Saturday, January 30, 2016

Ofuro and Slab

So there is a Japanese bath in our plan. Basically this means a wet room configuration where a shower and bath are placed next to each other in a tiled area so you can shower before you get in the tub to soak. Japanese bathrooms are super nice. We have nothing like it in North America; the Japanese companies are light years ahead in terms of bathroom products. Here's an example from a Japanese Toto catalogue.

When we went shopping for fixtures, Terry at Boone Plumbing put us onto this system called Maax Modulr. It's a similar idea, basically a shower floor and tub that lock together. Here's a picture of the Modulr wet room layout.

So with this setup you can make something very similar to the Japanese system baths and its pretty affordable. I would have liked a tiled floor with a linear drain but this option just had several advantages. Easy to install, affordable, all in one system with glass doors to match. I may try to make a thin wooden slat "floor" to lay over the shower pan, giving it a more earthy and custom look.

Outside of the bath is a sink area and separate water closet (toilet room).
Again this is a typical Japanese thing. We wanted this area to have a modern yet earthy vibe so one idea we had was to use a live edge wood slab for the countertop in this area. One day while we were browsing a home renovation store in Gatineau my wife pointed out these huge live edge Acacia slabs. Like, a single piece of wood literally the size of a dining room table, completely finished, boxed up, shrink wrapped and ready to take home and mount on legs (which they also had for sale). The whole affair would set you back less than a grand. Considering that tables of this sort go for a couple grand easily, and are almost always laminated from several boards, to get a table size slab from a single solid piece of wood for less than a grand is pretty crazy. We went back once or twice more and kept eyeing these slabs. It turns out they stocked some 24" deep slabs also, with a live edge on one side, perfect for a desk or countertop. I started thinking we had better jump on this soon so we went back today. The big table slabs were all gone but there were a couple of the counter slabs left. We looked at them both and liked the color on this piece so we scooped it up, loaded it in the back of the SUV and drove home with poor Chiyo scrunched in the front passenger seat, which was pushed as far forward as it could go. Not comfortable. But we have our slab! Check out this beauty.

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