Small Bathroom Before and My To-Do List

Who doesn’t want their bathroom to feel like a bit of an escape? You go in, shut the door on the world and take some time to take care of yourself. It’s certainly the easiest place to go to get a little space and quiet calm. With all that in mind, I do not quite recall how we ended up choosing this saturated red-orange, but we did. After a few years, I’m ready for a lighter, brighter space.

small orange bathroom before

This room is only 5′ by 8′ and has come a long way from where it started when we bought the house. I’ll put together a before and after floor plan to just show how we opened it up and made the best use of the space.

orange small bathroom before

The fixtures were in such odd places and the floor tiles were cracked, deteriorated, and dirty. Not cleanable. The guy who owned the place before us was very creative and had lots of projects in the works. There wasn’t even a kitchen! Needless to say, we have inherited lots of in-the-works ideas that we are still working out.

small orange bathroom before shelves

The to-do list as it stands today:

  • Artwork – need something to take you away. :)
  • Finish vanity. Add shelves and legs. Paint or strip and stain, then seal.
  • New faucet. I’d like an oil-rubbed bronze to match the light fixture.
  • New globes for the light fixture?
  • Clean up storage accessories on right-side wall. Need something for toothbrushes, hand towel, toilet paper roll and hair accessories.
  • Caulk base of bath tub, toilet, sink and trim.
  • Reseal the slate floors. This should be done once a year or so and it’s overdue.
  • Repair/replace incorrect trim pieces.
  • Repaint walls and trim. The trim need to go dark brown to match the rest of the house and the walls and ceiling will be a soft, warm grey.
  • Replace toilet seat. Thinking a wood one would be great to tie into the age of the home and add warmth (once the walls are light grey, we’ll need to add a little more warmth back in.
  • Storage – We want to build storage shelves between the wall studs. Currently using a slim shelf in the hallway for extra toiletries, curlers, travel essentials, etc.
  • Refinish the door. We only have four interior doors and all are original to the house. Initially the plan was to stain them, but the hallway is small and after a few years of living with them, I think I want to paint them a medium grey.
  • New shower curtains and liners. I think i need to make the shower curtain if I want a seamless piece that stretches all the way around. Still thinking about how to address that one.
  • Towel hanging storage. Have some options to work out here. Stacking short towel bars, hooks longer towel bars on the doors.
  • Debating on putting a storage shelf above the entry door. You wouldn’t notice it unless you were in the bathroom, but then again, it would certainly take up space and might make the bathroom feel smaller overall.
  • Add ceiling moulding. I saved all the trim from demolition in the house and there is a simple cove that would look great in the bathroom.
  • Locking. We’ve got the original door hardware which doesn’t lock but still works great otherwise so we need to work out a separate lock.
  • Accessorize. I want to make a tub caddy, something wood and metal that can hold a candle, glass of wine and book. Maybe a small side table near the tub as well that can double as a seat. Fabric liner for the copper metal caddy, bins for the vanity shelves to hold makeup, brushes, nail kits, etc. Maybe give the little containers on the shelves a little makeover as well.

Alright, that’s it. At least I think it is. I thought I was finished with that list about halfway down and then kept remembering projects I had in mind. I have a feeling these lists are going to be really helpful for me to stay on track and not get so distracted with new projects or other spaces. I should probably thank Young House Love for the inspiration. They make and mark-off lists like I wish I could. Well, I have no problem with the making of the lists, just forget about them because they are closed away in a notebook somewhere.

Boost Your Roost Contest

Okay, so I’m really going all out here by posting my attic and stack of coats/ blankets displaced from our basement by a flood. But I really want to win the Boost Your Roost Contest by HouseLogic that I found on Making It Lovely so the photos need to be posted somewhere. Fair warning, these aren’t pretty!

Stair Location Before Picture

This shows our current access to the attic. Those stairs are so great, you can walk up and down them facing forward, not like the scary fold up stairs they sell now. They also have a huge spring that acts like a pulley making them very easy to get up and down despite their weight. We would replace these with a u-shaped staircase starting where the nearest end of the sofa is.

What’s that, you don’t see a sofa? Oh, that’s because for the past 3 months it has been our temporary storage for coats and blankets due to a basement flood that called for their immediate relocation. Also, take a peek at the gallery wall I re-created and have been unable to blog about due to the coats!

Unfinished attic soon to be Office

I’ve got windows saved up to replace these, much bigger and operable (for emergency egress) and will probably put some more little windows around it for fun and light. That file cabinet was left by the previous owner, but is old and operates like new, so I think I’d keep it and refinish it. You can see the stash of insulation that was saved from a job site, I’ve got stockpiles of stuff everywhere!

unfinished attic to be master suite

This is about 35′ to 40′ of attic space stretching to the west end of the house, you can barely see the window on the other end peeking out from behind the mound of stuff. I can assure  you this looks like much more stuff than it really is. The massive pile to the left is made mostly out of old work desks left by the previous owner. So stuff is just piled on top. There’s some good stuff in there, glass door knobs, furniture from an old bank downtown, wood and metal chairs, artwork, empty frames etc. Believe me when I say that this pile barely scratches the surface of what used to be up here.

sketch of attic space potential

I know, I know. I do have the space on AutoCAD somewhere, but it must still be on the old computer. I wasn’t about to take the time to hook it back up and find it, I should be working right now as it is!! Anyway, it almost shows the potential of this space. I think there would also be closets on the outside of the bathroom wall as well, but couldn’t remember quite how much space there is.

