The Penultimate Bathroom Remodel Post

I give you my word that the next time I post about the bathroom remodel, it’ll be the final, official before and after post showing my completely finished bathroom.

It’s almost finished.  And if you just let out a little scoffing laugh, or rolled your eyes at that statement, I don’t blame you one bit.  That has pretty much been Matt’s reaction for two weeks now every time he asks me, “How much more do you have to do in there?” and I respond with, “There’s not much more now!  It’s almost finished!”  I’m starting to wonder if his only reason for asking me this question anymore is so that he can laugh at me, make fun of my definition of “almost finished,” and respond with things like, “Okay, so maybe by the summer of 2016?”  😀

But it really is almost finished.  I just had quite a bit more trim and tile to install.  And then all of the finishing work (wood filling, sanding, caulking, priming, sanding again, and two coats of paint) seemed never ending.  But just yesterday, I finally got the final coat of paint on all of the crown moulding, trim, wainscoting, and built-in storage, with the exception of one cabinet door.  For some reason, I overlooked the door.  I didn’t even get it primed until 11:00 last night, so it still needs two coats of paint.  But I’m soooo close!

Anyway, here’s how this little corner of the bathroom looked last time I showed you…

bathroom progress july 2015 - 5

And here’s how it looks now…

bathroom remodel progress 7-14-15 - 4

I still need to paint that little sliver of wall, paint the cabinet door, stain the countertop, polyurethane the countertop, and install the door and drawer pulls.

But can we just take a moment to and look at my tiling job here?  😀

bathroom remodel progress 7-14-15 - 2

I am so proud of the way that turned out!  Not only was this my first time to ever cut tile on a 45-degree angle for an outside corner, but I was doing so on tiny mosaic tile pieces that had to be cut one at a time, and I was using my cheap tile saw that’s pretty much on its last leg.  I had procrastinated on this tile project as long as I could just because I was dreading it so much, but it worked out just fine!

It’s those little details that make me happy.  🙂

Anyway, the built-in area is now all trimmed out and painted as well (except for that door).  Here’s how it looked a few days ago…

bathroom progress july 2015 - 4

And now…

bathroom remodel progress 7-14-15 - 5

And I don’t know if you can tell in the picture above, but in the first picture, the tile in the back of the shelves looks kind of dull and darker, and in the second picture, the tile looks much lighter and brighter.  That’s because I painted the grout.  I originally used alabaster grout on all of the tile in this bathroom, but it just ended up looking dull and dirty.  So on all of the accent tile (i.e., tile that isn’t by water), I painted the grout with regular latex paint (semi-gloss, since that’s what I was using on the trim).  I just used my regular 2-inch paint brush, painted the entire back, and then used a damp rag to wipe the paint off of the tile.  And on the tub surround, I used Grout Renew to brighten the grout.  The difference in color isn’t that drastic, but it makes such a big difference in how light and bright the tile appears, especially on that mosaic tile.

Anyway, I don’t recommend ever using latex paint on grout that will be exposed to water (i.e., a shower or tub surround), or that will be walked on.  But for an accent tile like this, it works perfectly.  Just be very sure that any natural stone tile is sealed before you put paint on it!  Although, if it’s grouted, it should be sealed already.  You’re supposed to seal natural stone tile before grouting so that the grout doesn’t discolor the tile.  And paint will discolor it also if it isn’t sealed.

I used latex paint to paint the grout on the kitchen backsplash in the condo years ago (maybe five years now, on new, unsealed grout that didn’t turn out the color I had wanted), and it held up perfectly.  But for areas that will be exposed to water, or for a tiled floor, I suggest using Grout Renew since it’s water-resistant.

