Of all the innovative ideas to appear in decorative bathroom hardware, and bathroom sinks, the copper vessel sink stands alone in its ability to charm the eye and complement both traditional and minimalist decor. Copper has many fans that have come to appreciate the natural patina that it develops over the years, adding a rich and rustic accent to the room in which it is placed.
The use of copper for the wash basin is not a brand new concept. Before the modern manufacture of vitreous china sinks, copper was one of the better choices available and was mined for use in many objects, not just the bathroom and kitchen where we so often see it today. A modern copper vessel sink integrates the traditional with the contemporary.
Copper Sink Choices and Practicality
Today, copper sinks can be found in the kitchen, where a popular sink is the single large basin farmhouse sink, as well as in bar areas, where round and square hammered copper vessel sinks dominate, and of course in the bathroom. Smaller styles can even work great in places when a small bathroom sink is needed.
Accustomed to seeing the impenetrable surfaces of vitreous china sinks, one may question how practical a copper sink is for even a modest amount of regular use, let alone in an area that is visited several times a day. The answer is simple: it’s virtually maintenance free. Copper sinks do not require any chemical cleaners. Acidic substances should also be kept away from the copper vessel bathroom sink.
These sinks can be wiped down with a gentle fabric cloth to prevent hard water build-up and do not need anything else. Should any substance cause the copper to develop a shine, a mild soap can be used to remove that substance before allowing it to patina once again.
Design With Copper Vessel Sinks
The personal choice to use a copper vessel sink, whether it is hammered copper, or a copper mosaic vessel sink filled with small glass tiles in various patterns, stems from a preference for the rich patina that becomes altered by the elements to which it is exposed.
This style typically demands a more rustic approach to the design of a bathroom where it will be used. The rich patina will add depth and character to warm shades of just about any style and combination.
If you prefer copper bathroom sinks that will not change, choose a glass vessel bowl with a copper pattern underneath the glass. These sinks provide a surface that can withstand normal cleaning, and protect the one of a kind pattern created beneath the surface. Using a glass sink with a permanent pattern may allow the use of copper in a more contemporary design as well.
Copper Vessel Installation
A copper vessel bathroom sink will not present any significant challenges to installation if the proper steps are taken in advance. These sinks can even be used with a small corner bathroom vanity. Preparation of the sink area before installation is a good idea. The drain size for a vessel will be standard, as it has to conform to building code, but be sure to order it from the manufacturer if possible. In most cases you should have plenty of space for the plumbing (unless you are installing a bathroom pedestal sink).
The connection to the drain underneath is standard for a vessel sink, but the vessel sink will not prevent water from escaping the bowl and creating a mess on the counter. Water does escape and drip over the sides, creating a ring of moisture where the bowl meets the sink. Be sure the counter top your copper vessel sink sits on is waterproof and that the line where it meets the sink is sealed.
Finally, have you chosen your faucets? The faucet for a vessel sink needs to clear the vessel by enough distance that it does not look cramped, but not so much that it creates an unnecessary mess at normal water pressure. To match the warmth of a copper vessel sink, choose an antique brass or oil rubbed bronze faucet, and you will probably find yourself lingering a little longer at the bathroom sink.