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After five years, we are so happy to finally share our small half bath remodel!!
This bathroom, has clearly stumped everyone who has tried to work on it since its conception. Its a room that seems like it was really shoved in a space to make work and its never really worked. Sure, it does what it needed to do, a functioning toilet and sink. But aside from that. Its been a real head scratcher.
When we moved in, it was a periwinkle room with 135 degree mirrored view of the action, a vanity that was half useless and chopped off at a 45 degree angle to fit the space and a lovely banjo countertop. All illuminated by flattering florescent lighting. We knew it would need to be fully gutted at some point, but we didn’t have the means to make it happen after moving into a new home and all the cost that went into that.
Six months after living with this charming bathroom I decided I was not going to go another day without making this less room less hideous. I still had very little money to put into it, but I was determined to put lipstick on this pig until we could do it all in. So for $200, I shined this turd right up. You can read about that process here!
Unfortunately, unlike HGTV or all those big social media accounts that are constantly renovating their home, seemingly very quickly, these things take time. And this change happened to take five years. We finally saved what we needed to renovate the two very original bathrooms in our 1988 home. And we finally found contractors we felt confident working with.
And when we decided they would be worth it to wait the eight months or more that we had originally prepared for, an opening for work came up just twenty days into the future. As exciting as that was to get the job started soon, this meant I had to design two bathrooms incredible quickly.
Because no, despite what most contractors would suggest after looking at this space, I did not “just” want to put in a pedestal sink, or another vanity, or the standard vanity lighting, etc, etc. We waited five years and were making our home uniquely ours. There were no “just” solutions about it that I was going to accept. We were paying to have this work done, we wanted it to be completely custom.
So my brain began spinning out about the infinite solutions this quirky little coat closet bathroom could take on. What was its hidden identity waiting to be discovered?? I knew I wanted it moody. I knew I wanted it strange. I knew I wanted it to be somewhat of a conversation piece since this was the bathroom most guests will end up using in our home.
I started all with the fact that I wanted a wall mounted faucet. It saved on space in a small room, and it always screamed high-design to me. Knowing we would likely be ripping out everything, now was the time!
Here’s the part I always am swiftly reminded about when designing these spaces, either in my home or in others. There are usually two (or more) opinions that need to be considered. Suddenly my husband had all of these opinions when I started picking out finishes for the room. I wanted something more timeless and ornate, while he tends to lean more into modern design. After hours of searching we landed on this one. Its modern, but has timeless details on the temperature controls.
From there I know I wanted this wall mounted faucet to feed a vessel sink on a unique piece. So my frantic hunt on Facebook Marketplace began. It was semi-stressful knowing I would be picking a piece to be a permanent fixture in my home. The things I looked for in my search were wood, the right height, and unique lines. I bought a few things but they ended up not being right. Luckily I usually end up being able to sell them, for more than I paid. But that’s another post for another day. 😉
When I scrolled to this table, for $20, I knew we had a major contender. So I just went for it. It was whitewashed because the previous owners sanded down too much of the finish, and was “seasoned” with peanut butter and who knows how much other food. I was beginning to feel like a crazy person for considering mounting this to the wall and keeping it forever.
But with very little time left to pivot the plan, I had to keep charging forward. But look at those legs, it was perfect, of course I had to keep making it work. I sanded it down, stained it, and was sure to seal it very well since this thing was obviously going to get wet.
I had originally planned on centering all this on the one wall but enough came up between the drain location (that could not be moved), code, and just comfort of use, so we decided that it would have to go more to the left and end up with a 45degree cut in the table. Thank goodness I wasn’t home when they cut the table, because there was only one shot to get it right. And they sure got it right. It looks like the table is coming straight out of the wall.
Speaking of the drain that could not be moved, It ended up with a box being build around it. I understand some things just have to be, but I wasn’t about to pretend that this camouflaged the fact that something was down there. So instead, I leaned into it and gave it a little door.
This room was supposed to be quirky, remember? It fit the bill perfectly. A mouse outhouse? A fairy home? What would you call it?
Since suddenly the design slid over to the left, I had to re-asses the plans for lighting and the mirror. No longer would the circle mirror and lights on either side work. Enter the tall swivel mirror and the lights on the right to balance it out. Lights that felt like a blend between schoolhouse, moderm, but also retro? These were the best decision because the ambient lighting in this moody room, its a real vibe.
For the walls, an eclectic mix of frames from you already guessed it.. goodwill. But most importantly the art inside those frames. All pen and ink drawings of our favorite places. Can you name them?? Honorable mention for the most encouraging pennant from YourGalKiwi. “Crushin’ it” Ive had this for years and I think it finally found its forever home. Everyone just wants to be told they are doing a good job. Why not catch them off guard and tell them while they are using the bathroom?
For the flooring I went with a pretty standard 12×24 concrete grey tile, which I found at ReStore for I think $30 total. The way I dressed up this basic tile was by having it installed in a herringbone pattern. Knowing it was going to cost double to lay it in a herringbone pattern, I asked if we could turn the pattern so that the cuts were all linear if that would be the same cost as a basic pattern.
They agreed and I could not be happier, with both the pattern and the overall cost of this floor! That painted tile from the lipstick makeover was sure better than what was under it, but I was happy to see it leave.
There you have it! Shes all grown up, cleaned up, sophisticated and moody. Shes a VIBE. What do you think??