The Making of Laufen’s VAL Bathroom Collection by Konstantin Grcic

11.17.15 | By
The Making of Laufen’s VAL Bathroom Collection by Konstantin Grcic

We use them everyday but we don’t often think about what goes into designing and crafting a sink or a bathtub. They just seem to magically appear in bathrooms everywhere without us knowing how they came to be. Renowned designer Konstantin Grcic teamed up with Swiss company LAUFEN on the VAL bathroom collection that features simple architectural lines with incredibly thin walls, made from LAUFEN’s game-changing material SaphirKeramik. Take a look as LAUFEN and Grcic give us some insight into how the pieces take shape, in this month’s Deconstruction.


The first step in the ceramic casting process is to fill the plaster mould with the liquid ceramic mass, called slip.


The level of complexity of a piece also determines the amount of manual work which still goes into it. Even well-established, less complicated products still need some manual work.


Surfaces need to be sanded and evenly smoothed before glazing.


Dust from the sanding must be removed before actually glazing the product.


Prototype products are glazed by hand, whereas production products are glazed inside and out by robots.


The finished product has gone through a 22-hour firing process, going up to 1250°C, liquifying and then solidifying and hardening the glaze, leaving the product with the typical glossy, hygienic and scratch, chemical and abrasion resistant surface we all know from ceramic sanitaryware.


Left to right: Konstantin Grcic, Dominic Lutyens, Alain Reymond Design and Product Manager, Laufen Bathrooms AG, and Marc Viardot Director Marketing and Products, Laufen Bathrooms AG


Konstantin Grcic and Charlotte Talbot inspecting pieces.


Konstantin Grcic

Photo courtesy of Laufen

Photo courtesy of Laufen

Thanks to the slim rim and thin walls, the bowl of the washbasin from the Val collection appears particularly generous.

Photo courtesy of Laufen

Photo courtesy of Laufen

The oval bathtub from the Val bathroom collection appears light and elegant, and thanks to an extremely slim rim harmonises perfectly with the filigree washbasins in the series.

Photo courtesy of Laufen

Photo courtesy of Laufen

To match the SaphirKeramik objects Konstantin Grcic has designed a freestanding bathtub with a slim rim.

Caroline Williamson is Editorial Director of Design Milk. She has a BFA in photography from SCAD and can usually be found searching for vintage wares, doing New York Times crossword puzzles in pen, or reworking playlists on Spotify.