A Pretty Gray and Master Bathroom Plans

Aug 21, 2014

I'm still here! It's been a while since I've updated you on the goings on around this house. Summer with the boys at home has been a whirlwind. I can't believe they go back to school on Monday! It's a bit strange for me to be at home every day instead of working part-time, but I've got plans to stay busy while they are in school. Besides heading back to the gym to work off the summer chub, I have a big list of projects to tackle. Most of them are small, but I do have one big project I'm starting on. It's the master bathroom! I know I said it would have to wait until next year since we decided to get a new roof instead. It still is going to take a while since I will be working on it in phases. There's no reason I can't get some of the smaller projects out of the way, like painting and new hardware.

I have already painted one coat of gray on the walls. Before, it was a gold color that I painted when we moved in ten years ago. It was 2003. Don't judge! It was still much better than the lime green the previous owners had painted it. I still see lime green on the tile, ceiling, and light switches. Ugh! Anyway, I had planned on painting the bathroom the same BM Gray Owl in my master bedroom. I was a little concerned it would be too light since the bathroom receives so much sunlight. I tested it out and I was right. The Gray Owl was a completely different color in this room. Not only is it very light, it also has a very blue undertone I never notice in the bedroom. I decided to go a little darker and went with SW Mindful Gray. It's the color in my entryway, dining room and office. There is absolutely no blue in this paint. It's really the perfect medium gray and seems to look good in every room. It also blends great with the Gray Owl and it's hard to tell they are two different colors when looking at the two rooms together.

I realized after I started painting I didn't take a before picture. Oops! I grabbed my phone and took a quick picture. You can also see the lighter Gray Owl samples compared to the Mindful Gray.

This is why I called it a 90s disaster! It was even worse with the gold beaded chandelier and green velvet valances. I remember thinking how awesome it looked back then and that it could be on MTV Cribs. And this is exactly why I strive for a classic look in my d├ęcor and wardrobe!

Here it is now with one coat of paint.

It's already a million times better and it feels so much cleaner. It's actually quite messy in here, but there's no point in cleaning up since I still need to paint one more coat. It covered really well though and I didn't even use a primer. Sherwin Williams is definitely my favorite paint.

Now on to the plans!

I approach projects in my house with a "worst is first" mentality. This is why the shower will be getting the first makeover.

This is what I mean!  So, the shower and tile inside it and around the tub will be getting the first major makeover. Then, the floor followed up by the vanity area. The vanity is actually in good shape so it will stay. I will be replacing the counter with a white granite or quartz that resembles marble. The large mirror will be replaced by two smaller ones on a backsplash of marble herringbone tile.

I found this tile at Lowe's and it will cover the entire wall behind the mirrors.

I love this mirror from Pottery Barn, but I have seen cheaper versions elsewhere.

I love River White granite! I wanted to use it for my kitchen remodel, but it was just too expensive. It will be much more affordable since we need so much less of it this time around. Marble is just not durable enough for my messy family!

The vanity area is the most exciting part of the renovation, but it will have to wait because the moldy shower is more important. I'm looking forward to never having to caulk this shower again!

I am still looking for a shower and tub surround tile. A frameless clear glass shower is in my plans, but I'll have to see how much that will cost. I might have to go to Plan B for that one.

I had planned on a herringbone floor, but since I found the marble herringbone backsplash tile that might just be too much of a good thing. I'm thinking a large rectangular tile laid in a brick pattern will be better.

While I look for affordable tile and glass showers there's still plenty of low cost grunt work (not my favorite) that can be done. The moldings around the doors and windows will be replaced with the craftsman trim we have in the rest of the house. My husband is facepalming right now. Hey, at least it's not crown moulding. We almost needed marriage counseling after that project. I would love crown moulding, but after looking at these sloped ceilings I won't even go there. The toilet area will be getting a few shelves like this one, but in white.

I will pick up fixtures, hardware and tile as I find them or see them on sale. I might as well be ready since special order items can take a while to be come in. I learned that the hard way when I was remodeling my kitchen. This is why I don't have the farmhouse sink I wanted so badly!

I think the biggest challenge in this bathroom is the soffit above the vanity. My first thought was to take a sledgehammer to it, but it houses our recessed lights. I know how expensive moving lighting and drywall repair can be by a professional. Those are way beyond my DIY skills.

Damn, it's ugly! I swear I bought the house with the oddest "architectural details" known to homebuilders. I will do what I've done with the rest of them in my odd abode and cover them up. I found a few examples of pretty soffits on Pinterest and this is my favorite.

I love the curved piece at the top and I think it will be fairly easy and inexpensive to replicate. I'm not sure if I will extend the sides down like in this picture. It would give the vanity a nice built-in look, but it might be a little too complicated. Here is one without sides.

Either one would be an improvement! I do like the curved one in the first picture and I think it would hide the old recessed lighting cans, which is why I'm leaning towards that look. Can you picture it?

The biggest question is when will we get around to actually doing these projects. I'm hoping to get the new shower sometime this fall and the trimwork timeline is up to my husband. He did just finish up the trim in the mudroom so he's free to work on the bathroom. ;) I will be caulking and painting the mudroom to get it ready before school starts on Monday now that he's finished in there. There's nothing like waiting until the last minute!


  1. What a big difference paint makes! Love the choices you're considering, the marble, the idea of the soffits and the mirror, but yep the trouble you have in the shower is what you need to tackle first. I'll be here checking your progress ;)

  2. Ooh how exciting! Already it is looking so much better just with the paint. I love the tile and ideas you have for the bathroom, can't wait to see it all pulled together and see how you solve your soffit dilemma!

  3. Looks better already. My house was built in 1997 and it has so many features that make me cringe. Like you, I'm working on covering up and changing.

    I'm in Houston and we recently remodeled our bathroom. I can recommend Shower Doors of Houston (on Brittmoore) for your frameless shower. We spent about $1700 for glass and install.

  4. I honestly don't mind your soffit, although I see what you mean about those beautiful examples. The bathroom looks SO good already with the new paint. I can't wait to see the herringbone wall tiles. I'm planing for a similar remodel hopefully this winter!!

  5. This is critically lovely, it’s wonderful how distinctive the bathroom looks with just a new paint colour and some new info. Lovely job!