Sunday, March 6, 2011

DIY Weekend Project #1... Master Bathroom

I awoke mighty inspired and full of energy on Saturday, and while sipping my morning coffee, decided to embark on a lovely weekend project: renovating our existing master bath. I was inspired by the Waldorf Park Astoria in Park City, Utah, when Jace and I stayed there for his birthday this past year. The bathroom was rich, deep woods with taupe walls and ambient lighting. While flipping through my most recent issue of Ballard Design, I was inspired by an absolutely gorgeous combination of summer orange, beige, and deep chocolate brown. With this as my inspiration (an another BIG cup of coffee) I set out to work.

Our home, built in 1980, appears to have never had the bathroom renovated, and this project could have been MAJOR. However, we established that the cabinets were in good shape and just really needed a staining.

Here is our Master bath BEFORE any renovation:

Product Catalog from the 80's?

Beginning Steps: Cabinets
-We visited our local Habitat for Humanity REStore (Awesome place if you've never been- I highly recommend it) and picked up some random polyurethane stain in "bamboo mahogany" and a few paint cans of taupe beige colored paint for only $0.50 a piece.  
Just a typical day in la la land....
-I removed each cabinet, labeled the section it came from, and separated each set of hardware (ex: left bottom hardware). 
-Next, I sanded down each cabinet (We were fairly lucky as there had not been any stain or sealant placed on these cabinets for decades, and there was a dry, thirsty finish already waiting to soak in some paint).

-I removed all of our cabinet pieces into the kitchen to stain, and then stained the base unit as well as each door and drawer. Cabinets Before:
"Feed Me"
"Ahh....=) "
Cabinet after 1 coat of stain:
-While the stain was drying, it was go time for the paint in the bathroom.

"Painting the cabinets red, we're painting the cabinets red, or off with her head!"

-Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall.... You have to go.
"Mirror Mirror on the Wall"
This mirror could have been great, thirty years ago. Now, however, it was a sad shell of it's glory days (if it ever had any?) It has rust spots from aging, nicks and scuffs galore, and spanned the ENTIRE length of the bathroom. I'm assuming the previous owners didn't understand that less is sometimes more, either that, or Narcissus used to own my home. Either way, the mirror had to go. I hopped up onto the counter top with a Spackle knife and pried the edges until the entire thing popped off. Once it did, this was what I found:
The "Holy" Wall

7 large holes in my wall. Hmm... what to do? Have I mentioned I've never remodeled a bathroom yet? If not, now would be a good time to tell you that I have no clue what I'm doing. Perhaps I should have mentioned that....

As luck would have it, two brains are better than one. Jace returned home around this time to find the bathroom in disrepair and me in confusion about my "holy" wall.

Luckily, the people at Home Depot really know their stuff, and we were able to re-texturize the wall so it flowed seamlessly with a little spackle and paint. Spackle, sand, spray, paint, repeat as needed.The color I painted was a medium beige-taupe with slight purple undertones, extremely neutral and very flattering, even though the camera coloring is off.
"Snowball fight!"

Next up, the Medicine Cabinet:
The previous cabinet was entirely rusted out metal that looked like it too, was original to the house.
This part of the demo was actually quite fun, as I now have a gaping hole in my wall... whoops. And I guess putting a window into the bathroom would be a bad idea, right?

At this point, we decided it would be a great idea to head to Home Depot to purchase supplies. 
Here's what we bought:
-New wrought iron Light Fixture -$30
-Large beveled bathroom mirror- $45
-Beveled glass medicine cabinet- $35
-Antique-finish hardware pulls for cabinets-$20
-Molded shelving: $35
-Antique-finish towel rack- $20

Total Hardware purchased: $185

Let there be (pretty) Light!:

There's a light at the end of this tunnel, right?
After we returned, Jace set to work changing out the old, too bright light fixture with the new one we picked up. I believe in good lighting, but in a bathroom this small, there's no need to re-create Florida here people. I understand it snows 6 months out of the year, but give me a break. I knew warm lighting and a brilliant light fixture would transform this room!
Our new light fixture

NOW we're getting somewhere!

By this time, it was nearly midnight, so we packed it up and called it a night.

Bright and early Sunday morning, we started up again and the cabinet doors had finished drying from their second coat of paint

We drilled holes for the new hardware which had previously not existed, leveled everything out, and re-installed the cabinets for a beautiful finished look:
It's hard to believe they're even the same cabinets!

We hung up the mirror using the correct caulking glue and pressure, finished with some minor details.. (aka Jace versus the towel rack. The towel rack won Saturday, but Jace won the final battle....)

Next, we went decoration shopping! (Did I mention this is my FAVORITE part of redecorating?!)

And picked up:
-New antique bronze shower rod: $5 (Was on a sale and we didn't even know it!)
-Waffle texture white shower curtain $25
-Antique Bronze Waste Basket : $20
-Orange and beige decorative towels: $10
-Antique Bronze Towel Rack: $13
-Antique Bronze Tooth brush holder: $10
-Antique Bronze Soap Dispenser: $10
-Glass Apothecary Jars: $10
-New bath rug $15
-Candles and candle holders $15
Total Decor: $133

And, without further ado, here is our finished master bath...

And, the amazing part of it all? This remodel cost $330 total. Take that Bob Villa.


--Happy Home, from your newbie renovators, Jace and Cass


  1. This is truly a miraculous transformation with a minimum of cost and a maximum of vision and effort. You guys are amazing!

  2. Awesome job. I remember doing the same thing to our upstairs bathroom and felt so much better when we were finished. It's nice to have a room you can enjoy. Way to be inspired.