Disclaimer: we aren't professionals

Thanks for reading our silly little blog! As the disclaimer says, we aren't professionals in either blogging or house stuff, but we try. This is mostly to let our friends and family know what we've destroyed so far in the house. We post irregularly and usually forget to take pictures, so thanks for your patience, and please feel free to comment with your thoughts and suggestions!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Super motivated mode, engage!

Wow, we killed it yesterday on the bathroom.

It took several trips - we went to Home Depot (for drain parts) and Bed Bath and Beyond (for the shower caddy tension pole thingy and shower curtain rings), then another trip to Home Depot (for more drain parts and a mirror for my vanity) and Target (for a shower curtain liner).
In the end though, we knocked a lot off of our list:

  • fix the vanity in place
  • install drain
  • grout trim
  • find and install mirror
  • find shower curtain*
  • buy and install tension pole caddy
  • finish painting the doors to my wall cabinet vanity thingy
  • paint and hang the new door to the bedroom
  • replace the old door and install a new door jamb/trim
  • make and install thresholds to cover the tile-to-oak transition for both doors 
  • buy and install towel bars and robe hooks*
  • find some art or something to decorate the walls
  • paint the rest of the crown molding and baseboard
The biggest things were completing the sink/vanity. We are totally good to use the sink in there now. Some things are half-completed, like finding a shower curtain and installing towel bars. We don't have the shelf/bar that we were planning to get for hand towels. It will go over the toilet. 
I did get some towel/robe hooks at BB&B that match our shower fixtures (they're not exactly the same but they're really close, and all made by Delta)
Actually the hooks we bought for $10 ea at BB&B apparently do not exist on the internet, but they are the Addison hook shown above but without the little dimples at the corner of the squarish base. Whatever, I'll post pics soon enough. 
Randomly, while looking for the hook online, I found that they sell the chrome version at Walmart. Here's the description:

  • Robe hook
  • Wood blocking is preferable behind all wall surfaces
  • Tile, masonry plastic, anchors, plaster, drywall and toggle bolts
  • Charming teapot
  • Timeless design is a perfect marriage of both form and function

Did you catch it? Charming teapot? What? Oh Walmart, you crack me up. I was searching their site for shower curtains yesterday and lost respect when I saw multiple curtains listed as "Artic white". Artic? Really? (p.s. it's Arctic, with a c, like the ocean). 

Anyway, speaking of shower curtains, we worked it out so a standard 72" long liner will work, but we want the curtain to brush the floor, a la Sherry and John's at younghouselove, who are constantly inspiring to me. However, Amazon does not seem to have that curtain anymore. Solid white cotton 84" long curtains are shockingly hard to find. I loooooove Target's 100% cotton, really nice heavyweight waffle weave ones, though, so I'll probably buy two, one white and one gray, and sew a short gray border on the white one. My other option is find a table runner I like that is exactly 72" long (to match the standard 72" width of the shower curtain) and tack that on the bottom. I would still prefer to buy only one shower curtain, though. 
Seriously Target, y u no haz any extra-long shower curtains? 

Oh one more thing. What do people with natural stone tub surrounds do for a shaving mirror? Chris tried to suction his onto the wall but it is way too rough to stick. Apparently shower mirrors with hooks to hang on a wire caddy do not exist. Only suction cup ones. He really wants one to be at head height; he has to stoop to shave now because one of those permanently installed washcloth bars is in the way in the current bathroom. We will probably end up buying one with a little stand and place it on the window ledge, but then that's not face height. Hrm. Any suggestions, invisible and probably non-existent readers? 

Friday, January 13, 2012

Bathroom pics

Since these pictures were taken, we've made a lot of progress on the bathroom. Actually, we can probably have a *final* after photo post by the end of this month. 
But for now, the process: 
I think at this point we had the tile down, and we were painting. We had to paint the ceiling, and then the walls. Color - Martha Stewart's Spring Melt in semi-gloss . We did prime first. I used paint and primer in one in the closet, and might splurge on that when we get around to painting the bedroom. It saves time and looks fine! 

Here's a close-up of the floor tile. Chris did a great job getting up close to the bathtub. It's 12x24" tile, and is the same tone as the accent tile in the shower (below). It really makes the room seem larger, because when you open the door you see continuous lines running away from you. Does that make sense? It is also nice because although we used the same brick run pattern as in the shower surround, the rows are perpendicular to one another (horizontal in the shower, then front to back on the floor)

Here's a good view of the bathroom tile. We still have protective plastic wrap on the edge of the tub, but otherwise it's grouted and sealed and done. The gap at the top is now covered by crown molding. We will place a tension pole shower caddy in the corner, probably this OXO one, with a 20% off coupon at Bed, Bath & Beyond. It's 'speeeensive but has amazing reviews and we can take it with us when we leave this house someday. The coupon will help. 

Our beautiful shower fixtures are installed. Again, Chris did a great job. I can't wait to use the rain-style shower. We have installed a curved shower rod and I just need to order an extra-long curtain. A regular length liner will fit, though. We also need to repair some chips in the acrylic tub. Note to folks: protect your tub with a blanket or something, taped around the edges. Also don't drop hammers or trowels on it. 

The shower has a trim tab, which means you just set it to your favorite temperature with the small lever and just turn the big lever to turn the water on. It's fancy. 

So, since these pics, we've:

  • installed the crown molding and baseboard
  • installed my wall-cabinet-turned-vanity, and made a top for it using stained pine and Kreg jig pocket hole magic. It sort of matches the desk from IKEA that we are using as a vanity
  • ordered a different sink because I didn't like the first one I got from Overstock (we'll use the first one when we redo the other bath)
  • modified the desk to fit the sink (I should submit it to http://www.ikeahackers.net/)
  • installed the sink and faucet in the desk, and now we just have to secure the vanity to the wall and install the drain
  • put in a toilet a while ago. It's dual flush, which is pretty snazzy. It's also chair height and elongated bowl, which makes it handicap-friendly. We realize that there is a growing market for age-friendly houses. Ours is already no-step, and we widened one door into the bathroom. Other features like the right toilet height and a low-step shower pan in the other bath (when we get around to renovating that) will make this house appealing to the elderly market, we hope.
  • installed the medicine cabinet and vanity and wall sconces, and started a decorative tile trim using the same tile as is in the accent wall of the bathtub. Still need to grout the tile trim and find a mirror for my vanity area.
Other things we still need to do (other than fix the vanity in place, install drain, grout trim, and find mirror and shower curtain) are:
  • finish painting the doors to my wall cabinet vanity thingy
  • paint and hang the new door to the bedroom
  • replace the old door and install a new door jamb/trim
  • make and install thresholds to cover the tile-to-oak transition for both doors 
  • buy and install towel bars and robe hooks
  • find some art or something to decorate the walls. 
Then... THEN we can say we've completed our bathroom! But nothing on that list is really daunting or time-consuming. It's mostly finish work. Then, the bathroom will be totally ready to use! YAY!