Thursday, February 16, 2012

Bathroom Mood Board

Ah, we are nearing the finish line! There is a fine coating of drywall dust on EVERY EFFING THING IN MY HOUSE. The finishes have been selected, the bank balance has shrunk to almost nothing, and I am thisclose to dragging a mattress up to the still-quite-raw attic and just pretending it's done. Remodeling is chaos. I know--wah, wah, right? It will definitely all be worth it. I just want to press fast forward and soak in my big new tub. Sadly, that tub is wrapped in plastic, in my basement, with everything from tile samples to dirty laundry stacked on top of it. Not very spa-like.

I find it therapeutic to concentrate on the awesome things, like my bathroom! Seth thinks I am joking when I say this, but quite seriously: I AM NOT COMING BACK DOWN. I am locking that bathroom door (note to self: check with contractor to make sure the door locks), putting in some ear plugs (as soon as I find them--the house is seriously reaching Hoarder/Buried Alive levels of insanity right now. They keep making us empty out closets to run pipes and things through them! AND on the days that I am "home" with my children, ages 4 and 10 months, we have to vacate the house and wander around town aimlessly because of the construction. WAH INDEED.), and TAKING A NINETEEN HOUR BATH, FOLLOWED BY A NAP AND POSSIBLY ANOTHER BATH.

But! Eyes on the prize and all that. Here is my little mood board of what we're doing in the bathroom (heh heh).

1. Okay, so herringbone marble. How pretty is that? We can't afford to do much decorative tilework, but there is a handy tiny wall right behind the tub that is just right for a little accent tile. It will give us a big impact without having to tile all the wall in the bathroom. You'll see what I mean when it's a little further along. Right now it just looks like this:

Admittedly, it might not inspire much awe as it is, but picture that back wall covered in marble, with a clawfoot tub in front of it. Now picture a nasty basement, with a plastic-wrapped tub full of dirty laundry in it! You may need to call upon your memories of recent Hoarders episodes for this. Which one is better? This brings us to my third child, THE TUB.

2. I have wanted a clawfoot tub since I was a little girl. My grandmother had a huge old house with a deep clawfoot tub that must have been six feet long. After looking into refinishing an old tub, I ended up buying an acrylic one from Overstock. The cost was about the same, maybe less, than a vintage tub plus a good refinishing job, and the weight of a cast iron tub was of some concern, since we are retrofitting a space that wasn't originally designed to hold that much weight.

3. I want a little side table by the tub for things like trashy magazines, liquor and a baby monitor candles and bath salts, and I looooove the classic Martini Side Table from West Elm. The silver is just so gorgeous. I saw a silver one at my local West Elm in the scratch and dent section, and I could just kick myself for not grabbing it. It's on sale this week, so maybe I can justify it. I love that it's a stool and a side table, and I could take it downstairs for extra dining seating if I needed it. It's so perfect.

4. Maaaaahble, again. I can't say "marble" very many times without reverting to this. Seth and I priced about fourteen different kinds of marble, and we ended up going with 12x12 GrecianWhite from Home Depot, which we'll have cut in half for 6"x12" tiles, laid subway-style. It was half the cost of Carrara, my favorite, and a little more expensive than other colors we considered (a darker gray, a less-veiny white), but it was the one in our price range we were most enthusiastic about.

And now we move over to the vanity section of the bathroom, which is currently in this less-than-spa-like state:

An oasis, yes? However, it will be laid out (in terms of mirrors, lights, and the actual vanity) very similarly to this setup from Pottery Barn:

Um, minus the mahhhhble wall. I ain't made of money, y'all.

5. For our sconces, we chose the very basic, affordable (and hopefully not too draining to my already ghostly complexion) Good Earth chrome sconces from Lowe's. Ha, you can actually see the exact moment where we started to run out of money. But these are nice and basic, and they came with CFL bulbs.

6. The best gray paint I've found to go with all of my other finishes is Martha Stewart's Heavy Goose, which my four-year-old thinks is the funniest name in the whole world.

7. We haven't bought our medicine cabinets yet, but my husband wants something linear and simple, and we need one that is surface-mounted (not recessed, due to our stud placement, ha ha), so we're thinking something like these Zenith Early American cabinets from ye olde Home Depot.

8. All of that will sit above our vanity. Look closely at the Pottery Barn vanity above. Now check out this one on Amazon. I'm no vanity expert, but to me, this looks pretty much like the same exact vanity for about, oh, half the price. And you can get it even cheaper if you opt for polished white marble instead of the carrera countertop. Ours is scheduled to arrive tomorrow, and my fingers will pretty much remain crossed until then, but I've heard good things about this brand and this company, Kitchen Bath Collection.

I'll spare you a vision board on the water closet, which will be a white toilet in a gray room. That leaves us the shower. The shower is to Seth what the bathtub is to me. It's a big space, which is not really reflected in this sad picture:

9. If you're standing at the vanity, the shower is directly behind you. The little window to the side of the vanity is between it and the shower.  The part facing the vanity will be all glass, pretty similar to this configuration--a door in the middle with a glass panel on either side. The interior will be gray subway tile. The color we chose is Daltile's Desert Gray in semi-gloss, with white grout. You can find it at your local Daltile showroom, or at Home Depot. We actually found it was cheaper to go through Home Depot in this case.

10. Finally, we wanted seating in the shower. We considered a built-in bench, but because we're putting shower heads at both ends, we couldn't figure out a good location for that. Seth mentioned a teak bench, but I was all, "Okay, Seth J. Rockefeller," because holy cow, those things can get pricey.  Also, I wasn't aware that HE was even aware of such things as teak benches. La dee DAH. But I digress.

