Thursday, January 2, 2014

Old House Bathroom Remodel~

Oh yay~!

We are in the middle of the bathroom redo finally. We're on day #4 and we've made A LOT of progress...

Just a catch-up, this house is an old, old, old, rock house. It was built in the 1800's. It's one of the oldest homes in this County. It 'pre' dates a fort in the area. It is OLD........ At some point in its lifetime, someone added onto it. Somebody added on a bathroom and a kitchen area in the 1920's sometime, according to the natives. The bathroom was remodeled in the 1960's (?) they tell me. Nothing has been done to the bathroom since then and the house sat vacant for 12 years with nobody living in it before we moved over here from our other house, so it was old and grungy.

I think I'm finally brave enough to show some snapshots of what it looked like before. It was awful blue and it didn't matter how hard you scrubbed, nothing was going to make it look good. Wasting time on it was futile. Only some fresh paint and a redo of flooring was going to make this ugly duckling tolerable. But, I did tolerate it for a year and a half without much griping aside from griping about how it always made my hair look purple - the hew of the blue, blue, blue, blue & more blue on blonde hair - it was bright and it was blue~!

Here is what I had to work with -
We nicknamed the toilet the "Blue Goose"... I broke it last year. I stepped up on it to paper the wall and broke the lid and toilet seat- we'll get to that later. That's why it has a white seat and lid in the before pics.

This bathroom had a blue throne, a blue sink and the blue tub with the blue tile surround. It had blue walls, blue carpet and a baby blue ceiling (roof - yes Pam, my tongue is sticking out at you). It came complete with a broken, old, retro Sears & Warbuck (?) vanity that didn't work. And, classic, retro lighting.

It also had this abitibi (?) stuff on the 'water closet' wall. It's like a shiny paneling that looks like a really bad faux marble paint job that people used to put around their showers in the 1970's. I HATE THAT STUFF! It drove me BATTY~!

So, last year in complete desperation, I added some raised stencils and covered over it with paper. I had every intention of painting it then, but the 'Man-Child' talked me into not wasting energy on it and instead, focus my energy on a remodel ~ Oh, Yay ~ I could do that. So, since then, I've been 'hunting & gathering' for this remodel and I'm thrilled it's finally happening~!

I'm also thrilled that some of the old doors from the Old Home Salvage & Demo Job we done, fit this old house, so I could throw those retro maple ones in the weeds. Oh, I hate old maple, retro doors. It's one of my pet peeves...

I have been dreaming about this bathroom redo for a long, long, time. At least since Last April. It has taken me a while to gather everything I needed to make this happen economically ~ under $1,000 anyway. And, in the scheme of things, $1,000 seems like a lot of money to some and a pittance to others. The 'Man-Child' says it's dirt cheap and that I'm good at my game for what I'm getting. I'll take that as a compliment, for sure, from a contractor.

Day # 1~~

On the first day, the 'Man-Child' made a mess and got in a lot of trouble with the short blonde midget woman. He told me he was going to start by pulling out the vanity. I was doing dishes and he came walking through with the 'blue goose' (the old toilet) I immediately came un-corked cause nobody said, "Jen, I'm pulling out the toilet in a minute, do you need to tinkle?" It was a long day with a couple tinkles in the old outhouse~ It's an old house, it has an old outhouse. Not my first choice, but happy to have it sometimes.

Then, he pulled up the old carpet and the old vanity - We are keeping the old blue tub and the blue tile and glass doors. They're in excellent condition. There isn't an economical reason to pull them out and redo them, so I've just chosen to work around them.

Then, we put in the flooring. We used the 'Allure' brand vinyl flooring from Home Depot, in Harrison Slate
It wasn't a hard choice. Our local Home Depot had a special order that somebody never came and got, so they marked it way down for me. It took 3 boxes to do the floor. And, the 'Man-Child' is a contractor and said, "This is the easiest, quickest flooring he's ever laid." It is really nice flooring. It only took him about 2 hours from start to finish ~ It lays down nice and it looks nice.

