Jan 18, 2011

Powder Room Heaven

On December 18, I received a call at work from Rob.  He said, "Guess what I did?"  I thought maybe he took my chair to get reupholstered.  "What babe?" I asked.  Rob responded, "I just took an ax to the bathroom and it's completely gutted.  Toilet and all!" 

If you're not an enthusiastic DIY couple like us I'm pretty sure this news would be terrifying to hear.  And especially if you had no ideas or plans for what you wanted to do with it.  But me, I was excited.  My only wish is that Rob's timing for his random act of demolition hadn't come one week before Christmas and three weeks before a baby shower was being thrown at our home. 

We briefly talked about redoing this bathroom, but NOTHING was definite and we never discussed timing.  So, although I was excited to hear the news, I was also stressed because we had no idea what we were going to do.  But knowing you have 20 plus people coming to your home in less than three weeks for a party is a good way to kick your butt into mega work mode.  We devised a plan really fast. 

Here's what our bathroom looked like on the morning of Dec. 18th.  I took this picture with my old iPhone during our final walk through in Aug. 2009 - so I apologize for the quality.

And this is what the bathroom looked like after demolition.

But now, our bathroom looks like this.  Heavenly.

The inspiration for this bathroom came from several different images.  To see my inspiration images check out the Inspire Me page.


Xylem manufactures the white Marble counter top.  I ordered it from FaucetDirect.com on a Wednesday and had it in my living room by Monday - I'm an extremely happy customer.  Most local retail stores could have ordered this for me but the average delivery time was 2-3 weeks.

The light fixture is from Home Depot.  It's more modern and attractive than I thought it'd be.


The mirror is Martha Stewart



The knobs are a nice touch that we added on the vanity doors.


This is where the old toilet used to be.
It's a stinky job - but somebody had to do it

And this is our new and improved, slow closing lid and comfort height, Kohler toilet.

I purchased the picture frame above the toilet at a local thrift store

I want to tell you about some of the things we did to our bathroom...

Below is a picture I took when I was setting the tile.  That's correct, when "I" was setting the tile :) .  We both agreed that I'd be the best person for the job because I'm the more detail oriented one.  And when you set tile you have to make sure you get the lines extremely straight, otherwise the imperfections will show when you grout. 

We were lucky because the floor was cement and level.  If the floor had been wood we would've had to lay sheets of cement to create a hard surface and level it out.  We simply mixed up thinset and then I applied it straight to the cement floor with a trowel, shown below. 


As I set the tile in the thinset, I placed spacers in between the tiles to help assist me in getting perfectly straight lines.  The spacers helped - especially because sometimes the tiles can shift as they're drying.

Once the tile was set and dry and the counter top was installed, it was time for me to apply the glass tile backsplash.  These tiles were super easy to work with and thank goodness they can be purchaed on square foot sheets, otherwise I would've never attempted this backsplash. 

I used the same thinset and trowel that I used to set the tile on the floor.  We used nine sq.ft. of  tile for the back wall and about one and a half for each of the side walls.  When the tile was set and dry, we grouted with a sandless white mixture.
I decided to keep the vanity we had and stain it a dark mahogany.  It took some convincing on my part to get Rob to agree to this, since he really wanted to buy a brand new one.  But once he priced out a few vanities he realized  how much money we could save and quickly jumped on the thrifty boat. 

To achieve the dark mahagony vanity we envisioned, first I sanded all the wood with 220 grit sandpaper.  When I was finished sanding I used a tact cloth to thoroughly wipe the wooden doors and vanity base.  Tact cloths are great for removing teeny dust and dirt particles that can ruin a paint job if left on.


I used a MINWAX wood stain and conditioner on the vanity.  The wood conditioner is great for preparing your wood for stain and it helps you apply even coats of stain onto the surface.  I chose a wood stain with Polyurethane already in it - this was a super time saver and allowed me to skip a crucial and important painting step. 

You should invest in a higher end brush made especially for oil paints, finishes and stains because it will hold up longer and is easier to clean.

This shows how our Maple doors looked after just one coat of Bombay Mahogany wood stain.  I painted four coats of stain, allowing each coat to dry for five hours, before I achieved the look I wanted.  Notice how there are no knobs on the doors?  Rob installed the silver knobs onto the doors.

My original plan was to stencil this design on the powder room walls and fill in with a high gloss paint, but unfortunately the time crunch got the best of me. 
Plan B?  I had a large gold picture frame in the closet that I bought for $10 in a thrift shop.  Is gold making a come back?  Since I didn't have time to paint the stencil, I decided to add a piece of patterned fabric into the picture frame.  The fabric was on super sale at JOANN for $4.


And that concludes this long tutorial.  I hope you enjoy the "after" images as much as we love how it all turned out.

If you saw something in these pictures that you have a question about please, please feel free to shoot me an email - I'd be happy to hear what you have to say (good or bad) and answer your questions. 

