Tuesday, November 11, 2014

our bathroom

With old houses, you find very few bathrooms. Our house is from 1920, and we have four bedrooms with only one bathroom (not including the closet with a toilet below the stairs that is currently not in working order).

The bathroom was the very first thing that Steve started working on in July 2013. But since everything had to be custom made, it came to a standstill, and just finally got finished this weekend!

The old bathroom had yucky green linoleum floors, painted wood-paneling walls, and the ugliest fluorescent drop ceiling light fixtures. Steve just went ahead and ripped all of that out :)

He got the walls down to the lathe, then he put up new drywall. If we had unlimited resources, or this were our forever home, he would have taken out the fixtures as well to dry-wall behind them.

We painted the new walls a minty green. Photos don’t really do it justice. It’s hard to take photos of bathrooms! :)

When he ripped up the linoleum, there was obvious damage to the wood around the tub. He replaced the flooring with new wood, sanded the entire floor, and stained everything to match. It turned out beautifully!

So this is how it looked for a year. Steve hadn’t made up his mind what to do with the ceiling above the shower or the vanity—there were some electrical and vent issues to consider. Recently, he decided to just finish the job: he tore it all out :) The light in the shower was a huge no-no and was gladly removed for safety. The exhaust fan/light was taken out above the toilet. (He found a dead bat in that fixture!) This left a series of holes in the ceiling and walls leading up to the attic—hello more drywall!


Now we have a simple, uncomplicated bathroom. Steve plans to add some trim where the old paneling meets the repaired plaster.

We added the shelf above the toilet when we moved in. Steve also switched the light switches, outlets, and covers from dingy to white!

We didn’t touch the tub or the tile above it. It’s another “If this were our forever home” job. . .  We’d love to take out the plastic wall insert, and tile all the way up to the ceiling.

Steve had to custom make all of the door and window casing (to include the window sill) to match the woodwork in the rest of the house.


As he did with the door and window, Steve matched new base moulding and shoe and installed them.

Thanks for stopping by!

Take a look at the rest of our house projects.


  1. I feel ya girl! Wouldn't we all love a gorgeous laundry room/mud room combo?? :) The bathroom looks great! Love the floors

  2. So cute!! I love the color you chose!

  3. Maybe you've answered this before, but how do you get to do all these projects in a rental house? At least I think you said you rent. Maybe I'm just totally crazy :)

  4. Rachel: I love the color, you are so lucky to be married to such a talented man ! Our laundry room is the same, not photogentic lol.

  5. Your bathroom makeover looks: AMAZING! The color is so beautiful. How exciting!! And, listen, I live in the North (MN) and my laundry room is downstairs unfinished. But, I don't spend much time in there so it doesn't bother me.

  6. Rachel, your bathroom makeover looks amazing! I love older homes and the charm they possess! Y'all did a great job!

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  8. You guys did a lovely job on the bathroom, not to mention the wooden floor and the walls. I think putting up a new drywall was a great idea, especially in the long run. Anyway, thanks for sharing this with us. All the best!

    Johnny Hernandez @ Ripple System

  9. Wow that looks fantastic. You have really opened the room up and it feels a ton more welcoming. We are redoing our bathroom. The main adjustment we are making is the window. We are making an enormous window that has that cloudy look. I think it is called frosted. We had barely any light in the bathroom making it unwelcoming.

    Maxwell Frey @ Design Build Duluth

  10. The sanded floor with its ‘antique’ colour varnish and choice of period colours match the overall ‘period’ feel of the bathroom. This also matches the original tub and other features you kept which, apart from keeping down costs, also adds to the character of your home. I would expect a similar approach to your laundry room will yield great results.

    Wilfred Andrews @ LB Plumbing and Heating

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  13. Seems like Steve is very well knowledged and experienced in such DIY jobs. He’s done a fantastic job with the bathroom. Luckily you’ll didn’t come across any leaking or burst pipes throughout the renovation project. In case it does happen in the future, be sure to hire a professional plumber to sort it out. You don’t want to risk damaging your well done bathroom any further!


Thank you so much for your comments! I enjoy reading each one!


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