Thursday, May 31, 2012

Bathroom Remodel: Back to Square One

Bathrooms. They can be a huge pain in the you-know-what!  They're probably the most difficult room to remodel, after kitchens.  Thank fully we started with a great kitchen, and it was perfect after only painting the cabinets.  However, the bathrooms.  Cheap linoleum floors, gross almond colored counters and shower tile, and awkward vanities.  It's actually a pretty standard bathroom, but it does nothing to stir my creative juices without re-doing everything.

Which we planned on doing.

However, we've given the bathroom situation, as well as condo-living, some deep thought and came up with the following:

We're ready to move into a house.  A place without rules, a place where we can do what we want and not have to worry about neighbors crushing our zen.  More square footage, opportunities to really make improvements as we see fit.

Unfortunately, we're also addicted to living in the city, and the city is expensive.  For what we paid for our tiny condo, we could have gotten a much bigger house in the suburbs....but we didn't want to give up the culture of the city to live in the boring-ness of big box suburbs.  For a tiny house in the city, it will cost at least double the price of our condo, and probably more.  Soooo.....we'll be saving for quite awhile before we can realistically start looking to move.  Plus there's the whole selling our condo thing.  We'd love to keep it and rent it out, but that might not be possible with rental caps and we probably don't want to deal with it.

So, we're officially starting a "New House" fund and have decided to only upgrade things to the level I can live with for the next 5+ years and still love, but not sink a lot of money into a home that we're planning on leaving.  Unfortunately, saving for a house won't go quite as quickly because of our obsession with traveling to foreign countries.  But hey, we're working on it!  We're pretty good at saving when needed.  We purposely live below our means so that we can sink a lot of money into savings when needed...but concert tickets, eating out, and new dresses are so much more fun!

Anyway, deciding to go the cheapest route possible has actually saved us a lot of uncertainty and stress, because know we know exactly what changes we want to make, and we won't have as much panic when we sink a sum into an upgrade, "Is this this the right choice?"  And I don't have to worry about investing in a perfect rug or curtains, because they will move with me wherever we go in the future!

But back to the bathrooms.  We were about to start renovating months ago when we halted to reconsider what we really wanted to do.  Now we're back on track and here's the game plan:

Overall Bathroom Tone:
These are just the colors of our bathroom right now, and what we'll stick to in the future!  Light blue and green.

Old Plan: either A. find an old dresser at Goodwill or a garage sale and turn it into a vanity by adding a round sink on top,
or B, straight out replace the vanity with this pretty white one from Home Depot (we'd add a black counter top instead of the white one shown).
New Plan: Paint the cabinet dark gray (the same color as our bedroom),  
Put something like these rolling drawers in the cabinet:
Switch our almond colored counter top with a white one.
Old Plan: Install a shower door, replace the ugly almond tile with white subway tile.

New plan:
Think about buying a shower curtain.  We took down our curtain almost immediately after moving in, because the room is kind of dark on that side (which is actually pretty nice in the mornings because I hate bright light while waking up!), but the plain vinyl curtain isn't pleasing to the eye.  So, we might buy another curtain that's lighter or semi clear, or we may even still install a shower door since we still plan on being here for 5+ years.
Still replace the tile with white subway tile eventually.
Old Plan: Rip up the linoleum floors and install warming tracks under gray stone tile.
New Plan: grab the same concrete patterned peel and stick tile floors and grout them in place, as we actually previously planned to do here.  At that time, we ended up returning the tiles because we were re-thinking the floors, but we're back on board!
Build a set of shelf in Tim's narrow, tiny bathroom

So there you have it!  We'll probably start with the floors, so I'll keep you in the loop as soon as it happens!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Bathroom Remodel: Towel Hooks

Like I showed you yesterday, we installed a row of towel hooks in the bathroom in place of our old towel bar.

The thing only cost us $8.51 ish and took about 20 minutes total to do!
The hooks came from a set at Ikea meant as a coat hanger.  It contained a white board along with five hooks for $9.99.  I knew this set was way too small and crowded for our bathroom, but I liked the hooks and for $2 each, I'll take the free board!

The board was snagged at Home Depot in their scrap wood for 51 cents.  Heck yeah!
All I did was paint the board with one thin coat of basic white low VOC paint, applied with a small foam roller.  I only did one coat because I loved how it looks with the knots showing through!  Then I simply screwed in four of the hooks and screwed it into the wall.

