Day 13 - Master Bath Remodel

We've got tile to the ceiling, y'all!

Day 13 was a good one. Tile is nearly done. The guys are here this morning, but I think this may be their last day to finish up.

As you can see, we've got a bench, a mostly-complete niche, and tile to the ceiling!

Here's a westie-eye view of the bathroom. We purposely made the shower floor the same tile as the main floor to make the bathroom feel as open as possible. In person, it really feels cohesive and continual. It's neato.

Another angle...

Here's a peek at the niche. I love that we backed it in the mosaic. It really brings some interest into the shower other than the one row of mosaic. I didn't want to go nuts with the decorative tiles. I was mostly concerned with keeping it clean and not too trendy so we'd be sure to love it for years to come....not just 6 months.

Here's one lesson in construction. See how the niche isn't centered? Yeah, well, I'm actually OK with that. It had to fit between studs and this was its best spot. It actually isn't that noticeable OUTSIDE the shower since you're looking in at an angle. Clearly, I stepped into the shower to take a few of these pics.

Here's a view of the bench from inside the shower. The shower space is perfect. Not too small and crowded, but not too big so as to create cold spots in the shower. I'm looking forward to trying it out.

Another fun angle. Again, you can see how much space is between the tiles. I'm dying to see the grout go in!!

The most exciting part of today was that our cabinets came home! They are being stored in our lovely guest bedroom until Friday when they will be dry fitted. They will be installed permanently on Monday while I'm off getting oriented at my new job. What a great thing to come home to!

In this photo, the insets look like a different shade, but I can assure you they are all white! The doors and drawer fronts are wrapped in a protective plastic so a weird shadow is being cast on the inset. I'm loving the cabinets, though!

This horribly blurry pic is what makes these cabinets awesome. They have the anti-slam feature and that was standard - no upgrade needed! This technology is on all the doors and drawers. Thanks, Martha!

We selected Martha Stewart cabinets from Home Depot. They were a good price and were some of the simplest designs. I wasn't looking for anything fussy and Martha delivered. We did not pick wood cabinets. We selected the laminate cabinets she calls Purestyle. Since we were doing white, we did not see the point in splurging on the real wood. Plus, the laminate feels just like painted wood. It's very smooth and doesn't have that traditional laminate texture of bookcases of yore.

Lastly, the center slab of our quartz came over, too. Oooo, fun! Again, HORRIBLY blurry photo, but it was dark outside and I couldn't get it right so just get over it. Our quartz is by Kraftmaid and is Olive Ovation color. Olive insinuates green but it's really not that green. It probably has a soft green to it, but overall, it's a very lovely taupe-y neutral that I love.

Also delivered today, our toilet and sinks. They are all still in the boxes so the excitement will have to hold off for another day.


Day 12 - Master Bath Remodel

More tiling happened today. The kind of tiling that makes me giddy. The kind that finally allows you to start seeing your vision! Most of the work was done in our new shower and I'm loving it. Let's jump right in!

So clean and white! Simple, white, glossy subway tile. I love it. The grout lines are slightly larger than normal because we're grouting with grey to pick up the grey in the floor. I'm so excited about this part and I can't wait to see the grout go in!

This shot really shows how much they did yesterday. I'm not sure what time they arrived, but they worked until 7:30pm to get the shower floor in place as much as it is. 

There are a million and one separators holding all this good stuff up to dry.

 Here's a shot of the floor. I am so glad I decided on the border. I think it helps so much. I just didn't like the idea of the diagonal tiles just ending abruptly. Only 2 really complicated cut tiles are left to lay before the floor is complete!

Excuse my blurry photography. If you could've seen the position I was in taking this photo, I think I was probably on my way to falling when the shutter clicked. Oops. Our niche is in place. It's very cute and in a great location. It's going to be backed in the mosaic which I think will really give the shower more interest. The bench will be tiled with the floor tiles.

Grout lines!

I took our paint sample in there to see what it would look like. In the process, we changed our minds! We picked basically the same color, just slightly lighter and slightly cooler of a grey.

