Before and After: A ’90s-Style Bathroom Gets a Cheery Farmhouse Modern Refresh

published Nov 25, 2020
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About this before & after
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Before: outdated bathroom

Sometimes it’s not the square footage of a space that’s the issue, but how big it feels. Take this bathroom belonging to Emily Lothert (@re.recreate). “When we moved into this house, it was so dated and poorly kept up. Every room needed a lot of love,” Emily says. In the case of the bathroom, while the size was generous, the bathroom felt dark and dim thanks to a combination of beige tile floors, dark wood finishes, and a blah paint color that did nothing for the space.

The bathroom didn’t need a layout change, but it did need a facelift, so Emily and her husband set out to give it a brighter, more modern style.

The couple kept the old vanity, but made a few smart tweaks to give it a new life. First, they boosted it by an inch to make the height more functional for them. Then, they painted the wood with a deep blue paint that’s vibrant yet classic. Fresh gold hardware adds a little glam.

The sink got an update, too. Emily and her husband ditched both the built-in one and instead opted for a new counter and vessel sink that they paired with a black faucet. Above, they replaced the old frameless builder-grade mirror with a more stylish arched mirror, and booted the old ’90s-style vanity light in favor of farmhouse-modern style vanity light.

Rather than replacing the floor tiles, Emily painted them fresh white. It instantly brightens the space and makes it look a lot cleaner, too.

For the walls, Emily and her husband installed board-and-batten wainscoting on the bottom half. On top, they sponge-painted a diamond print to mimic the look of pricey wallpaper.

The entire bathroom was a DIY project that Emily estimates took about a week’s worth of work, all told. Now, the fresh color scheme and modern finishes make it look way bigger and brighter—a win, considering the size stayed exactly the same.

Inspired? Submit your own project here.