Monday, March 26, 2012

The laundry list

The first time that we toured our house, I stood in the behemoth downstairs bathroom with our realtor, discussing options for converting it into a laundry/bath combo.  Previously, the house had no dryer, and the washer hook-up was in the kitchen.  As you can tell from the before and after (below), I had better ideas than a washing machine for the middle of the kitchen:

I also knew that I wanted to have the washer and dryer accessible on the first floor and not have to install them in the basement.  The downstairs bathroom was the perfect candidate because it already has water access (check!) and it's a HUGE room.  It was previously the master bedroom; converted to a handicap-accessible bathroom when the previous owner could no longer go upstairs.

Since it was converted within the last 5 years or so, it was a nice space.  The paint was nicely done (albeit not in my choice of color!), the fixtures were new, working, and didn't have years of caked on grime.  Longtime readers of the blog will know that all of these perks were not found throughout the rest of the house!

This room was - by far - the nicest room in the house when we bought it.  Naturally, my immediate plans to revamp it had Justin a little nervous.  At this point, the rest of the house was more or less falling apart, and, as he said "you want to tear apart the only nice space we have!"  Guilty as charged.  

For a while, we did leave it as is, and made trips to the laundromat (until at least this time last year) before we purchased a washer and dryer and had the plumbing revamped to fit a washer & dryer.  (Remember that announcement, here).

I stole the medicine cabinet for the upstairs bathroom, leaving us with a hole in the wall for much longer than anticipated.  My decorating and organization left a lot to be desired (but we were frying bigger fish at the time, like finishing the upstairs):

Then, last summer, I finally decided that it was time to make some things happen.  With 48 hours (or some other ridiculously short time frame) between that point and the pending arrival of my parents & siblings, I decided that I would finish the bathroom before they arrived to surprise them with the progress.  I think I finished the drywall repairs, painted the ceiling, and did half of the first coat (again, the huge size of the room and immense amount of cutting in took me by surprise) before the doorbell rang.  So, guess how my family spent a big part of their Ithaca vacation :)  (Thanks, guys!!)

Mom, helping to paint (and clearly acting on a dare from my dangerous-with-a-paintbrush sister in this shot!)

Maura and Colin, installing the sticky tiles I love - as a surprise for me while I was at work one day!

After new paint, new hardware, new floors, and some decor, I think it's looking a lot more spiffy (and organized, not to mention functional!)

This post is getting rather long, so I'll revisit some of the details in this room tomorrow.  I'm particularly proud of the brown cabinet and the rescue from its previous stay tuned!


  1. Very impressive (as with the rest of the house) - you two have such vision. Can't wait to see what you pull off for that nursery!

  2. This is awesome! I've been trying to do some laundry renovation, and this gave me some great insight for things to try. Thanks for sharing!