Monday, November 17, 2014

Our bathroom renovation - before and after


Almost a year to the date we ripped out our old bathroom (I excel at taking my sweet time doing things), I'm finally showing you the after! I'm making this a two-part post because I really want to share with you some tips and things I learnt from the reno and if I can dig out the receipts, I can tell you exactly what it cost too! I'd be curious as to what you think it cost if anyone is keen to guess a ballpark.

When we bought this house, we knew we'd never move the bathroom, but eventually add another. The original bathroom just housed a shower, bath and vanity - the toilet was in the laundry. It was old, original and rotten in parts - it was awful to shower in (a large percentage of tiles had broken and fallen away); awful to bathe in (slow to fill; gross and rough base) and awful to be in. Here it is just after we moved in!

It's just so attractive, isn't it? When it came to renovating it, we worked with the space we had. Steve had just three requests: a great rain-style showerhead; a bath that was quick to fill and a toilet roll holder that was vertical so the roll wouldn't fall off. I was (happily!) left to nut out the details: I wanted something clean and simple, light and white. The space needed to squeeze in a decent-sized vanity with benchspace, a bath, a shower, a toilet, great storage, a laundry baskey, kids stool for reaching the vanity (which we still don't actually have, but do have the space for!) and towel hanging space for six people. Seems like a lot of requests for a tiny space, but we managed to get it all in and even ended up with a fair bit of free space which was a nice. Not quite enough to swing a cat, but maybe a kitten!


The only main structural change to this space was ripping out the tiny, useless pantry that was opened from the kitchen and replacing it with built-in open shelving. Originally, I figured we'd just use the space that was there and just have a very narrow, tall shelf but the builder said he had to rip it all out anyway so we could choose our widths and heights of the shelf. In order to fit a toilet in (I chose the smallest I could find that wasn't plastic), we had to put the shower over the bath - not a major problem, but it'd have been nice to have two separate utilities and I've always wanted a freestanding bath, but it wasn't to be...

As for looks, subway tile was always going to feature - I know many who don't like it, but when it's white tile and white grout, I'm happy. I don't like it any other way. I wanted a dark grey floor that matched my whitewashed floors, chunky built-in shelving, at least one tiled display shelf in the shower, a frameless glass shower screen that swivelled and a wall-hung vanity to avoid water damage from the floor (every old bathroom I've ever had the pleasure of living with had water damage to the bottom of the vanity!) and nice-looking taps. Here's what we ended up with:


The only thing I'd maybe do differently is the tiled lip around the bath edge. Water sits here and stains the grout easily. I don't know what else we should have done, but I'd probably have looked into it more if I'd known that would happen!


The wall-hung vanity has enough space to clean underneath easily and because it's off the floor, tricks you into thinking it's smaller than it looks. But it's a good size - the cupboard houses a hairdryer, straightener, clippers, soaps, toothpaste, extra toiletries. I'm also so pleased the handles are the built-in variety (Steve's choice - he done good!) because I am pretty sure everyone's knees and thighs would have been corked several on any handles sticking out! We deliberately stopped the tile at that height on this wall and the opposite wall - there was no reason to continue it to the ceiling like it is in the shower. It's also decision made by budget - it would have cost several hundred dollars more to tile the whole wall. I think I made it one row too high (the kids can't see themselves yet! But they'll grow!) but it's a minor, minor oops. We could choose where we wanted to place the basin and I deliberately chose to the right to allow for maximum benchspace and also I thought it might have felt a little cramped being so close to the door. I'm still planning to add a fence-paling frame around the mirror. One day!

I had these taps picked out before anything else in my bathroom. But I struggled to find a vanity I liked that had three holes - they all had one hole for a mixer tap. But I don't like mixer taps in the bathroom - especially in the bath/shower because the kids can bump them so easily and are highly likely to play with it because it's easy to do so! I also didn't want to do two different tap styles so I spoke to the plumber and we decided to mount them on the wall over an above-sink basin with no hole! I think it turned out for the best!


The drawers have more than enough room for my minimal amount of cosmetics, sunscreen, and other bits and bobs (I've come a long way from my days at Cosmopolitan magazine where I had boxes full of skincare and cosmetics from our beauty sales! And I hardly used any of it!)


Towel hooks were the only way we'd get enough hanging space for everyone, but even then I had to cut the number of hooks on the wall back to three instead of four (didn't want them hanging over the loo!) There are two more on the back of the door - Steve likes to hang his towel over the shower screen so we all still get a hook each! Soon, we'll have an ensuite and it'll be the kids bathroom, so plenty of space for just the four of them.


Just quietly, I also like the look of towels hanging on hooks rather than on towel rails. It's always nice when aesthetics are a by-product of practicality! I've had these flower towels (from Le Souk) for about six years and they're still in good nick. The grey Turkish towel is from a new local shop called Honey I'm Home.


My nice chunky built-in shelves. I'm so glad they're here - when we knocked through the other side of the house for the kitchen, we removed the only linen cupboard. With no built-in wardrobes and minimal kitchen space, this is the only other storage space in the house. So the top shelf houses sheets and pillowcases (extra doonas, pillows and blankets are in the cabin). Next is towel storage - all rolled up! Then there is a wire basket for toilet paper, bubble bath and nappy-rash creams, cotton wool and cleaning products (it's a Kmart basket I spraypainted black). Behind the basket is more toilet paper and tissue boxes; to the side is hand towels and face washers. Lastly, a laundry hamper slides into the space perfectly for dirty clothes (though it is SUCH a battle getting those kids to put their clothes into it!). Looking out into the kitchen - notice my half-done floor? This is how it's staying until we extend - the floor needs to be continued for a little bit in the dining room and I am NOT doing it now and then redoing it in a few months time! So all painting of ceilings/walls/floors and architraves in that area has ground to a halt!


