Projects & Improvements

Before and After: This No-Demo Bathroom Redo Cost Under $300 but Looks So Luxe

published Nov 5, 2023
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When tackling a room reno, it’s important to consider which parts of a room need major attention (read: major dollars) and which parts of the room might just need a little style upgrade (read: budget-friendly beautification).

Beth Finch’s (@ahouseformyplants) bathroom redo is full of the latter. “This bathroom did not need a total redo — just a DIY facelift would do us so well,” Beth says. 

She didn’t like the blue-green walls — the color was a bit “over the top,” she says — and the tile, while in good condition, always looked a little bit dirty. The other spot that always looked dirty was the shower. “I hated showering in a shower that didn’t feel clean!” Beth says. “The grout was multiple shades of brown.”

In a redo ringing up just under $300, Beth and her husband, Camilo, addressed the floors, the shower, and more. “We didn’t demo anything,” Beth says.

Credit: Beth Finch
Credit: Beth Finch

A $100 kit project took the shower from stained to sleek. 

The first no-demo upgrade to note is the shower; Beth and Camilo used a tub and tile paint kit to get it looking white and refreshed. “I had read a lot of blogs about shower paint, and everyone has said it has lasted even though there are so many skeptics in the comment section,” Beth says. “The ones who have done it have attested that it lasts and looks great, and I felt as though it couldn’t look worse than it already did so I might as well give it a try.”

The shower kit cost about $100, and Beth says it brings a crisp white — and a sense of calm — to the bathroom. “I feel clean and at-peace when I shower,” Beth says. “That is so important and made all the difference to us. It’s so nice to have a light and bright bathroom that looks clean with one solid color of white.” (Speaking of white, Beth and her husband added white paint to the walls to brighten the room, too, and she says she loves the contrast with the new matte black hardware in the room.)

The finishing touch to the shower was a white caulk and clear caulk seal. “That’s what tied it all together, and it started to not look like a DIY. It looked like something we really loved for the long term.”

Credit: Beth Finch
Credit: Beth Finch

The star tiles are stick-on.

Beth and her husband wanted to use a similar paint kit on their floors, but they had to pivot. “We just ran into too many hairs sticking to the floor, and the star stencil didn’t work well with the paint we were using,” Beth says. “So we pivoted and tried a different DIY.”

Determined to create a vintage-inspired star pattern, Beth and her husband used stick-on tiles and cut them to the shape of the room with a box cutter. “I learned that using a box knife works better than an X-Acto knife because the tiles are a little thick,” Beth says. “I also learned some tricks such as using paper as a stencil to guide you as you cut the tiles in difficult areas like around the toilet and the radiator.”

Beth says her tile trick and her tub fix both saved her thousands. (The floor tiles cost approximately $40.) “If I had the budget to redo it any way that I wanted to right now, I don’t think that I would because I really love how this pulled together,” she says. “The stars and the light colors and the art make me feel nostalgic or like I’m in a museum.”

Credit: Beth Finch
Credit: Beth Finch

Boho details pull the room together.

And speaking of the art, Beth used some (perhaps genetic) DIY ingenuity there, too. “The red-toned art piece is pulled from an old calendar of my mom’s, and the contrasting blue pastel pieces were made by my mother. I hung them with some hardware I found for $1 at Habitat for Humanity Restore for some character.”

Beth’s accessories are budget-conscious finds, too. The rug was an $80 flea market find, and the towels are under $20 from World Market. 

Beth’s best DIY advice? “Find something doable for you that will make you feel good about your home,” she says. “You won’t regret it in the long run. It might just turn out better than you imagined it would, and your before-and-after pictures may even leave you feeling shook up, like they did for me!”