7th House on the Left

Last time we posted about the hall bathroom, we talked about what to put on the counter between the two sinks. Well, we finally came to a decision and some wall art, a few hooks, and a toilet paper holder later, we can officially call this turkey “Done”. Holla.

complete bathroom renovation

We’re really happy with the final outcome and feel that the year spent in the making was well worth it. To refresh your (and my!) memory, here’s what the bathroom looked like the day we closed on the house…

As you can probably see in the photo, the bathroom before was extremely cramped and dark. As a result, we decided to do a little rearranging…

To give us some more breathing room, we opted to take out the hallway’s second linen closet (remember that?). We then gave that space to the hall bathroom making room room for a much larger vanity and a second sink (read more about that here).

When it came to countertop decoration, we decided to keep things simple. We started out with the tall Boxwood topiary we picked up at Ballard Designs. I love how the greenery brings in a classy natural element without being too “woodsy”. We then decided to pair it with a small antique silver tray to house the hand soap, some PB room spray, and a small glass jar to house over night guest’s jewelry or whatnot. We could always fill it with individually wrapped mints too. Yay for multi-use items!

The wall art was created by yours truly (you can find it in our Etsy shop here) and is made up of the well-traveled streets around town. We love the contrast it brings against the light and bright tiled wall.

On the wall opisite the vanity, we hung two oil rubbed bronze hooks (found here at Restoration Hardware) for guest’s towels and we hung an ultra soft plush robe to go with the whole spa-like motif. When we drilled them into the wall, we made sure to drill in the grout line to prevent cracks in the tile. That would have been bad.

After living with it for a few months, we’re really happy with the decision to include some open shelving in the middle of the vanity. We added a small wicker basket to corral the washcloths. It’s convenient and great for guests because they don’t have to wonder where they are.

As for the toilet paper holder (found here at Pottery Barn), we decided to go with a satin nickel finish to tie in with the faucets and vanity hardware…

Overall, we’re really happy with the outcome and the fact it doesn’t even feel like the same room as when we first bought the house!

Now time for the nitty gritty… I’m sure there are little things here and there (like switch plates and new junction boxes) that we forgot about along the way but to give you an idea of what cost what, we went through our receipts and came up with this general budget breakdown:

Demo: $0
Framing/Sheetrock: $600
Plumping (pretty much everything had to be replaced): $900
Tile (including labor): $1,500
Vanity: $1,750
Bathtub: $850
Toilet: $255
Sinks: $300
Plumbing Fixtures: $680
Lighting: $94
Exhaust Fan: $185
Quartz Countertop: $900
Accessories (rugs, art, hooks, etc): $325
Mirrors: $120

Even though we had a pretty good idea of how much the overall reno would cost, we never started with a “set budget”, so we can’t say if we came in under or over budget. We just did things (or had things done) as we were ready to pay for them. Which yeah, with everything else in the house going on at the same time this made the process go on a little longer but now we’ve got a completely new, much larger bathroom with no debt whatsoever – which is how we like it.

To look back at the action as it happened, check out these posts where we…

So, what do you think about our very first, totally finished “after”?


posted by Ashley  /  13 Comments

We’re just about finished with the hall bathroom renovation. Can I get a “yahoo!”? (To read up on our bathroom reno, check out part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, and part 5… whew!) The bathroom has been usable for awhile (it’s been serving as our main bathroom while we’re working on the master bathroom!) and we’re now moving on to the finishing touches. Finishing touches as in… toilet paper holder, soap dispenser, wall art, and so on. All of that stuff is pretty easy to pick out – I mean, come on, there are only so many types of soap dispensers! But then there’s the “so on”.

We have a pretty good amount of counter space between the two sinks – 29.75 inches to be exact. A soap dispenser takes up only so much space, so what else should go there?

We tend to like things simple and uncluttered. So we’re not looking to add a bunch of “stuff” for the sake of having “stuff”. At first, I thought about doing apothecary jars (like the ones in the above photo), but I want to save that for the master bathroom. Apothecary jars are popping up everywhere these days so it may seem like an obvious choice. However, if you can find unique things to fill them with, you can make a one-of-a-kind vignette. I’ve got some ideas up my sleeve that I’m anxious to get to!