It's only been two days and we love it!  It's looks so much classier than throwing our wet towels over the shower curtain!

Tomorrow I'll share the rest of the plan for the bathroom!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Favorite Travel Souvenir

Happy Tuesday everyone!!  I'm linking up with Centsational Girl today to talk about my favorite travel souvenir!
We bought this caricature from a street artist in Piazza Navona in Rome during our trip to Europe in June 2011.  We usually don't buy almost any souvenirs because we've always lived in tiny apartments with plenty of clutter, and I take enough photos to negate the need for physical memories, so this is kind of a fun item to bring back to Seattle with us, if only for the adventure we had trying to mail it to ourselves before we left Rome!

Here's a real life photo of us in Rome for comparison:
And the caricature one more time:
This photo cracked us up for many reasons:

  • He decided to make us at the beach and took the liberty of drawing me naked and Tim in Speedos
  • He drew me thinking about ice cream because it was so hot out!
  • Tim's teeny tiny body wind surfing!
  • Our teeth our soooo big!
  • Tim's chewing on a piece of cotton??
  • My big chubby cheeks!  Not much of an exaggeration :)!

Our trip to Europe last year was so much fun, and it's nice to have a funny souvenir as well!  I might love my leather jacket that I purchased there a little bit more, but this drawing makes for better memories!  We plan to frame and hang it up in our game room as soon as we build a set of shelves in there!  In the meantime, read all out our trip and more of our travel tales on our travel page!

A little bit of this, a little bit of that

When we were able to finally get rid of the jewelry from the bathroom, it was time to get rid of that pesky old towel bar so that we can install of series of towel hooks.
Here's the general plan for this wall:
Basically, we want to add a series of towel hooks. They just give a rustic, beachy look that's so much more "homey" than an ugly towel bar.

Speaking of hooks, we added a hook for my robe on the back of the door in my bedroom.  It's convenient and gets it off the floor, but I really enjoyed having it laying on the floor next to my bed.  Boo hoo!

We also added another hook to our entree way because we've been trying to hang up twp helmets, Tim's soccer bag, my purse, and canvas bags that need to go back to the car all on one hook.  Now we've got two hooks to juggle all that between!
Back to the bathroom, we finished painting all the walls finally.  You see, back when I painted the kitchen, hallway, and bathrooms the same color, I lost steam after my half and never quite finished Tim's bathroom.  Instead, I just painted the parts I could from room and left the rest electric blue. I also wanted to see what a room would look like with a painted ceiling, so I used my bathroom as a template.  Conclusion: painting ceilings sucks and I won't be doing it in this condo!  Lastly, I also had to paint over the old spots from the towel bar.

Anyway, now our bathroom's all the same color!  Woo!

Annnd we installed some towel hooks!!  I will post the process in tomorrow's post!  Preview?
I'll have a big bathroom update for you all soon.  We've been spending the last six months thinking very carefully about how we want to update our bathrooms and the entire condo floor, and I'm excited to share the new plans with you!

Until next time, check out our condo tour for more pictures!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend!!!!

Hope you all had a fantastic Memorial Day Weekend full of Pinterest projects!!!!  Oh who am I kidding, I'm much more likely to make a plate of red white and blue food on July 17th than I am to remember on the the 4th.  Let's hope I can get it together for the rest of the holidays this year!!
 Friday:  came home after work and enjoyed mojitos on the deck with a good book.

 Checked on our plants, which are still making excellent progress!
 Bell peppers galore and lots of strawberries forming!

 Threw on my ultra cool Mariner's outfit- here's me trying to look cool:

 On our way to the game!

 Annoying Tim as I decide to play with my camera on the way!!

 See the annoyance in his face?? Adorable!

 Tim's so happy to see his old friends!!!

 We had a urge to bust a move after...!
 Hitting up the food trucks for awesome Mexican food!!

 Then time for the beach-each, let's go get away!

 Hey there Ms Lindsey!
 Ladybug on Tim's face....!

Ahhhhh :)

This freaking adorable seven week old pitbull came over and fell asleep on my arm, I just about died *swoon*!!
Then lots more mojitos with Dax and Barbara!!  La Isla, a Puetro Rican place, is so delish!

 The rest of the weekend was spent doing endless projects around the house, only to interrupted by our washing breaking, Games of Thrones with the gang, and dinner with the in-laws!!
How was your weekends, readers?  Read all about our latest home improvements over at Our Emerald City, starting tomorrow!