As promised, I’m back to bring you all the lovely details of our little half bath reno. There were tears and frustrations involved, but we worked through all the craziness and now are done with one room in our home 🙂 So we started this project back in November (so three months ago) and thought it was such a little room we could knock it right out in no time, while flooring our entire house…. Ambitious much??? I think yes.
Focus turned to getting some actual floors under-foot, and the bathroom was left in gutted state for a month. Then, sometime before Christmas we decided we were finally going to tackle this little beast and bought all our tiling supplies. (Because bathrooms should have tile, right??) Oh the tangled webs we weave….
B E F O R E
We were total tile newbies, but that did not stop us from installing the backerboard that night. After mixing up the mortar and cutting the cement board to size, Jake commenced on screwing the pieces down ever 6 inches. Now, this is a time sensitive endeavor and allows only a 30 minute window before the mortar begins to set.
Several screws in, Jake’s cordless power drill runs out of juice… Panic sets in, and like a madman, he screwed in over 100 screws into the cement board … by hand. Let’s just say, this was not a joyous night in our household.
After that scarring experience, Jake never wanted to think about tile again (and neither did I)! So there it sat, prepped for our marble tile… for another month and a half.
The holiday craziness slowed down and we decided, it was time. We needed this bathroom to be in working order again, so we got set to tile. Without going into too much detail, we did absolutely everything possible wrong.
The floor wasn’t entire level, so we compensated by laying uneven mortar. We worked ourselves into the back corner of the room and grunted and stretched to finish. We tiled in sets and had to chip out the extra dried mortar before continuing. It was all around bad. Then came the grout… Once it dried, realization set in. Our tile job was bad. There was no ifs, and, or buts. It was just bad. You could feel all the sharp edges as you scraped your foot across it and the tiles were all uneven.
So, one very somber evening, Jake demoed it all … while I took a hot shower and mourned our loss. A lot of time, frustration, and money down the drain… nevertheless, we pressed on and had it floored with hardwood in just two hours.
Finally we could move forward!
The plan was to stencil the top half and install board and batten underneath to brighten and add interest. I have been in love with the Imperial Trellis wallpaper in citrine since it first graced my eyes in this dining room. I bought a similar stencil, and painted the bathroom yellow. Boy, that was so much yellow! It definitely made me nervous on the bold color choice, but once once stencil was up, I felt much better.
The corners proved to be very difficult since I was already folding the stencil at the ceiling. I tried to do the best I could but had to hand paint most of the corners in the end. Once stenciling was pretty much finished, we got to work on the board and batten.
A lot of people do the ‘faux’ board and batten where they just add the vertical battens and treat the wall as the ‘board’. This works great and generally saves much time and money. But, since we had several gigantic holes in our half bath’s walls, we decided that actually putting up the ‘board’ would be less work than attempting to patch all the drywall.
We took a trip to Home Depot to pick out our supplies, and it turned into a two and a half hour trip of indecision…. Who knew board and batten materials were so tough to decide on? And, that they got real expensive real fast?
In the end, we went with hardboard tempered panels for the ‘board’ part. They were only $6 for a four by eight sheet, so that was the obvious choice. Then we picked out some strip (?) pine for the top and bottom panels, a nice primed mdf trim piece for the top ledge, and lattice trim for the battens. Overall, it cost more than we would have liked, and I’m honestly not sure how all those bloggers out there create their board and batten looks ‘for less than $20!!’ Please… teach me your ways….
It went up pretty quick, and we are so grateful to have a jigsaw now. How did we ever manage before? The long cuts on the hardboard were not fun though…. next on the need list: a table saw.
I failed to mention earlier, that we were working on a deadline.. Superbowl Sunday. I was bound and determined to have a fully functioning guest bathroom for the very first party we were hosting in our new place. So, I took Friday off of work and painted the board and batten all. day. It took one coat of primer and two coats of paint to cover.
Then Jake came home that night and installed the toilet and vanity and all the important little extras, like the mirror, lighting, toilet paper holder, and towel hook.
I used a thrifted gold mirror I had bought several years ago and spray painted it white to match the decor. The towel hook is just a cheap hook in the hardware section of Home Depot for a few bucks. I like the simplicity of hand towels that hang on a hook and look useable.
Phew! We are 100% done-zo with this room and I think it looks like a million bucks. 🙂 Remember when I was planning it? I don’t think it ended up too far off mark! If you want to see more pics of the after, check them out here. And please find all my sources below: