Freestanding Bathtub Beauties

By Kate Riley April 9, 2014

In the fixer we’ll be working on soon I’m already thinking about upgrades in the bathroom. The home has plain Jane builder grade tubs and I’m considering a fresher  look with a freestanding tub. I’ve never installed one in any of our homes but I’ve stayed in a hotel rooms with a claw foot tub and the look has always been a favorite. 

I can’t deny the convenience of a sunken drop in tub with a tile or solid surface surround for placing soaps, candles, towels, etc, but my heart goes pitter patter for a freestanding version in the traditional claw foot and more modern shapes. Swoon!

There are architectural considerations with this choice, most require a floor mount tub filler which is pricier fixture and definite splurge, but I just love how a freestanding tub opens up a bathroom space and makes it feel less cramped.

freestanding tub housetohome

 freestanding tub muse interiors


freestanding tub black and white bathroom

house to home / muse interiors / mark williams design


There are many different options for freestanding tubs at several price points, some are angular, others curvy, but they’re undeniably elegant.

freestanding tub styleathome


white freestanding tub lonny

 style at home / lonny magazine


Clawfoot tubs have a more traditional feel feel when surrounded with modern finishes are a classic touch.

pale blue clawfoot tub


clawfoot with greek key trim

kelly scanlon designs / clay squared


These two tone modern cast iron versions are stunning, whether metallic or black.

cast iron two tone tub


cast iron metallic tub housebeautiful

lulu design / house beautiful


I have noticed that some freestanding tubs have holes for faucets on the tub’s frame …

freestanding tub veranda interiors

veranda interiors

Luxurious? Oh yes! Some might argue they’re not as practical as a drop in or sunken tub since there is no tub surround but it’s nothing a little side table won’t solve …

Who out there has installed one of these freestanding bathroom beauties in a build or remodel? Do you prefer them over their sunken sisters?  



  1. We are planning to install a free standing tub in our new home. As it is a cottage on 10acres we feel a claw foot tUb is more in keeping with the style while adding a bit of glamour. I plan to have one with a black exterior, white interior.

  2. I have a cast iron claw foot tub in my current home and I absolutely LOVE the look but because I’m short it’s difficult to get in and out of. The new place I’m moving into has what is called a “Soft Tub” with jets and I’m dying to try that one out.

  3. We are replacing a standard tub w/a clawfoot tub in my mother’s old house. The rooms will be a charcoal color with gray streaked marble floors. The tub itself will be Radiant Orchid on the outside with silver feet. That’s the plan, anyway. If we get tired of the color, we can always repaint it.

  4. I think the look is so pretty if it isn’t your primary bathroom, but I had one and I HATED it. I was so excited to redo my bathroom and get rid of it. You have to have shower curtains all the way around, they attack you while you’re trying to wash your hair….they’re good for baths but if you have to use them to shower, it sucks. My parents house had a freestanding tub downstairs and a shower upstairs, which was great!

  5. I love traditional clawfoot tubs! Being Half -Japanese I also love traditional Japanese bathroom in which you scrub-up, shower, getting fully cleansed( in an area seperated from the tub) before entering herbal batwaterin a traditional cypress soaker tub. My dream someday is to combine the traditional Japanese bathroom style w/the twist of a very traditional clawfoot tub as my soaker tub! I’ve sketched out many MANY a design of what that future bathroom will look like when I finally own my own home. Thanks for posting the soaker tubs! They’re ALL lovely, but my dream bathroom would somehow pull-of the fusion of two *very* different bathroom styles while retaining the *very*different traditional styles( I even dream of incorporating a Victorianperiodchandelier!)

    P.S. @Wendy- Albeit being half –Japanese Japanese, I’m a rather tall girl( very confusing as my mama is just shy of 5ft, lol!) If your castiron clawfoot tub no longer works for you, I would glady pick it up. =^_^*=I already know my “dream home”( first home of my own, being an U.S. Army wife, & before that a “military brat” , never having lived anywhere longer than a couple of yrs my entire life) will have to be a “fixer-upper” designed/ updated lovingly by much DIY,&scouting deep deals, salvage, etc. Which, don’t get me wrong, I’ve been happily looking fwd to the process for many years! Well, if you’d like to help me get started( I have a couple of treasured pieces in storage I’ve been saving for the big day I can FINALLY imprint myself on my own space after years of military housing), maybe I can be your excuse to go ahead &invest get that new tub you so desire!=^_^*=

  6. OOPS, sorry, I didn’t read your post clearly,* Wendy*. You are moving into a new place which has your dream tub already! Good for you,& congrats on your new home!=^_^*=
    I’ve heard one can find cast iron clawfoot tubs at Restores, salvage stores, etc. A great part of the fun for me will be the “hunting” process!!=^_^*=

  7. We installed a freestanding tub with separate walk-in shower when we renovated our home two years ago. I absolutely love it! Our tub filler is mounted to the deck and I find cleaning the tub super easy with the use of the handshower. I store and display towels, candles, etc. on my Newbury Rolling Bath Cart from Restoration Hardware (love!).

