Monday, October 14, 2013

Master Bath Remodel: It's a Wrap...for Now!

Sincerest apologies to our readers (and my wife) for the tardiness of this blog post.  First, I would like to mention that we survived the master bath remodel with all fingers (and toes) intact.   Most importantly, our marriage survived!  Now on to the goods.  When we embarked on this journey, we were committed to transforming our standard builders-grade master bath into a modern coastal retreat.  We also had a strict budget requirement (as little as possible).  Here is a picture of the bath before work began.

My favorite part of any remodel is the demo.  What guy doesn't enjoy tearing stuff apart? Unfortunately for me (and fortunately for Amy), the only demo involved was to remove the large vanity mirror.  After demo, it was time to prepare the walls and do some cosmetic work to the vanity cabinet. I wanted to add some detail to the end panel on the cabinet to give it a more "custom" look.  So with a sheet of 1/4" plywood and 1x3 poplar, I added a recessed panel to the end.  The bottom right picture below shows the recessed panel during the construction phase.  In the top right image, you can see that we removed the false drawer fronts.  I had big plans for those little guys that would give us additional functionality while reducing clutter on the countertop. More on that in a bit.

One of the most exciting things about any renovation project is color and material selection.  We had decided on a color palette: Benjamin Moore Gray Owl for the walls and ceilings, and Benjamin Moore Whale Gray for the vanity.  We upgraded to the Aura paint and let me say one thing....BEST PAINT EVER!  The quality of the paint was well worth spending the extra money for.

To bring our Modern Coastal Bath to reality, we had decided to run wood planks on the walls and ceilings.  There was a lot of debate about whether we should go with tongue and groove wood flooring, bead board or dimensional lumber on the walls and ceiling.  We found a few great tutorials on DIY wood wall planks.  In an effort to stick to our budget, we decided to go with 1/4" plywood that we would cut into 5" wide planks.  Not only was this economical, $13 per sheet, but it was much easier to work with than 4'x8' sheets of bead board.

Next on the agenda was to actually get to work.  First, I had to repair the holes in the wall from removing the old mirror. Luckily for me, it didn't have to be too pretty since the new wood planks would cover the wall.  Next we (read: I) painted all the walls and ceilings.  <Amy's edit....I helped with the cutting in!!!!> Why you ask? Although we were planning on cladding the walls, we planned on a penny size space between the wood planks.  Since we planned on this, we didn't want to take the chance of the old wall color peeking through the gaps.  We also painted the old built-in wall cabinet the same color as the walls. This may have had the largest impact on the space.  Now instead of what I considered to be an eye sore, it blended beautifully into the wall.

One big surprise occured when I went to remove the old fixture so I could convert it to two outlets.  Apparently the previous owner had located the existing light on a stud, cool right? Well one concern is that there was no electrical box. I literally had exposed wires popping out through a hole in sheet rock.  Now, I may claim to be an expert in a lot of things but electrical is not one.  It didn't look right and definitely looked beyond my skill set to repair it.  This was the only part of the project that I called a contractor. While he was at  it, we had him move an outlet a few inches to give us ample room for one of our double mirrors.

Now that we had the walls painted, electrical moved, and the vanity painted- it was time to start the wood planks on the wall.  If you remember, we had decided on wood planks on the walls and ceilings. Due to the amount of time this project had taken, we VE'd (value engineered) the planks to one wall.  I spent a few hours on the table saw ripping the plywood to 5" strips.  We had purchased the plywood at Home depot and had them cut it, however the worker apparently had issues with measurements.  The planks ranged from 5-1/8" to 6-1/2" widths.  Anway, I love to play with power tools so I was happy to correct the errors.  Next we (read: I) sanded the edges and primed the boards.  Note to self, this takes forever! Eventually I surrendered and just began installing the planks, primed and unprimed.  My company had recently purchased a headless pin nail gun which was a little bit of awesome!  This handy dandy nail gun made filling in nail holes a thing of the past.  With some Liquid Nail and a few shots with the nail gun, presto, the wall was done.

After all the planks were installed, I finished priming and then started the paint process.  This is where I made mistake #1,000,001 in the process.  Hank, meet paint sprayer. Paint Sprayer, meet Hank. Since this post is already a novel, I will give you the short version.  The paint was too thick, there was some sanding involved, followed by some painting by hand. Lesson learned!

At some point we would like to replace the countertops and most definitely the floors.  However, for the sake of our marriage (I tested her patience by having the room in full fledge remodel for 7 weeks) and our budget, it can wait.  I am happy with the way it turned out and really happy with the price (around $500).  Like every project I undertake, I learned several lessons. But for now we'll enjoy a more relaxing space, and rest up for the next big project.

Cheers till next time!

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful blog & good post.Its really helpful for me, awaiting for more new post. Keep Blogging!
    Remodeling Birmingham


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