Posts tagged ‘Guest Bath Redux’

November 9, 2011

Mini Bathroom Overhaul: Update

by Cait

As an ademdum to my post Monday, I bought these handles (mostly for the one the arrow is pointing to) but the photo somehow didn’t make it in the post.

Sadly the handle is 7/8″ bigger than the ones I was tempted to buy (and I need a 5/8″ diverter index button, any suggestions?) I have some more handles on their way though, so fingers crossed those work out (if so, it’s about half as expensive as the ones I was considering). Otherwise I think we’ll be going the ceramic cross handle route in this bathroom as well.

In other news, I bought this shower head for about a tenth of it’s retail value, and I have a 15″ chrome shower arm on its way as well.

Basically, the plan is to distract people who may use the bathroom with the shiny chromeness. “Please don’t look at the slight spider cracking in our 56 year old yellow tile. Pay no attention to the fact that the floor looks like someone may have glue indoor-outdoor carpet down as somepoint. Look at this shiny showerhead instead. Ok great. Thanks.”

Aside from this new (sexy) vent fan, we have spent less than $100 on the hall bathroom so far.

We’re making some progress with the guest bath. After the 4th day (technically) of working on it, I don’t want to break out in hives just looking at it. And Robert only fell through the subfloor once (it’s only a 4-6″ drop, he’s fine), so I’d call that a success. Sidenote: He said “this is what was supporting your bath” right before he fell through the floor. Because that’s not scary at all. It’s not like water is heavy or anything.

Last night we mainly we gathered up three contractor bags of busted tile, drywall & gross old insulation, and removed screws and nails that didn’t come out with the drywall from the studs. We also remeasured the room to better estimate supply costs and we gained about 4 inches in each direction (though some of that will go away again with drywall and tile). My Michael Graves dust pan that my mom gave me before I left for college also bit the dust (pun intended). It seems it had somewhat of a design flaw in that it didn’t hold up as well to screws, nails, broken tile, etc as certain Y chromosomes may have expected. </sarcasm> I’m officially adding the price of that and a new broom to the renovation costs.

The next steps for the guest bath are something along the lines of:
1) Brace the walls better (studs shouldn’t move when you remove drywall nails… right?)
2) Move plumbing for toilet, possibly sink, and contemplate second shower head
3) Insulate
4) Drywall/greenboard/cement board*
5) Squeal and bounce excitedly as more supplies arrive**

* I’m going to keep calling it “drywall”, but we’re probably using GP DensArmor or something along those lines. I’m going to let Robert figure that one out, just like he’s going to have to figure out how many 3×6 subway tiles we need.
** The timing of that last one really depends on shipping.

 Tonight we’re going to be doing a lot of measuring and list making, then we’ll stock up on supplies for the next steps.

What is everyone else up to project-wise these days? I’d love to hear about it!

November 8, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: It’s Happening Again

by Cait

I got jealous of everyone else in Blogland drywalling, so yesterday I threw down the challenge to Robert. I think he got into the spirit of it (or he’s excited about his new respirator), because this morning he said “I may clear the bathroom before you get home.” To which I replied “Ok, make sure to take pictures!”

We’re picking up where we left off in May, so if you don’t hear from us for awhile, you might want to send the bloodhounds.

October 22, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: Pay it Forward

by Cait

Yesterday I gave an update on our guest bath purchases, and today I spent the morning taking inventory of all of our purchases in the storage closet guest bedroom and listing anything we won’t be using on eBay. We have been fortunate to score some pretty great deals thus far in our remodel, so it only seemed fair to sell what we have decided not to use. Hopefully we can help someone else out with there own updates or remodel.

some of what we scored: tub & shower handles from eBay  (shown with shower diverter escutcheon from Period Bath)

So, in case anyone is interested- up for sale are:

A Delta Victorian faucet spout (we were planning to pair it with the metal cross handles purchased from ReStore in this post but changed our minds). Spout and seals only, does not include valves or handles. $15

A vintage porcelain shower diverter escutcheon (not needed, since we splurged on one from Period Bath). Period Bath actually has the same escutcheon selling for $75, and I’d bet this one would look just just as good after a short soak in boiling water. $20

Look familiar to anyone? If you answered “hey, isn’t that the programmable thermostat you just bought?” you would be correct! Funny thing, that eBay. Apparently some sellers do not feel the need to be specific about which model of the Honeywell Vision Pro 8000 series they are selling and they don’t accept returns. And some buyers are Buy-It-Now happy when seeing a thermostat for $50 less than retail price. True story.

