Budget Bathroom Makeover

Before we had our incredible second bathroom, we made do with our second floor bathroom, and only one bathroom at the time, with some updates when we first moved in, mainly painting the original green white. Over time a few more updates were made like a new faucet and rug here and there – but nothing major after the first big paint. But those same yellow dingy looking tiles were always there, just staring at me. They had to go! We definitely didn’t want to tear them all off, we have plans for a big gut job one day  — but we aren’t there yet. So how would we get rid of these gross tiles and upgrade our space for under $500?
Bathroom_Before(1)
Above: Bathroom before

It wasn’t until I saw home decor and color extraordinaire, At Home With Ashley, do an affordable bathroom upgrade, that I was inspired to paint the tile! Painting that yellow, gross and dingy tile to a crisp white to match the upper half of the walls would be the subtle update this space needed to completely transform it and mask an ugly, ugly detail that encompasses the whole room. Painting the tile would of course be the most work in this budget project — but would foster the biggest reward.

First, we cleaned the tile with TSP cleaner and then prepped the walls using Kilz Primer per Ashley’s reco (we bought a gallon, but it goes on so thing you could probably get away with a quartz depending on your space) – we did two coats of the primer, as it’s quick dry. Three things about this primer: it’s super thin, super stick and smells terrible! But this was definitely a necessary step and helped sooo much when it came to painting the top coat. As we started seeing the space transform with the paint, we started getting inspired for a more updates, while still sticking to a lower budget.
Bathroom_After(1)
Above: Bathroom after

We ended up pulling the trigger on getting a larger vanity with more counter space! This is something we’ve always talked about for this bathroom, especially since the current vanity is the most generic of generic vanities. Obviously we knew the sink wouldn’t be under the mirror based on the light placement, but that will change one day.  The additional counter space and drawers were two things we really wanted over the awkward mirror placement. We also switched out our mirror to a frameless option. Finding a mirror that works between those two lights is REALLY tough, so we’re pretty limited – another reason to move those lights eventually.
Bathroom_After(2)Shop our pieces: New Vanity | Faucet | Curved Frameless Mirror | Towel Ring | Towel Bars | Opalhouse Soap Dispenser 

When we moved in the previous owner probably had about five or six different shelves and towel bars in the bathroom. We removed a few, but still had two on either side of the clawfoot tub. So we upgraded to, two new silver towel bars to stack at the front part of the shower and opted for a hand towel ring closer to the vanity. I got super fancy with a grey glass soap dispenser from Target and painted our orange hook rack to a lighter and muted blue that matches better to the floor and our shower curtain.

We ended up needing to get a new faucet from Lowe’s based on the mounting options with the new vanity, so we ordered the same faucet we had just the larger one to fit this vanity, it’s a classic look that I just love! A few other finishing touches that I’m still working on are finding some fun bathroom inspired prints to put in the white frame on the closet shelf and maybe a new shower curtain — but I like the current one with the subtle pops of blues.
Bathroom_(3)Bathroom_After(4)
All-in-all we spent around $460 on this update and it’s such an improvement! The not so great laminate tile isn’t as noticeable with the white on white updates with the tile and walls. The vanity offers additional storage, more counter space and I know our future guests will love the additional counter space!

Project Price & Breakdown:
– Vanity & Faucet: $299
– Paint & Cleaning Supplies: $55
– Mirror: $30
– Soap Dispenser: $12
– Towel Wracks: $44
– New Toilet Seat: $20
TOTAL: $460

This was a fun quarantine project that we were able to tackle over the course of two weekends. We pre-ordered as much of our materials and supplies as possible and had them directly shipped to our house or did in store pick-ups so that we could limit our foot print and interaction with people! What’s your favorite part of this makeover?

bee (1)

 

$12 Custom Bathroom Drawer Storage from the Dollar Store

With our recent bathroom makeover and having the addition of a second bathroom – a few floors below our main bathroom – I wanted to make sure it’s stocked just like our upstairs bathroom with all the essentials. The vanity is extra wide but is the only true storage for this space so I have to be smart with it!
StorageUpdate(1)beelifeblog
One of the top drawers has an opening for the sink pipes so it’s an odd U-shaped drawer. But since it’s the first main drawer under the sink, this seemed like a good spot to stock up with all the bathroom must-haves. In order to accommodate this unique space, I created custom drawer storage with a high-end feel using 3-inch square glass votive holders… from the dollar store! I use these for various things throughout the year, entertaining with snacks – votives – seasonal decor, so I gave these a try in the space and they ended up working out perfectly.
StorageUpdate(3)beelifeblog

After the glasses were in place, I tested opening and closing the drawer and noticed they were a little clanky.  To help with this, I added felt furniture pads in between a few of the glasses to avoid the clinking noises. On top of having high-end custom drawer storage with these glass holders, they can double for vanity decor holding goodies like cotton rounds, q-tips or cotton balls, especially if you’re having company coming over! Then you can pop them back into the drawer and easy peasy – storage is still on point. So for $1 per glass, you can truly make a statement while staying organized!

