Solving the Big Issues: The Fancy Edition

Just because I’m on holidays doesn’t mean that I stop working. I just don’t. Always observing. Always reporting. And always bringing you the big, important issues.

Like this one.

I’m staying at my Brother’s fancy house down here in Melbourne which has been exciting because it’s the first time I’ve stayed here since they moved down earlier in the year. The house is lovely, in the way fancy houses are, but I’ve noticed a similar theme when it comes to the fancy house. The idea of form over function.

Like this tap. This lovely, fancy kitchen sink tap.

Looks good doesn’t it? With that Murchison-Hume soap there? And those deep, wide, square sinks sitting either side? Oh don’t get me wrong, they are some of the best sinks I’ve ever had the pleasure of washing up a large scan pan roasting dish in, but the tap. The tap, just let’s me down.

Let’s have a look at in action shall we?

Does the trick I suppose, of washing your hands on the trot the way a Mother can do 456 times in any given day. EXCEPT.

Look at that splash back issue.


Water pooled over everything because the tap is too close to the edge of the sink because it’s FANCY LIKE. My less fancy tap doesn’t have this problem now does it? For a clean freak like myself it’s been most distressing having to wipe down the bench top of all this excess water.

My fancy brother is a blog reader and when I indicated to him the direction of today’s post he wanted me to point out a few things to even up the “for” side of the debate. They include…

: The black part of the tap is actually a retractable number that can be pulled out for the rinsing of the plates/dishes/what have you. I didn’t realise this and wondered how on EARTH anyone is meant to be some cluely
: The level of the nozzle to the closeness of the dish being rinsed to the temperature of water indicates to HIM that he has never experienced such a superior pre-wash rinse in all this days

I say WHATEVER. It’s still messy. Unnecessary wiping takes up unnecessary time in ones day.

What do you think? Have you noticed this phenomenon with the taps of the “fancier” variety? Do you have a retractable nozzle?Β Is a pre-wash rinse vital in your process of getting dishes cleaned?Β 


  1. Lol. None of our taps match or are very fancy. Crash test Laney commented (in her Kevin McCloud haze) that you should spend money on the things that you touch every day – eg taps – but I think that money should go on BIG things in the house – great table, comfy chairs, etc rather than taps. Each to their own πŸ™‚
    And with tank water – we don’t pre rinse or use extra if we can help it.

  2. Oh I hear you on this one Beth!
    Our new house which we moved into 6 months ago – may look fabulous and super fancy – but there is so many aspects that are just not practical! Hey, they look FAB but they’re a pain to use because they end up making more clean up work for me afterwards. We too have this same fancy sink with the high neck & deep squares. I almost flood the bench every.single.time I use it.
    And then in the bathrooms….the baths are filled from a ‘shower head’ which comes from the super high ceilings!!! So each night when filling the kids bath…although it looks spectacular to have this great shower of water coming down from the ceiling….it’s also a pain in the ass coz it sprays all out of the bath too…everywhere!!!
    I shouldn’t complain as I do love this house. But there are a few cases of where the designer/builder did style over practicality.

  3. We have a retractable nozzle and I would be lost without it. It is so useful for heavy rinsing and we also have an insinkerator and it’s so helpful to washing everything down it.

  4. Beth this excites me, not in a weird way I promise! We are in the process of building and as I peruse the fancy tapware shops and glossy mags I am dismayed by the lack of functionality many of these products have, I want this stuffto make my life easier. As a huge fan of the pre-wash rinse (no dishwasher at all here) I would say that tap would seem very awkward as it is so close to the edge of the sink. It is terribly beautiful though πŸ™‚

  5. Well my kitchen taps are decidedly not fancy…I think they are the originals from the 1930s or something…they extend only about two inches from the wall and so I have this same problem.
    Although I also cannot fill a pot or a vase without some interesting geometry because I don’t have a flash extension.
    And yes, it drives me nuts.

    However I do have Murchison-Hume products…I love them and I think they make even my kitchen a little bit fancy!

  6. My tap is quite fancy ( I didn’t buy it) and looks the same but goes further towards center of sink so no splash.. love it. I don’t have the extenda thingy, had a cheap version in my old house (which I did buy) and never used it much as after a few tugs it never retracted back with ease..fnarr fnarr..

  7. We have old style flickmixer in our house but have used the type you describe at a holiday house an the splashing annoyed the hell out of me!!!!! Rebecca S.

