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Thursday, January 2, 2014

Bathroom - A long list of problems to tackle

Happy New Year!  I'm beginning 2014 with room 2 of my 3 room challenge - our main bathroom.  This one scares me the most since it needs the most work.  In reality I will not be able to fix up the entire room with the budget I've set.  That's part of the challenge - what can I accomplish giving me a room I love for at least the next 5 years?


In 2003 we remodeled the only 2 bathrooms in our home.  The main bath has a single sink on a long counter, a toilet, and a shower.  At that time, we mostly concentrated on the shower side replacing a small bathtub with a shower and sliding glass doors.  We hired out the tiling of the floor and shower, we wallpapered the entire small room (a project I do NOT recommend with so many obstacles to go around), and we painted the ceiling.  We did not change anything on the sink side of the room except for adding a bamboo frame around the large mirror.  The counter top is cultured marble with a built in sink.  For some reason, I chose a brass finish for the shower door surround and left the existing towel bars and other metal finishes as antique brass.  We've changed the faucet since that remodel project to one with an oil rubbed bronze finish, which I ruined trying to remove the hard water deposits.  Although I've liked the 'Jungle' theme for quite some time, I'm now ready to start a move toward a design I hope will please a larger audience should we ever think to resell.  The bottom line, however, will be that I like it.

Yes, there is a toy snake on the top of the cabinet!

 The shower needs to be regrouted and resealed.

Problems to address

Cabinets and Counters

Our counter height is only 29.5 inches.   On me, that doesn't even reach the top of my thighs and I'm only 5'5''.  I don't plan on getting new cabinets, so my challenge here will be to raise the height in some fashion. 

Additional changes I'd like to make:
  • Change the handles and knobs to ones with an oil rubbed bronze finish to continue with the metal finish I used in the Foyer lighting.  
  • I want to add more storage as one can never have enough! 
  • I will be refinishing the cabinets, but haven't decided how.  Depending on what I end up doing for added storage, I may stain or paint.  One thing I do know is that my husband does not want white cabinets.  Hmmm, that gives me lots of options!  I really don't want to do any tricky paint techniques this time.  
  • The counter top will be changed.  I've been researching pricing on tempered glass, Silestone, butcher block and more.   
  • That also means I'll need a new sink and faucet.
  • Finally, the large mirror was ruined when I put up the wallpaper so it will be replaced.  Don't ever let wallpaper paste drip behind a mirror.  It erodes away the reflective backing.


Another must do is to change the lighting.   I have been wanting sconces as I've learned this is the best source of lighting for applying makeup.  This would likely involve me hiring an electrician.  I can easily replace the overhead light myself, but I don't want to experiment in moving a junction box and adding another fixture.  Besides, this bathroom has an outlet that is likely not up to current electrical codes.  There is no GFCI.  While we are at it, maybe putting the outlet on my right would be a better fit for me since using my curling iron or blow dryer involves me stretching electrical cord from the current outlet across the sink area.  I am right handed.  $$$$ :(

Exhaust fan switch covered with tapeuntil the fan is fixed
Walls and accessories

Wallpaper will go, but it has been so long, I don't remember the condition of the walls underneath, so that could present a problem.   Towel bars and toilet paper holders are out of date, so I need to upgrade there as well.

Now for my goals on the budget and timing.  I plan to spend between $1500 and $1700.  I'm hoping for the lower end because I'm already thinking of more things I want for the last room of this challenge.  I need to complete this by the end of April 2014.  There are still many decisions for me to make on this project.  Stay tuned in.  One loyal reader mentioned 'motivation'.  Your comments on this blog are the best form of motivation for me, so keep them coming.


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