Wednesday holds more tiling, of course! Our toilet is coming, too! I think they are on schedule to finish tiling by Thursday. Friday we're going to dry fit the vanity, mirrors, and sconces. I really can't wait to see the vanity in place. I think it's going to bring it all together. 


Days 10 & 11 - Master Bath Remodel

I've been slacking on the posts so far this week. I'm off my game since I'm not working this week. Last week was my last day at my old law firm and I've got this week off in preparation for starting my new job on Monday, October 1st! 

As of last week, no work was to be done on Thursday and Friday. The painters were going to come on Saturday for a few hours to sand and prime the walls and finish the ceiling. Turns out, they came on Friday night which was good for our Saturday! I didn't take pics until Sunday so this is a combo post. The primed walls really weren't that exciting anyway.

Yesterday, we started seeing some REAL progress. The tilers are here this week and it's super-exciting. They got all the cement board up in the shower, sloped the shower floor and bench, and got 95% of the floor done.
We went with a pinwheel pattern on the floor and I'm in love with it! I think it gives the floor some interest and movement. It gives the illusion that it's laid on a diagonal, but it's not! 

Check it!

Our tiles for the floor and shower floor are really unique and I'm loving them installed. Here's a close-up:

It's hard to capture on film, but the dark striations are really like a bronze metallic. They are the reason we fell for these tiles.

 Here's another look across the tiles from squatting level.

And the shower floor and bench. Nothing too thrilling here yet.

The instructions from the place we bought our tile are pinned to the wall. Here's the sketch we dictated while we were picking out the tile. You can see our subway tile is the dominant feature. We've got a row of the the mosaic about eye level. The shower bench and floor will be the 3 inch version of what's on our floor. I liked the idea of "framing" the floor with a tile border and you can see that in the sketch, too. The niche that's drawn there, will actually be a little higher up and will be backed in the mosaic.

And here's the old shower corner. Looking snazzy!

The new shower, complete with Subway cup in the window. They are keeping it classy up in here.


Day 9 - Master Bath Remodel


Day 9 was the first day that made me feel assured that our bathroom would one day return to a functional space. I came home to WALLS and PATCHED HOLES. It was great. And I'm pleasantly surprised at how the new full wall really doesn't cut the space off like I thought it might. It's actually quite natural.

Let's dig in to the progress!

Obviously, the inside of the shower doesn't have walls yet since they will be a cement board, but all the regular drywall is done for the most part.

Here's all three sides to the old shower.

The location of the old linen closet (everything was still drying which is why it looks kind of wet)...

The sink wall (holes will be remade for the sconces once we've determined their exact location)...

A view of the sinks and new empty corner. I stood in front of the pipes on the far left and pretended to be at my future sink to see if I felt too close to the toilet. Nope. It's great to be closer to the window, actually!

Speaking of the toilet, here's the new toilet corner. Cozy, right? I have no plans for the wall back there, but I'd like to put in some open shelving for TP storage, but also for decorative things and towels perhaps. Still thinking on that.

The ceiling got patched up, too! Looking good! I'm so glad we were able to combine the shower light and fan and get rid of the original fan that was right in the middle of the ceiling. I was worried with the new can lights, the air vent, and the fan that the ceiling was going to look cluttered. Problem solved. They also fixed the taped seam where the ceiling starts to angle down. It had come unglued from the ceiling and was pretty obvious. We have the same issue in the bedroom which will be fixed when they come in to paint.

Lastly, I upgraded my iPhone to iOS6 last night and took a few panoramic shots of the bathroom for fun.

This one I'm standing IN the new shower and shot the new sink wall.

This one I'm standing in the middle of the sink wall shooting the rest of the bathroom.

No work in the bathroom Thursday or Friday, but caulking, sanding, and priming will take place on Saturday. I'll update again on Sunday!


One Clean Room

Since moving into our home more than 2 years ago, we've been living in a pretty constant state of "we just moved in" kind of chaos. Maybe that's laying it on a little thick there, but that's what it's felt like to me.