Then, he put in the new toilet. It's a Kohler toilet. He got it for $89. It was a display on the showroom floor at a local plumbing supply store. They were changing their showroom merchandise over and they gave their local contractors first 'dibbs' on the old displays. The 'Man-Child' says it's about a $500 toilet. I'm clueless cause I know very little about toilets...

He brought it home when I broke the lid on the 'blue goose' last year. Well, actually, the toilet seat was broken for a week, or so. We had company. I told the company to sit down careful as the toilet seat was broke. Company had one too many beers and when he went in to use the toilet, it bucked him off. So, the 'Man-Child' went and got a new one. I was so excited for a new commode - I was not home when I thought it was being installed. When I returned, I returned to the blue goose sporting a new white seat and lid. That was DEPRESSING. I just rolled my eyes and patiently waited for the redo... Choose your battles wisely~!
At least nobody else got bucked off the 'Blue Goose'...

Next ~
I painted half way down on the North / toilet wall.I had a really neat idea to do along the bottom, so it was futile to paint all the way to the floor.

And, I painted the South / vanity wall in its entirety... 
I have an interesting issue on this wall. The old heatilator that heats the room. I intend to paint the cover to it the same color as the wall soon... There are some things, you just have to work with. A heater is one of them.

Day # 2~~

A couple days before the remodel started, I had this brain storm. We were over to our old sawmill getting a load of fire wood. I looked West of me at an old homestead owned by the 'Man-Child's' cousin. There was a piece of old, rusty, currogated metal sheeting banging in the wind. It was like a light bulb went off in my head. I talked the 'Man-Child' into stopping on our way home and we gathered up a whole bunch of the rusty, old sheeting that had already blown off an old shed. We brought it home to do the walls in our bathroom remodel. First he thought I had lost my mind. Then, he liked the idea ~ so, he claims. One of his other cousins says, "he just panders to me" - maybe he does, but isn't that a smart thing to do to the woman you live with? Pander to her wishes? Either way, I got my way, so I am a happy girl~!

For the record; old, rusty, currogated, steel sheeting is a bitch to work with. I'm not going to lie. It's mean and it 'bites back,' wear thick gloves. But, I have no idea how a person would get that old, rusty patina without using the real deal. It makes an awesome looking wall. I intend to polyurethane seal it when we're done with the room. I'm thinking I'll use an oil based poly, for that yellowish hue???

We done the North bathroom wall 32" up and we done the East side 'water closet,' papered over wall. I'm all about 'Makeup' and hiding things. Hiding flaws under this old steel sheeting worked out AWESOME!

It wasn't just a matter of screwing the sheeting to the wall. The 'Man-Child' is actually a master at trimming a room. He cut a recess into the back side of each piece of rough sawn cedar trim, so the metal slides down into the trim, to hide it. Then he used big, rusty, old nails to nail it to the studs in the wall. Some of it is warped a bit and some of it is dinged up, but that's the charm of it. It also, still has some of the currogated blue color in it, so it pulls the browns and blues together in the room. It makes the tub area look like it belongs. I didn't want the tub to stick out. I wanted it to somehow blend in. The rusty metal helps me accomplish that.

It made an easy job of hiding the horrible West 'water closet' wall too...

Day # 3 ~~

On the third day, we concentrated on switching doors and getting the metal on the this 'water closet' wall. The old maple door had to go so this new, old, salvaged door could be hung. 

But, the new/old door was shorter than the existing maple door. It was however, the exact same width thank heavens... 

 The 'Man-Child' is a contractor, so he done some fancy framing and made it work. I was worried, but he wasn't and it worked out perfect.

 There was nothing else we needed to do because he was covering it with the old, rusty, currogated steel and new, rough sawn, cedar trim.

Day # 4 ~~

We hung the towel cabinet above the toilet which was interesting. When I Redone an old gun cabinet and turned it into a towel cabinet for above the commode, the 'Man-Child' had measured the old 'Blue Goose' toilet. This new toilet he bought was 4" taller and a different shape - oh noes... It was our first problem in this remodel. We had to re-tweek the back of it to get it to fit and the new toilet is kind of 'airodynamic' (don't know why a toilet would need to be =) and it changed the look of the towel cabinet once hung. But, I need the towel storage and stuff, so for the $25 the cabinet cost me, I'll get used to the look of it on the wall.

