One Room Challenge

Before and After: An All-Beige Bathroom Goes Dramatic with a $6,000 Black-and-White Redo

published Aug 8, 2022
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Before: Dated beige bathroom
Credit: Ebony Staten

There’s something special and sentimental about living in your childhood home — or your childhood neighborhood — once you’re an adult. Over the past year, interior stylist and blogger Ebony Staten (@thevogueroom) has been renovating the house next to the one she grew up in; it once belonged to her neighbor, Ms. Beth.

“I got a call from my stepdad, and he asked if I wanted to buy Ms. Beth’s house,” she explains. “Of course, my immediate thought was “Heck, no? I don’t want to live beside my parents!” she said on her blog. “But the more I thought about it, the more I realized it made perfect sense, especially from a business and investment perspective… Because we had a great relationship with her, she sold it directly to me!”

Credit: Ebony Staten

Ebony says the house, a 1958 North Carolina home, was in great condition. “Ms. Beth and her husband had lived in the house since the ’60s. They raised their daughter there, and her husband took really good care of the home.” It had new piping, a relatively new, under-warranty air conditioning system, and updated windows. “Today, I owe a special thanks to Ms. Beth for being such a great neighbor,” she adds.

She said the home was great, but “it just needed the Ebony touch!” The guest bathroom, in particular, needed a style spruce-up, what with its beige tile floors, beige walls, and oak cabinetry. Ebony decided to renovate it during the Spring 2022 One Room Challenge with the goals of making room for a new double vanity, replacing the walk-in shower with a tub shower, and upping the aesthetics.

Credit: Ebony Staten

With the help of a professional building company, Ebony gutted the entire bathroom — and from there, things got complicated. “We found that CONCRETE had been (unnecessarily) poured on top of the subfloor,” Ebony explians. “After a day or so of breaking up all the pointless concrete, we made yet another discovery of rotten floor joists. With the crazy concrete and the rotten floor joist, the team had to tear the entire bathroom floor down to the ground and then reconstruct the floor.”

Credit: Ebony Staten

Once the floor was repaired, the builders also helped Ebony with her vision of moving the bathroom door from the left side of the room to the right. From there, tile was installed (white subway with a black honeycomb stripe for the shower, and marble-y porcelain on the floor), then the walls were painted black (Sherwin-Williams’ Black Magic)

“I made an impromptu decision and decided to paint the ceiling as well!” Ebony says. “I absolutely love the black on the ceiling because it adds more drama to the bathroom space.”

Credit: Ebony Staten

Ebony says she loves all of the black and white details in her space. Two of her favorites? The black and white brushstroke wallpaper and the Barbie poster above the toilet. “She’s so fly in her fur coat, flagging down a taxi, and the driver in his yellow taxi adds a little POP of color to the black and white color palette in the bathroom!” Ebony says.

Credit: Ebony Staten

Also adding some pops of yellowish gold are the new brass fixtures. (A new faucet, shower head, vanity light fixture, and new brass-edged mirrors certainly up the glam.) “The original mirrors I ordered were very similar to the ones I have in the bathroom now,” Ebony explains. “They were ordered from CB2, but they were 3 inches too big — my mistake. I was extremely lucky and found VERY similar mirrors on Houzz. Whew!”

Credit: Ebony Staten

Ebony says the floor and mirror setbacks slowed the project down a bit, and her advice to anyone undergoing a remodel is to “expect the unexpected.”

But, she adds, “overall we ended up pulling it off! The outcome took about 7 weeks with renovation, materials, and ordering decor (some delays in that).” Her remodel cost about $6,000.

And while the location of Ebony’s new bathroom is certainly familiar, its new look is totally different — and completely perfect for a 2022 revamp.

This project was completed for the Spring 2022 One Room Challenge, in partnership with Apartment Therapy. See even more of the One Room Challenge before and afters here.