Shop the Pieces:
– (12) 3″ Glass Votives from Dollar Store
– Optional: Felt Furniture Pads

And then stock up with essentials like band aids, cotton products, tampons, floss, nail care and toothpaste!
StorageUpdate(2)beelifeblogI’m not used to having so much space to fill up, especially in my bathroom! But I love how this came together and is nicely organized while also having options for guests while the essentials for us — another drawer is completely full of toilet paper, but I still have a few more drawers that have extra space for more towels and other bathroom essentials!

bee (1)

House Tour: Bathroom Remodel

Are you ready to see our bathroom remodel? It’s finally time to share a tour of the transformed space – which honestly came out amazing – especially for B and I doing 80% of the work! This was part of our basement makeover and gives our basement a completely new livable space.
Bathroom(4) - the bee life
Continue reading

DIY – French Barn Door

Our bathroom makeover was a complete revamp, and figuring out what we were going to do with the door was all over the place.  Since we had limited room we were initially planning to do a pocket door. But then we switched to something more modern with frosted windows – but the doors I found and liked were well over $300, way more than we wanted to spend, so we went back to the drawing board and tried to figure out a door we might be able to make.

We got the idea to check out our local Habitat for Humanity Restore to see if they had any doors that might fit the bill, or even something we could turn into our own.  We really wanted something that had windows in it, like a french door, but wanted to frost the windows since it’s for a bathroom… we just needed to find an affordable french door.  And we did! It was a little skinner than we needed, but we were confident we could extend it and make it our own and DIY-ing our own barn door using black pipe.
DIY door - thebeelife
Cost Breakdown:
– French Door – $55
– Frosted Spray Paint – $5
– White Paint – $18
– (2) 2x4x8′ – $8
– Wood Glue – $15
– (2) Wheels – $7
– (2) Hooks – $6
– (1) Bar w/ base and corners – $30
Barn Door Handle – $21
Total Cost: $165

What We Did:

  1. First we sanded down the door and removed some of the extra pieces/frame that was on the door.
  2. Through trial and error we finally figured out the proper piece of wood to use to extend the width of the door which was two 2x4x8′ – this definitely took a bit longer to figure out, including securing it to the door and then using wood filler to make it look like one piece.  Again, this was the toughest part, but we finally got it into a good spot with the wood filler.
  3. Next up was painting the door, white! After a few coats on each side, we were almost in business and then sprayed the windows on the outside of the door with the frosted glass look.
  4. We then drilled in our larger circular hooks at the top, added the wheels (which we had to switch with different ones that worked better), and then put together the pipe bar for placement!
  5. With some tweaking and DW-40 we got this door sliding easily and working great in the space! Once we had the door working, we added the handle while it was standing for more accurate placement.

DIY door 4 - thebeelifeThe frosted windows definitely help the bathroom space feel private, while from the outside it feels welcoming and open.  Since there are two windows in the room, we wanted the light to still be able to come through.  From the bathroom side of the door, you can see a slight difference in the additional side pieces – only because the door width with the wood pieces wasn’t an exact match – but from the outside it’s nearly perfect! 

Although this was a little extra work and challenged our problem solving skills, the end price was still WAY more affordable for the look and type of door we wanted to purchase – it was a savings of over half the price of the doors I wanted – plus we both love the way it came out!  And it’s completely custom to our space, don’t worry the full bathroom reveal is coming soon – in the meantime check out this $15 Floating Shelf, How to Install Vinyl Flooring and What We Wish We Knew before Tiling Our Shower.

bee (1)

How To: Install Vinyl Flooring

As we were getting ready for our bathroom project and pricing out various materials and finishes, we quickly saw the dollar signs as we wanted a completely tiled shower stall and initially wanted a tiled floor.  In addition to the dollar signs, time, effort and labor came into account and as I found slightly more affordable vinyl adhesive flooring options – that also had great patterns – it quickly rose to the top as a realistic option for this space.
How To Vinyl Floor - the bee life (1)
In addition to being more affordable than ceramic tile, vinyl flooring has other benefits like it’s highly resistant, it’s easy to install and low maintenance. Which is exactly the perfect mix of things we needed for this bathroom floor space! It really ended up being a no brainer – so let’s breakdown what you’ll need and how to install your own vinyl floor!

