Washing facilities for guests in the Victorian home
By the webmaster’s mother, 1906-2002
In the early 1900s when I was a child growing up on the working class Victorian housing estate, it was not considered reasonable to expect guests to wash in the sink in the scullery the way that the rest of the family washed everyday.
The wash china jug and its matching bowl
Guests had hot water taken up to their bedroom in a china jug. The jug would be filled with hot water from the kettle or the copper and the guests would pour the hot water into a bowl and wash themselves.
A matching bowl or basin was already in the bedroom to hold the water. It was on an washstand elegant stand. In our house it had a marble top which I very much liked.
Other matching items on washstands
In better-off houses, the decorated china jugs and bowls were part of matching sets which included soap dishes, chamber pots and shaving jugs. Some were very pretty indeed.