The wire basket and laundry hamper are both from Kmart. Can't go wrong with black (well, the wire basket was silver, but I painted it!)

Inside the basket - baby/kids shampoo and bubble bath/oils, tub scrub, cotton wool and loo paper. We don't need or use a lot of stuff around here. I'll let you know how that changes when my girls become teenagers! Eek!
  
Towels always look better rolled up. Our beach towels go here too, but were (conveniently!) line-drying after swimming when I took these pics.
 

The nook! It's at the other end of the shower. I thought I'd use it for shampoo and conditioner storage, but they go on the windowsill and instead I usually display some greenery from our walks in a tiny bottle, a candle and usually my all-purpose mint spray. For these pics I switched it up with the first agapanthus to bloom in my garden!

That's about it! I'll write a little bathroom renovation guide in coming days for those who could do with some tricks and tips! I'm trying to work out the look of our ensuite bathroom in our loft, I can't imagine me veering too far from this kind of look. I'm a bit of a one-trick pony! But really, I can't see this going out of style quickly - there is nothing trendy here that will date. Plus there aren't too many patterns or colours or shapes or... stuff! No need to be tricky for the sake of it or for the sake of a DIY project. Pretty and practical has always been my mantra...x

Sources:
Taps: Mondella Resonance Chrome bath set, $75, Bunnings
Vanity: benchtop (Quantum Quartz in Alpine White), basin: (Siato above-counter basin) and vanirt (BTH Noah Wall WF-900 vanity), $620 for all three, Eagles Plumbing
Floor tiles: Bellazza floor tile in Mystic Granite, $10.45 for a box of 11, Bunnings
Wall tiles: Johnson Waringa White subway tile, 58c each, Bunnings
Showerhead: Estilo Round shower head, $29, Bunnings
Toilet roll holder: Caroma Cosmo Chrome toilet roll holder, $25, Bunnings



20 comments:

  1. Looks terrific! Thanks for the write-up.

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  2. Oh I am mid renovation of my bathroom this week and oh boy...what a process. We are surviving without a shower or toilet and thankfully its summer, so we can swim in the pool to shower!! Keep an eye out for my bathroom reveal post next week :P x

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    1. It's fun isn't it?!? We have a cabin with extra bathroom plus we had the toilet in the laundry for a while until we ripped it out but because the hot water system on the cabin was close to death we had to only turn it on an hour before our shower or we'd have a cold one! Luckily my husband enjoys cold showers because neither of us was willing to get up at 6am so he could have warm water! And the rest of us did it in bulk in the evening! All fun and games - but totally worth it in the end! Good luck and I will have to have a look when you're done x

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  3. Lovely Belinda! I'm so giddy to glimpse a peek at your space. It looks great! Love those chunky built-ins. Can't wait to hear your tips (for our next house - haha!) and see what's in store for your future reno. xx

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    1. thanks lovely! ooohhhh next house, really?! Do you think it's on the cards eventually? I think it's hard to stop when you have the renovating bug and you're so close to being done! We don't plan to move for a long time, but we do plan to buy an investment unit or two once the mortgage is down to practically nothing! xx

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  5. I love love love your bathroom! What a beautiful transformation. I've been renovating my home over the past 12 months and we are about to start the bathroom soon. I love your choice of sink (we bough a very similar one from Bunnings for $107) and the vanity.

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    1. Thanks cyndie! Renovating is never ending isn't it? But a new bathroom always feels like a major major accomplishment! Good price on the vanity! I looked at the bunnings ones but for memory they were too deep or something (my memory is failing me - it was over a year ago!!) good luck with your Reno! X

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  6. Oh my! I am so impressed with the costings - I would never have guessed from the photos that each item was so well priced! A refreshing change from the renovations I see in homey mags and love so much, but seem so out of reach. Love the realistic budget here - well done!

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  7. Oh thank you Kate, that's so nice to hear! I do try to keep it all very real because I do feel there is a big lack of style-on-a-budget! And advertising is usually involved with kind of ruins the recommendation unfortunately! X

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  8. That is so luxurious. That is indeed the way to go. In terms of look, your bathroom kills it. The only thing you have or need to find out for the long haul is making sure that the pipes and drains are more than amply installed. Thanks for sharing that! Good luck!

    Evon Brow @ Athens Plumbing

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  9. This is such a good transformation, your bathroom looks great. I love the use of the built in shelves. Thank you for sharing this with all the pictures.

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  10. Looks great! My favorite part is the sink. I love how it looks like it's just sitting on the counter:).

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  11. a very simple yet very elegant design choice and colour palate. people have really veered away from the whites, and off white, and beiges for some reason over the past 5 or so years. i do not really know why they do this yes it is a neutralish tone but it is an effective and soothing tone especially for places like a bedroom or a bath room. With all the constant stress in peoples lives i am not sure why they aren't running towards these colors.

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  12. Wow! What a great transformation! I absolutely love your new layout, sink, and tile. Personally, the rich brown tile with the white is beautiful.

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  13. Wow! It looks amazing. I'm loving that sink. So unique!

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  14. Looks amazing! What was your budget?

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    1. I was looking everywhere for all my bathroom paperwork to do a cost breakdown but haven't got around to sorting through it all yet (I'm not very organised). All up though the bathroom cost around $11,000. For memory it was about $2000 for the tiler, $2500 in fittings including tiles, and the rest was for the builder, plumber, electrician, plasterer and showerscreen man. hope that helps!

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  15. It’s a well organized bathroom. I love the idea of putting a towel on the wire basket. I also love the laundry hamper. Wish we had Kmart here.

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