  8. I agree, fancy pants stuff often equals more work. I remember using a friend’s Alessi lemon juicer thingy. I could do a better job squeezing the lemon in my hand and when I mentioned this to my friend. She smiled and said, ‘I know it’s useless. I just keep it for looks.’ And pulled out a cheap plastic one that she uses x

  9. seriously have almost that exact same tap. love it. mine also has two different adjustments, one shower type option, and a regular. I do agree with the fancy hand soaps, a small amount of self indulgence goes a long way…especially for us moms who are always washing and washing and washing away.

  10. This is a huge issue when we design a kitchen. In all the bathrooms i want wall mounted taps so there is no water residue getting around the tap base, pet hate with children brushing teeth & washing hands, splashing water, hitting metal, turning icky if left moist.
    I also loathe mixers, i can never get the temperature correct. I like hot & cold taps, simple, old school. I also like a tap which reaches to the centre of the sink, not too much to ask right??
    Add to my long list of requests are huge lab sinks, deep sinks, wide sinks. The sinks also have to be sunken, so the counter goes over the top edge, no space for water to gather, no unsightly silicon gel to go mouldy. I married the son of a plumber so practical all the way – what is technical & functional. I don’t care if my taps come from the local hardware store, i just want them big & to do the job they need to do – put water in the sink, NOT all over the counter, splash back & my clothes!! In 16 years of Army housing, we’ve had some god awful tap & sink experiences.
    As for the Murchison & Hume, their counter spray is fabulous!! Use it every day, well i’m a mother, that’s a given, i use it 20 times a day!! Love Posie

  11. We have a retractable tap, with a veggie spray on the end, we also have splash back issues, but that might have something to do with my husband installing it.

  12. Already the OCD in me is stressing over your brother’s taps! How many times a day would you have to clean the sink? Just not on.

  13. What a great topic and I mean that seriously. We have a Franki tap, we had to replace the first one after 5 years which really annoyed me. Our plumber told us it was too fancy. We got a more basic Franki one but it still has the pull out bit and I LOVE it to death. You can use it to rinse, to sprinkle water on things in a colander and also spray the sides of the sink so noone has to touch it. Did you know the sink is the germiest place in the house? My husband tells me that all the time. And I say ‘oh so is that why you NEVER touch it?’

  14. First World problems!!!I think your lucky to have a tap.

  15. hmmm I’ve just built my house, and I don’t have a retractable nozzle……I best be starting again then!!!!

  16. Position of nozzle is everything! Our laundry has a tap that hovers so near the FRONT edge of the sink, it’s impossible not to soak the floor when I use it. Useless.

  17. The basins at the museum yesterday had a similar issue. HUGE big basins with a tap that was tucked right over the back. My littlies could hardly reach and we all got water everywhere rinsing our hands. Weird design. That hand soap looks gorgeous by the way. My cheapie crappy kitchen taps leak a bit so they spread water anyway! Cheers, Sue

  18. I love this post, we are planning to build in about 6 months and I’m trying to fine tune all the things people never think about prior to geting stuck into it. Kitchen taps is firmly on the list now, as I too hate a splashed kitchen bench.. thanks

  19. soooo agree with you Beth….

  20. I have this problem in my laundry but only because the plumber (not a very bright lad) placed it diagonally in the corner rather than along one of the sides. It drives me bat-shit crazy and its lucky its only in the laundry and not the kitchen.

    We are in the process of redesigning our kitchen and I will be standing beside the tradies every single hour of every single day. They’re gonna looove me… NOT!

  21. The tap…is crap…

  22. The main thing is it looks good……even with water all over the bench……great if you can afford it ;O)
    Beth, I challenge you not to wipe it up……could you handle it? ;o)
    Tania xx

  23. Oh Beth! Firstly hello. I’m a new reader of your blog. I have an 8-week old baby and your blog makes the (many) night feeds positively enjoyable. Im working my way through your back catalogue. Daisy isn’t yet two! Anyway – to the topic of the day. Fancy taps. We have one. Chosen by my fella. Looks fab. Splashes water EVERYwhere. Drives me bonkers. He doesn’t care/notice. He isn’t OCD about wiping up the water. Give me a garden variety non-splashing tap any day. I pull out the retractable thing every time to make it lower in the sink and reduce splashing. He doesn’t like this. Something about the way the tap looks when it is hanging out. Enough said.