And finally, if you’re still here, how about some pretty. I pulled together a quick inspiration board for how I want the space to feel. I’ve been saving some of these images for years. There are a couple of images of a white attic with glass walls dividing the interior spaces missing, maybe they are on the old computer too?

attic interior inspiration board

If this room is ever finished, I see lots of white, light, warm wood tones, some soft blues and oranges. The space will certainly have some mid-century furniture and a little industrial meets zen.

Okay, no more scary attic pics. Come visit me over here at the make:Tulsa blog today. And after looking at my round-up of studio inspiration over there, I really want to win the opportunity for this makeover! Not only will it drastically change my work life, but every morning, noon and night will be positively different, how exciting. So I’ll let you know if I make a finalist, and you’ll have to help me :)

Home To Do: Our Den

I’ve decided to introduce a series called “Home To Do” which will consist of pictures of various rooms in our home with their (very detailed) “to do” list attached. All part of my new attitude to expose my home in order to motivate myself to make some moves on my lists. You see these lists already exist, written, typed, in the back of a notebook, everywhere! I just found one titled “32 Things To Do Before I turn 32″ and think I finished maybe 8 of them. In my defense, I made the list less than a month before my 32nd birthday and some of the items were pretty ambitious. So in this series I am going to break down my lists by room, put them in picture form with numbers and everything and let you guys hold me accountable.

Let me introduce you to our den. This is technically supposed to be Jeff’s room so the color, fabric and furniture choices are ultimately his, but you know I dream up all kinds of ideas as you can see in my Current Attractions post here. We also use this as our television watching space and have put quite a mix of found and given items in here to create a seating arrangement. In a nutshell, it is quite hodge podge and I’m itching to streamline it so there is a recognizable cohesive design.

This is an overview of how the room looks on any given day. Boots out, blanket laying across sofa and chair seat, tennis rackets, guitars, movies and other things that do not have a home. The theme is loosely centered around music and art, with show posters from shows Jeff promoted at the Cain’s Ballroom or his own venue taking center stage. They are the starting point for the design and create some interesting details to work with. The plans are to keep things warm, comfortable and funky with a touch of old Hollywood glam.1. This says “Artwork, Girl Getting shot with Arrow” and it needs to go.  It was a gift and has beautiful colors and interesting subject matter, but doesn’t say “Home” the way I would like.

2. A friend’s unfinished drawing. This lady has always been missing a face and I’ve wanted to re-frame it will a nice matte and create multiple faces that can be interchanged. Not sure this will still happen, but if so, she may move over to my gallery wall and be available for visiting guests to re-arrange if they so choose.

3. Door opening is now closed off and needs to be finished. This is on my January organization projects list, so we’ll see how that goes, so I’ll leave the details for another post.

4. Jeff has a tiger collection from his childhood that needs a decent home. I’m thinking of including these in my grandmother’s refinished glass curio cabinet. It currently houses part of my pottery and rock collections and might be just the place. I think they need some sort of home to be displayed on. Perhaps I can make a multi-level display out of different colors of scrap wood. (Mental note: make a sketch as soon as I save this post)

5. This media stand (term used loosely) is actually the lower half of my grandparent’s dining room hutch. I have plans to build a top for it, paint it and I’ve been toying with the idea to put some simple bun feet on it. That would make this small room feel a little more spacious and definitely help with the cleaning.

6. This huge honkin’ television has never had a home in any room I’ve designed so a new flat screen TV is on the list. I’m positive that someday one will just appear at the secondhand store for next to nothing!

7. I have a surround sound system with my old stereo and hope that once our media collection moves to the doorway-turned-built-in-shelves, we’ll have enough open space in the media console to house all the equipment. Then we’ll only see some small shelves in the corners of the room holding the small speakers.

8. Ah, the attention grabbing light switch is quite white on that wall. I had hoped to create a copper switch plate in the shape of a guitar when I was in a class at Garden Deva’s. But my attempt turned out much too small so was reassigned to Christmas ornament status. I still have a few options up my sleeve for this and I’m hope a new artwork arrangement combined with moving some furniture and maybe a new switch cover will solve this problem.

9.   The artwork on this wall will be rearranged and possibly re-framed in simple black with white or gray mattes. Since the wall color and music poster art is already so bold I think some non-competing frames and a symmetrical arrangement will calm things nicely.

10. Hmmm, things that need a home include the tennis racket, guitar, a random throw pillow, boot stretcher, lap desk, box of CD’s and a couple of other small boxes of who knows what. I guess this is what happens when you don’t have a junk drawer.

