June 17, 2020

Phase 2 Half-Bathroom Refresh

One of my projects on my "To-Do Before the Baby" list was to refresh the half bathroom that connects the master bedroom and the nursery, and I got it done just in time as baby Jase arrived a week later. 10 weeks later and I'm finally getting around to writing a post about it. For my very first $100 Room Challenge I tackled the first phase where I painted, laid flooring, and built shelves. As my style has changed in the past 2 years I found myself not utilizing this space much because I didn't like it. With the baby coming I wanted to make it "my" space where I could spend time on myself, all for less than $50.

Here's how it looked when we moved in. (I had taped off the black part of the "faux" plastic tile.)

Then in 4 weeks I made it into a prettier, more usable space with $100 (see the reveal here).

2 years of living in it and moving things around, here's how it looked for the official before photos for this Phase 2.

Initially in my project to-do list I mentioned I wanted to finish leveling the floor, install real tile, and do a wall treatment. After thinking about the reality of that plan I realized I could do a scaled down Phase 2 and save those bigger projects for later on in our house journey, and not 7 months pregnant.

I thought I would resurrect the medicine cabinet that had originally been in here and paint it matte black. I dug the cabinet out of storage, painted it, but when I went to put it up it was too big. Turns out this was the one that goes in the full-bathroom, not the half-bath. The one that goes to this bathroom I (now) remember throwing out because it was cracking down the middle. Bust. Even though it frustrated me, I decided to put the freshly painted cabinet back up in the full bathroom to give us some more storage and move the mirror from there into this bathroom.

My first step for Phase 2 was to build the open shelves. I copied what I did for the $100 Room Challenge for the full bathroom where I just used premium pine boards and spray painted L brackets. Getting the lowest shelf up first was important so I could set the mirror on it and decide how high  to hand the upper shelf.

Hanging shelves aren't difficult, just be sure to secure it to a stud (which are a pain to find in this old house, but this handy stud finder is amazing and only $25), and I always use #2 construction screws. Those are the ones you have to use a star-head bit on your drill. I usually use #2 2" screws for these shelves, unless it's cabinets when I use 3.5" screws because they have to hold a lot more weight..

I decided to paint the faux-tile black that I had previously painted white. One of the things I disliked about this space was there was too much white, shocker I know. For Phase 1 I used left-over vinyl marble tile we had from the kitchen and it made the entire space so white. The vinyl tile didn't stand out because there was nothing anchoring your eye. By painting it black it also carries from the black tile in the full bathroom, making everything feel cohesive.

I got a quart of Behr's Limousine Leather for $10 and an old paint brush and went to town on all the grout lines. Every paint brand has a perfect black, I think Limousine Leather is Behr's. It is perfectly warm and cool and has enough depth to not be bland.

After  a few coats, it was time to paint the grout lines. Yes, hand painting the lines was a super tedious job and took the longest time but it was worth it.

Assembling the Ikea sink cabinet was not hard, but it was my first solo plumbing job. Nothing like being 8 months pregnant and trying to figure out how to drain a sink! It ended up not being that hard because it was only a drain and not a supply line.

I wasn't in love with the pulls that came with the vanity but I also couldn't picture regular hardware on it, so I decided to DIY some leather pulls. I just cut some strips from a scrap of crafting leather I had and used two cabinet knob screws to secure them to the doors.

This project didn't take that much time in pregnancy terms and probably could have been completed over a long weekend.

Can we just take a minute and admire this bowl my mother in law made for me!

I spend so much more time in here now that I like to actually be in here! Do you have spaces like that where just a little updating will give it new life?


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