master bathroom shower renovation white subway tile green shower curtain

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It’s long overdue: my primary bathroom shower makeover is finally complete, and it’s time for the big reveal!

If every room in my house had its own little story to tell, the primary bathroom renovation is one of the longest I’ve ever told (those of you who have subscribed the longest need no reminder, but just in case you want a look back at the twists and turns, you can check them out here and here and here). But as with any good story, there are also some truly satisfying moments of relief and excitement — like finally being able to reveal my primary bathroom shower makeover!

master bathroom white and green shower makeover

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Delta® Faucet. The opinions and text are all mine.

Primary Bath Makeover: Shower Reveal

I love my new shower so much I might dump my boyfriend and run away with it (sorry hun).

master bathroom shower renovation white subway tile green shower curtain

Looking at these pictures, I feel an incredible amount of weight lifted from my shoulders. Where you might see a shower, I see each of its elements, too:  space planning, maximizing light and height, tile, shower head, grout lines, caulk, crown, ceiling paint, and so on. I also still see in my mind what it used to look like (scroll further down the post for that!). Renovating is a stressful and dirty job sometimes, and since I did/am doing both the design and the labor for the whole room, I’ve had to overcome quite a few challenges. In time, I even started calling it my “bad luck bathroom” — the room that just didn’t want to get made.

tiling master bathroom tub surround with long white subway tile

Finding new inspiration

No matter how much I tried to force myself to finish the room before, I just couldn’t seem to find that wow factor to really push this renovation forward. That all changed earlier this year after a trip to Chicago with Delta Faucet. I’ll admit that I was a bit skeptical at first that I’d be able to get direct inspiration for my bathroom, but as it turned out, there is no mistaking the uncanny resemblance of my new shower tile’s handcrafted surface to the beautiful rippled effect of Chicago’s waterfront:

Chicago skyline waterline
See any similarities?

Plus, the way the light bounces off of the delicate tile reminds me of some of the absolutely gorgeous (and painstakingly intricate) tile work I saw in some of Chicago’s historic buildings:

tile and glass inlay in marble
Chicago Cultural Center

After returning from the trip, I had a new plan in mind for what was truly missing from my primary bathroom. The shower needed to go.

master bathroom shower - before

It took several weeks to remove, prep, and install, but the end, I think it was 100% worth the effort.

new shower side of the master bath

master bathroom shower makeover - uneven tile surface shows movement and lots of light

Compared to normal subway tile, the edges and the surface has a more organic look to it that reflects light in all directions whenever the window is open. I really wish these pictures could do justice to how glittery the tile looks when the light hits just right.

white reflection along handcrafted white tile

I lit a candle in the corner of the tub just to give myself a way to picture a candlelit bath in here. I can’t wait!

closeups white shower makeover in master bathroom

I was really happy to be asked to partner with Delta Faucet for this project. Not only did they help with the budget to make the shower tile a reality, but they also supplied me with a new chrome shower head from their Zura™ bathroom collection.

New Delta Zura shower head

I think the contrast between the flowy, water-like effect of the shower tile and the super clean lines of the shower head create a nice pairing for an entire look that is fresh but not cold (sometimes “modern” styles can look really severe, but this combo softens it).

zura bath collection shower head side view

One of the other things I’m particularly proud of is the new crown molding added to the very top of the shower tile. At first, I wasn’t sure how I would overcome the pronounced edge of the tile and tile trim vs. the wall, but I found my answer by flipping baseboard molding upside down to add to the wall and putting the crown on top (I’ll have a separate tutorial for this). It makes the molding look even more impressive and avoids awkward cuts when the molding reaches the tile. I love it!

shower tile and crown molding

After taking the new white tile all the way up to the ceiling, I still wanted to make sure that there was enough color in the room to keep things interesting (but still overall neutral and creating a sense of calm). Green isn’t normally my go-to color, but I saw this outdoor leaf print fabric a few months ago and have been dying to use it in a project. The shower curtain is a complete DIY, so I’ll have to show you how I did that too.

new DIY shower curtain palm print fabric

Finally, a little art from one of my favorite painters (source list below), and this bathroom is finally starting to look the way it was always meant to be — and a far cry from where it was when I first laid eyes on it (this is the listing photo from when I first bought the house!).

original listing photo - master bathroom

Have you been finding inspiration anywhere lately?


More from this series:

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  1. AMAZING! This bathroom is really coming along now. I love the tile! I’m also a fan a Clare Elsaesser. I’ve been eyeing a few of her prints for my house. I want either Married To The Sea for my main bathroom.

  2. It’s awesome Sarah! Wowsa what a transformation! Everything is so fresh and bright…and that DIY shower curtain! ❤ Kudos!

  3. Wow!!! Your choice of tile and decision to add crown moulding in the shower elevates the look! It looks very high end spa, to me! Nice work!

  4. Hi! I really love this look. Can you provide a link for the trim/bullnose tiles that you used between the shower and the wall? I think I would like to use this as a kitchen backsplash but I will need a coordinating bullnose tile.


    1. I tried to find an online example but I found it through a local outlet type of place, so I wasn’t able to find an exact match. BUT, what you’re looking for is called “pencil” tile. Some of them are textured and more complex design, some are simple. Just make sure you bring the other tile with you (I almost bought a different one at a bigger store but the “white” color didn’t match at all). As far as your kitchen goes though, I found an alternative for my backsplash you might find even better (the pencil tile sticks out a good bit, and I wanted something that was virtually unnoticeable on the edges of my kitchen backsplash). Check out this post for all of those details and installation info.

  5. That’s an awesome looking shower head. i was looking at replacing our current shower head at my home. My wife really likes the products from Kohler that advertise a natural rain feel, however; when I look at the reviews the shower heads are said to constantly drip. Does this shower head have a natural rain feel, and does it constantly drip?

  6. OMG! This looks amazing and beautiful. Thank you for the inspiration. I, too, am a DIYer. I am a little nervous about taking on this kind of project but with all your step by step, I think I can do it! Have to put this away to reference back to. Thanks for the posts!

  7. I love it!!! Favorites are the crown molding all around, and the tile up to the ceiling. Can not believe the condition when you bought it. Aaahhh!

    1. Thanks Tricia! It really took some hard work to get all of that tile in (you think it’s not THAT much more to extend it to the ceiling, but working with your arms constantly above your shoulders gets HEAVY fast!). I am really happy with how it all turned out. So glad you like it!

  8. I love the subway tile looks similar to one I saw recently. Do you know what it’s called

    1. Sources for everything in the photos are listed right at the bottom of the post with links back to where I purchased them, hope that helps!

  9. You did a beautiful job redoing your bathroom! I love the subway tiles and the shower curtain design.

  10. Wow, that came out amazing! I was wondering if you had to seal those tiles after? I heard marble needs to be sealed

    1. They’re ceramic, not marble, so they didn’t need to be sealed! But I’m glad to hear they look enough like marble for the fakeout!

        1. Could you be talking about the grout, and not the tile itself? You first asked about the tile, which if it were marble, would need to be sealed, but sealing the tile is different than sealing the grout. I went over tile installation in greater detail in this post, so that should help clarify a few things for you if you want to give it a read!