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Reveal: A Dingy Bathroom Gets a Breath of Fresh Air

by on May 15, 2014

After years of dreaming of our perfect bathroom, we had honed in on a look that we knew we would be pleased with for years to come. I pinned and pinned my little heart out until Pinterest finally started saying, “This looks familiar; didn’t you already pin this?” Our vision was set, now we just needed to find a way to bring this vision to life.

As you saw a few days ago, we had our work cut out for us. This little room needed some big, big help. 

Before Bathroom photograph with snake shower head in background

The good news was, we didn’t have to shop to the ends of the earth to find what we were looking for; honest to goodness, Lowe’s had everything we needed. Including custom-made vanities, yes please. 

Picking out cabinets at Lowe's

We started with the big things first: ordering our vanity and vanity top. Since the space was small, we needed to make sure the vanity fit the room, and we went with gray, to add to her humble nature. We made a great cabinetry friend at Lowe’s who took care of all the nitty-gritty details (I’m not a numbers girl, myself), and we even swapped renovating stories and puppy photos in the end. Quite the pleasant experience, if I do say so myself. 

Designing Vanity at Lowe's

Now, it was time to work. Since I tend to specialize in the shopping department, my job was done and it was time for that husband of mine to get to work! Demo Day was here! He started with demolishing every square inch of the space, which turned out to be quite the stress-release. 

Demoing tile and walls

One weekend later, this guy (and my amazing father-in-law) had moved 2.5 tons of concrete from the deep, dark corners of our 70 year old bathroom! Needless to say, Monday morning was harder to get to than most. I checked in every now and then to take lunch orders and say things like “a little to the left…” Everyone needs a good project manager.

Taking out the rubble

Once the room was knocked down to skin and bones (read: gutted), up came the green board. With the boards fully secure and in place, it was time for mud and paint. This bad boy was starting to look like a room again!

Mudding the greenboard

priming the greenboard

A few more steps here and there, and our bathroom had a whole new look! We went all marble and chrome, with touches of gray and white for a nice calming feel. Doesn’t it just feel lighter? We are so pleased with the way this little girl turned out that we are thinking of moving our mattress in here for a while. 

After - marble and chrome bathroom with grey vanity

Marble shower

Shower Niche with Marble basket weave mosaic

At first we planned on classic white subway tile, but while we were walking through the flooring section at Lowe’s, my eyes were grabbed by the Venatino Polished Marble Tiles. Wowza. We also found a perfect marble basketweave for the floors and we were in business.

Grey vanity and aspen quartz top from US Marble

Both the vanity and top were custom orders from our local Lowe’s store. We went with the Kraftmaid Gentry cabinet in Greyloft and a US Marble quartz top in Aspen.

Chrome Kohler Bancroft fixture with US Marble Aspen Quartz top and marble subway tile

Kohler Bancroft shower fixture with marble subway tile

We wanted classic looking fixtures in chrome and found the Bancroft series from Kohler. They did just the trick for both the vanity and shower.

Marble subway tile shower, marble basket weave floor, & kohler tub

Lulie Wallace painting, Marble subwaytile, grey vanity

Voila! There you have it! Five weeks of no shower, a lot of work, and a ton of fun later, and we get to enjoy this beauty for years to come. We are so grateful to Lowe’s for helping us take part in this little springtime project. Our bathroom finally feels like home.

In case you’re interested, here is a complete list of the materials used:

This post was sponsored by Lowe’s (they gave us a gift card to help us purchase our materials). However, all opinions are ours alone.

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  1. The walls were primed with the Valspar drywall primer. 

    To keep things (somewhat) consistent with the rest of the house we ended up finishing the walls with the same paint color we have in a few other rooms: Grey Owl from Benjamin Moore.

  2. holy moly that looks amazing! clearly you’re in the wrong profession…don’t tell John.

  3. @Toto – It’s the same pattern but in marble, and no longer broken and cracked.

    @CapreeK – We have an extra bedroom and a furry dog if you’ve ever want a southern vacation home.

  4. It looks great! I love the wall tile and I’m so glad you can shower at home now! 

  5. I love the new look but isn’t that the same vanity with a coat of paint and new fixtures?

  6. @jeanio– thanks! It’s not the same vanity but a very similiar size and shape! The old one was made of particle board and was falling apart 🙂 

  7. Question on the floor…did you have to remove the old floor, or did you tile over?  We have the exact same 70 year old floor in our bathroom.  We were told it is very hard to remove because it is set in cement.  Thanks!

  8. What led to the decision not to replace the electrical outlet?

    Love the renovation!

  9. @Robin – We did remove the old floor. I was told the same thing but was determined (or dumb) enough to take it out anyways. It was hard, but went much quicker than expected. Amazing what a 42″ pry bar and pickaxe will do.

  10. @martha – Thanks! We love it too 🙂

    Which outlet are you refering to? We actually moved the old power outlet from on the wall by the mirror to in line with the switches.

  11. I apologize if this is a repeat but not sure this is posting. We just put up the same tiles and they look so dark. How long did you have to wait for the tiles to lighten after putting them on the wall before sealing? Which sealer did you use? And did you seal again after grouting? Looks Beautiful!!

  12. @Eddie The tiles were as picture when we pulled them out. There were some darker tiles but we really liked the contrast. 

    As for the sealer, after asking around a bit, we sealed after the tile was grouted and used sealer Lowes suggested. Sorry but I can’t remember the brand/name. Hope this helps!

  13. LOVE THIS!!  Do you mind sharing what brand and color you used for the gray to paint the walls with?!


  14. Hi-

    Love the renovation, could you let me know what you did/used for the end tiles of the shower (where it meets the painted wall on the side); bullnose or left alone? Could tell the bullnose on the top of the partial wall, but wasn’t certain of the other edge. Even better if you have a photo!

  15. Hi, I noticed you listed Lulie Wallace for paint. Was this a custom color? Several asked paint color but I didn’t see response. Can you let me know if you can share? I just ordered Aspen counter top but now finding difficulty with paint color … don’t want to take away from the beauty of the countertop. Your bathroom is very pretty.

  16. Hey Sandy! The painting we hung over our toilet is by Lulie Wallace but the paint color of the walls is a Benjamin Moore Color, Gray Owl. It’s a great cool gray and is on the walls of most rooms in our home.

    We’ve loved the countertop color and durability. It’s been great! You’ll love it.

  17. Lowell, I’m sorry I’m just now seeing your question.

    We used a pencil liner that matched the marble to top the tile. You can see it really good in the photos of the sink/faucet.

  18. Was searching Pinterest for bathroom remodel ideas and stumbled across your post. Not kidding, we have the exact same floor and wall tiling as your original bathroom. Guess its definitely time to pull the trigger on our remodeling plans.

  19. Love your bathroom, looks very similar to ours, can you please tell me the color of the walls that were painted.


  20. We’re almost done with a very similar bathroom? Where can I find your toilet paper stand and is it well-weighted not to tip over during use? Thanks.