Pink bathrooms: On the mid-century most endangered list?

save the pink bathrooms

A TOPIC LIKE “SAVE THE PINK BATHROOMS” deserves a snazzy homepage. So recently my fabulous designer Suzy Massey came up with a fresh look for the site, which has been up since July 2008. But even though it’s meant to put a smile on your face, Save The Pink Bathrooms has a goal that’s quite serious. I believe that vintage pink bathrooms are at a tipping point as mid-century homes continue change hands, often for the first time, in a major generational shift. The risk: While a new generation of owners may love the quirky spirit of their pink bathrooms, just as many may rip them out — only to regret it later.

How can this little campaign help?
After a full year of running the Save The Pink Bathrooms (STPB) site, I have testaments from many, many people who say that they changed their minds — and decided to keep their pink bathrooms — after learning just a little about them. That is: They found STPB when they were looking for ideas to get rid of the pink. They got sucked in, started reading more history, saw other homeowners’ bathrooms — and changed their mind 180-degrees. They decided there were reasons to love, and retain, their pink bathrooms after all.

There is nothing wrong with pink bathrooms. Au contraire, they are quite wonderful. It’s just that we — modern consumers, often guided by what what see in mainstream media and the newest trends promoted by color marketers — may not yet have the information to understand this iconic mid-century color. I am old enough to know that one year hemlines are up, the next, hemlines are down. It’s the same with color. Marketers have an incentive to lure us from one color trend to another. I am not against making a buck. I am not against color trends.  I am not against renovation using new materials. And believe it or not, I am not against gutting a pink bathroom and replacing it with something else. What I am “for” is getting to know these bathrooms before arbitrarily destroying them. The goal with Save the Pink Bathrooms is to tell the story… and for those who ultimately decide that this mid-century color rings their bell, to provide an alternative to gutting, along with the resources — and confidence — to play it up.

This week, I’ll be shining more spotlight on pink bathrooms to keep the momentum going.

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