawfoot-lifestyle.

It looks pretty cool but Im finding that to be its only redeeming quality.

Do you have one? Where did you find a shower curtain wide enough for it? I cant seem to find a way to shower without soaking the bathroom floor.

How do you store your soap/bathy things? Do you know of a useful storage caddy that will work for this type of tub? Should I just get used to this thing being a pain in the neck?

Any tips/anecdotes are helpful. Thanks!
posted by ElmerFishpaw to Home & Garden (13 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
We have a rod attachment that comes up from the tub and goes all the way around, and we use three curtains so they overlap a little, with a "seam" in the front where you can climb in.

For storage, you have a bunch of options. Here are a few, Amazon has others. Search "tub caddies" or "clawfoot tub accessories." We actually have a little clamp-like thing that holds a soap dish and a round basket for a scrubbie like this.

Oh, and get a bathmat with a nonskid base. You don't want it sliding out from under you as you step up and into the tub.
posted by nkknkk at 3:49 PM on June 16, 2008

i have a clawfoot tub. i use two shower curtains—one for the front side, and one for the back. i have the kind with the suction cups that are meant to suction to the side of a walled tub but instead i suction the two curtains together at the ends (the end that meets at the faucet side is left suctioned. i use clear plastic ones to line the tub (curtain goes on the inside of the tub) so it doesn't get so claustrophobic (fortunately the side facing the wall actually faces a windowed wall) and then a pretty fabric curtain that falls on the outside of the tub on the front side.

as for caddies, i just got one of those standard metal ones that you hang over the showerhead only i hang it to the side, on the the shower ring over the tub. there are also ones that you can get that span the width of the tub like so. those are nice for when you are soaking in the tub.
posted by violetk at 3:55 PM on June 16, 2008

You can also get shower curtains with magnets at the bottom, which keep the properly stuck to the metal of the tub. And yeah, you need two curtains.
posted by autojack at 4:03 PM on June 16, 2008

If the tub is near a corner of the bathroom, you can install a corner shelf for bath products. Example 1, Example 2. I use three shower curtains with my tub. I have a ring like this and use three shower curtains: one across the back, and then one by the faucet end that comes around to the front, and one be the sloped back that comes around the front.
posted by sulaine at 4:27 PM on June 16, 2008

Lucky you!

The coolest thing ever about them is that they stay warm... forever and ever and ever. 2nd coolest is that they are HUGE (compared to 'standard' tubs these days).

Try Restoration Hardware in their Bathware (Tubs and/or Accessories) for some ideas on what you can do with your tub.
posted by Incognita at 4:31 PM on June 16, 2008 [1 favorite]

See, wall-mounted things and corner shelves are no good because you gotta fumble with the shower curtain to get to them, opening the curtain gets water on the floor and after you put the shampoo bottle back on the shelf, the wet shampoo bottle drips onto the floor. Suction cupped curtains is a great solution!
posted by ElmerFishpaw at 4:59 PM on June 16, 2008

While our tub's not technically "clawfoot", it's not attached to the wall at any point. Like nkknkk we have a metal ring that goes around on which to hang curtains, but ours is attached to the ceiling. We have two curtains that overlap at the front (by the faucet) and meet at the back.

For our accessories, we have a small rack that hangs on the edge of the tub (it doesn't span the tub) and we also put stuff on the sill of the window that is behind the tub.
posted by Lucinda at 5:04 PM on June 16, 2008

If you want to be cheap, and your bathroom is narrow enough, I imagine you could use four regular expandable shower curtain rods making something shaped like the character #.

For my clawfoot, I have the ceiling ring and use three regular shower curtains. For the shampoo and soap, I have both a shelf hanging from the shower head and a soap basket that mounts on the side of the tub. See a bunch of clawfoot tub accessorries here.
posted by ShooBoo at 5:08 PM on June 16, 2008

Oh, and that above link sells a super long shower curtain so you only need one curtain for the entire tub.
posted by ShooBoo at 5:12 PM on June 16, 2008

This reminds me of a vacation house my family often stayed in that was built around 1900 and never renovated. The bathtub was a clawfoot tub and remarkably short and narrow. It was the right size for little kids, but anyone over age 10 / 4 feet tall had to double up and even put their legs out over the side in order to lie down and wash their hair.
posted by bad grammar at 6:10 PM on June 16, 2008

I found that using strong magnets to hold the curtains to the tub dramatically improved the daily shower experience, but really with a clawfoot the biggest pleasure is an occasional long soak in a full tub.
posted by anadem at 6:36 PM on June 16, 2008

The trick to using a wall or corner mounted shelf is to make sure it is either on the short end of the tub, either by the faucet or the sloped back and that the shower curtains meet there. So you already have a slit to stick your hand through and do not have pull the curtain back. There is the least amount of water spray at either end, so if your shower curtains meet at that spot and you can reach out to a shelf you won't end up with water all over the place.
posted by sulaine at 7:40 PM on June 16, 2008

Caddies and soap dishes:

Giant clawfoot curtains:

I like that site, it seems like the best prices and the shipping is free. Lots of customer reviews on most items, too.
posted by Lou Stuells at 8:21 PM on June 16, 2008

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