ONE ROOM CHALLENGE // WEEK SIX // THE BATHROOM
The bathroom, aka the scariest project we have ever attempted. At our last home we lucked into a bathroom (the only bathroom!) with classic black and white tile. We updated faucets, vanity, lighting, etc… but we never had to touch the tile. But when we moved into this home I knew that tile was going to have to change. All three bathrooms (as well as the kitchen) have the standard muddled beige ceramic wall tiles, with some sort of beige/brown mosaic border and the hardwood look floor tile. All of which was fine, but not our particular style. We also had a few issues in this bath, the toilet was too large and had to be pushed through the baseboard in the back leaving a hole into our crawl space. Seriously, like a big gaping hole. Smh. And the vanity, like the rest of the cabinetry in the house is falling apart at the seams and painted in the worst possible shade of, well, I have been calling it bad self tanner brown. So we had deep discussions on if/how we could possibly pull of a full bathroom overhaul on our own.
We consulted a few friends who have done this before, and they all said that with our experience with every other project, we could definitely (most likely!) pull it off. So we took on this bathroom as a guinea pig, since we have two more to tackle down the road.
Here was the before…
While I was busy wallpapering the mudroom, the husband and my stepson (who is now 21!!) began demo in the bathroom. All I know is that a saw was used and full panels of the shower walls came out! Lol.
And then it got really noisy when the floor came out. We are on a concrete slab down in the basement and found that renting a demo hammer was the best way to get up all of that original thin set.
Now that it had gotten to this point I needed to select tile! There was no turning back now. I was so excited to be able to work with The Tile Shop (an ORC sponsor) on this project, and fortunate that we have a local showroom I was able to peruse in person to get a feel for what I really wanted this space to feel like.
We have done the the black and white bathroom thing, a look I will honestly never tire of, but thought I might try something different. Still classic, but different. I also had the thought that I really hated the original beige bathroom we just ripped out, but was there a beige/taupe bathroom I could get behind? I love neutrals and since turning to them more and more, I have learned that they really are my vibe. I love color for clients! But I am more comfortable in a classic, neutral space.
And after my visit to The Tile Shop, I determined there was a beige tile I could get behind. It was a 3″ x 12″ Glass Tile in the color way Rosewater. And that paired with a classic marble hex in Royal White for the floor should be a winning combination! The marble contains veins of creams, taupes, grey with a touch of gold/tan every so often.
Now that the tile was selected, my associate at The Tile Shop helped me determine quantities needed as well as all of the installation materials we would need. Cement backer board, Thinset, Grout, Marble Sealer, Spacers, etc… If it is tile related, The Tile Shop has it.
After redoing 95% of the pipes/plumbing, my husband got to work hanging the backer board.
And then waterproofed it. This red was terrifying! lol.
And while the scary red waterproofing dried, I dry fit the floor tile. Meaning I simply laid the tiles down and went ahead and made most of my cuts. This allowed me to move much quicker during the actual install.
I was able to make all of my cuts for the floor using a pair of scissors! The base moulding and threshold would cover up the jagged areas later on. Next I added the grout.
After getting the floor tile down, my head got a little big… I was like “This was way easier than I thought it would be!” That statement came back to bite me later.
We ended up watching way too many YouTube glass tile tutorials and freaked ourselves out. Tile saw? Manual Cutter? So we ended up renting a manual score and snap cutter for all of the tile. We broke about the first ten pieces… I began to panic a bit. Okay, a lot. But finally, my husband started to get the hang of it, so he won the job of cutting, while I would install.
I considered doing some sort of stacked pattern, but knowing the walls weren’t completely plumb and not wanting to go too crazy for our first install, I stuck with a standard brick pattern. So we kept cutting and installing for what felt like days… okay, it really was days!
We are now at this point after grout. And let me tell you, I like building with wood better! But, I am proud of our first attempt at tile so far.
We still have a lot of work to do. Obviously. Caulk, grout clean up, paint, fixtures need to be installed… but we are in the home stretch!
Speaking of faucets and fixtures, we are going with these matte black beauties from HansGrohe! These are part of the Joleena collection. I love how they dance the line between classic and modern. They fit right into my design scheme to create a timeless feel for this bathroom.
I think that these matte black touches will look beautiful on the tile as well as the pedestal sink I bought and hoarded before we ever even moved. I am a crazy person who buys a sink even though they have no need for one… but you know what, I had it when I needed it now!
My husband also went ahead and installed the vanity light from Hudson Valley Light Group. The Barron light is a little Art Deco and I love it!! I also love that the double arches relate back to my dad’s bourbon cabinets we installed in the main room.
All in all, it wasn’t as scary as we had thought it would be, but it was a ton of work!!! I will tile again in the future, but I will need a break for a little while! Ha. I do appreciate all of the assistance we received from the experts at both The Tile Shop and HansGrohe. any questions we had, were quickly answered with kindness and vast knowledge of their products.
Just in case you missed any of the other weeks, here are the links.
Week One // The Before
Week Two // The Bourbon Cabinets
Week Three // The Built-Ins
Week Four // The Built-Ins + Moulding
Week Five // The Mudroom
Week Six // The Bathroom
Week Seven // The Final Touches
Be sure to check out what everyone else has been up to!!