Continue reading

Latest Obsessions 05.19 – Desert Inspired Decor

With our bathroom remodel coming close to an official wrap – the final decor is coming into play and I’ve been having fun by adding in some desert flair, inspired by our trips out to Palm Springs. Which, btw totally has me in vacay mode dreaming of days by the pool and nights dining at trendy restaurants with delicious food (yes I’m watching flights).  So the goal has been to make our bathroom feel like a desert resort – pulling in the all the things we love about PSP.

What I especially love about PSP decor are all the pops of color paired with modern and simplistic lines.  Not to mention, gold!  Channeling some desert inspired decor has allowed our black and while foundation hold strong while building upon those simpler design picks.  And although we’re pulling ours into our bathroom, I couldn’t help but be inspired by some other Palm Springs inspired mod decor, both simple and bold.
Latest Obsessions - PSP - the bee life (2)
Easy Ways to Bring in Palm Springs to Your Decor:

Faux Plants & Succulents: A few years ago finding good faux plants was a bit hard without spending an arm and a leg – today, you can still spend an arm and a leg for a fun faux cactus (I almost did) – or you can get a little creative and pull in a variety of faux stems and plants into the space.  We ended up creating a fun statement and pop of color with these 40″ Monstera Leaf Stem from Target and 41″ Red Ginger Flower Stem from Target. We found the clean vase at Home Goods, but I was also hemming and hahing about the basket route.  I’ll also continue to pull in smaller faux plants throughout the space for more colors and lush feel, also since we don’t have a ton of natural light this is an easy way to bring a little life into the space.

Continue reading

DIY – Floating Rectangular Wall Shelves

For our bathroom project we have an ugly door above our toilet that is access to a crawl space area that we don’t use, but might need to access so we couldn’t do anything too permanent. So in addition to painting this ugly door white, we wanted to hide it a little more, I knew I wanted to put some sort of shelf in that area, but I couldn’t decide how many, what kind or finding the perfect pre-made piece that fit.
DIY - Shelf - the bee life (3)
That is when I spotted some beautiful old wood we had in our garage and I was inspired to build our own rectangular floating wall shelf to help cover it up while also bringing in some natural wood feel into the space.  Since these pieces of wood were just shy of 4-feet they would work perfectly for the space. Here is how I built our shelf – you’ll need minimum materials, especially if you have your own scrap wood lying around!

What You’ll Need:
– Wood Glue
– Miter Saw
– Nail Gun + Nails
– Wood Boards
– L brackets for hanging + Screws

Step-by-Step:
1. Measure your space & determine the size of your shelf, I wanted it to be a bit oversized the crawl space door area, but didn’t want it to be too tall. So I went with 3-feet in length and then about 8-inches high including the thickness of the main shelfs.
2. Measure and draw lines and cut your pieces of wood for your main top and bottom shelves with the miter saw.
3. Determine and measure your in-between pieces and cut appropriately with the miter saw. You should have all your pieces cut! Two long top and bottom pieces and then two smaller side pieces that will fit in between the longer pieces, connecting them!
4. Add wood glue to your in-between pieces and attach the top with your in-between with a nail gun.  You may need a helper to hold the pieces in place while one staples, be sure to staple along the length of your board. Continue this for all four corners, be sure to wipe any excess glue after stapling the pieces together.
5. Let your piece dry before moving forward with adding the L brackets and hanging. Sand any rough edges, paint or stain if necessary based on your aesthetic.
Pro-tip: Make sure the screws going into the shelf aren’t longer than the board thickness!
6.  Determine spacing based on wall studs and add the L brackets to the inside of the top of the shelf and then drill into the wall with screws (this is probably a two person job!). We will be painting the metal part touching the wall – although once filled up with towels you can’t even tell!
7. Now for the fun part – adding the finishing touches and add your finishes!
DIY - Shelf - the bee life (5)
I’m so excited to be adding in finishing touches to our bathroom space – and as you can see you’re getting a bit of sneak peak of the space, but mainly the showstopper (that floor!) We still have small finishing touches to do around the room, like the crawl space door we’re trying to hide, we still need to cover up that heating pipe entrance – plus I’m sure I’ll be getting some different accents to put on top of the shelf.

