It's time for a radical transformation

... of a 1980s bathroom variety.  I am talking about my master bathroom.  Do you want the full tour with what I'm planning to do?  Like, totally.  Here we go.

As you can see, the permanent fixtures in this space are pretty good.  The shower is great, the sink and vanity are updated, the subway tile and floor are really lovely.  But my goodness ... the wallpaper.  Honestly, it is an affront to the senses.  

It is even peeling away in that little strip in between the shower and the mirror.

Something that cracks me up every time I see it: they wallpapered the outlet cover.  I usually appreciate great attention to detail but this?  This is some devotion to wallpaper.  I am going to replace this with a basic white one.

Next up: the tub area.  It is so nice to have a separate tub and shower.  I am going to paint the room Mindful Grey (Sherwin Williams) cut by 50%.  I already have a gallon of this and am crossing my fingers that it's enough to cover the room.  I think I will add a large picture on the long wall over the tub.

Once I steam off the wallpaper, I am going to remove this oddly placed towel bar over the toilet.  It is off center (which you know drives me batty) and too low.  It's essentially useless.   I am going to replace it with a white wall cabinet for more storage.  I have seen a few of these that are pretty inexpensive at Home Depot, Lowes and Bed Bath and Beyond.  I can't wait to add more functionality. Plus, I think it will look a lot nicer.

Next up: the door.  Right now there are two plastic hooks - black and clear - on the back of the door.  I hate them and they scream 1980s.  I am going to replace them with a bar of silver hooks.  Oh, see the switch plate cover? That is metal and rusted, so I am swapping it with a white one. 

I have already made one little update: the bar light over the sink.  It is one of those "hollywood" style bar lights and I really don't like them, but since I am renting, I think I need to work with it.  I have learned that electrical can be tricky and I did not want to remove it, only to find a mess behind.  The only problem?  Just like the tin roof in "Love Shack" -- RUSTED! (admittedly, it is hard to see the rust in these pictures)

So I took out the bulbs, got a large cardboard box and placed it under the area that I was painting and used some brushed nickel spray paint to spray over the rust.  A few light coats and the light went from this ...

to this!

Yes, I got spray paint on the wallpaper, but I am going to steam it off anyway, so no one will ever be the wiser. 

So, that's the plan.  I hope to be able to tackle this entire project the weekend after Thanksgiving.  I imagine it will take a full day to steam the paper off and prepare the walls, then another day to paint and a final few hours to hang the cabinet and art and accessorize. I can't wait to get started.

My goal is to spend no more than $100 on this space.  The big expense will be the wall cabinet, but I think I can spend around $75 on that.  I already have all of the tools, paint and accessories on hand.  I may need to get a large frame for the art, but I think I can snag one at Ikea for a great price.

What about you? Have you updated a space on little cash? Please share! 

See you swoon,


  1. This is going to look great! My only suggestion is that if you invest in a decent piece of art, get it mounted on wood. I think they charged like $20 to do this at Hobby Lobby (obviously not all the framing) but it helps the picture not to warp in the humidity of the bathroom.

  2. The bathroom in my condo came with a wallpapered outlet cover too. Must have been an 80's thing.

  3. That's a good idea about the art, Maury! I will keep that in mind for sure. And Allison, I'm both relieved and a little scared to learn that the wallpapered outlet cover was in vogue at one time! My parents brought their steamer over the other day, so it looks like I can start getting this project started this weekend!

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