This bathroom remodel has been a great experience for me. I have learned a lot about money management, planning, construction, and decoration, as well as adapting when things don’t go my way. I made myself plan what I was going to do before I started, and I really didn’t want to do that, but I soon realized that in doing so I saved a lot of time and money. I went from only knowing how to use a screw driver to being able to do electrical work, plumbing work, sanding, drilling, cutting wood, cutting tile, and many other things. These will be especially useful as I transition into adulthood. I also had to be very creative and come up with alternative ways to do some projects when they didn’t work out the first time. For example, when I was framing my mirror I originally just stuck the frame around it, but it didn’t stick so I had to resort to using the clamps. This project taught me the value of hard work. It is so cool to look at the before and after pictures and know that I did that with my own two hands. It gives me a great sense of accomplishment, and I’m proud to say that I did it!
The past couple of weeks have been my favorite part of this remodel. Getting dirty and doing all the construction work is fun, but I am a girl so decorating and designing will always be my favorite! I have taken a couple of weeks off to gain back my energy (and to be honest, refill the bank lol). I’ve been shopping around and looking at some stuff on Pinterest to get an idea of what I want to do, and I’m really excited about the way that it turned out!
The first thing that I decided to do was some organizing. All of my stuff was just lying around all over the counter for a while, and it drove me nuts! I really like the look of mason jars, and I had originally planned to buy clear jars and paint them purple, but I was lucky and found a pack of six of these mason jars that just so happened to be purple at Target.
The picture doesn’t do it much justice…I promise that it is a really pretty purple! Anyways, I used these mason jars for many different things. I used three of them for my hair brushes, toothbrush and toothpaste, and my makeup brushes. I found a little basket from a store called At Home to put them in, and I just set it in the corner of my counter.
This gives me easy access to all of the things that I need in the morning, but it is still appealing to the eye.
The next organization project was the medicine cabinet. I added a shelf, and bought some more jars from Target for hair things. I also used two of the mason jars for my contacts.
Now on to my decorations! If you haven’t already noticed, I kinda like purple. So to go with my purple theme I got purple towels, and a purple rug.
Next I bought a quilted mason jar, and a soap dispenser top from Michael’s. All I had to do was take off the original lid and screw in the lid with the soap dispenser. Then I put purple soap in it, and it turned out really cute!
My next project was my shelves. I bought this set of floating shelves from At Home.
I used the last mason jar, as well as another pot for some flowers. I filled them with purple and white glass beads, and silk flowers that I got from Wal-Mart.
I also printed my initials on some purple scrapbook paper, and put the paper in some mini picture frames that I got from Michael’s. I also got some wooden letters to spell out “faith” and a purple candle.
The last addition to my bathroom was my wall art. I found this picture from At Home, and I absolutely fell in love with it!
The goal of this remodel is to make my bathroom more elegant and sophisticated. So, one thing that I decided to do is to frame in my mirror. I think that this simple project completely changes the atmosphere of the room, and it makes the room look finished. Here’s how I did it.
I started by buying long pieces of trim from Home Depot and cutting them down to the size that I needed.
Then I stained the pieces with the same stain that I used for the cabinets.
After letting them dry for a day I used Liquid Nails to glue the trim to the mirror.
Then I clamped the frame to the mirror and let it dry for two days.
With the leftover trim that I had I decided to also frame in the open medicine cabinet that I made. I cut and stained the trim, but I had to use nails as well as liquid nails to put up this frame.
I drilled holes for the nails.
And then I was able to put it up.
Here are my before and after pictures:
Today I tackled the old faucet. This was probably the most disgusting project so far. The faucet was original to the house, so the pipes haven’t been changed for twenty years…Let’s just say that I now know why plumbers charge so much for their services. Here’s how I installed the faucet:
I started by turning off the water from under the sink. Then I disconnected the pipes, and water lines. It was a very tight squeeze under there!
Then I took out the old drain and faucet. There was a nut at the top of the drain that I unscrewed and then I could just pull it out. For the faucet, I disconnected the water lines and pulled it out.
Next I added new waterlines and pipes. This isn’t a required step but like I said earlier, it hasn’t been done in twenty years and they were kind of nasty.
Then I connected the waterlines to the new faucet, and screwed and glued the new drain, and I was finished!
A big issue with the bathroom right now is the lighting. It is very dim, and it makes getting ready in the mornings difficult because I can’t see anything. Painting the walls brightened up the room a little bit, but a new light fixture was the answer to my problems. This is how I did it!
The very first thing that I did was turn off the electricity in the bathroom. Then I took out the light bulbs and the old light fixture. I had exposed wires, so as a safety precaution I taped the ends of the wires with electrical tape.
Then I had to patch up the holes in the walls with spackle and let them dry.
Next I painted the exposed wall, and installed the anchor piece for the new light fixture. All I had to do was screw it in with a couple of screws.
After that I could mount the light fixture. The wires were too long, so I cut them with wire cutters. Then I stripped them with wire strippers, put new nuts on the ends, and connected the wires. When I mounted the light there were small screws built-in and all I had to do was tighten them.
Finally, I screwed the ceramic covers in and added the light bulbs, and my bathroom lit up like I’ve never seen it before!
It’s finally time to do the floor! I started out this project by going shopping.
I found my tile at Floor & Decor for fairly cheap. I decided on this wood-look gray tile for $1.81 per square foot.
Because of the size of the bathroom, I only needed one box of tile so it was a good cheap choice!
The first thing that needs to be done to install tile floors is to screw down the backer board.
Then you mix the thin-set and spread it around with the trowel over an area of the floor.
Once a layer of thin-set is down, run the notched edge of the trowel over the layer and begin adding tile, separating the tiles with spacers.
After the thin-set has dried for at least 24 hours, apply the grout with a grout float and let it dry. Once the grout has dried remove excess with a large sponge.
The time has come for the project that I’m most excited for, the floor! This is the floor before the makeover:
It’s a sticky back vinyl tile that my parents put in when we first moved into the house. It was old, grimy, and it didn’t really match with my color scheme, so it had to go.
The first thing that we had to do was take out the toilet. Once the toilet was out we started to rip up the tile. Since it was almost 13 years old finding a loose corner to start with was pretty easy.
When the tile was out we still had the laminate floor to rip out. This task proved to be a little harder because it was very, very, very sticky. So sticky that my dad, who was helping me, actually got stuck in the middle of the floor, and he had to take his shoes off in order to get out of the bathroom.
This demolition process took a little longer than I anticipated. The whole thing took about half a day. The tiles were so incredibly sticky, and it was a big struggle to rip them up. It felt so good when I finally finished, and now I get to go shopping for some tile!
One issue with this project is funds. I have a lot of things that I want to do, but I have a limited amount of money to do it. My main question throughout this remodel has been how can I make my finishes look expensive without breaking the bank? One way that I have done this is by staining my cabinet instead of buying a new one.
My original cabinet was a light brown color:
It didn’t really go with my gray and black color scheme, so I opted to stain it black. The first thing that I did was remove the cabinet doors and I stained the cabinet itself.
I used this Minwax stain that I got from Home Depot for about $12:
Then I cleaned the doors and drawers with denatured alcohol and stained them:
A total of two coats was added to the cabinet and it dried for about a day.
This is the final product:
Today was a great day because I got rid of the awful purple on the walls, however there were a couple of things that I had to do before I could start painting.
The first was to patch the holes that I made when I ripped out the towel bar above my toilet.
The walls were also dusty from all the drywall work, so they had to be washed down with soap and water. After that I was finally able to paint. In about twenty minutes, my bathroom was transformed from dark and stuffy, to bright and cheery.