Before & After: Back to Black & White Bathroom for $200

published May 7, 2015
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(Image credit: Kelley)

Since they’ll eventually sell this house, Kelley didn’t want to spend too much money in updating the place. So when this bathroom was feeling a little bit country, she set a short budget, and made the existing vintage tile shine:

(Image credit: Kelley)

From Kelley:

We live in a small cape cod house built in 1951. We love it, but can’t stay here forever because the layout and size doesn’t really allow for a family in the future. For that reason, we’re trying to make it our own for as little money as possible. The house has great bones but needs a little TLC and a personal touch, and I’m loving the journey. It can be hard these days to retain a traditional style without things feeling dated, but I’m trying.

I want to keep as many original features of the house as possible to retain its vintage charm, so when I recently made over our bathroom I attempted to do just that. I loved the original wall and floor tile, but wanted to create an calming atmosphere that suited our taste rather than the outdated, busy look of the black floral wallpaper that was there when we moved in. Because there is no natural light in the bathroom, the wallpaper made the whole room look dingy, but I knew it was possible to brighten things up. I kept our budget under $200 and changed the entire feel of the room. I scraped ancient, peeling wallpaper (and found a few surprises on the walls underneath… scribbled love notes that served as sweet remnants of the former owner), sanded, painted, caulked, and scrubbed the tile until it shined. I added tempered glass shelves, switched out the sconces and removed the homemade wooden frame around the medicine cabinet to play up the vintage pharmaceutical vibe that began to establish itself. I removed the shutters on the window because I felt like they were a little too “country” for the new style, and added curtains to hide the mirrored window.

I much prefer the clean, simple look of the new bathroom to the cluttered, dark country feel of the wallpaper. It serves as a great base for switching out accessories when I want to change things up. I can add colored towels, hand soap and flowers according to season and not have to worry about things matching, because basically everything goes with black and white. And I love even more the fact that I was able to pull it all off without any renovations and for under $200!

For more details and photos, visit Kelley’s blog, A Domestic Life.

Thank you Kelley!