Thanks again for stopping by and checking out my latest DIY project.  Good night!


THIS TUTORIAL IS PARTYING WITH THE BEST OF THEM AT:
The DIY Show Off Weekend Bloggy Reading UndertheTableandDreaming


30 comments:

Nicole@ Black Cab Designs said...

Looks great! I love the counter top. I have never attempted tiling myself but you did a great job, it looks beautiful.

Charity said...

I love it! The tile looks great! And the mirror is oh so heavenly. Thanks for sharing your link, I love seeing what others have done, and sometimes you just need someone to show you where to look. I love the blue too!!

xoxoxo said...

My jaw is on the floor! I have 2 bathrooms(no--2.75) that look just as terrible as your before--I had no idea I could make it look like that! I could use YOUR pics for my inspiration!!!
Oops--Your electrical outlet is upside down-did you plan that?

Jayme said...

It looks absolutely fabulous! You did a great job. And fabric, really? I would have never guessed.... and it looks perfect in that spot and against the color of the wall.

Ray* said...

Thanks ladies! This project was reallynot that bad and we saved so much money!

Xoxoxo: upside down? Hmmm. I guess it is. It didn't bother me until now, lol. Thanks for pointing that out- I'll get my handy husband right on that!

That One Girl said...

It looks FANTASTIC!!!!! I can't wait to get started on our house....

Anonymous said...

What an incredible job. I am impressed and amazed. I want to take on my bathroom but I am too afraid to do it on my own, but you gave me some great ideas.

AidelK said...

Beautiful job! And very inspiring--I've been thinking about attempting a reno on our powder room.

Bloggerontherun said...

Awesome job! Love the tile backsplash. Isn't it amazing what a bit of paint can do for a vanity? :-)

Janica said...

WOW! Nice job. I really like that sink and your color combination. I've been working up the guts to try wall tile in my master bath too. Thanks for the inspiration!

kristol faucheux said...

what an AMAZING transformation!!!

Blessed Mommy of 2 said...

Fantastic job! Every last bit of it. :o)

Katie @ EyeSpyDIY said...

Wow, looks so much better. I love, love, love the glass tiles!

Paula said...

Fabulous makeover! I love everything that you guys did to modernize this space. You would never know that it the same room.

I personally like gold and hope that it is making a comeback!

Rachael@Lovely Crafty Home said...

Great work!! I'd love to hear my hubby call and say he demo-ed something, but that would never happen LOL!

Ethnic Girl Fun said...

I love this powder room redo. Wonderful work!

gail@myrepurposedlife.net said...

saw your feature over at jen's
great makeover! lots of work, but well worth it, huh?
I bought that wall tile for my kitchen, but after I got it home, it totally changed colors on me! hahah
super work!
gail

Wendy said...

Purty! Love the glass tile. I cant wait until we can redo our brown, 1962 beast of a bathroom!

Visiting from Serenity Now!

Elle Uy {SWITCHEROOm} said...

great job on doing everything by yourself! and I love how moody this bathroom is.. :)

Amanda @ Little House on the Corner said...

WOW - I am beyond impressed! What a fabulous transformation! And it's even more impressive that it only took you guys a few weeks. Kudos to you on the tilework, and I love that you were able to save money by staining your vanity, not to mention the fabric artwork. We have a bathroom to finish in our basement, and this just gets me excited for it!

Stopping over from the Serenity Now link party. :)

Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

A completely fab makeover! I still can't get over the countertop in the first photo. The new tile is wonderful. You guys did a great job! Thanks so much for linking up to my party. Hope you'll stop by Serenity Now again soon. :)

Paula Kathlyn said...

Unreal! You did beyond amazing!!!

Lacey from Weekends at Home said...

Looks fantastic! I have so many ideas about what I would like to do with my guest bathroom, but just can't seem to start. i guess I need my husband to just demo it one afternoon :)

Sandy@Life Began In A Garden said...

I am uber impressed!

PaperDollMN said...

Three words: Fricking. Awesome. Tile.

Stephanie Lynn @Under the Table and Dreaming said...

What a fabulous transformation. I love the tile and the oval mirror hung sideways is a great idea! Fantastic job - looks amazing! Thanks so much for linking to the Sunday Showcase - I greatly appreciate it. I'll be featuring this today - stop by and grab a featured button if you like. Hope you have a wonderful week ~ Stephanie Lynn

A Home Made by Kiki said...

Wow! I love that tile! What a transformation! I am your newest follower!

Candace said...

You're amazing! Can't wait to see what you do next.

Irene Robertson said...

That room looks amazing.

I have the exact same mosaic tile I am planning on using in the shower of our bathroom.

frugaleclecticchic said...

This looks awesome. I really appreciate your tips on staining. I bought a new home and really hate the colors of the cabinets, although I've just made the decor around it work. I think your tips are much better than others I've read. I appreciate the details.