Category Archives: Bathroom

A Home Remodel Series- Part 2 (replacing bathroom faucets)

Continuing the progress at my friend’s home remodel  http://agirlcandoit.com/2010/04/27/a-home-remodel-series-part-1-before-demo/ , they had 5 bathroom faucets to replace.  With new faucets running as inexpensive as $40 and up, this is an affordable update to make to your space style-wise.

First and most importantly,  make sure that your new faucet needs the same number of holes as your old faucet.  In other words, some sink faucets only need one hole in your counter tops whereas some others need 3 or 4.  Sometimes it might just be easier to take the old faucet with you to your local store to ensure a match.

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Frame a mirror

Mirror, mirror on the wall, you ARE the fairest of them all!


Mirrors never lie, unless you find yourself in a fun house.  You stand in front of the big rectangular beast every day, and you don’t like what you see and surprise, it has absolutely nothing to do with YOU.

Besides its plainness, your mirror may be *gasp* showing the harsh truths of its age with the little age spots setting in around the edges.  Kindred spirits.  The plain and drab favorites of builders everywhere do a lot for making a room appear larger but very little for actual aesthetics.  Before you decide to spend money on a cuter, sleeker model, there are few things that you can do to boost your mirror’s self esteem.

Sizing it up

First determine where you want the frame to be.  If you want to attach the frame to the mirror on its edges or cover up age spots, it will reduce the mirror’s apparent size.  Opting for this method, you will simply want to measure the width and length of the mirror.  If, however, there is a space between the mirror and the wall and ceiling, you have the opportunity to make your bathroom mirror look even bigger than it really is, by having your frame attached to the outside edges of your mirror.

To go bigger, use a level, draw a line on the wall around the mirror at a distance of least 2-4 inches (depending on your frame selection below). This line will be your guide showing where the frame will end and will be your new measurements.   I highly recommend adding 1 or 2 inches to any measurement you take, to offset any errors when it comes to cutting the corners of the frame.

Picking the frame

There are a wide variety of wood trim options: unfinished ready for staining with wood finishes, pre-primed (great for painting), less expensive MDF board frames (also great for painting).  The wider and fancier you get, the more expensive.   You can match the color of your cabinets, paint them to contrast the room or whatever you desire.  Semi-gloss paints make the best finish in wet areas for ease of clean up.  The simplest of trims can make a lot of impact for as little as $20-30 to complete this entire project.

Whatever trim you choose, you will need 4 pieces, long enough to measure the longest length or width of your mirror.

Making the cut

Imagine a picture frame; the 4 pieces you have will each be cut at 45 degree angles at the ends so they fit together to form a square.   If you have a saw at home that can cut at an angle (like a miter saw or miter box guide), then simply cut your wood at 45 degree angles. You will create two pieces for the width and two pieces for the length.  Remember to switch between right and left as you go so that when placed together, they make 90 degree right angles.

If you don’t have access to such a saw, most stores offer wood cutting services at no charge.  You may also find that many Home Depot stores provide a table with a handsaw and a frame for sawing at a 45 degree angle so that you can cut the wood yourself.

Frame it

After your pieces have been cut to measure and you have stained or painted as you desire, you are ready to frame it up!  Using a heavy duty adhesive (I like Power Grab because of its easy clean up and quick set time), apply the adhesive to the backside of your wood pieces that will make one corner. You will need to hold the pieces in place until the glue begins to set up.  You can also use some heavier duty painters tape or a brace of some sort to hold the wood in place firmly until it dries.

Once this first half of the frame is affixed, you can now attach the other half the same way, completing the “square”.

A small twist in the plan

If you aren’t convinced that wood cutting or framing is your thing, think of what your mirror would like like if you “framed” it with smaller bathroom tiles, or seashells, or glass mosaic tiles or whatever style your bathroom takes on?  Heavy duty adhesives can go a long way to adhering things directly to the mirror.  Tiles can be applied to the surrounding wall with a tile mastic.  Let your imagination run wild.  Your mirror will thank you for it!

Whatever you decide, your mirror will now look like a sharp finished companion that will share your deepest darkest secrets for days to come.

**In case you aren’t convinced, let me also add that these mirrors are also usually very heavy and glued to the wall; so proceed cautiously if you still decide to opt for replacing it.

Portfolio Bathroom Remodel 2

Another portfolio for bathroom makeover ideas!  This bathroom was a late 80′s vanilla room with oak cabinets, tulip track lighting, marbled vanity and tub with white tile and beige carpet. See how it goes from “ho-hum” to “wow”
Some of the projects completed like tile and faucet replacement will take a little more know-how, but in time, will be talking about all of this on this site.

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A Home Remodel Series (Part 1-Before Demo)

One of my friends recently purchased a beautiful new home and has decided to complete certain improvements before moving day.  Basically, with ivory walls and beige carpet along with white tiles in all baths, the home is a virtual blank canvas for aspiring do-it-yourself’ers!!  My friend has generously agreed to let me take photos of the work before, during and after in order to follow the progress; at the same time, I will provide step-by-step advice on how to complete some of the work so that you may choose to do the same in your own home!  Some of the projects have a varying level of difficulty that you may opt to hire profession help for.

Stay tuned!!!

The blank canvas awaits:

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Portfolio Bathroom Remodel

Bathroom remodel-Before

Bathroom Remodel Before

Bathroom remodel progress

Bathroom remodel-After

Bathroom remodel-After

This bathroom update project involved:
1) repainting existing cabinets in a satin black
2) Installing new cabinet hardware in brushed nickel and retro glass knobs
3) framing the existing mirror
4) new glass mosaic tile counter tops purchased from Home Depot, drop in sinks and faucets from Home Depot
5) new floor tile (4″ x 4″ black, 12″ x 12″ white and 4″ x 4″ blue glass)all from Home Depot
6) new tiles dispersed in shower(chiseled out random tiles so that a complete shower demo would not be required)
7) Paint-”Shale Blue” by Ralph Lauren from Home Depot
If you’d like to complete a project like this and just don’t know how, comment back and I’ll try to help with the “how to” advice!  Many of these topics will be covered on this site.  You CAN do it!

Cabinet Hardware-How to Install

Once you’ve determined the type of cabinet hardware you’d like to put into your kitchen or bathroom, its time to put the icing on the cake!

Cabinet Hardware-The icing on the cake!

The installation process is easy.  Here’s how:

1)     There are a couple of easy ways to determine placement of installation.   For cabinet doors, the lower right corner is the typical location.  For drawers, you will need a measuring tape to measure the middle distance between the two horizontal edges as well as the vertical edges.

Measure to find the middle of your vertical rise on drawers for correct location

Measure to find the middle point of the horizontal length on drawers Continue reading

Selecting cabinet hardware…the icing on the cake

Surprisingly, cabinet hardware is an easily overlooked feature in your bathroom or kitchen that for a little effort and a few bucks, it adds a lot of personality and character to the room instantly (see my earlier story about http://agirlcandoit.com/2010/04/21/6-quick-and-easy-tips-for-a-budget-kitchen-makeover/).  The sky is the limit when it comes to choices and prices in cabinet hardware.   You can find a decent variety off the shelf at your local Home Depot or Lowe’s,  but you can custom order something fancier or look online at some sources below.  You should easily be able to find a stylish knob or pull off the shelf for $2-5 each.

Looks are everything

A good place to start would be the style you are trying to achieve first.   Contemporary, traditional, Tuscan, retro?  Are there design elements in the room already that you can highlight?  Something simple is always best if you are feeling indecisive about the style you want.

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