  24. A couple of years ago we moved from the city to a little further out shall we say. We bought the fancy house with the fancy taps and sinks and basins and pool and oven. BUT NOTHING WORKS!!!! Needless to say, we’re moving back to the city. Where it’s noisy and crowded and gorgeously busy. With sinks that work and bathrooms that have storage instead of just gorgeous basins that take up half the room. Oh, and an oven that I can fit my roasting dish in…..

  25. Bah. A tap is a tap. If the water comes out clean it’s all good for me.

    Mind you – I do love a good Chux, so perhaps I’m biased.


    Enjoy your hols Beth!

    Gabs x

  26. To this oldie a tap is a tap is a tap…or is it? Guess not really as I go for convenience before style or show. Mine is a plain stainless steel swivel ‘tap’ which doesn’t cause splashing at all. It is convenient ‘cos I can have it straight on or each side. I too pre-rinse before washing dishes (I don’t have a dish washer nor do I want one) and it works just fine. As for hand washing I tend to pop into the laundry where you can really wash your hands ‘cos the trough is much bigger than the kitchen sink. Rinsing hands in kitchen is fine though. I guess I go for practicality rather than style or show but then that’s just me who some would say is an old fuddy duddy. I am sure your brother’s house is magnificent but I’d feel I had to keep it all clean and shiny all the time. πŸ™‚

  27. Our tap is not so fancy but it does share the same design flaw. Annoying!!

  28. I love the sibling rivalry and “whatever Bro” I’m this post ! We never grow out of it do we ?

  29. Yep! Same problem here though mine looks slightly less irritating. I have a very similar tap in my new kitchen and I notice how much water comes over the edge every time I turn it on. I haven’t even moved in yet! Fancy smancy not always greaty:)

  30. Oh I hear you, Beth. That tap is, as my Dad would say, about as good as tits on a bull. Just doesn’t go. Here at Chez WSDN we have a flick-mixer kind of tap that swings perfectly over a single deep, round sink. I love it, keeps the water IN the sink where it’s supposed to be, NOT on your clothes or on the bench top. And the sink itself is genius too – boy, do I remember the flack everyone gave me when I said I wanted a round sink – it’s big enough to get even the biggest of pots submerged and wide enough to comfortably wash those rectangular roasting dishes. Win/Win in my book. πŸ™‚

  31. haha I have the pretty standard non-fancy mixer in my kitchen but at least it reaches the MIDDLE of the sink!! I don’t know who is thinking up these ridiculous things – clearly not mothers! I loved The Block but it drove me nuts watching them pick out all these nonsense fittings that looked great and didn’t work.. for 5x the price of the one that did actually work..

  32. pop your hands down below the bench level and it’s not a problem πŸ™‚ x

  33. I’m totally a function over form person. I love big, big sinks and taps that reach to the middle of the sink. I’m the same with websites too. But I’m a programmer not a web designer.

    Someone mentioned previously that they hate mixer taps. On the long weekend I washed my hands in my in laws non mixer tap sink. They live in Goulburn and it was 7 degrees. My hands almost fell off from the cold water. I’m totally for mixer taps.

  34. Taps… I am hearing you lady! We have the waterfall taps in our house, installed by the owner/builder/plumber dude… Installed TOO HIGH! The apex of the waterfall is about a foot above the sink. So whilst they look fab and get comments from everyone who visits, they spray water everywhere and your middle looks its been through a rain shower after a good hand washing! We removed the one in the family bathroom and went for a goose neck version that swivels out of the way when kiddies are bathing. Note to hubby: remember to turn goose neck tap back over bath when filling to avoid general bathroom overflowing situations!
    A good tap is not necessarily the most expensive that’s for sure. All that wiping up sucks!

  35. Attention to detail right down to the finest detail is your specialty. Mine too. We currently reside in a house with a fancy new bathroom. The basin is so large, that there is only centimetres around the perimeter of the bathroom cabinet top to spare. Where to put anything? Irk to the Izzo.

  36. Hi Beth,
    I agree largely with Jennie Mclelland. I know this is an old post, but we recently moved to a new house with a similar kitchen setup which looks great but it drives me nuts!
    We end up with water all over the floor after washing 2 or 3 large pots and a few hand washes. I use heaps of tea towels every day to stop the mess but I reckon there’s a business opportunity here, if anyone wants to help design a splash guard let me know!

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