Bring it on, Bathroom!

Over the long weekend, Ben decided he was going to get serious work done on the house.  Perhaps start tearing off solar panels and cedar shakes to get ready for roofing?  Mother Nature had a different idea.

On Saturday morning we woke up to a few inches of sloshy, wet snow.  Never in my life have I seen snow on Memorial weekend!  Bad weather turned our attention back to the main bathroom.  Before we could get working, we needed to run errands.  Costco for the week’s groceries, an auto store to get a new car battery for Handy Sammy, and Home Depot for lumber, plywood, sink, and new faucet.  Errands caused us to get a late start, but we did get something done before building.  Grouting the floor tiles.

Ben likes grouting because it is the mindless part of tiling.  Mix, spread over tiles, let it sit a few minutes, wipe off.  It’s like Staples ‘Easy Button’ of the tile project.

One thing to keep in mind when you’ve got small grout lines: wipe off the excess grout in a circular motion.  When cleaning in a circular pattern, it’s nearly impossible to remove too much grout.

Use an old, wet rag to wipe, rinsing occasionally, re-wiping until the tiles are clean.

A slight haze stays on the tile, and that’s okay.  Wait until the grout has completely dried to clean thoroughly.

For cleaning reasons, we decided to use a medium gray grout, Pearl Gray on the floors.  In our first house we used white and it did get a little dingy in main areas.

The long weekend started off with a few sheets of 1/4 inch MDF to cover the glued bead board mess of yore.

Turns out the 8 foot square bathroom comes in handy for this.  No seams, just 36 inch tall pieces nailed to the studs.  Covers the ugly mess quickly, and this room can benefit from bright white trim.  Ben drilled holes to fit around the sink plumbing.

And we’re ready for a linen closet.  Measuring and marking made building easier.

We’re already short on space.  To make the most of the layout, we decided to skip building a 2 by 4 wall.  Instead, Ben built the closet just like he did our fridge surround in our kitchen remodel.  A few strips secured to the wall and ceiling, then a piece of MDF to act as the wall.

See how rough the framing strips look?

Not anymore.  Strips of 1/2 inch MDF cover everything for a beefy, finished look.  And the shelves keep the vanity edge wall from shifting.

The bath tub got a little action, too.  Ben framed up the support wall in preparation for a granite sill.  Still no grout in there.  More trim work to happen, then grout.

In our first house, we had trim treatments in every room.  Yes, it’s very pretty, but also time consuming.  More finish work and more cleaning.  But I don’t know if I want the wall panels in the bathroom to look as plain and flat.  So, I worked on a few trim designs in Photoshop to see what I thought.  Here’s an idea I tossed to Ben.  The back wall, straight ahead of the entrance.

Looking at the vanity wall:

The entrance wall:

And the tub wall.

We discussed the hexagon idea and nixed it.  We’ll live with the plain, easy to clean walls.  But you got a peek at the vanity design.  Similar to the basement vanity at our first house, but smaller.  Ben made a few changes because we didn’t have enough material for the legs.  You’ll get to see that tomorrow.

How was your long weekend?  Did you get work done?  Or spend time with family?

24 thoughts on “Bring it on, Bathroom!

  1. My neighbor is installing a new tub in their bathroom and they are going to fill in the space below it with insulation to keep the water in the tub warmer, longer. Just an idea if you are bath takers 🙂

  2. How wide is your linen closet? We are in the process of a reno and our plans have ‘adjusted’, thus creating a more narrow cabinet closet like yours. I’d love to get an idea of what size it is. Thanks!

    1. Hi Koca, The closet is 18 inches wide. It’s perfect for towels, toilet paper and other necessities. Hope that helps!


  3. I really like the hexagons. Could you create them with paint, just using a slightly darker color of the same shade to create them? Still easy to clean, but have more dimension…

    1. That’s an idea! We’ll see what we think of the flat panel and go from there. 🙂


  4. This is great! I can’t wait to see more. I love reading your posts and seeing how your progress. And I have to say, I’m jealous! I LOVE your house and you live in Montana. I’ve only been to Montana once but I instantly fell in love. I would kill to live in either Montana or Colorado, but my husband hates snow. He hates snow as much as I hate GA’s humidity, which if you know me well enough, my summers are full of non-stop humidity complaints unless I’m at the beach. HAHA!!!!!

    We rent our house so major renovations can’t really happen, but we got some yard work done before Tropical Storm Beryl hit and now we’re waiting on her to pass through and the ground to dry up so we can get back to work.

    1. I totally understand the humidity thing. I can’t stand it either, which is a great thing about Montana. Snow isn’t fun, but I’m used to it. But I’m jealous you’re within driving distance of a beach. We’ve got a 12 hour drive at least to get to a coast. Good luck with your yard work!


    1. Totally crazy, right?!? Just a few days before we had 90 degree days, too. Guess that’s Montana for ya. Ha.


    1. Our white grout wasn’t terrible, but I know we’re only going to have more dirt in this house. Easiest way to keep everything looking as clean as possible.


  5. Why did you decide against the hexagons? You mentioned that it would require extra cleaning (which I didn’t even think of) but was that the only reason? I only ask because I was considering doing something similar to our guest bathroom and this is the first time I’ve ever seen it done with hexagons and I absolutely love it! I found your blog from reading the comments at YHL and am so happy I did! How blessed you are to have such a talented husband. I look forward to following your transformation of your beautiful “mountain house.”

    1. Hi Linda!

      Well, Ben wasn’t in love with the design and cleaning those dust collecting sills isn’t much fun. We’re going with simple baseboards so we can add details later if we really want to. We’ll just have to see how it looks. I love the idea of something different and less traditional looking though. So glad you’re liking the blog! Thanks for stopping in. 🙂


  6. I think the tiles and grout shade look beautiful, and kind of wish you were going with the hexagonal shape with the baseboard! But I totally not get wanting to clean that; I currently rent a period conversion flat in London and can hardly keep up with dusting even the baseboards. Side note, do you guys seal your tiles once you’ve grouted them?

    Also, I can’t wait to see how the vanity shapes up! I love the color you plan on going with – such a nice, bold choice! I’m excited to see the finished bathroom!

    1. Hi Amanda, I liked the hexagon shape, but it’s more work. The baseboard we’re using would be easy enough to add if we decide we want it down the line, so that’s always a possibility. I’m debating paint colors for the vanity, but I know I want a bold blue or blue-green color. Just more fun, right?!?


  7. You may have mentioned somewhere but I couldn’t track it down… What brand/size is the floor tile that you used and where did you find it? I’ve been looking for something like that for our kitchen reno and haven’t had any luck.

  8. We just bought a house and decided to hire someone for the bathroom and to put down the carpets. My husband put down the kitchen floor but the bathroom is a bigger challenge. We will do all the painting ourselves and some cabinet work but let a contractor do the counters in the kitchen, too. We also need a new backdoor. It’s so much work! You are doing a great job on your own.

  9. The bathroom is looking great! Love that first picture!! Do you mind me asking, where in Montana do you live? We live in Raleigh, NC. Its nice, but we both grew up with snow, so we miss it, and we much prefer cold weather to the heat/humidity (as do our dogs!).

    Again, you guys are doing a great job. I can’t wait to see more work = ) Let me know when you guys want to come over, aside from a good time, we’ve got plenty of work to be done = )

    ~ Liliana

  10. You chose the perfect bathtub for that space and it looks fantastic with that tile. I am totally impressed you are doing it yourselves – great job. We tried with our half bath downstairs and it was such as mess, we had to call someone in to fix it. That room didn’t even have a bathtub!

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