Oh happy day! We don’t regret for a single moment giving up a small bedroom to create this luxurious bathroom. It is the only full bath in the house and is functional as well as beautiful.
You may remember that we originally planned to reconfigure the old bathroom but decided to convert the smallest bedroom into the new bath. This greatly extended our timelines as well as our budget. Pictures of the befores (and in betweens) can be found here.
The bathroom is neutral and will work with a variety of styles. Being a decorator, I like to try out new things, so the simple black, white and wood envelope provides the perfect backdrop. Right now, I am loving the soft pink and feminine look to this space which balances out the masculine lines. The coolest piece was found in my grandfathers garage, an old mesh top to a wine press, repurposed here with a few flowers. The macrame wall hanging was made at the Craft Bee and the candles/holders are from Chapters and Homesense. And of course, no space would be complete without a few older items, the rug and glass bottle are vintage finds and the wood trim is original, carefully salvaged during demo.
splurges and saves
In every reno there are places it makes sense to splurge and places to make more economical choices. Here is how it played out for our reno.
Splurges: Brizio tub and shower faucets, glass shower stall, freestanding soaker tub, radiant floor heating, skilled tradespeople
We needed A LOT of help with this one! Thanks to our drywaller, tiler, electrician and plumbers who gave this bathroom project a professional finish. And of course, we could not have done it without the amazing Shane!
Saves: Vanities (Adam made them! click here for details), wall sconces, subway and hex tiles, accessories and artwork, we did our own design, demo, trim work and painting
For some items, no matter how much we looked, we couldn’t find exactly what we wanted. So we made things ourselves and customized standard items. For example, we purchased a shower kit in a chrome finish and had it powder coated in glossy white with a matte black handle. H & G Powder Painting did a flawless job of painting all of the little bits and pieces, and are a great local London resource. We couldn’t find a mirror in the size we wanted, so we made one from the same walnut plywood as the vanities and ordered the exact size mirror we needed, with polished edges, from Provincial Glass and Mirror. The blinds were originally measured and made to hang from the top but we didn’t want to block the view of the trees and sky, and since we don’t need privacy from the birds we decided to shorten the pull chain and hang the blind so it covered the hardware in the middle of the window to give a permanent view of the sky. If you don’t have room for a built in shower seat, a ceramic stool works well and looks amazing. This one is from Urban Barn. Even the towels have been customized with little loops for hanging.
We found some amazing local sources for our bathroom reno (and some familiar Toronto sources too!) I hope you find these resources helpful in your own renovations.
London Bath Centre: We sourced our tub and shower kit from this great showroom on Wharncliffe. If you have ever sourced a modest sized tub with a centre drain and two sloped sides, you know it is no small feat. Thanks Wendy!
Household Plumbing: Were great at getting us the products we sourced online and at good prices too! The matte black Brizio shower and tub faucets are perfect in this space. Thanks Janet!
Ciot: This large Toronto tile retailer has a great selection. The simple white subway and 2″ black hexagon tiles are classic and on trend. Thanks Sasha!
The Lighting Shoppe: The simple black and brass industrial sconces are perfect mood lighting for the space! The Edison bulbs create a warm glow that is quite flattering.
Rona: We scoured the big box stores trying to find matte black faucets and were lucky to find the two vanity fixtures at Rona (one found in London, one in Brampton!)
IKEA: Long, shallow depth trough sinks were a great find in a beautiful ceramic (I love the feel).
Homesense: Plush new towels make any bathroom feel fresh and Homesense is my go to place for linens and home accessories.
Home Depot: We sourced the edge drawer pulls for the vanities online, and since Home Depot carries other products by the same manufacturer, we asked for them to be ordered for us. Yes, you can do this too!
Trades: I’m happy to share contact info for the great trades that worked on this project. Send me a message and I will get you their info.
We thought a short video might explain the layout of the space a little better. Enjoy!
As always, thanks for following along. I think we’ll be puttering outside for the next little while! The workshop completion is next…xo
I am repairing and priming the old bathroom trim and having the toughest time painting over this one piece above the door. It has such a beautiful patina. Would you leave it as is? xo
The slow and steady progress is starting to take shape. It started as a princess room, complete with stenciled crowns. Removing the lathe and plaster revealed no insulation and thin strapping. Once the exterior walls were properly framed and insulated we installed a vapour barrier, drywall and subway tile (with the help of Abraham the drywaller, and Ted the tiler). The electrical is done, the plumbing rough in’s are waiting for the fixture installation. We are so close. I’m looking forward to my first bath almost as much as getting the tub out of the hallway and vanities out of the kitchen! xo
The project management triangle is a good principle to keep in mind for any renovation project. The three elements are: speed, cost and quality. Unfortunately, you may only choose two of the three elements. We have decided for the yellow brick project that we would sacrifice speed to keep the budget in check and assure high quality. When I get a little antsy about the length of time the project is taking (ahem, a tarp for a bathroom door!) Adam kindly reminds me of what we call the quality triangle.
Here is a story that illustrates how the quality triangle is playing out in real life right now. On a visit to Toronto in December I found a gorgeous vanity at a higher end bath store. At $3,000 each, they were not possible within our budget. So we began designing our own and with the help of an expert wood worker friend, a lot of time and patience we are, four months later, almost finished building a pair of lovely floating vanities. The learning curve was huge but the results are something we are proud of.
And, because we choose quality and cost over speed, you will have to wait to see the finished product! xo
Framing and insulation, done! Fixtures are ready to go! Time for plumbing and electrical. Soon, it will start looking like a bathroom, thanks to Shane and Adam. xo