So here’s a wider view of this whole side of the bathroom.

bathroom remodel progress 7-14-15 - 6

My “to do” list is dwindling, and the bathroom really is nearing completion.  It won’t be long now.  It’ll certainly be done by Thanksgiving  😀



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  1. Great job on that tile. I’m trying to remember if you had a reason for running the tile on the shelf wall in the opposite direction of the border around the room? Maybe once items on on the shelves it won’t matter but it just seems out of place to me but I’m sure you have a good reason. I’m anxious for you to get started on the dining room, it’s going to be fabulous.

      1. She said in an earlier post that the reason she ran the tiles behind the storage shelving was because it’s an old house and she was concerned that they would not be level. I kind alike it though, reminds me of falling water.

    1. Really, really think things turned out so well.. A tiny bathroom with so much architectural style. Just the best. you get better and better!

  2. You do beautiful work, so precise, neat, I love and appreciate it! Just keep doing what you are doing and you will have a beautiful house just like you want it 🙂

  3. Looking great Kristi! Can’t wait to see your completed bathroom! You are such a brave and strong woman for letting us all into your home and personal space. I’m not sure how you deal with people who don’t have the tact to keep their criticism to themselves!

  4. Can you hear me clapping and hooting from Louisiana. I am probablynmore excited then you.
    it is beautiful. Great Job. So close . Can’t wait for your shower curtain to get hung to finish it all off. .CONGRADULATIONS.

  5. LOL, you don’t have to explain to us your time line. We are just cheering you on from afar. Anybody who has done any DIY knows that it always takes longer than expected and it’s always the stuff that’s no fun before the beautiful finishes can be applied. It’s looking fabulous. You go girl!

  6. I’ve said this before but I reallllly want to encourage you – again 🙂 —PLEASE will you do a series on trim work? You are incredibly talented putting together multiple pieces of trim to get an amazing, rich look. If you didn’t show step by step detail, I would never guess you use so many different trim pieces! Many of us are baffled by a trip down the trim aisle at Lowes or Home Depot. We can’t find what we’re looking for – because what we want is a combination of multiple pieces…we just don’t realize it. I would love to see tutorials on layering trim, perfect caulking – especially in detail areas or inside corners, and budget trim work…getting htat thick, chunk wood look without spending a fortune. PLEEEEEEEEEEEESE!!!

    1. Yes, I can do that! 🙂 I really only use a handful of different trims and mouldings over and over again, but I’d love to share my favorites, how I combine them, and how I use them.

  7. Love seeing your progress on your home. It’s looking wonderful. How do you find the energy to do all this though? Whew!

  8. It is coming together beautifully! Had to go back and remind myself what shower curtain fabric you decided on:) Have you chosen your colors for the accessories ie towels, bathmat, toiletries etc? Using teal as in your vanity would be very nice.

  9. Your bathroom is looking fantastic! I am especially happy that you chose solid shelves instead of glass shelves. As visual as you are, I think you might find that glass shelves would have added an element of visual clutter that would bother you. Bravo on all your choices and your hard work!

  10. Kristi, I have been on vacation with no IPad! I have missed you! So happy to see the latest bathroom post. You are doing an awesome job. It is beautiful!

  11. Kristi, I joined your blog a year ago and have emotionally traversed your challenges, joys, highs and lows and decisions. Remodels bring out the good stuff in us by taxing us with the mundane and sometimes bad stuff. I had to reach out to you today and say “congrats” on sticking it out! I can identify with your life and your expression of design. It’s not about the house, it’s truly about the work! Thank you for sharing.

  12. I have a request, and maybe you already have this somewhere. Point me to it if you do! I would be very interested in your choices of power tools, and why.
    I would like to get a table saw, and the one I want is [Porter Cable at Lowe’s] nearly $400.00, but are the cheaper ones good enough to hold up to lots of DIY projects?
    I need one to help with house repairs after the storms and to use for many project I want to do latter to fix up the house. I have talked to several contractors over the years and all have recommended the Porter Cable brand as the most dependable out there. My skill saw and saws-all are both that brand.

    Any info will be greatly appreciated.