Anyway, this is the TH8110OU1003 model. Otherwise known as a 1 Heat, 1 Cool model for Conventional and Heat Pump systems, so long as they don’t have auxiliary heat from heat strips. Our house has heat strips, rendering this useless to me. $90 (or willing to trade anyone with a TH8320 or RTH8500 model they don’t want).

I also may be willing to sell these two light fixtures:

former guest bath fixture, as seen at the top of this post

bought for the guest bath but may be too small in relation to mirror

So there you have it. We’re definitely not trying to pressure y’all into buying anything, most of this is already listed on eBay, but I figured I’d mention it here in case anyone is interested. (And if anyone is interested, feel free to comment here or email me at for more information.) We’re not looking to get rich off of any of these items, just recoup what we spent on them. Anything that doesn’t sell will be donated to our local Habitat for Humanity ReStore.

October 21, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: A Few More Purchases

by Cait

Absolutely no work has been done on the guest bath since the last time I talked about it. Unless you count all the hours of overtime I’ve put in at work to save up the funds to work on it again. Fortunately the nice chunk of change from that has eased the spending freeze on the bathroom a bit.

That being said, I finally ordered the faucet and tub spout because today the price on the faucet was down to $158 again (from $176) and Overstock had also sent me a coupon. For $180 with free shipping they are both on their way into my hot little hands. Now on to bigger and better things like drywall vent fans.

You may notice that I also changed our floor tile choice on the design board. We perviously chose white hex tile ($5.95/sq ft), but the about the same time I was falling in love with this lantern shape tile ($6.95/ sq ft) I noticed that octagon dot tile was only $2.57/sq ft. Fortunately we liked all three choices equally, because we’re saving quite a bit of money by changing our minds. Also, both our local Home Depot and Lowe’s carry this tile in store, so we can buy only what we need, rather than ordering full cases (unless they let you order partial cases? I didn’t get that far in my research).

Also, anyone who follows me on The Twitter knows that with the recent cold snap (record lows this time of year for sunny Florida) I have been complaining nonstop about the frigid tile in the hall bathroom. Here’s hoping I can convince Robert that we should add radiant heat to our list of things we want for the bathroom (and eventually hall bath, kitchen and laundry room). Maybe he will agree because I have been so good at saving us money on big ticket items thus far? And because I’ll let him keep the thermostat lower in exchange for toasty floors?

Here’s hoping.

And for those of you playing along at home, here’s a round up of what we’ve spend so far.

Costs Thus Far:
Shower Arm: $22.99 (eBay)
Sink: $20 (local home renovation outlet)
Shower head: $25 (local home renovation outlet)
Toilet: $149 (local home renovation outlet)
Mirror: already owned (HomeGoods)
Shower Diverter Escutcheon: $65 (Period Bath)
Vintage Porcelain Faucet Handles with Escutcheons: $20 (eBay)
Shower Diverter Handle: $5 (eBay)
Bathtub: $124.99 (ReStore)
Sink faucet & tub spout: $180.87 (

$665.89 (includes sales tax and/or shipping)

I’d say we’re doing pretty well on budget (we’re hoping to keep things below $5,000. Hopefully way below.)

Still to Buy:
Recessed lights
Vent fan
Curtain rod
Tile (walls & floor)
Caulk & grout
Drywall & green board
Tape & mud
CPV & other misc plumbing bits

Anyone else working on (or recently finish) a complete gut job of their bathroom or take on any other big projects? I’m loving Our Humble A{Bowe}d’s kitchen reno. Who thinks I’m crazy for wanting radiant heat for a bathroom floor in Florida?