The 'Man-Child' says, if it still bothers me in the future, he can add a build in on the sides of it, to make it blend in more. He thinks it's fine. It will serve its purpose. It looks worse in pics than it does in real life. 

I think the look of it will change as we get this all finished. The room is so tall and skinny, I had to have a skinny cabinet and I had to put it somewhere to hold some towels and toiletries. Old houses pose interesting problems like that. I wonder sometimes if they even used towels and soap back then? ~kidding~

We brought in the 'soon-to-be' vanity and mirror...

The 'Man-Child' got the sink in the vanity ~ It took me over a year to pick out a sink and I love the one I got. I found a pic of it on Houzz and we went to the plumbing supply to see if, by a fluke they had one in stock to look at. Not only did they have one, but they had it on their floor model clearance. It had a really nice Kohler faucet on it and they sold it, in its entirety to us for $100. They didn't even charge me tax. I saved about $500+ dollars on it. I felt like it was Christmas when I found that sink last year.

First he marked the location the vanity would sit on the wall.

Then he took the back off of the vintage bureau / dresser we were going to use for a vanity.
He put a 2 x 4 brace across the back of it (where he took the back panel off,) to brace it.

(Ya, my Christmas stuff is still sitting there waiting to be put in storage...)

Then, he attached a 2 x 4 brace to the wall where the vanity will go, so he could screw down through the old vanity top and into the 2 x 4 brace on the wall, so the vanity won't wiggle sideways and so it will be attached to the bathroom wall.

Meet the 'Man-Child' - he's been photo bombing me all day~!

Then, he got the new vanity top on and the sink in. It's all dusty from the saw dust and from being in storage. And, the mirror is just sitting behind the faucet, it's not hung yet. We're going to split the old horizontal vanity light and put in 2 sconce type lights at the sides of the mirror. That's tomorrow's project!

I'm thrilled to be as far as we are in 4 days 
and I LOVE the new colors and the new furnishings.

Stay Tuned ~ there's still a lot to do, 
including redoing the vintage doors~!


  1. That's a huge undertaking but I know you'll have it just the way you want it. Cute pics of helpful hubby and a beautiful vanity! I posted pics of my purple pillow shams today. My bed's not made up all pretty but you can still see what they look like. Sweet hugs!

  2. How did I not see this post until today? Gee. I swore I checked your blog anticipating your re-do. I must of checked right before you posted! Looks great! The blue tub looks awesome against that tin! Keep us posted!


  3. The remodeling looks really successful. I'm happy you guys enjoyed the experience. I can see how much effort all of you had put in. I can tell by the progress you made that everything is doing great. Anyway, I hope you've done more remodeling, seeing as how great you guys are with the task. All the best! :)

    Tiffanie Dinger

  4. Oh my! I'm so glad that you decided to remodel your old bathroom. Your eyes must've been sore looking at that for sometime now. Hahaha! Anyway, the progress looks like everything went well. I see that everyone pitched in a little more than the effort required, and I'm happy to have known that. Kudos to everyone for such a great job! Thanks for sharing that! :)

    Fred Richardson @ SGK Home Solutions, Inc.

    1. It turned out beautiful in the end....
      (That link will show a current pic)
      Thanks for stopping by ~ I appreciate your visit~!

    2. Really its looking so different from any other bathroom deigns I really like the architecture of the bathroom. Really nice. Thanks for sharing the new design trend of the bathroom. I recently visited the Austin website where bathroom remodelling Austin

  5. I am doing a similar job on an old farmhouse that looks roughly the same. We are living in a caravan in the garden and I am trying to save money by doing as much work as I can myself. I'm not into retro so most of the stuff is going. I have thrown out an old 'mangle' from an outside washroom and I am going to convert it into a sauna. It's a five-year plan.

    Wilfred Andrews @ LB Plumbing and Heating

  6. Your blog has given me that thing which I never expect to get from all over the websites. Nice post guys!

  7. It represents an area where unique design can be implemented to turn just another boring room into an exciting and attractive part of the home.

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I love to hear from you~!