Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Recreating a Vintage Bathroom - aka the Anxiety Provoking Tile Project

Can you say vintage???  Because that's our goal for this bathroom. It probably had lots of charm when the house was built in 1926, and our goal is  to recapture some of that antique style (because seriously, who wants a 1980's bath??).  So this was a full gut job - we went back to the studs and started over.  Farewell oak cabinetry and weird shower built in the middle of the room.  And farewell pull chain light (I'd say farewell to the electrical, but there weren't any outlets in the bathroom! ­čś│)

With everything gutted, we updated all of the infrastructure:  we insulated the exterior wall, installed all new wiring, plumbing and drywall.   So finally, you'll be able to plug a hair dryer in!!!  Now that's modern living!  With all that complete, it's finally time for the fun stuff.

I agonized for weeks and weeks about creating a vintage style floor.  I want that to be a big focal point for the room.  I combed through Pinterest and Instagram and found lots of inspiration.  Ideally I would have liked to purchase a pre-made design.  But alas, thanks to COVID delays, there was nothing available.  So I resigned myself to creating a design from scratch - a daunting task, but the only option.  

I laid it out 'dry' and marked where I wanted the snowflake style pattern, making sure the spacing fit evenly across the room.  And I numbered each sheet of tiles, so I could figure out how they went together - like a puzzle!

Then I started installing the white tiles, cutting out the holes for the black tiles to get inserted.  If you've ever installed hexagonal or penny tiles, you know how exacting the work is - if you get one row of tiles out of place by the slightest bit, the whole tile job goes bad in a hurry..... so this was a slow process to get it right. 

What do you think?  Does it have that vintage vibe?

For the walls, I wanted to stay with the black and white styling, so installed a simple white subway tile with a diagonal 4x4 set of tiles in the middle.  It adds a bit of interest, without being overwhelming.

See the big cabinet on the right?  That's going to provide so much storage!  Lots of shelves and ventilated drawers to hold everything you need (and there is a nice linen closet outside the bathroom, with even more storage). 

Next week the sink will go in, with its antique style, I can't wait to see it in place.  And once painting is complete, I can install the wallpaper.  So there is still a lot to accomplish, but this is nice progress!

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  1. I do so envy your brain! Your creativity is astounding. Thank you so much for continuing to share your projects with us. We've been reading your blog for years and hope you will continue to share projects with us for a long time. ~Maddy

    1. Thank you so much for following along all this time!!!!

  2. Very nice job on the tile Laurel. Definitely a vintage vibe!

  3. Great Style! Classic and timeless choices make a perfect bathroom. It is so easy to be able to change up the accessories with such a clean and simple backdrop.

    1. I always try to make sure the finishes are simple and neutral enough that the homeowner can customize them for their own style!


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