    You are so good at what you do, and I value your opinion! You do amazing work and I love this blog!

  13. YES!!! Looking so amazing. I actually did notice both the wrap around tile job and the brighter background before you said anything! Really an awesome job, Kristi!

  14. I think you’re coming along very nicely. That tile work is yummy! The whole room is almost pulled together and I am loving it!

  15. it’s just gorgeous. The before shots compared to now…how can that be the same bathroom?? And, you aren’t even finished! Seriously, absolutely gorgeous.

  16. LOL! It’s looking great. Hubby will often ask “how long ’til dinner”, and I’ll tell him “I don’t know”. This is especially true if I’m making something like a beef roast – I’m SO inept at making those! He always gets frustrated with my response, and I get (more) frustrated with making that meal. Sigh.

  17. Wonderful and looks professionally done! You should feel proud. Maybe when you have the time, you can teach us DIYers how to wood fill, caulk and sand. My inside mitered corners always seem to turn out “bumpy” either from too much wood filler or not enough.

  18. What the two directions of tile tells me is that some professional tile guy was showing off his artistry. Much like a tallented brick mason would row-block soem brick (turn a row of brick up on it’s end vertically while all the other rows of brick run horizontal, showing off how skilled he is.

    This must be the classiest bathroom in town! A room that is often overlooked by a contractor, yours is outstanding.

  19. This looks perfectly fabulous and the colors are spot on. I think it is so amazing that all your rooms are so unique and so perfectly executed…..there is a show on TV where the host just slaps things together and says I love the save the original finishes, which in my opinion look like weathered junk that will not stand up to anything, So I no longer watch the show because it is so poorly done!
    I digress. The house is fab fab fab!
    But i have one question? The tile on the back tub wall looks too short for the tub width? I always thought tiles should go beyond the tub with an edge of bull nose tiles on the wall just outside the tub and all the way up the wall? Or is the back wall all tile and I just cannot see it correctly in the picture? Just curious.

    1. The back wall is completely tiled, and the tile extends completely to the edge of the tub. I didn’t use bullnose tile because I couldn’t figure out how to tie that in with the wainscoting I wanted to do. So instead, I used a 1 x 4 to terminate the tile, and then tied that 1 x 4 in with the wainscoting. The 1 x 4 extends from ceiling to floor right on the outside edge of the bathtub. In other words, it’s right up against the bathtub on on the outside of the tub, and the tile goes right up against it, so that the tile extends the full width of the tub on that back wall.

  20. Congratulations! It’s beautiful, classy, and completely done except for a couple of finishing touches, and I agree with everyone who wrote that these things ALWAYS take more time than we think. 🙂

  21. You’ve done an amazing job of the tiling and all the trim work Kristi. It’s looking absolutely gorgeous and I can’t wait to see your final reveal with this bathroom being accessorized. You must be so proud of your achievement.

  22. I love love love how you use molding to make a room look like a million bucks. And the tile! The finished product will be so gorgeous.

  23. Such a clever lady! So happy that you have nearly completed the Bathroom, it is looking very professional and has the glam look. Thanks for sharing so much,love travelling this project with you. WowWow!!

  24. i like the way you did the tile – wrapping it around the corner there. The cuts are flawless. High class!

  25. I think your tiling and wood working talents are A-1! Isn’t Matt really proud of you?!! My husband would brag about my skills around the house and I really felt good about myself! Great work!

  26. That’s freaking awesome (can’t put on here what I really!!! Great job Kristi….!!!!! I’m so proud of you and what you can do on your own….!!!!

  27. To quote my dad, who died a year ago today and was an inveterate DIY-we and a perfectionist craftsman, the last 10% take 90% of the time. So I’m not surprised that it’s taking this long and no eye-rolling here. Since God, or the Devil, could be in the details, it only makes sense to take enough time to iron out every single wrinkle that would make you crazy. It’s coming along so nicely, tough…