July 25, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: Another Look at the Budget

by Cait

Remember back in April when we tried to fix a pipe that burst in the wall of our guest room, wound up discovering mold in the walls, and decided to do a complete bathroom overhaul instead? Yeah… about that. Sadly with everythig we’ve had going on the bathroom has pretty much been sealed off and waiting for us to have the time & money to tackle it since mid-May.

the guest bathroom in its former “dealing with it” stage

We haven’t done much besides gripe about how we need to get the guest bathroom back in working order think about exactly what direction to go with for the guest bathroom. I knew I wanted white subway tile and blue walls even before I found this picture on Houzz (back before Pinterest stole my heart), and thankfully Robert liked that direction a lot.

from houzz

Then the oval tub we removed during demo and put upside down in the backyard cracked on one edge. We tried to see it as a good thing, since making a solid surface tub surround would have been a pain in the neck with an oval tub. And then the second-guessing started. Did we even want a tub in that bathroom or if did we want a stand-up shower? Did we want hex tile on the floor or something more unique and unusual? Should we buy a new tub or cast one out of concrete? Pretty much the only things I never second guessed were white subway tile and blue walls.

 Last Thursday I was thinking about bathtubs (I prefer plumbing fixtures to jewelry) and looking on Pinterest when I saw the very modern Kohler Underscore. I fell in love with it for just long enough to realize that it’s supposed to retail for $1100 ($755 at Home Depot) and have a panic attack about our budget. Thankfully my good sense returned quickly and rather than resorting to desperate measures to fund our bath remodel I started searching around again. I sent Robert a link to the Kohler Devonshire ($350 at Home Depot) but neither one of us really liked the indentations around its edges. Then asked him sort of offhand if he could stop by our local ReStore to see what they had.

iPhone picture Robert sent me of the tub

Cue the heart palpatations when he sent me this picture a little while later. Someone must have heard my feeble cries for “fabulous on a budget” (to quote Jami from What The Graham), because this white tub was only $124.99 and it fit perfectly into our plan for the bathroom. I spent the rest of Thursday and part of Friday freaking out that someone else was going to buy it out from under us before he could go back, but luckily no one else was interested.

With that new addition, I decided it was about time to update the design board and reconfigure our budget tracking. We are still nowhere near ready to finish renovation, but I wanted to take a look at what we have ahead of us.

updated design board

You’ll notice that since the last design board I changed my mind on the sink faucet. I’m sure Robert is thrilled. However, he likes the tub spout I picked out, and agrees that the new faucet coordinates better. (Both from Overstock.)

I used a tub, toilet & sink that are similar to ours (tub shown is by Kohler, toilet by Glacier Bay, but the sink was something I Photoshopped together using one by St Thomas Creations and one by American Standard). Our sink is by St Thomas Creations, the tub is by Aquarius Bathware and I can’t remember the brand of our toilet (Zeus maybe?), but they’ve both been discontinued.

The sconce is from Lowe’s, and is similar to this one from Pottery Barn. The mirror was a HomeGoods purchase from right about the time we started the blog, but I’ve seen the same mirror at Pottery Barn, on Amazon, and possibly on Overstock.

Not pictured on my design board are the shower diverter escutcheon I ordered from Period Bath, and the shower diverter handle and faucet handles with escutcheons that I scored on eBay. We splurged on the shower diverter escutcheon, but I think we made up for it with our eBay finds. Period Bath has great customer service and quick, shipping, but it would have blown our budget our of the water to buy the other pieces from them, too.

shower diverter escutcheon and my eBay finds

Costs Thus Far:
Shower Arm: $22.99 (eBay)
Sink: $20 (local home renovation outlet)
Shower head: $25 (local home renovation outlet)
Toilet: $149 (local home renovation outlet)
Mirror: already owned (HomeGoods)
Shower Diverter Escutcheon: $65 (Period Bath)
Vintage Porcelain Faucet Handles with Escutcheons: $20 (eBay)
Shower Diverter Handle: $5 (eBay)
Bathtub: $124.99 (ReStore)

$485.02 (that includes sales tax and/or shipping)

I mentioned last time I did a budgeting post that we had spent about $326 thus far. I’m not sure if I factored that with or without tax&shipping, so I added everything again (minus the faucet spout and the metal cross handles, since we’ve changed our minds about using those) and then factored in the bathtub and a few other smaller things that we hadn’t purchased yet the last time.

