Bathroom Redo | Part Done

It's finally official.  The bathroom is done.

While it's been usable for weeks, it wasn't photo ready yet, so I got out of my procrastinating slump, and finally finished sewing/DIYing the shower curtain and painting the shoe molding.  Yes, probably the 2 easiest things to do were the hardest to get motivated to do.  So, after finishing and doing a little happy dance I cleaned everything and took some pictures.

We've come a long way from the yellow/green/brown, 1970's bathroom that we've been living in since we bought the house 2 years ago.

Now, it's a light and airy, spa-like bathroom, that not only has improved in the looks department, but functions a lot better, with more storage, two sinks, and more overall space.

The new shelving nook where the chimney was removed.

Above the toilet I framed some pictures I took while Mike and I were in Florida visiting my parents.  I printed them in black and white and threw them in some Ikea Ribba frames, and used my favorite Ikea picture ledge to display them.

Yesterday was overcast, so it was hard getting pictures with natural light, but I was able to get this one between the clouds, which show the lights above the vanity.
All the fixtures are brushed nickel and have a slightly modern feel, but with the more traditional elements like the molding, it still feels like it matches the rest of the house.

Even though the sinks are high, (we didn't realize the vanity was luxury height, (35") when we bought the sinks), we love them.  Mike and I are both 5'7"ish and find it more comfortable to wash hands/brush teeth when we don't have to bend over.

In the middle of the reno we decided to upgrade and extend the tile up to the ceiling.  I'm so glad we did because it makes it look bigger and brighter.

For window treatments, we bought this bamboo shade from Home Depot and keep it half way open all the time.  On the bottom window, I added frosted film to let light in, but maintain privacy, (click back here to see the view from this window).

I really wanted a waffle weave shower curtain, but the higher tile meant an 84" shower curtain.  Which is of course is trying to find a unicorn for sale.  I found one from Target online, and even bought it, but when it finally arrived in the mail, I was really disappointed with the fabric.  It was really cheap feeling and shiny.  Not worth it, so I returned it.

I was left trying to find a simple white 84" curtain, something I didn't think would be that hard.  Maybe others have magical internet searching powers because I could not find anything, so I made my own.  I used a plain table cloth I bought at Target and had planned to sew 12 button holes along the top.  Although I'm pretty good with a sewing machine, (nothing crazy, but I can sew a straight line), button holes elude me.  I practiced and practiced and even considered taking it to a tailor, but finally broke down and bought a grommet kit, spray painted them white and pounded them in.  I had to hem the bottom, but the width was perfect.

Even without the waffle weave, I think the white fabric curtain still adds a layer of softness to the room.

As you can see in this before and after floorplan, we removed the chimney adding more storage, and shifted a couple things to make everything breath a little easier and more room to move around.

Something that can't be seen that's also improved, is all the plumbing, electrical, and even some of the structural elements were updated by Mike himself.

Here's a look back at all the dirty details of how we got to this point.

Demo started right after Christmas, (months before we were planning to start) and went in a couple stages, first the large built-in items, like the tub and vanity.  And most importantly, the chimney.

Then, the plaster walls and ceiling.

Finally, down to the studs and floor boards.

Then the real fun started, removing all the old plumbing and updating to new PEX water lines and PVC piping.

After adding everything we needed in the floor, we were able to put base board down and update all the old knob and tube electric and finally close everything in with some insulation, (something that wasn't in the old bathroom) and frame the chimney hole and around the new tub.

Mike then added drywall and prepped for me to paint.  Unfortunately, we were given the wrong tile, and I was using a different tile sample to pick my colors from.  This meant I painted two more times before I got it right with Sherwin Williams' Pewter.  

In between all the painting Mike was able to get the floor prepped for tile, and also built window trim to perfectly match the existing trim in the house.

Then, we were able install the tile, on the floor and in the shower.

It was finally starting to look like a finished space.  We took a huge risk and decided to cut and install a solid surface countertop ourselves.  I mean we made it this far doing everything ourselves, might as well go all the way, right?  

After the finishing touches were added like the insert for shelving in the chimney nook, mirrors, sinks and fixtures, we're ready to call it done!

As for the cost, in our minds we thought we could do it all for roughly $3,000.  We decided to update all the plumbing and electrical, and chose some upgrades along the way.  We just bought things as we needed/saved up and ended up spending closer to $5,500.  But, taking almost 7 months to finish, spread this cost into more manageable payments along the way.

As for the breakdown, I tried to find all the receipts, but I'm sure a couple small trips to Home Depot might have not made it into the file, (not to mention a couple extra house items making it onto some of the bathroom receipts), so here's a basic rundown with at least all of the big ticket items:

(All done by Mike)
Building Materials
(Including new plumbing, electrical, and framing, drywall, etc.)

Shower Head/Faucet




(Through work, I get a pretty awesome Sherwin Williams discount)


Window Shade

(A very rough (probably over) estimate)

Even though we spent more than we thought, it was completely worth it, (I know everyone says that, but it's true)!  Overall, I don't think there's anything we wouldn't have done/chosen if we had the chance to redo it.  Well, even though I like the tile now, I think I would have wanted the original tile we picked, and I probably would have gone with a larger tile, probably a 12"x12".  It would have made installation easier and probably looked a little nicer, but I still like the tile we have now, and I'm just glad it's over!

I think both Mike and my favorite new items are the double sinks.  It's so much nicer getting ready for bed with two sinks!  Although now that I think about it, I really like the tile in the shower, oh, and the new storage made from removing the chimney.  To be honest, I love it all!  And, don't feel weird if we invite you over and insist you use our bathroom.  We love showing it off!


  1. It's gorgeous! The shower and closet are my favorite parts for sure. Great job!

  2. I love the remodel! Your bathroom looks bright and so relaxing! I think it definitely plays its role as a “comfort” room. Good job! =)

  3. Wow, I can’t find the right words to describe your new bathroom, but I have to make do with the adjectives to describe it – elegant, sophisticated and welcoming! It's just pure bliss to me :-)

    Terence Watthens

  4. Looks great and thanks to the wonderful idea to remove the chimney, my husband is interested in removing ours as well! We'll have some nice additional space!!

  5. Your bathroom looks almost exactly like ours - your re-do looks beautiful!! Can I ask what the width of your vanity is? We need to replace our old one, but the previous owners did not tile behind, so we have to stick with the same width - which is 66". Yours looks like it is longer than most, so just wondering if it is 66", and where you purchased it. We are having a hard time finding an inexpensive one. Thanks so much for your help!

    1. Thanks Beth!! The width of the vanity is 66" as well, two 24" sink bases, with an 18" drawer in the middle. We bought them at a local construction surplus store, but I believe the brand is Contractor's Choice, (in the Sarsaparilla color). We actually ordered them through the store, so you may be able to find somewhere near you that carries them as well. Hope this helps!!

  6. I know this is an old post but I just came across your blog. (And am loving it) Do you happen to still have the name of paint you used for your bathroom?

    1. Hi Toby! The paint color is Sherwin Williams' Pewter. thanks for stopping by!