Egg, Meet CUBE

A few weeks ago, 3ringer Joseph Starr went a little crazy with the egg, focusing on egg-shaped chairs both new and old, as well as an egg-shaped bed. His study in form made me wistful for my own geometry. Hence the cube.

CUBE, BC 08-1 bathtub. Manufactured by Wetstyle.

I've actually already begun this design obsession, having chosen to write about the Cube Motorized TV Cabinet and the Rocking Cube (which also made my Best of 2008 list). And now we can add the CUBE bathtub collection from Wetstyle-especially since I'm not the only one who likes it. The Metropolitan Home November 2008 Home of the Month featured the CUBE tub in its master bathroom, looking all the more cubist-as in hard-lined, edgy, and slick (not Picasso or Braque Cubist)-against a glass wall flooded with light. The CUBE bathtubs come in models that are perfectly straight or tapered, but I will concentrate on the straight models, which are actually in the cube family-missing the sixth plane, of course: otherwise, you couldn't get in or out (it would be more in the vein of a tub for Houdini). The straight models are available in a variety of sizes (smart, I'll get to that later) and in glossy or matte white finishes. They can be freestanding or mounted on a base or on legs, though technically the addition of legs removes its cube-ness. The CUBE bathtub can be installed in the center of a room, against a wall, recessed into three walls, or sunken. All very convenient, but let's talk about size.

Egg, Meet CUBE

The BC 01 model is the largest at 72 x 40 x 24, the perfect size for two people to submerge themselves in water and have their own backrests. If size is no matter, then go in for this most dramatic CUBE tub-perfect for those spacious Aspen mansions where winter might just demand a long soak (current temperature is 14 degrees). But Wetstyle hasn't forgotten those Minneapolis lofts (yes, I'm mentioning Minnesota; it's changed; Al Franken is its senator now, which immediately ushered in a slew of design-savvy people, sucking them in from both coasts) or San Francisco homes (very narrow for the money) or Brooklyn condos (across from the Botanical Gardens in particular). These would-be bathers have less room to spare, but they can still enjoy the CUBE-model BC 04 measures a significantly smaller 62 x 30 x 24. However (and here's the stroke of genius), the BC 04's interior is the exact same dimension as the grandiose BC 01. Even so, some of you may need an even smaller CUBE (I'm reminded here of my friend in Manhattan whose bathtub sits smack in the middle of the kitchen). For you, Wetstyle makes a one-person model that you can tuck into tighter spaces.

All well and good, but I haven't yet waxed poetic about the CUBE's cubidity. So here goes: the cube in the bath contrasts beautifully with the soft fluidity of that most sensual and healing element, water. The cube's striking linearity, its boxy silhouette, reminds us that we have harnessed the natural and brought it indoors, where we can contain the seemingly uncontainable-holding water in a clever porcelain drawer.

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