Saturday, October 10, 2015

Bath “Before + After” and a Trip to Paris!

AFTER: a new modern bath with clean lines

BEFORE: original fixtures and a vintage feel

Awhile back I promised to share one of my recent home renovation projects. Finally the time has come! As most of us know or have experienced first-hand, bathrooms are often the last room of a house to be renovated. They are expensive, even the small ones, and usually a new homeowner can deal with what is there while investing in updating the more public living spaces. That is how our story goes anyway.

I actually chose the subtle damask-style wallpaper above to replace a bright orange floral print that was on the walls when we first moved in to our 1904 farmhouse. We were okay with the overall look for awhile, but the fixtures really did not serve us well. The dated corner toilet used far too much water and the wall mount sink was pretty nondescript with an exposed trap and no storage underneath. At least the fixtures were white and we could live comfortably with them for as long as we did (about 10 years).

This first floor bathroom actually started out pretty large, with a washer and dryer at one end opposite a stall shower which unfortunately my young-at-the-time kids would often get stuck in (the folding door was hard to operate). The worst part about the bath by far was that the door opened directly into our tiny kitchen, two feet away from the island. And to add to the inconvenience, we had to walk through the kitchen multiple times a day to transport clothes to do the many loads of laundry a family of six has to manage. It was just not working.

The first change we made was to relocate the laundry to one of the smaller bedrooms upstairs. Best decision ever! Next, we reoriented the door of the reconfigured bath so that it would open up into a new mudroom we created by stealing square footage from our exterior farmers porch. So much better! Below is the new and improved layout.

custom vanity: Benjamin Moore Galveston Gray
matte black faucet, knobs and towel bar from
the Jason Wu Collection for Brizo
Afina Illume LED back lit mirror

Most of our projects take quite awhile to complete since we are doing the majority of the work ourselves on our off hours. My husband is a licensed contractor, so he was able to build out the room and handle all of the plumbing (so nice when we can work together on our projects!) Then we brought in some experts to lay tile and build a custom cabinet, which we had professionally sprayed with a Sherwin Williams version of a Benjamin Moore paint color (note: Sherwin Williams formulas seem to work better for spray applications). One of my favorite colors that I had in the master bedroom of our last house, Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue, was used on the walls. Classic ivory subway tiles suit the no-fuss style of our American Foursquare home, while the backlit mirror with LED lights adds a modern touch. Dated fixtures were replaced with water sense models and smart-touch technology.

Jason Wu for Brizo Hydrati
2-in-1 Showerhead with
handheld shower and
H2O Kinetic Technology 

Toto Connelly 2-piece WaterSense Toilet
{best part: no exposed trap on sides!!!} 
subway and floor tile: Galleria Stone + Tile

wall color: Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue

artwork I am considering:

(I love that there is just a touch of pink in this for me!)

simple shower curtain from Target

hammered nickel sink from Native Trails
honed black granite counter on custom cabinet
towels from the Turkish Towel Company

where it all began: Old York 24th Annual
Decorator Show House 2013 (read about it here)

Did I mention that almost all of our fixtures were from one of my design show house projects? When you invest in participating in a show house, the key is to choose pieces that you would like to live with yourself, since often times those pieces end up in your design inventory afterwards. In the Petite Powder Room above, I was able to keep the counter top, sink, faucet and matching accessories. And now I get to enjoy them in my own home! #worththewait

sensor switch and outlet from
the Legrand Adorne Collection

Our whole family loves this new home improvement. We really needed it! And just as we were finishing up, I was offered free switch upgrades from the Adorne Collection from Legrand. The timing was perfect!

Legrand Before + After
Facebook contest

We had originally put in some basic switches that were not the right color (they should have been light almond, but no worries now!) I visited the Legrand website and was able to choose energy efficient sensor light/fan switches and sleek looking outlets that all fit seamlessly in a gloss white plate design. These details make a designer difference! Along with receiving the switches, my before and after photos were entered into a contest they were running. I actually qualified as one of the top ten projects they selected to be voted on to possibly win a grand prize trip for two to visit their Paris headquarters! Crazy, right? Of course, now all my boys wish they had taken French like I asked them to – only one of them listened to me : ) To be honest, I am just happy that our project got noticed! We worked hard on this little bath, and had to endure one bathroom to accommodate six people for years before finishing this up. So believe me I feel blessed already. Even so, a trip to Paris would be amazing (have never been and I did study French for years!) Although I would be equally happy with a family trip for six to Canada at this point, I would still appreciate it if you could take the time to vote on the Legrand facebook page before the contest ends on October 16th (vote under the Best Before & After tab). They are even giving out Adorne Connectivity Prize Packs to 5 lucky voters who choose their favorite transformation. While I wait for the results, this is my second option for wall art ...

via Minted

In the meantime, be sure to come back soon (or follow my Instagram feed) for updates on my entry in the bloggers One Room Challenge link up event. All this week I will be busy clearing the clutter in my office and hopefully finding a home for more design show inventory. The prize for this new challenge? A sense of accomplishment (tackling my junk room space is seriously daunting!) with the end result being a comfortable, visually stress-free room in which to be creative and more productive. Wish me luck!

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