We are back today with the final reveal of our guest bath makeover! (If you missed the “How to Build a Custom Medicine Cabinet” from yesterday you can check it out here.) I am SO excited that this bathroom is finally complete. It’s been on my to-do list since we moved in over a year and a half ago but I just hadn’t had time (or a vision) to do it until this winter. This bathroom is the main floor guest bath that all of our guests typically use when they come over. I really wanted it to be simple and elegant so decided to go with a clean white and silver look but added in a little color to make it cozy too.
Here is what we were working with before…
While I actually do like the color red, this bathroom just seemed SO dark and much smaller than it really is. I also wanted to update the oak vanity cabinet by painting it white to help brighten up the room.
So off to Home Depot I went and picked three paint samples in the same color family to try on the walls. (Paint samples are the way to go before you splurge on a full gallon of paint – make sure you actually like the color first!)
I always paint samples in every corner of the room to make sure that when the light hits it with the shadows that I will still like the color (see second wall below). The hole in the wall is where I removed the builder-grade medicine cabinet and asked Shawn (my hubs) to help build a wood medicine cabinet. Check out that Before & After here.
Once I had removed the toilet roll holder, towel racks, the large builder-grade mirror, and medicine cabinet, I started painting the room in Behr ‘Lotus Leaf’ paint. We ended up having to do 3 coats of paint to cover up the red! This bathroom doesn’t get very much natural light so I kept the light fixture up while I was painting until I was ready to switch it out.
Here is another progress picture of the paint on the walls.
Once the walls were done, I began working on the vanity cabinet. After taping it off with Frog Painter’s Tape, I gently sanded it down using medium grit sand paper and my electric sander. I use Gripper paint primer anytime I’m priming wood. This brand of primer is the best I’ve tried and doesn’t actually require you to sand (but I typically do sand just to be safe).
After you’ve sanded and roughed up the wood, make sure you wipe everything down really well to remove all of the saw dust. You REALLY don’t want saw dust mixing with your primer as you paint. It will be lumpy otherwise! I typically use an inexpensive sawdust rag that you can buy at Home Depot/Lowe’s and then follow up with a slightly damp rag to make sure I got everything.
I did two coats of primer on the vanity. Shawn caught a picture while I wasn’t looking (silly guy!) but thought I’d include in the post to show you that you might have to lay on the floor to do the underneath of the cabinet and the sides so wear painting clothes!
While the cabinet primer is drying, make sure you do a coat of primer on the cabinet doors. DIY TIP: Use whatever you have (get creative!) to make sure the doors are off of the ground so that dog hair/dust/etc doesn’t dry onto them after you paint. I normally try to create a landing where I paint them on two plastic storage bins and two old fence pieces of wood. Make sure to put plastic underneath them as well in case the paint drips! And while I did mine in my office, it’s probably a better idea to paint them in the garage.
One the wall paint was dry, we hung the new light fixture and the mirror. Something we learned hanging the light fixture was how to use toggle bolts. They.are.awesome. The placement of this light fixture is not on top of a stud in the wall so we used the toggle bolt to hold it into the dry wall. Check out this article for more info but turns out that you CAN hang heavy stuff on dry wall by using toggle bolts! Who knew?! :)
P.S. I found this mirror online at Lowe’s for $60! I also found the light fixture at Lowe’s. Once the light fixture and mirror were hung, I did another coat of primer on the vanity and doors. After two coats of primer, I did two coats of white paint to finish them. I hung the doors back on the cabinet and added new modern silver knobs to the doors. I also replaced the toilet roll holder and towel rack with a more modern silver kind.
Here are some of the after pictures of the details…
I found the black box shelves at Bed, Bath, and Beyond. I ended up putting hand towels, toilet paper (easy to grab when needed!), extra soap, and a few decorative pieces in the shelves.
For the art decor, I wanted to use personal pictures we had taken on our travels over the years. The one above is one that Shawn took while he was in Rome. In the frame above the towel rack we have pictures from the night we got engaged, our honeymoon in Jamaica, our trip to Mexico to watch our best friends get married, and a fall picture from a trip to the mountains with our very close friends.
You can also see the updated towel rack in the picture below. I really needed to update the towel rack because the old one had a severely stripped screw and wouldn’t stay on the wall! It was so frustrating – imagine trying to dry your hands and the entire towel rack falls off. Not good.
The final touch was that we updated our faucet to a more modern one. While my original idea included a new black counter top and white, square above-the-counter sink, those just didn’t fit into our budget plans for now so I opted for a modern faucet instead. I’ve learned that the key to keeping Shawn from having a heart attack on these house remodels is to WORK WITH WHAT YOU’VE GOT! :) (I made sure the colors I picked to do in the bathroom would match the white counter top if we ended up not updating it.)
All in all I am very happy with how the bathroom turned out. AND we did it on a budget!
Thanks for taking the time to stop by! Hope everyone has a lovely Sunday!