Before & After: 3 Years, $1,000 and Many Craigslist Finds Later, This Bathroom Has a New Look

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Becky’s bathroom was not only super dated, it wasn’t really meeting their needs, so she set about changing it, slowly but surely. Aside from some plumbing work, Becky tackled most of the updates herself, keeping the cost low (but, occasionally, the stress high). The new bathroom is a moody, glam goth space, the likes of which we haven’t really seen on the site before.

From Becky: The before, to us, was, well …. pretty awful, to be generous with my word choice. It’s a dark, windowless room of 5’x9′. The vanity was a rickety pile of fake wood with a terribly impractical glass sink and top. The tile, while bizarrely interesting, made us dizzy. The paint color was sad, and considering we have other full bathrooms, the tub was not needed here. Overall this bathroom made us feel gloomy.

We wanted to completely change the bathroom because it was impractical as-is and visually offensive. It did not fit our style in any way, therefore it had to go.

This project took me about three years to complete mainly due to work schedules and gathering the gumption to really tackle such a task. In the end, it cost us less than $1,000 as I did all the work, save some minor plumbing close-up’s done by a professional.

The biggest surprise was finding the original 1890s Chicago common brick behind the tiled tub wall when I accidentally punched a hole through. While of course I knew the brick was somewhere, I didn’t realize how right there it was. This changed the course of the design a bit.

The first thing to go was the vanity, and the first new thing in was the vanity I built to replace it. It’s made of a hairpin leg stand I found on Craigslist and maple bowling alley for the top. Next the tub came out, that plumbing sealed up, and all the tile was booted to the curb. Installing the new tile followed, most of which I found on Craigslist again. That was quite the process and I’m not sure I’m fully recovered from it yet.

I then had to patch in some drywall but left the brick exposed. The wallpaper was used on a television show I worked on; it was so ridiculously cool I had to find a place for it in our house. The ceiling was painted black and I installed a cool crystal and chrome ceiling mount fixture with a dimmer. After that I designed and built the custom cabinets which gives us fantastic storage, freeing up other areas around the first floor.

I faux painted some rust on plywood pieces and using some weathered wood that was gifted by a friend, made a floating shelf. I then also made the concrete tissue box cover. A few final touches and the bathroom is finally complete!

We love every single thing about the after and I don’t think I would change a thing. I’m not sure that I would do anything differently.

Becky’s words of wisdom: Don’t be afraid to take chances and try new things, especially things outside your comfort zone. Most of all, it’s your home so do what makes you happy regardless of what others may think.

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Thank you, Becky! You can see more on Becky’s blog Flipping the Flip.