SIDE BY SIDE • Interior architect Lisa Foster creates distinct looks for adjacent
bathrooms — even as they share a shower
bath written by jill connors • photography by john horner
Forces of nature often conspire to turn renovation plans into action, and so it was that her own pregnancy spurred interior architect Lisa Foster to tackle two second-floor bathrooms in her home. “I had lived here for eight years with no shower — only cast-iron tubs — but I couldn’t ake it anymore once I was pregnant,” says Foster, who lives in an 1895 Victorian house on the east side of Providence with her husband, artist Josh Yates, and their now 18-month-old daughter, Foster Yates. “I mean, my out-of-town relatives wouldn’t even stay in the house
when they came to visit,” says Foster with a laugh. “It was time.”
With plenty of experience designing spaces in historic structures —
Foster’s design business, Reconstructure, has done numerous interior renovations for vintage homes in Providence, as well as in Connecticut and on
design: reconstructure • contractor: neal estate
in the master bath (left), luxurious elements with a vintage sensibility
include the white-veined black marble tile, 1930s-style faucets and fittings,
and the wall-mounted chrome towel warmer. In the family bath (right), a
sense of spaciousness is achieved with the use of a glass wall to enclose the
shared shower. Thick walnut countertops, unadorned cabinetry, and white
floor tile give the room a contemporary aesthetic.
Martha’s Vineyard — Foster was sensitive to keeping the Victorian flavor
while maximizing the function.
The existing master and family baths, each measuring approximately
6 feet by 8 feet, abutted each other and shared an interior wall but had
no common openings. Both had old tubs, subpar plumbing, and uneven
floors, the result of joists being chopped over the years to make way for a
haphazard array of plumbing and heating pipes.
Reasoning that she didn’t have the space or the desire to have two
showers and two tubs in such proximity, Foster came up with an innovative
design solution: Position a tiled shower between the two bathrooms, so that