The first time we saw our house, we both shed tiny sad tears at the state of the master bath. It was, frankly, wretched–I imagine every shower taken in there was a shower of tears. So we knew that it would be one of the first rooms we would demo as soon as the keys were in our hands. And we did! The only things we left in there were the tub and surround, which had just been replaced and were generally fine. We did all of the work ourselves, including moving electrical outlets and light fixtures, as well as several days’ worth of sanding down a rather stout crescent-patterned wall-texturing job (FYI, it still isn’t totally gone). But from the get-go we both knew we didn’t want to sink a lot of money into this house in general. This definitely isn’t the house we’ll live in forever, and given the amount we knew we’d need to spend on the rest of the house, we didn’t want to price ourselves out of the neighborhood. So with the understanding that I wasn’t going to be designing my dream marble-wrapped bathroom with a steam shower that adapts its ambient lighting to my mood, I approached it from a true Copy Cat Chic perspective: budget first. I looked through my rather large file of bathroom inspiration photos, and I picked out one of my favorites that I knew I would be able to approximate on a budget.
In my experience bathrooms (and kitchens) are two of the toughest rooms to design on a budget. We sink a lot of money into rooms like that–and maybe it’s just me, but a lot of the time I find myself wondering where the money was even spent. I was watching a remodel show on TV last night and they remodeled an 80s-tastic bath for over $15,000. My jaw dropped looking at the ‘after’–for the life of me I could not understand where any of that money went. The end product was fine but completely basic and underwhelming and, in my opinion, an utter waste of money for the mediocre end product. So with that in mind, I chose items for my own bathroom that give the general feel of the inspiration picture but that fit comfortably in my budget budget. I leaned on IKEA for the furniture pieces, which never fails to surprise anyone who sees the bathroom–you’d never know it was IKEA if I didn’t tell you. There are a ton of options that way as well–sink cabinets come in several sizes and styles, you have several sinks to choose from, faucets, etc. It’s kind of a dream. And don’t forget to buy some pretty knobs for your cabinets–they’re a small thing but we spent about $40 on some beautiful faceted glass knobs and they really make the sink cabinet pop We also did some budget shopping at Home Depot for fixtures and the mirror and couldn’t be happier with how everything turned out. Hope you’re as happy with the outcome as I was!
A few more notes–this room redo doesn’t include things like towels that you already have, or the cost of installing new outlets or sanding paper for the aforementioned walls. It also doesn’t include the cost of paint or flooring, since I have no way of knowing how big your bathroom is (we spent about $250 in flooring and materials and our bathroom isn’t large). And since we didn’t put a new tub in, that’s also omitted (though there are a ton of affordable options from the big box stores–you just have to look! I would estimate spending as little as a few hundred dollars (or more–mine would definitely be more 😉 My point is that you definitely need to have extra funds available for those small expenses (new outlets!) that we always forget to budget for.
And by popular request, I’ve put together a whole post about our bathroom renovation over at Lindsey Does, complete with before + after pics. Here’s a sneak peek:
In our bathroom we did opt for the Hemnes mirrored cabinet from IKEA instead of the open shelving in the Room Redo since we don’t have any other concealed storage (I believe it was about $100 more than the shelf pictured above). The shower curtain, rugs and hamper are from West Elm but it doesn’t look like they’re available online. You can read all about the renovation process HERE.
sink console + sink $300
storage cabinet $100
floors $2.73 per sq. ft.*
towel ring $16
shower curtain $30
bath mat $24