Our family has moved many times. Like, seven different states within fourteen years, and multiple cities in a few of those states. Thirteen times total. Let’s just say, we are basically nomads. At least we have been up to this point. As with everything in life, there are pros and cons to moving a lot, and one of the fun things about it is that we have had the opportunity to renovate multiple rooms in our homes and we have learned a lot about different ways to renovate on a budget. This is just one example of the master bathroom in our old home:
It was very difficult to get a good picture of this bathroom because it was a small layout, especially for being a master bathroom. When we bought the house, this was the one room that we wished was different, mainly bigger, but there just wasn’t much we could do about the size, so we went to work on changing what we could, and making it as efficient as possible for two people.
The only change that I absolutely INSISTED had to happen was upgrading to a double sink. We lived with the single for awhile and I was very tired of having to take turns brushing our teeth. I know, first world problems right? but really I just wanted our house to function best for us. The hardest thing about this change was that the countertop was only 55″ wide and there was no room to expand. There were very few options for dual sink countertops at that width; we looked everywhere. We started to consider a custom made one but we really weren’t looking to put a lot of money into this renovation. Luckily we found one option that would work being sold at IKEA, so my husband took a trip down to the closest IKEA, three hours away, and bought it for me. Little did we realize…
…the countertop wasn’t deep enough. See, we thought we had measured, but alas, we overlooked something quite crucial. At this point we weren’t about to drive all the way back to return the countertop, so I put my thinking cap on and came up with a solution.
I was planning to paint the cabinet. The oak color and wood pulls were just dating the entire bathroom and making it a little too country for me (note: this house was indeed in the country, but it didn’t have to look it, right?) Anyway, so I picked the darkest brown I could find, because I didn’t want to go black black, and I got to work on the cabinets. The trick to painting cabinetry that I use is to do very thin coats and leave 24 hrs of drying time between coats. It takes forever this way, and often takes three coats, but it decreases the chipping a ton. So, take your time! The drawer pulls were just found at the local hardware store, but I do love a good brushed nickel square pull and think they really added to a more modern feel.
Okay, so back to our little depth issue…my idea was to create a shelf behind the countertop that would then fill in the gap between the countertop and the wall. We found a wooden post that was in great condition and was the exact 4.5″ that we needed, so I painted the post with the same glossy paint and we installed it behind the sink. We used a few supports under the sink to secure them together and to the wall, ensuring they wouldn’t pull away. (I wish I had taken pictures of those, sorry, blogging fail.) Anyway, the final step was a little clear caulking along the back of the countertop to prevent water from leaking down between the counter and wood post. It worked perfectly and I actually loved the look when all was said and done. We found some slightly more modern faucets at the hardware store adding some character to the new DUAL sink. Seriously friends, the two sinks changed my life!
One thing I had forgotten to mention was that we had previously had the linoleum floor replaced with tile by a very talented friend of ours who has done the tile in a couple of our homes. He does an AMAZING job, and my favorite thing about the tile he did in this house was the baseboard tiling I had him install. It makes mopping the bathrooms a breeze because you don’t have to worry about wood trim.
Okay, so back to the reno, a few other things were added to the list. I spray painted the light fixture. I just didn’t want to drop any more money into a new one, so I removed the glass, sprayed it, then reinstalled. It matched and blended in with the rest of the new design. Had I lived there longer, I would have eventually replaced it as the rest of the light fixtures in the house were updated. We did replace the toilet, but that’s nothing to write on about, other than that the lid was quiet-closing and I loved that feature.
Okay, so the final project was the mirror frame. We just went to the local hardware store and bought some molding that was nearly flat on the back. We mitered the corners, glued them together, painted it, then secured it to the mirror using some double stick foam which compensated for any unevenness and held it up just fine. The molding was very lightweight, using a heavier wood would definitely require a more substantial adhesive. I loved the frame though, it just gave it a final finished look. I found the shower curtain online, the towels at Marshalls, and the tree metal art at Hobby Lobby.
All in all, this project took us a few weeks (not including the tiling done a few months before) and probably about $500-$600. I can’t imagine what it would have cost to hire someone to do this, and really, even with the unforeseen issues, which ALWAYS come up in home renovation projects, it wasn’t that hard to complete. So, if you’re looking to tackle a cosmetic home renovation like this, give it a go. You can do it!