As sore and exhausted as I’ve been feeling in the evening lately, I still wake up feeling optimistic and energetic about the day ahead. Our latest remodeling project indoors was a small back bathroom that we repainted and freshened up last week. We used two different colors for this room. A peach color called Tomorrow’s Coral from Behr, and what is likely my favorite deep blue-green color to date, Lunar Tide by Behr. The finishing touches in this room are still a work in progress. Which leads me to a question I find myself contemplating often: “Is a room ever really done?”
I hung a small hand-drawn sign that one of my now-grown children, Ares, made for me about ten years ago. It displays the word “love” in Japanese Kanji. It was the first piece of “art” that went up on the bland, depressing walls of a rental home that I moved into back in Illinois after I broke up with my now X. I hung it next to the door that Ares and I would come and go from each day, and that sign often gave me strength. It was a reminder to stay positive and radiate love. It was also a reminder of what a special person Ares was for picking up on the importance of a concept like that, even as a young teen. I think the sign fits into our present space well. The three portrait spaces in the frame coordinate perfectly with the three panels of the mirror below it.
I purchased the shower curtain on Amazon. The theme really spoke to me. It encompasses many things that I love, and looking closely at the tree on the curtain, I noticed that some of the little knots are even heart-shaped. How could I say no to that?
The rug was an Amazon find as well. It measures 2’2” x 4’ which helps give an idea of how small this space is. The brand is Safavieh. We have several Safavieh rugs throughout the house and enjoy the quality and vivid coloring of each one. I like the colors in this one, and it has a bit of a tropical feel to it. It also reminds me of a mask from one of the old The Legend of Zelda games, which was kind of cool.
I use an old-fashioned carafe from Jonathan Adler to hold mouthwash, it’s a fantastic color of blue and fits perfectly under the mirror.
The room is still in need of some additional art to compliment the walls, and some type of curtain to complete the window area. Finishing touches are everything, but it takes time to find exactly the right items. In the meantime, the paint colors alone have made such a positive impact on this space. The paint took about 10 hours and probably could have been done in one day, but I split it into two. I do the edging by hand without painter’s tape which saves resources and quite a bit of time, but it takes a steady focus, patience, and a precise hand. I credit my training and years of practice as a makeup artist for that. I started a month-long free trial of Youtube Music to help me through this project. An audio stream of 1980’s pop music one-hit wonders was just the kind of upbeat dance energy that I needed to take this little bathroom to the next level.
Quick and easy bathroom item additions like the new rug and shower curtain have really helped to create the vibe we were going for in this space. We placed a tropical plant-themed vinyl privacy film from Amazon over the window (outside the window is the back deck, so there’s a need for privacy. The film looks great and allows quite a bit of light through while affording adequate privacy. It was easy to put into place, requiring just a few minutes and several spritzes of water. I am pleased with this bathroom for now and Richard seems to like the way everything is turning out in that room as well.
The custom tile in the shower is one of my favorite parts of this bathroom. It was a spectacular find that Richard’s late wife, Barbara, purchased on eBay. Barbara passed away in 2021 from lymphoma and had been a professional interior designer for many years. She had fantastic creative talent and boasted an impressive celebrity portfolio. The portrait on the tile art is based on a 1946 piece called Seaside Walkway,”by Marilyn Simandale, an internationally renowned artist. The watercolors of the portrait and tile gave me the inspiration for the rest of the room, and it all works together to create a peaceful, happy scene. A local “tile guy” did the ceramic tile work in this room, and it turned out magnificent. The rope framing around the tile painting feels like it needs to be finished in some way, and I’ve added that to my To Do list of renovation projects
When Richard acquired this house back in 1999 and moved it onto our present 3/4-acre lot, the space that is now this bathroom was just a hole in the floor with wooden stairs leading down to a basement. When Richard moved the house onto the new property, where there was no basement, he had to decide what to do with this area and ultimately installed flooring and converted the space into a small but fully functional bathroom. Richard had workers install the plumbing, brought in a ridiculously heavy cast iron bathtub that took five people to drag through the house, and he added a toilet and a quaint little sink…the rest is history.
Overall, I think we successfully gave this small bathroom an uplifting and refreshing vibe while still retaining a bit of that art-deco sophistication that makes this house so unique.