Price Breakdown:
So the obnoxious part of this (for you, not me!), is the cost of this project was $0. The wood for the shelves we got from my sister in-law’s house, because I knew I would have a good project pop up to use them with!  Everything else was around the house – but pending the wood, you can get the Wood Glue for about $3, L-brackets for about $5, and screws for anywhere from .30 – .50 cents each. Meaning you could make this shelf for about $10-15.
DIY - Shelf - the bee life (4)
Since a lot of our bathroom is white with the black pops of black in the floor, I love the addition of natural wood, we have another finishing piece to help tie into this vibe that we have yet to do as well – so the big reveal will have to be a bit delayed still.  But I’ll be sharing some of our project woes, lessons learned to help you prevent the same mistakes on your upcoming projects!

bee (1)

Accessorizing a Black & White Bathroom

As we continue to work through our bathroom remodel and have made decisions on a lot of the major, more permeant pieces, I’ve started to explore the fun accessories to include in the space to really finish it off! Since our floor tiles are a pretty bold black and white pattern, I’m going to be keeping most of the finishes white – but want to incorporate a little color in to the space without competing with the tiles and letting them be the true statement of the room.
Bathroom Accessories - the bee life (1)Since our floor is going to be our statement, in addition to our shower – we really want to compliment the space, while enhancing the neutral colors and adding a little umph the space.  Since we have gold faucets, hardware and overhead vanity light, the look and feel that we’re going for, for this space is classic with a little bit of vintage glam.

Option 1: To help keep the classic, vintage glam feel – one color accessory option would be incorporating shades of blush pink and more white with towels, baskets and rugs.  If we go the pink/white route, it would still be really subtle and I would continue to work in some gold accents with the toilet paper roll, hand towel bar and maybe even a soap dish for the vanity!
Bathroom Accessories - the bee life (3)
Option 2: As much as I love the pink route – there is also a part of me that imagines adding in big pops of color, like a deep mustard towels, accents of a dusky green or blues into the space.  Of course, I wouldn’t have all these colors in the space – just a few deep pops to play off our black and white canvas.  With a big pop of color, there would still need to be other supporting accessories of blacks and whites – like the the Jute Storage Basket (also comes in a Laundry Basket size) from H&M comes in this fabulous natural white – but also comes in a dusty rose that could be perfect for option 1!
Bathroom Accessories - the bee life (2) Shop the bathroom accessories:  Tuft Spa Bath Rug from Target | Gold Etched Metal Soap Dish from Target | Woven Pattern Washcloth Peach | Blocked Border Bathroom Towels, Set of 6 from Anthropologie | Brass Medallion Bathroom Hardware Set by Anthropologie |Textured-weave Bath Mat from H&M | Dark Mustard Yellow Jacquard-patterned Bath Towel from H&MSolid Bath Towels Blue from TargetMagazine And Toilet Paper Holder from Anthropologie | Jute Storage Basket from H&M

What do you guys think, Option 1 or Option 2?  I have to say I think I know which direction we’ll go down to help pull together the space.  But I also can’t wait to incorporate an old vintage mirror that was left at our house, maybe a plant or two and some other functional shelving or decor for the space.

Planning a bathroom makeover soon? I’ll be sharing a DIY checklist on an upcoming blog post!

bee (1)

Mood Board – Basement Bath

Remember when I mentioned we were working through a mini basement remodel for additional living space? Yeah, I know it’s been a minute – don’t worry the reveal is going to be shared in the coming weeks!  Well, part two of this project is working on expanding and updating a bathroom to continue making more of our house livable!

Nailing down the style for this space was key and I did this with a mix of online shopping, Pinterest browsing while working through the function and flow of the room.  I landed on vintage and classic while the plan of resting on classic pieces like penny or octagon patterned tiles as the foundation with the floor, walls and shower.  From there it’ll be reinforcing this style through the color pallet, light fixtures and a classic yet modern vanity.
basement bath mood board - the bee life Shop My Mood Board: Vintage Gold Bath Light | Aberdeen 36″ Vanity in Dove Grey  | Montaigne Weathered Oak Vanity | Retro Octagon Mosaic Porcelain Tile | White Glossy Porcelain Penny Tile | Amberes Azul Ceramic Floor Tile 

Honestly – the vanity has been the toughest part to find, as we’re trying to stick within a reasonable budget yet not something that is completely generic or stock.  But I can’t seem to find a good happy medium, although Home Depot is the leader in variety of style for decent price.

White tile will be a must.  Although I’m tempted to figure out a fun, yet stylish way to incorporate a bold statement tile into the space either a backsplash or statement wall – but I think that is still TBD. I’m also tempted to work in some natural wood with shelving and/or the vanity – since it would be nice to pull in natural finishes like we did with our statement shiplap wall in the living space of our basement.
basement bath mood board - the bee life (2)
Image Sources:  Left image | Right image

How do you plan your home projects?  I like to map out a direction, do my research and usually end up sticking to something pretty classic! We’re excited for this next project and will share the latest DIY’s and How-To’s along the way, all leading up to the grand reveal!

bee (1)