    I’ve also been dreaming of a similar version to this DIY bathtub shelf

  8. If you are planning the house for re-sale, I would stick to a traditional tub with the surround. Although the tubs in the pictures you posted are beautiful, they are in bathrooms that have been highly designed (not that yours won’t be highly designed) that have the space and the architecture for it. If you’re renovating a traditional smaller-sized house, I would stick with traditional tub. The resale will be better for you. There’s a house on the market here (standard size house for average people) that is not selling because the people took out the built in soaker tub and put a claw foot caddy-cornered in its space. It’s very awkward looking and doesn’t fit in with the rest of the style of the house. I’m sure with your great eye for style, yours won’t look awkward, but I’m just saying. I wouldn’t buy a house with a claw foot or free standing tub.

  9. I love the idea of the orchid colored bathtub – I may have to rethink my black one, as you say it can always be reprinted.
    I would disagree about choosing a standard tub for resale. Our house actually has no bathtub at all. While it was top of our list of renovations (ahead of a new kitchen even) it didn’t put us off buying the house. It did factor in the price we offered. However, I note a lot of people are removing tubs and putting in big shower spaces. Ok, rambling somewhat I know, but my point is if a house is well styled buyers will either like the style or not. If I had found a house with a claw foot bath tub it would have swung the deal. As it was a house without any tub at all won our favor due to the setting and layout. A tub is a small thing in the scheme of things.

  10. While I love the look, the practical side of me knows the floor(behind or under in some cases) wont get mopped nearly as well, or as often as this type of tub requires. Oh the dust bunnies!

  11. When we moved into our house, one of the bathrooms had a clawfoot tub crammed in a corner. It was very hard to clean under and impossible to clean behind and mold built up on the walls touching the tub. My kids also lost a couple of rubber ducks and hair ties under there. It had an overhead shower and the curtains were never sufficient to keep the water contained. Plus I didn’t like the cluttered look of the shower hardware hanging from the ceiling. But we did love the tub’s deep size. So when we remodeled, we removed the claw feet and had the tub sunk into a tiled surround. I opted not to put in a shower, but just have a shower hose attachment. The tiled surround also gives more space for bathing and decorative items. I wouldn’t advise anyone to put in a free-standing tub unless they had plenty of room to give ample margins around it . And you if you don’t like to get on your hands and knees to clean under a tub, don’t install a clawfoot. They are also extremely heavy, so you have to make sure your bathroom is structurally able to handle one (plus the water weight).

  12. young house love just put one in the master bath in their show house. it looks awesome.

  13. I absolutely love them all. Our home is over 150 years old. We remodeled the lower bathroom to a large shower only with no regrets after 3 years. We dont have a tub in either bathroom. Our spaces are too small for a claw foot. Our home is not at all appropriate for a family with children. Yard of hills ( no play area at all) and a blind curve with too fast of traffic. Whoever will buy this house when we are done will surley be without children. Thanks for sharing the lovely pics.

  14. Go for the pedestal tub over the claw foot. My grandmother told me one of the reasons people started taking them out of bathrooms is because they hated trying to clean under them! I didn’t even think of that so keep it in mind. Freestanding is the way to go, they take up less room, and even though I use mine all of the time a lot of people don’t so one that gives the appearance of a bigger bathroom might help! Have fun!

  15. My mom has a claw foot tub in her bathroom. It’s beautiful :-). A pain to clean under, but beautiful. She had the builders install a granite shelf between the tub & wall. That way, she still had somewhere to put things, but the shelf wasn’t visible if you just looked at the tub.

  16. I have a large jacuzzi type tub plus a separate shower and find the tub extremely hard to get in and out of and plus you slide around quite a bit (and I’m tall). It also takes forever to fill. I’m loving the first three tubs and even though claw foot tubs are great looking, I would hate to clean the floor underneath. I would definitely consider a regular tub unless you have the room for a separate shower for resale considerations as others have mentioned. Wish I could justify a remodel with a soaker tub! Have fun with yours! I would also recommend installing your faucet in the center not at the end. One end might be more comfortable than the other and I wouldn’t want a faucet next to my head!

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