Before and After: A Cluttered, Stained Bathroom Gets a $600 Space-Saving Redo

published Oct 15, 2022
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Before: a bathroom sink with products on the counter surrounded by two hand towels
Credit: Kiran Ali

Perhaps Apartment Therapy’s Decluttering Cure proves it best: A clutter-free, happy space can help lead to stress-free, happy living. That’s why Kiran Ali (@homenflorabykrn) decided to make a change in her once-overwhelming bathroom.

“The ‘before’ was an outdated, cluttered, and anxiety- inducing space,” Kiran says.”There was limited storage in the cabinets that were chewed up and falling apart. The white countertop had also become stained and couldn’t be cleaned with any amount of cleaning.” In addition, Kiran wasn’t a fan of the brown and bronze fixtures and wanted to give those a more modern upgrade.

Credit: Kiran Ali

“I decided to make a change because having a clean, organized, and functional space is vital for my mental health and overall wellbeing,” Kiran says. “Also, the project itself was fun and therapeutic for me to complete.”

In her $600 redo, she and her partner, Billy, removed the flat-sheet mirror that stretched from corner to corner and replaced it with a storage mirror to tuck away bottles and cosmetics, plus they added $40 Amazon shelving on both sides of the mirror “for additional storage and to reduce the clutter on the countertops,” Kiran explains.

Credit: Kiran Ali

Underneath, their vanity redo is one for the inspiration books — it proves you don’t have to completely replace a fixture in order to modernize it. Kiran and Billy covered the beige counters from before with a white marble contact paper and then ordered new cabinet fronts for the vanity. “The only setback we had in this project was the cabinet faces taking longer than expected to be delivered,” Kiran says, but once they were in, Kiran and Billy painted the vanity and doors black (Behr’s Black) for more contrast and modernization.

Credit: Kiran Ali

They painted the walls gray (Valspar’s Essential Shade) for more warmth as well as replaced vanity light, faucet, and cabinet handles with new brass ones.

Credit: Kiran Ali

“The only thing I would do differently is having done this earlier,” Kiran says, adding that she’s proud of working on the project with Billy. “We achieved our goal of making it more functional and reducing the clutter. Now it makes us want to spend more time in there instead wanting to avoid being there … I love how it now looks like a boutique hotel bathroom.”