A Fresh, Powder Room Makeover

The first major project we tackled in our house was completely re-hauling the powder room. We got some quick satisfaction by painting the den after moving in, but this bathroom was so unbelievably dirty from top to bottom, I was itching to renovate it from the minute the last moving box was inside. Think: gas station bathroom (the kind on the outside of the building that you need a key to enter). Yeah, it was gross. When we removed the vanity, there was roughly an inch high pile of dirt, and the rusted floor vent was a nice touch… Here’s a before/after of the floor:

Now, my favorite part (by FAR) is the floor. Originally, we wanted to use cement tile because we loved the designs, but then I found a porcelain version on Wayfair for a fraction of the price! (This is also the tile I used for my custom stencil when painting the basement tile). But rewinding a minute, before getting started I made a mood board to share with the hubs. He is very visual, so I learned a long time ago to just show him pictures of what I’m envisioning, ha!

Although we veered from the mood board on the tile, we used the same paint color and sconces. But the true catalyst for this project was finding a similar vanity from Lowe’s on mega sale (we saved at least $300 from the mood board pick – I can’t find the original, but this is similar)!

The before pictures leave much to be desired, because: 1) some are screen grabs from a video I took after we moved in, and 2) it’s a tough room to photograph due to lack of natural light (it’s situated off of a hallway between our kitchen and foyer – it shares a wall with the den). Here’s a throwback picture to help show the location:

Awww… baby H!

This room had to be demolished to the studs. There was nothing salvageable. The dry wall was textured (in a bad way) and many of the nooks and crannies of it were filled with (let’s assume) dirt. Days of demo (the tile had many layers), were followed by days of drywalling (the worst/longest part).

You can tell the back wall is shared with the den because of the paneled wood!

Then my husband painted the walls, and DIY’ed some faux-shiplap for the lower two-thirds. For the shiplap effect, he ripped quarter-inch, 4 ft by 8 ft sheets of pine to equal widths (5 inches) and used a nickel to achieve consistent spacing before installing each piece. He hid the top seam by capping it with a piece of 3 inch by 1 inch wood (he routed a space in the bottom half before installing, so the trim/cap would lay flat against both the faux-shiplap and teal walls). He installed the tile after finishing the wall treatment, and then installed the baseboards. Next, I caulked and painted all of the shiplap and trim white. Finally, the hubs installed fixtures so I could decorate!

And now, here are some before and after pictures, side-by-side:

See that smudge over halfway up the back wall on the “before” photo? Yeah, it was in multiple pictures – it was just something gross on the wall I couldn’t scrub off.

I purchased the art from Etsy (blue crab watercolor print, Baltimore skyline, Domino Sugars sign, Natty Boh Tower):

This is my favorite view 🙂

You may have noticed the arched ceiling in some of the after photos. My husband did this to hide a pipe that was sticking out of the wall (going from the basement to our second floor). I didn’t take a picture beforehand, but it looked exactly like what we have going on in our foyer closet below (which shares the same wall that the pipe was sticking out). I think the solution adds some cute charm, while keeping the height of the original ceiling – ingenious thinking by the hubs! 🙂

Apparently the 6th hole was the charm (it looked the same in the bathroom), haha!
The pipe was on the opposite side of the room than this picture (it was in the corner, behind the sink), but the hubs arched the ceiling on both sides of the room so it would look intentional.

I love how this bathroom turned out! Teal is one of my favorite colors, and I think the white faux-shiplap is a great compliment to the moody, upper walls and ceiling. Plus, I love how the quatrefoil mirror ties into the tile design (happy accident since we’ve had it since our first house – it’s pictured in the wreath picture here).

Sneak peek of our Mickey wall!

Of course with two potty trained boys (and a girl to follow), you know we’ll have a step stool living in the bathroom for the next few years. These days, it’s looking more like this:

One more before and after for good measure…

Anyone else really into the cement tile (or patterned tile) trend? I feel like the pattern we chose is timeless, but I guess only time will tell (ha!).

13 thoughts on “A Fresh, Powder Room Makeover

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