Some rooms of our house have been mostly under control, but not on a majority of days. Not good.

It's the rooms we don't use everyday that suffer the brunt of our clutter abuse. If you ask me, we have just the right amount of stuff and room to add. If you ask the hubs, 99% of our stuff should be thrown out, sold, or donated. I've whittled it down a number of times, but we still find stuff to scrap quite often.

So recently, I got motivated to get our upstairs guest bedroom completely put away, cleaned up, decorated, and ready for company (should we ever have any ahemgeorgeandleighahem). I WISH I had taken a before picture so you could really CARE FOR the difference, but I did not. So here's the after!

VOILA! Isn't she adorable!?! I'm so happy with how the room pulled together and the only thing we bought were the lamps (which you can't really see since I'm not a good photog) and the curtain rod and rings.

The above photo was taken from the doorway to the room. The photo below was taken from the corner to the right of the door.

The curtain rod is slightly undersized for the window, but we didn't feel like getting too fancy on it just yet so we bought a wooden rod (Lowes) that would mostly span the window and we moved on. It's just our secondary guest room after all. We'll fix it later if the room ever gets used on a daily basis.

In this shot you can see the door to the bedroom and the hallway outside. I thought this a cute place for our guests, invisible as they may be, to put their bags, sit down and put on shoes or whatever. 

Again, excuse the horrible photography. It was late. I was tired. I'm not a pro. This nightstand, however, IS a pro at being awesome. I love this thing. I found it at a store in downtown Apex called Lilly's for just $99 which I thought was a good deal for a cute, solid wood piece. Originally, it was in our living room along with the green rug in these photos, but once our color scheme started changing down there, it got put in the guest room and then stuff got stacked on it. NOW it's in a real spot and has a real purpose.

This is my attempt to show you the cute lamps I got at Home Goods for $25 each. I found them in the kids section - don't skip that section, there's cute stuff to be had! My plan was to turn them around so the duck face wasn't showing. Then if we had babies, i could turn it around and voila! a cute baby's room lamp. BUT, I am stupid and forgot to notice that the cord was coming out from the plain side, so duck side it is. I still think they are kind of cute. The duck isn't very obvious.

The reason this room is awesome to me is because it came together just by collecting things we already had around the house. Things that used to live somewhere they were no longer wanted or needed. They all found common ground in our upstairs guest room. And many of them are pieces I inherited or bought in special places or on memorable trips. Here's the rundown with first photo again:

  • I bought the duvet (on sale) when we first moved in. I'd loved it forever and I finally decided the guestroom was the best place for it (Pottery Barn)
  • The curtains used to live in living room. (Pottery Barn)
  • Euro shams were purchased to go with an old West Elm duvet (that was mannnny duvets ago).
  • Green and yellow pillows on bed and bench were originally in living room. (Pottery Barn)
  • Purple bolster pillow was to go with another bed set (mannnny duvets ago) (Target)
  • Matlasse was on our old queen bed before we upgraded to a king
  • Leather bench under window used to be at the end of our bed so Three could get on the bed. (Home Goods)
  • Green rug was purchased from my brother and SIL and was in our living room. (Pottery Barn)
  • Wooden trees on far night stand were bought in West Jefferson, NC and were to be Christmas decorations. I've kept them up year round because they are cute and add texture.
  • The bed and dressing table were my grandmothers. I got them when she died and I sprayed them a high gloss black.
  • Tiny picture over wooden trees I bought when in Australia during a college trip in 1998. It's an original and I love it.
  • I bought the Andy Warhol print at the National Gallery on a trip with the hubs to Washington, DC before we wuz hitched.
  • The bench my mom bought for me at an antique show for my birthday several years ago. it was originally a church pew and was cut down and sold as a bench.
  • The Snoopy print by Tom Everhart is one of my faves. I have another, but can't find a place to hang him. I love Snoopy and Tom Everhart is awesome. We saw some originals in Vegas. Liiiiittle out of our price range.
  • The stuffed fish hanging in the window came from my bedroom at my parent's house. It was hanging in the window there, too. I just thought it fitting. You can't see it, but he has gigantic eyes and I like to pretend the neighbors get a glimpse of him sometimes and have a laugh.
  • The gold moon mirror I bought when I was in my 3rd apartment as a single lady. It matched a shower curtain I had perrrrrfectly. Later, I discovery the hub's sister had the EXACT same shower curtain and nearly EXACT same mirror in her bathroom as well.
  • The paint color is original to our house. I'd like to paint it, but for now, it works.
Hope you enjoyed my detailed tour of the room. So far, we've actually kept it looking like this through our bathroom renovation even though we use the room to dry clothes and pass through it to get to our working upstairs bathroom

