Rub a Dub Dub Makeover the Tub a Small Bathroom DIY Renovation
Ahhh yes the bathroom! I cannot tell you how excited I was to be able to finally get to do the bathroom renovation! Being that we live in a 2 bedroom, *1* bath house, I’m sure you understand the importance of that 1 bathroom. And as tiny as it may be I was determined to squeeze a whole lot of style in that space. If we would have done a full remodel we have wanted a claw foot or free-standing tub, however the tub was the only thing that had already been replaced by the previous owner and so we made the budget friendly decision to keep it. But those sliding glass doors had to go, just not a fan and I’m sure anyone who’s had to clean them would agree with me 😉 plus they were a bit modern for our taste.
Now as per usual with remodeling projects often things look a lot worse before they start looking better. We tore off the faux tile wall covering to reveal this scary looking black stuff, which led to the decision of installing bead board paneling. Removing the built-in medicine cabinet/mirror gave us a glance of our plaster and lath walls, and just generally made the room look even more gross. Also an interesting discovery, there was a slit in the back of the medicine cabinet with the word ‘razors’ below it and when we removed the cabinet we could see lots of razors that had been discarded through the hole and were down in the wall…using your walls as a waste disposal system weird or genius? Your call lol!
I was so happy to see that vanity go! As you’ll notice with most of our projects and renovations our ‘go to’ store is Lowe’s, and that’s certainly true with the bathroom renovation. We got the bead board paneling there. It runs about $20 for a 4×8 sheet and we needed 2. We found the material to be easy to work with and were able to mark and cut it with a utility knife. In keeping with the rest of the trim in the house and decided to use just basic 2x4s as the top trim.
One thing about only having one bathroom and then choosing to remodel it is that it’s a job you want to do quickly because inevitably someone will need to use the bathroom before the toilet is put back in place lol!
We chose 18×18 laminate tile for the bathroom. I love this stuff as an alternative to ceramic tile. It has the texture and feel of real tile without the coldness. It’s also a breeze to install because it’s can be cut with a utility knife in a pinch. In our case we also borrowed a tile cutter from a friend for the day. We also chose to grout the tile and used tile spacers just like you normally would for ceramic tile. One thing you’ll notice is that Ed thought it would give it more interest to lay the tile at an angle instead of straight. We plan on using this as the flooring for the kitchen as well and so it will continue out of the bathroom and throughout the kitchen at this angle.
We ended up having some major peeling/cracking issues with the paint that was on the walls around and ceiling above the shower, which became a small project all on its own. Up until this renovation there wasn’t any kind of ventilation in the bathroom. So we’re talking about roughly 50 years of moisture in this room. And as evidence there were some small spots of mold on the ceiling. I had to scrape and sand down the walls and ceiling and then as recommended by a professional we painted them first with a mold killing primer followed by a mold/mildew proof paint. Don’t worry a proper respirator mask was worn throughout this process. So far both have worked and we have not had any recurring mold. Ahhhh old houses 🙂
On to the details! Aka my favorite part!
Then I painted the rest of the room in the original shade of blue that was used throughout the house, and of course all the trim went white. After some deliberation we decided to go with a much smaller vanity from Lowe’s, which was on sale for $119. While we did give up some storage space I think that having the right sized furniture in a room is more important, and in this case we gained a ton of square footage as well as visual space because of it. I did replace the pulls on the doors with mercury glass ones I found at Hobby Lobby. I like to add a bit of sparkly detail somewhere in each room.
We replaced the scary fluorescent lighting with a fixture found at Lowe’s. The mirror I found at Gordman’s a while back and stashed it in the basement; sometimes when you find the perfect piece even before you’re ready for it 😉 The greenery in the bathroom can all be found at Target and the hand soap, lotion, and bath salts are from World Market (2 of my favorite stores).
We added the 3 corner shelves for interest as we as creating some functional storage. The galvanized metallic sphere is from Hobby Lobby. On the middle shelf there’s a basket from the old Alco stores, which went out of business, that holds extra wash cloths. The pitcher I found at an antique shop for $1. On the bottom shelf there’s another identical basket for extra towels and the 3 blue mason jars came from a local antique store. The one on the shelf holds cotton balls, the one on the sink q-tips, and the windowsill potpourri. The foot stool can be found at Hobby Lobby.
One thing I did splurge on is the shower curtain. It is a waffle weave extra long beauty, which in my opinion was worth every penny of the $60 it cost from Bed Bath and Beyond. The bath rug is from World Market. One place I LOVE to shop is Etsy! Supporting handmade products and businesses as often as possible is important to me. Our Turkish bath towels and hand towels are from Cotton Cloud Towels and I’m obsessed! They’re so soft, absorbent, and beautiful!
One thing I’m proud of is that I took a risk and mixed the finishes in this room, which led me to doing so throughout the house. We love the collected over time look and mixing finishes like this is one way to help achieve that. It also creates a more sophisticated style. I went with a matte black finish on the light fixture, towel hooks, and curtain rod, and an antique brass for the faucet. The faucet was my risky piece and it has become my absolute favorite part of the bathroom! It adds such warmth and we’re constantly complimented on it. We found it on Amazon here. Other metals in the bathroom include the rusty mirror, bronze chicken wire basket, matte black shower curtain rod, which you can find here, and galvanized metal sphere. So if you’re thinking about mixing finishes and metals I say go for it!!
So even with the accessories and decorating elements the bathroom renovation ended up totaling between $600-$700 which I think is amazing considering the transformation! A little creative spending, deal hunting, and elbow grease goes a LONG way! Don’t let a small room or a small budget hold you back from creating a space you love! Hope you feel inspired to get out there and DIY!
Everyone can enjoy the bathroom remodel 🙂 Be sure to ask any questions! Thanks for checking out our little blog!