Still to Buy:
Tub Spout: $40.99 (Overstock)
Sink Faucet: $159.99 (Overstock)
Sconces: $17.98 (x2; Lowe’s)
Recessed lights
Curtain rod
Tile (walls & floor)
Caulk & grout
Drywall & green board
Tape & mud
Insulation (two rolls)

And I might be forgetting some things. Again, we’re not ready to jump back into things, but we’re hoping that when it’s all said and done we’re under $5,000. To me that seems like a huge jump from $485, but Robert points out that we have to redo all four walls, the ceiling, insulation, the floor (and parts of the subfloor), some of the electrical, and all of the plumbing (inside the walls as well as moving the toilet and shifting the sink over). I know all of that is going to add up to a lot more than I was expecting, but hopefully it will still end up being a lot less than $5,000.

I’m starting to panic again. Sometimes I think Robert is rounding up and fearing the worst about what we’re going to run into as far as unforeseen-costs, but then I look back at other bathroom redos and realize they didn’t have to demo nearly as much as we did. Robert says the ones I’ve shown him don’t count because they didn’t fully demo everything, and then he tried to prove his point by giving me a panic attack talking about his plans for the hall bathroom. Which he says he can get done for less than $700. And then it led to a “discussion” about pocket door hardware.

What about y’all? Has anyone done a complete bathroom redo, from the studs back out? So please, help a girl out by sharing the figures from your bathroom redos!

PS- We weren’t paid for this post in any way, all opinions on Pottery Barn, HomeGoods, Overstock, Period Bath, etc are entirely our own. (Although if any of them would like to help fund our renovations, that might help with the panic attacks and heart palpatations.)

May 20, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: More Inspiration & Features

by Cait

As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been pinning a lot of things on Pinterest. When I found this bathroom I pretty much fell in love with it. And then I sent it to Robert who said “That is one of the most amazing baths I think I’ve ever seen”.  Score.

from Better Homes & Gardens

Keen observers will notice that this somewhat similar to what I said we wanted. White tile, lots of light, blue-ish walls, etc. I also really, really love those shelves.

Our tub is like the one above, and we both agree that the solid surface top looks better than how it was previously tiled. Now the next question is: what do we use as a counter surface? We’re considering Paperstone, recycled glass counters and concrete. Anyone have experience with any of those? I know that Kara Paslay and her husband DIY concrete counters and tables a lot, but I don’t know how keen I am to try that.

from re-nest

Another good thing about using a counter is that it would provide a small lip at the edge, which is good because we wanted to try to DIY a tub tip-out. That’s right, I said tub tip-out. The image above is The Stowaway made by GW International, but I think we could probably rig something up using bead board and wire baskets. (Hopefully without those large, obvious handles, too.)

Speaking of hidden storage, I love this idea from Donna DuFresne Design. We’re using bead board on part of the walls, so maybe we could make this work with some of those cabinet hinges that open when you push on the door? (I know there has a technical term for that… it’s escaping me.)

 from Donna DuFresne Design 

 What about y’all? Do you prefer hidden storage or open shelving? Freestanding tubs, apron tubs, or garden tubs?

May 16, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: Demo Day 3

by Cait

Alternate Title A: The One In Which I Finally Get My Outdoor Bathtub; Alternate Title B: The One In Which Freckles is Toilet Trained.

