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Hey friends! This post is a pretty big one for me: the inspiration and ALL of the ideas for the primary bathroom makeover! In a previous post, I mentioned a spontaneous mood board I made while in Chicago earlier this year for the same room, but I decided to go back and come up with a formal mood board now that I have some of the key decisions made. The biggest elements of this modern bath mood board feature lots of white, a splash of green (given my love for white/gray/black/blue, this is kind of a departure for me!), and chrome fixtures.
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Basically, the key driver for me was making the space clean and bright. It’s the only bathroom in the entire house that actually has a window, and I wanted that light bouncing around the room as much as possible. The room has a very small footprint, which of course I don’t love, but I don’t really want to steal square footage from the primary closet on the left side (it’s limited on the other three walls by the exterior, garage roof, and the guest bedroom ). So, working with the same basic layout, the goal is to just get as much of a clean, sleek look as possible.
When I first moved into the house, the room had yellowing, folksy wallpaper from the 80s, grimy linoleum floors, stumpy oak cabinetry, and beige shower tile — a whole lot of bad. I added some temporary upgrades by painting the cabinets and the floor, but not long after removed the vanity, wallpaper, toilet, and flooring. And it pretty much stayed that way for a few years while I got a lot of the rest of the house done.
I’ve gone into more detail before on why it took so long to come back to finishing this room, but the easiest explanation is just by calling it my “bad luck bath”… and it has REALLY lived up to its name! I’ve had hot water valves spontaneously detach and flood the room, found bugs filling the wall with literal shit, had a horrible tile installation that needed fixing a number of times… and I’m not even close to done yet. I’ve since ran into yet another plumbing problem, but I’ll get into that in a different post (sigh). Let’s focus on the GOOD stuff, shall we?
Lots of white and light gray to brighten the room
For several years, I pretty much assumed that I would keep the beige tile in the shower, so I started by only replacing the old yellowed linoleum with a large porcelain tile (the same that’s in the guest bathroom). The beige hue wasn’t particularly exciting, but the shower was in decent enough shape that it didn’t need to be removed. That all changed this year after a trip to Chicago. For one, having a sponsor for the room gave me a new budget where I could consider the added expense of purchasing new tile and taking it all the way up to the ceiling. Then, things just sort of fell into place when I saw a display of just how pretty handcrafted tile can be. It was going to prove to be a challenge since it wasn’t flat and the edges weren’t perfectly square (meaning that there would be a lot of guesswork and positioning by hand), but with enough experience of tiling under my belt (between the kitchen backsplash, laundry room backsplash, laundry room floor, and the guest bathroom floor), I wanted to see if it could be done!
Adding a splash of green
Given how much I like neutrals (except for the occasional jolt of blue like my dining room), this was the most surprising thing for me, but I could not seem to get this print out of my head lately. I’ve seen it (or similar) patterns around and I suppose this is a little trendy, but I’m totally loving the idea of adding a graphic green leaf print like this as a DIY shower curtain and using it as the biggest statement maker in the room. The fact that the fabric is an outdoor fabric will also make for some great durability!
Refreshing chrome fixtures
I can’t wait to share more details about the new shower fixtures, but that will have to be covered in another post (I have only so much energy today to discuss plumbing, which is already a subject on my mad-and-ready-to-throw-things list, but the results have so far been worth all of the efforts to get it done. Links to specific products are also below!
Other finishing details
Things like artwork, floating wood shelving, plants (the fact that there is natural sunlight means an opportunity for living plants!), are also being added. I will cover more of the works from Parima Creative Studio in an artist spotlight post as I own a few already, but I think this Isabel abstract print adds plenty of color while still being incredibly soothing for a relaxing bath retreat.
The vanity is going to prove to be its own challenge, but I am using the same vanity that I used from the guest bath (which has now been discontinued, sorry — I’ve stored its twin in my garage for a LONG time anticipating that I needed to buy both at the same time). I’ve since learned that the vanity top is just not something that is going to match the rest of the room (it’s fine in the guest bath where it still has beige shower tile, but if I’m switching the shower tile to white it now becomes the ONLY thing still beige in the room). I’m considering adding something more custom since I can’t find a white vanity that’s narrow enough. Luckily, I know a handsome bearded guy who has access to possibly tracking down a decent countertop replacement (it might have to be a custom order but we’ll see).
SHOP THESE ELEMENTS
That’s all for now, but I have some crown to install, so I’ll be back with more updates soon!
(P.S.: I’m thinking of adding the latest room makeover series, such as this bathroom makeover, to the first section of the homepage; all of the latest posts will still appear below it, but since a longer series has multiple posts and they don’t always appear back to back, I think this will be an easier way for those of you who are following along or might have missed a post to get these latest details all in one spot! Then after this room gets finished and I move to the next big project, I’ll put <span class=”italic_text”>that</span> at the top and that will be a good way to get caught up, and there will still be all of the posts in the usual order just below chronologically. Just one of the few small changes I’m making as we go to help improve the site! – SF)