Bathroom was transformed, too

Published 12:00 am Sunday, March 23, 2014

We decided that since our house would be a mess during our kitchen renovation we might as well go into full chaos mode and include our downstairs bathroom in the mix. The goal was to claim some inefficiently used kitchen space to expand what was only technically a “full” bathroom into one with a normal-sized shower and storage space.
Used mainly by my husband, the old bathroom was a Spartan, unattractive place with mint green tile walls and a small, white pedestal sink that had seen better days. The only storage space was a small particleboard cabinet awkwardly wedged in beneath the sink. The commode was vintage – and not in a charming way. The shower was the most depressing part of the room. The molded fiberglass enclosure was so small my husband couldn’t even really take a deep breath in it. It was a place where one might get clean, but it was not a place to luxuriate or relax.
Workers ripped almost everything out of the bathroom, including the walls. Only the radiator and window remained. The walls were then extended into the kitchen to create room for a tile shower. The frameless glass shower door we chose was something of a splurge, but we wanted the Moroccan-style tile we picked for the shower to be highlighted. The bathroom floor tile is similar to the shower tile but with a matte terra cotta finish.
Because we picked fairly dramatic tile, we opted for a low-key sandy-colored quartz (low-maintenance, durable) for the countertops. A Mexican tin mirror with a variety of multi-colored Talavera tiles makes a cheery statement and helps tie together the two contrasting tile colors. My husband likes the mirror but didn’t want to give up his old-school medicine cabinet, so after the other bathroom cabinets were installed we asked the cabinetmaker to build a medicine cabinet to match. Bathroom storage is now plentiful.
My husband is happy with his bathroom and actually enjoys taking a shower these days. I’m just happy that when guests use the bathroom I don’t have to cringe and be embarrassed by it anymore, and that’s a real victory.

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