Occasionally we demo things around here, when I’m not pinning. And I’m using the loose sense of the word “we” here, the one that means “I once again stood outside the window and retrieved pieces that needed to go in the truck bed” while Robert and Ryan demoed.

our once-upon-a-time jacuzzi tub (no, we didn’t convert it)

Alternate Title B comes from the fact that the toilet is now not that far from the tub, and Freckles immediately relieved himself on it when I let the dogs out…

See that plywood at the bottom left? That’s an exterior T1-11 patch that Ryan removed when this whole thing began. Also, you can see how some of the studs are moldy and need to be replaced. That was probably going to happen anyhow because that wall needed more support (it was a bit alarming the way the entire exterior wall shook when Ryan was ripping the drywall down). The rest of the studs look pretty good, so that’s promising.

Long time blog readers may recognize this view from when we removed the medicine cabinet, plus a bit more destruction. The sink still needs to come out and get donated to ReStore, and I plan to ask Ryan if he thinks it’s possible to put in a 24″ pocket door while we’re already down to studs.

From here we need to clear the rest of the demo debris off the floor, remove the sink, finish ripping out the last bits of tile (including floor tile) and drywall, and then reassess. Reassess the layout, the game plan from there on out, the budget, etc.

Oh, and assuming we get through this 1) alive and 2) without any debt (we’re trying to pay for it all in cash or gift cards) we may tackle a mini makeover in the hall bathroom. But we also may take some time to do more low-key projects.

May 10, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: Demo Days 1&2

by Cait

First, a Public Service Announcement. If you are going to demo a bathroom: buy a respirator. If anyone even hints at the word mold: buy a respirator. If you have asthma like me: buy a respirator. Please do not just use a paper mask or a painting respirator. The one below is a charcoal cartridge, particulate & fungal respirator. I promise I was not paid by anyone to say this, I don’t even know the brand on mine (the photo looks like it says Survivair, Inc – I just know Robert bought it at his work, which is an auto parts store).

Ok, now with that out of the way we can get on to the fun demo photos.We probably could have done this all in one day over a weekend (or a very long evening) but we wanted to take our time.

Day 1

raise your hand if you think they followed the instructions on the box after sealing it in tile

This is pretty much our stopping point for Day 1. Though only 30 minutes of work, somehow after discovering several layers of drywall (some not rated for use in bathrooms), a couple of boxes of baking soda, and far more foul things than I want to think about or recount, we decided to call it quits. Especially since we wanted to make a run to Publix before they closed. But at least we got the process down. We sealed the door in plastic, went to Publix, and relaxed in front of Criminal Minds. Hey, Derek Morgan, apparently you own rental property, want to help with my bathroom?

Day 2, my view

Day 2, my view other side

On Day 2, since Robert only bought one respirator (though he’ll be getting a second one) and I smashed my finger (it’s fine), Robert volunteered me to stand outside and throw the debris that he passed out the window into the truck bed.

Day 2, R’s view

you mean you don’t store your unused tile inside the tub surround?

more surprises

Apparently the cool thing to do during a small bathroom overhaul is to plug the jacuzzi jets and leave wires where they can be exposed to water. Awesome. (Not that I like jacuzzi tubs anyhow.)

After we filled the truck bed we decided to call it an evening and Robert took the debris to dump in his old job’s dumpster. (Hey, the manager said he could!)

I know that it looks like we’re going about this in a strange way; we’re kind of doing this in stages as opposed to completely smashing everything and shoveling the debris out the window. Most people would probably have yanked the sink out first, but we still have to shut the plumbing to that off (pretty sure the under-sink valves don’t work). We’ll probably shut it off at the street, remove the sink, and cap the pipes soon because we’d like to donate the sink and toilet to ReStore this weekend. Also we’d prefer to salvage the tub if possible. If we can’t salvage the tub we’ll probably donate that as well and try to find a semi-cheap fiberglass tub. Here’s hoping we can salvage it.