However, I remembered the Italmodern stools I had perused when looking for something for Graham's room a while back, and I ordered the Sally stool for just over $50, with free shipping. It might be too good for my preschooler, but I'm fancy enough to sit on it while I shave my legs. Also, it can be used as extra seating or a side table elsewhere in the house, but don't tell people it's been in your shower, where you get all nekkid and stuff. Just a bit of personal advice.

That's all I got for now. I am aware of how gray and white everything looks, which is soothing, but also--to a color freak like me--a little bleak. I plan to inject a little color through accessories and towels, which I can change out easily. I'm digging coral against all the silvery gray, so I'll probably treat myself to some coral towels when we dig out from under the piles of craziness and finally move upstairs.

If you need me, I'll just be rocking back and forth in a corner of my attic, pretending everything is done and pretty already. Pin It

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Upstairs Update: Drywall Edition

Happy Valentine's Day! Here is a picture Graham drew for me.

He said, "This is me telling you 'I love you' and thinking about rockets." Well okay then. At least he's honest about his priorities.
So! The upstairs, she is rolling right along.

Where our attic door and dining room wall used to be (do you like the creepy chandelier shadows?) . . .

Is now our little stairway to heaven, har har.

Sorry, I couldn't move any further back from it to get a better shot. We have a lovely, temporary plastic wall cutting our dining room diagonally in half (to keep the drywall dust contained):

And here are some gray, indecipherable pictures! The top of the stairs, with my little office nook in the background. Note to self: do not use a rolling office chair here. That silvery business is where the air return will be, under my desk, which does not yet exist.

View from the top of the stairs, turned around. There will be a bannister on either side of the gaping hole/stairwell, and shelves or picture "gallery" space on the walls. Right in front of the window will be one of those Edison pendants the kids are liking these days.

View into the bedroom before:



During framing:

With drywall (awaiting new window):

Where the bed will go, before:

After demo:

After framing:

With drywall (and a fancy garbage bag!):

I'll spare you photos of the rest of the space--just more greige drywall that's kind of hard to distinguish from one room to another. But speaking of greige, I was testing out different color gray paints on a scrap of drywall, and I cracked up because somehow they ALL managed to look exactly like the ol' cardboardy gypsum color of the unfinished drywall.

That should keep you on the edge of your seats until next time--"Which gray will she choose?!" It will either be the top shade or the bottom one.

We are purchasing light fixtures and tile left and right. We have to go pick out carpet this week (is there anything more boring than looking at carpet? Answer: no.) and at some point a big ol' vanity (my biggest Amazon purchase ever) is arriving at my house. I can't wait to share more. And I REALLY can't wait to move up there. Pin It

Thursday, February 9, 2012

"Floor Plan"

So, as anyone who knows me (or anyone who sees this drawing) could tell you, I am not an architect.

My lovely friend Jessica, a real grown-up interior designer, took some measurements for me and drew a scale plan of my raw attic space for me in AutoCad, and then I mutilated the drawing by pasting it into Publisher and drawing little boxes and shapes all over it. But this is the only way I know how to do it, so this is what you get.

All of that gray space on top is where the ceiling is sloped too low, so most of it is storage space behind a five-foot knee wall. The bottom half of the plan used to have the same slope, until we busted through the roof and built a shed dormer

The whole left side is our bedroom. THE WHOLE SIDE. That ends up being about 16x18, which is nothing crazy for newer houses, or even more spacious older homes. But it's 2.5 times as big as our current "master" bedroom. Our kids' rooms are in the 9x10 range. My house in teensy, y'all. Anyway, I keep wandering into the unfinished space and twirling around like an idiot. All of that space! For ME us! 

So the attic stairs (which were replaced last week! More on that later!) sort of divide the space in half. We'll have a little hallway (really just a landing, I guess) at the top of the stairs, at the end of which will be my office nook. So far the only plans I have for that are building a desk out of a hollow-core door and mounting it to the wall. The ceiling on that side (the front of the house) is slanted, so I can't do much in the way of vertical storage. I have found some cute ideas for hallway offices on Pinterest, like this one

Back to my "floor plan"! From the hallway, you can turn left and go through some mini french doors into the aforementioned giant (to me) bedroom, or you can go right (through a glass pocket door, which delights me to no end) into my our master bathroom. I'm pretty sure our new shower is the same size as our old downstairs bathroom. Also, we are very fancy with our water closet. This is pretty much the Spelling mansion now.

On the other side of the bathroom is our closet space. Someone (ME! That's who!) had the clever idea to install washer-dryer hookups in the closet, since it backs up to plumbing anyway. Now, I don't know when exactly we'll be able to buy a nice little front loader set, but I don't think we'll be hauling the set that's currently in the basement up the steps anytime soon. It's just nice to have the hookups there, and to know we'll eventually be able to do some laundry where we actually keep our clothes and linens. I hate trudging up and down the rickety basement steps to do laundry (I guess that's why Seth does it. Aw). 

So, that's the layout. That is what we are working toward right now, and that's what has taken over our house since before Christmas. Our house is TORN UP. Clothes everywhere, plastic sheeting, and goofy baby exersaucer plastic craziness thrown in for good measure. There are always random dudes coming in and out, and Graham is always making them uncomfortable, trying to be friends with them, asking them to hug him when they leave, wanting to discuss the solar system with them. Poor guys.

If you (Mom?) are interested in my ideas for the space once it's finished, my Pinterest board for the whole upstairs is right here. Follow me for up-to-the-minute breaking news about grout selections, or what pillow I'm currently too poor to order!

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