11. I already have fabric I would love to use on the ottoman and the plaid chair. I’ve got a half-finished chair cover cut out of an old light brown sofa cover. Once the chair is solid, I’ll place some festive pillows for interest. I want the chair to stay (it is very comfortable) but need it to be less of a focal point. The ottoman needs the cushion cut down since it is about 2 inches taller the sofa seat and elevates your legs. It will be recovered with something much more appealing and hopefully just as durable.

12. This poor rug has seen much better days. It ended up in here because we moved in in a hurry and needed some soft rugs to help absorb the sound since the house is really just one big open space. I think there is a rug out there that I can borrow that will be neutral enough to work until we put a new rug in the budget.

13. These were quick drop cloth curtains put up when we moved in. They still have the manufactured seam down the middle. I plan to re-sew that seam and correctly hem all edges. It might be nice to put a screen printed medallion design across them as well. I will also make tie backs and roman shades for the individual windows. I like lots of options for my window coverings depending on the weather and time of day and in these old houses (1920) the layers certainly help in the winter.

14. This is one of the original light fixtures in the house and I just need to clean it, screw the canopy in properly and I’ve been thinking of a way to modernize it just a bit with an etched glass column slipped around the bulbs to soften the light. This light is the reason for the “bit of old hollywood glamour” in it’s no apologies gold and I love it.

15. Like I said, hodge podge. These pillows are just some my Grandma was getting rid of and are quite soft and comfy, but just don’t fit the other criteria.

16. Yes, the throw blanket needs to go, but in the coldest part of winter and the hottest part of summer we always leave a blanket down. I’d like to attempt quilt making and put together something reversible that could be draped down the back and seat of the sofa. That one sounds like quite a project, so don’t be surprised if you see me brainstorm on that here and there.

17. This rug is just temporary and is actually gone now, so one thing crossed off the list already!

18. Ah, well this is more like user error. I always have piles and piles of books and just need a better system and/or more accommodating side table. In all honesty it’s usually worse with some crochet or embroidery project piled on and topped off with a glass of tea. Anyone else have this problem?

19. My lamps do not coordinate. You know, with each other, the room, or the shade with the base. They’re just ones we had that fit on the tables and that was that.

20. Oh this is the best artwork and needs to earn a spot opposite on the large wall. Jeff’s grandma made him these “Michael Jackson” gloves for him when he was a kid and they’re great. She beaded them! Close-ups to come soon for that’s a project I should be able to tackle quickly.

Anyone still with me? Wow, sorry for the exhaustive list, but you know, the motivation doesn’t work unless it is all out there for me to look back on and see how the progress is. Just typing it out has my mind reeling with ideas and how-tos!

My Christmas Mantle

I am so excited to decorate my mantle because I didn't have one last year.  We don't even spend much time in that room, especially in the winter because the fireplace is not yet functional, but one step at a time, right?  This year mantle, next year… fire! Hopefully.

If you've read About Me, you know I just use what I have (and often if I don't have something I might be able to borrow it from my mom – she has the greatest collection).  So here's a shot of my decorating attempt.

Christmas 2010 Mantle - Closeup

The blue bottles are a mixed collection. Two were gifts from my mom, the tall ones in back, and the other two were from a whiskey bottle collection of J's grandparents.  We have several more bottles from that collection that I should show off sometime, they have great patterns and shapes. The white poinsettia garland was borrowed from my mom, as were the brass reindeer stocking holders. You can also spot a Snowbaby from my childhood and the moravian star is my Christmas tree topper that I decided to use here instead.

Christmas 2010 Mantle - Solid Stockings

This shows the full effect and the elephant and deer that stand amongst those bottles.  They are two of my favorite items in the house and always make me smile when I catch a glimpse.  The elephant came in a box of J's childhood goodies and I immediately snatched it for my own purposes.  The deer is part of my grandparent's pottery collection that was so vast I still can't believe it.  Grandma helped us sort through everything and still supposedly has the "good stuff". That may be true, but the pieces I received from her are pretty great and are my "good stuff".

I made Christmas stockings!

This is exciting for me because I've had stockings cut out and half constructed for more than 3 years.  These stockings, however, are all new since I had so much time to tweak my ideas! 

First I thought simple and soft gray would be so nice and convertible over the years to work with different colored trees.  Then I decide they should also be reversible and wouldn't it be nice if not only they reversed, but you could also have a cuff on either side if you wished.  This posed a problem for simple, quick construction, so although I do have finished stockings now, they weren't complete until the first week of January!

Here is a close up of my loop.  There are the loops which button onto each side of the stocking, or if you have a cuff, you flip the loop over and button to inside of stocking only.

Stocking Hook Close-Up

Here is loop in position for cuff option.

Stocking Cuff Close-up

This is what they look like with patterns out and cuffs turned down.  In the spirit of using what I have, I went ahead and used up some designer quilting cottons that I purchased with a birthday gift card and was saving for something important I'm sure.  On the left is Wildflowers in Navy and the right is Pressed Flowers in Turquoise, both from the Aquatic colorway in the Daisy Chain collection.

Stockings Pattern with Cuff

Oh and look at the button packaging for those I used on the patterned side.  I know they are probably nothing special, but these are the things that just grab me at flea markets and estate sales.

Button Front Back



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