sydney's sidewalk drawing...elijah, sydney, daddy, mommy, kezia

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Do it ourself - Bathroom

ok, here is how it used to look -

And here are all the things we wanted to accomplish in our upstairs bathroom. (You will remember that for now this is our only ‘bathing facility’ in the house, other than the scary dungeon basement shower stall. We plan to have a large shower stall put into our main floor bathroom sometime in the next couple of months. Anyway…) The walls are covered with a paneling of some sort that is not waterproof, and it is even around the tub area. Besides being impractical, it is really brittle, old …and so not my colors. ;-) So, we planned to take that down, and the wallpaper, put up pebble board around the tub and build a little cabinet to fit at the end of the tub. The tub was basically placed into the room, and the end was left open with no wall…so the water splashes out and the hollow part under the tub was exposed with who knows what crawling around there…and I always imagined walking in and seeing Sydney trying to crawl back and into there. eww. The dropped ceiling was also on the ‘outta here’ list.
goodbye dropped ceiling....the bathroom seems so much larger now. taking down the 'dropped' portion freed up about 2-2.5 feet of air space, so the bathroom feels nice and open now.

Well, the old paneling came down fairly easily…revealing the walls which were in terrible condition. The glue that was used was placed right onto the walls in a gloppy coat that did not adhere to the paneling very well at all…which explained the huge screws all over the paneling holding it to the wall. I had thought that we could just sand down any residual glue, but this stuff was bad news. There were also several large holes and old grout lines from tile that used to be on the wall.
Hmm…challenge number one was what to do about the walls. The texture was too rough to put the pebble board directly onto the walls. So, my dad called a good friend of his in the construction business…and once he was done laughing at our attempt to remodel (just kidding) he told us the right way to do it was to bust the walls down to the studs and put up fresh drywall.
We don’t know how to put up drywall and we probably don’t have the time to do a complete tear down and build up.
We were then informed that there was a way to cheat. We were good with cheating, so we went with that option. We bought drywall and that went right over part the old wall near the tub. (I know, I know…anyone who does construction is probably cringing right now. But, we are doing this project for us, so it is all good).
two men in a tub

So, we thought cheating was supposed to be the easy option…it wasn’t! At least not for us. ;-) We incorrectly assumed that taking two measurements was all you needed (how long to cut the piece and how wide to cut the piece). Wrong. Our walls are not square or level and apparently our tub wasn’t either. So, poor Wayne and my dad had a lot of measuring and cutting to do.
Then when they went to put the pebble board up, we were not sure how to keep appropriate pressure on it so that it would adhere properly and tightly. Well, we are geniuses! A few 2x4’s, a couple gallons of paint and a tension rod…and voila! Pressure. We were pretty sure this was how the professionals do it. :-P
using boards and another tension rod for the opposite walls

Of course, we didn’t get that put up until evening, which meant no using the tub (the adhesive takes four hours to dry), which meant that only left …that’s right… the dungeon basement shower. I confess, I was freaked out to use it, but it was just fine. It was actually really nice because I could actually stand all the way up. (our tub is beneath the angled roofline, so there is little standing room in the tub.)
We also had an electrician come in and move an outlet that was dangerously close to the tub, remove a useless outlet, cut a new hole for a ceiling mounted light (the previous light was in the dropped ceiling, but the wires ran from the side wall, not the ceiling, so we had that fixed) put up a new vanity light, and run new wires for the main switch. The main switch wiring was scary. I was worried I would get shocked using it after seeing the inside. Behind a piece of wallpaper we found live wiring just stuffed into an old electric box in the wall. Exciting.
our cool new vanity light...yes the hole is still in the wall, no wayne and i don't know how to fill such a big hole, so we are going to put a mirror right over it.

Lets see…what else in the bathroom. Oh, because the glue was so stubborn and lumpy on our wall, I decided to ‘simply’ mud over the messy areas. But, because the messy areas consisted of half the bathroom and there was no way to make it super smooth, I textured the wall.
Oooh, I know, so professional sounding…’texturing a wall.’ It probably looks more like a bad plaster job, but I think it will look really nice. When I am done ‘texture-izing,’ I plan on painting the walls a muted yellowy-mustard color and then color-washing over it with a bright orange. (the washing will make the orange more sutle than the ‘bouncy ball’ orange – yes, the orange is literally called ‘bouncing ball’ by dutchboy paint.) it will look soooo cool with our tree frog shower curtain and lizard curtains I made. Since this will eventually be mainly used by the kids for baths and such, I decided to have a little fun with the design.

Whew, I think that is everything that we accomplished in the bathroom. Oh, the cabinet is painted black and I have yet to paint the walls, so I will post a picture when I get there.

It was a lot of work, but Wayne and my dad kicked the bathroom's behind. I just gotta say how proud I am of the men in my life and all their hard work to get the house remodeled and better suited to our family.


  1. I love the frog!! (I just love your color sense.)

    What a rat's nest old wiring is, hey? My house in Iron Mountain had that old wiring and it is a little scary. One of my light switches was a push-button thing. The OLD kind of push button.

    It looks like you guys have gotten a LOT done! WTG!!

  2. I all looks great, Naomi & Wayne AND it does look very professional. Shhh, don't tell anyone or they'll want the name and numbers of your home impovers! Nice job! Cece Nekich