Day 8 - Master Bath Remodel

Day 8! We're getting so close to seeing real changes! Day 8 involved lots of prep work to take us to that next step so while these photos aren't all that interesting, the work in them will allow me to start sharing photos with big changes and I'm excited about that!

First let's start with a view of what the bathroom looked like when I got home yesterday:

Not too much different.

The electrician came back today and buttoned up all the electricial changes we asked for. He moved a couple of outlets and installed the housings for the shower light/fan and the light over our window.

This is the area where our shower used to sit. At first he installed the outlet on the lower right of the photo. Then we decided we'd like it moved to a place that would allow us to install upper and lower cabinets and still have access to the outlet if we ever decide to do this in the future. So you can see the new outlet on the upper left of the photo.

This is a terrible picture and I don't know why I took it this way, but this is the outlet that used to be on the linen closet wall. It's now been moved to the back wall. It's hard to see, but it's right in the middle of this photo. Am photographing weirdo.

This is the hub's new outlet location. It's basically been moved down about 4 inches or so. It used to sit about midway between the green area and where the drywall is cut, but with the addition of sconces and the scooting over of the vanity, we thought it might look better move it down and out of the way a bit.

Side note - I took photos when I got home from work around 5pm. Then our GC showed up to complete some more work so I stopped and picked back up after he left later that night. So half these pics are in daylight, half at night.

The next two photos are of our new light by the window. The first one shows the new housing. Another siide note - Now that the hole in the ceiling has been enlarged, I can see now why that light was located there. There is a rafter right under the cut on the left. There's no room to move it to the left or if they installed it to the left of the riser, then it'd be uncentered on the other side. Oh well.

 This is the same light after our GC came back and filled around it with insulation.

One issue with this new light at the window was the slope of the ceiling. It's not 45 degrees and apparently most can lights are made for either flat or 45 degree ceilings. Our electrician installed a can light that you can tailor to your needs so problem solved! You can angle it just where you need it so that the light shines in an appropriate location and not out the window or in your eyes. The next photo is the same light shot from where the toilet used to be.

 Same thing here with the insulation of the new shower light/fan combo. Nothing exciting. Just prepping for inspections tomorrow.

The new shower window was spray foamed around the edges. Wooo, exciting stuff here. Try to keep your pants on, guys.

The shower pan - all ready for inspection!

A tiny detail of note on the shower. See the 2x4s on the left? They come out the depth of 2 2x4s there. After the bench and wall were built, the right side was only flush with the seat. Yesterday, they bulked up the right end so that the sides would match and the tile would have an equivalent stopping point on both sides. Here's a closer look.

Left side:

Right side:

Right side larger view. Good stuff, right?

And then all the plumbing holes were fire caulked - also in preparation for inspection:

Enough of the boring stuff, here's one last look at the status of the room before tomorrow's work.

Former linen closest shot from toilet location:

Former linen closet shot from old shower location.

Wide view of the entire bathroom. Looking naked!

View of sink wall - now sans linen closet corner. Looking spacious!

Thanks for sitting through all the boring stuff. Tomorrow's work is sure to bring more visible and exciting changes. After the morning inspections of plumbing and electrical (and everything passing) they will start patching old and putting in new drywall! Very exciting to see walls get filled in!


PS - If you're following my renovation postings, please leave a comment! I'd love to know you're reading and what you think!