With apothecary jars off the list, I turned to the Internet to see what other homeowners have on their bathroom vanities and here are some of the inspiration photos I collected:

Pottery filled with foliage, vase with flowers, two soap dispensers, and a toiletries dish.

Soap dish, toothbrush + toothpaste dish, small clock, and simple flower arrangement.

Large tray complete with towels, flowers, soap, tissues, and a large container.

A tray with assorted soaps and oils, potted plant, and folded washcloths.

Toiletries petistal, mirror, candle, shallow basket for towels, and a cotton ball jar.

Pitcher with foliage, wooden tray, rolled wash clothes, soap on a rope, and small toiletry jars.

Even though most of the above bathrooms aren’t necessarily the style of our bathroom, I thought these were great examples of what other people put on bathroom vanities. Once we finish up the master bathroom, the hall bathroom will primarily be used by guests when they come over (and the occasional overnight guest), so we don’t need a big jar of cotton balls or sea sponges sitting on the counter. We want a vignette that is beautiful in form, yet practical in function, and thanks to these inspiration photos, we’re a little bit closer to that goal. We’re hoping to wrap things up in the hall bathroom over the next week (fingers crossed!), so stay tuned for the “big reveal”.

How about you? What do you have on your bathroom counters? Tell us about it in comment section…

Apothecary jars available here. Bathroom counter inspiration photos found here, here, here, here, here, and here.


posted by Ashley  /  34 Comments

We are well overdue for a hall bathroom update, aren’t we? It’s not “finished” yet but it’s getting a little closer. Last time we talked about the hall bath, it looked like this…

The day we closed on the house, it looked something like this…

Yuck! Back to the present…

We’re not ready for the full on “reveal” yet, but we’re going to show you a few of the recent details that have been added.

The faucets (finally) came in and we love them! We went with a 8″ spread faucet because we felt it fit the sink size better. We first fell in love with Delta’s Dryden Faucet when we came across it at one of our local hardware store chains. It was priced at a whopping $430 each. After a little shopping around, we were able to find it online here for $268. Yay for deals!

I love large pieces in small spaces, so it comes as no surprise that I love the large mirrors we got for our bathroom because they make the space look substantially bigger. We totally lucked out at Target when we found the perfect mirrors for only $55 each! That’s a fantastic deal for large mirrors like these. Score!

The addition of the mirrors makes a huge difference, and the bathroom looks much larger and more finished. The thick espresso frames tie in with the vanity and are a great contrast against the white Silestone countertop. We haven’t decided whether to hang them on the wall or not. At the moment they are just sitting on the countertop. We kind of like it like this because it brings in a certain laid back / casual feel to the space. On the other hand, it might look a little more “finished” if we were to hang them two or three inches off the countertop. Either way, they need to be secured somehow, so we’re going to live with it like this for a few days before we decide where to drill the holes in the tile.

As for the accessories, we’re getting there. There’s a few pretty pieces on the counter but we’re just playing around with them at the moment. It’s a pretty large area between the two sinks, but we don’t want to clutter up the space just because we can. There needs to be enough “working” counter space for hair straighteners, makeup, toiletries, etc.

We lived with the bare light bulbs in the wall for too long and it was time for some “real” light fixtures. After what seemed like an eternity of fixture-shopping and Googling, we finally decided to go to the “Lighting Bar” at Lowe’s. Well, that’s what I call it anyway. It’s the section where you pick out the rod and the globes to create your own light fixture combination. Pretty cool, right?

We liked these particular rods because they were pretty streamline without being too modern or “fussy”. After going back and forth between a few globe options, we finally settled on the simple waffle textured globes. After we installed the fixtures, we realized the glass’s texture actually mimics the white waffle shower curtain (which you can see a glimpse of in the photo above).

Overall, the bathroom seems very long, especially with all of the tile. Therefore, we decided to put down a mat in front of each sink to break up the tile on the floor. After a lot of scouting, we finally found a winner…

Simply put, I love these bath mats from West Elm. The zig zag pattern brings in a little causal fun and personality into a room that might be a bit sterile otherwise. It also mirrors the light/dark contrast going on with the countertop, cabinets and mirrors.

Slowly by surely, the bathroom is coming together quite nicely. After a few more decisions here and there, we’ll have a complete bathroom that’s not only functional but easy on the eyes as well.