Today the stupid cabinet that I hated came out, some of the drywall came out (it would have had to come out anyhow thanks to them wallpapering directly over drywall to the point where you can’t remove it) and some insulation. After everything is completely demoed we’ll treat the walls, replumb, replace the insulation and put up new, moisture-rated drywall and backer board. Then honestly it will probably sit for a while, but it really depends on how expensive all the tile is.

If y’all could please suggest the best mold-killing treatments that would be great. I hear the way to go with wood and drywall is 1 cup Borax to 1 gallon of water, but I’m open to suggestions. Oh and greener insulation would be great, too. Where can you buy the stuff made from recycled blue jeans, and how much is it?

May 3, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: Features

by Cait

Y’all know I love me some build-in shelves, so in discussing how we want to plan out the bathroom I immediately thought about Kara Paslay’s bathroom (umm, also, her bathroom floor? and those chevron towels? yes please.) Then I thought about the build-in shown in one of YHL’s House Crashing tours.

Left from Kara Paslay Designs, right from YHL

I think a build-in would look really nice next to the sink, especially something sleek like the ones above. Robert (and Ryan) and I have already discussed the possibility of changing the current layout of the bathroom when we renovate it, spurred on by the fact that the sink and toilet were already pretty close together aaaaand then we bought a larger sink. Apparently when you rip everything down to studs it’s easy to change things like that. Who knew? </sarcasm>

I was thinking of making the build-in behind the current door and keeping the sink and toilet side by side, but with the larger sink I think it would really work best to move the toilet to the other side of the door.  If we do that though, I want either a pocket door or a barn door, because I don’t want the door to open right into the toilet (or the sink, if swap the hinges around).

Left & middle from Houzz ideabook, right from Rambling Renovators

I love the two door style of the lefthand picture a lot, and it might work best with the wall widths that we have to deal with. The rustic nature of the middle one is amazing, but something that rustic would probably be too much with the clean lines of the bathroom we’re planning. You might wonder why I threw that righthand picture in there when obviously I just said that some sort of sliding door would be best, given the small size of the bathroom. It’s because I’m tricksy like that I found a lot of “normal” doors made into barn doors while searching on Houzz and I think that we could do something like that with a door like the above right.

from Whisper Wood Cottage on Houzz

And then, sometimes I think about all the things I’d love to incorpurate into the guest bath and I envision Tim Gunn popping out of the woodwork going “that’s a lot of look”.

May 2, 2011

Guest Bath Redux: Budget Tracking

by Cait

After planning out what we want to do in the guest bath, I went to ReStore on Saturday to see what they had in the way of tile (sadly no subway tile), and ended up finding a couple of things for the bathroom. I snapped up 8 of these metal cross handles for 75 cents each, and the shelf was $9.

My dad texted me about the time I was picking these up, so after a bit of looking at $20 sinks, we grabbed lunch, made a brief stop at another store where they treated me to exact bathroom shelf that they bought me for my birthday last year (and later returned because the size didn’t work with the bathroom layout at the time) for $9. I forgot to take a picture of it, but it’s the style most often referred to as “train shelf”.

$20 sinks (sorry for the iPhone pictures, I snapped them for reference)

At the outlet store, I found a white, chair height, elongated bowl, dual flush toilet, a shower head, and a larger $20 sink with more space to put soap/contact cases than the ReStore ones.

I have picked up a couple of other odds and ends online, as well. I bought a faucet spout (which we’re hoping to use with two of the cross handles from ReStore, otherwise I’ll buy a couple of matching Delta faucet handles), a shower arm, and a shower diverter escutcheon (which was a major splurge at $65 from Period Bath, but it makes me laugh).

For those of you playing along at home, that brings out total for fixtures to $326. We do still need …. well, everything else, but we’re feeling pretty good about how we’re doing on budget so far.

Next up? Tracking down a tub spout (Ryan has sensibly forbidden me from using Glacier Bay for the tub/shower because they tend to fail and require ripping out the wall. Which.. yeah, no thank you.), DensGuard, green board, tile, grout, bead board (for the walls other than the shower surround), etc etc etc. Just thinking about it makes my head hurt.