September 14, 2016

Even I have sentimental limits.

When it came time to decide what to do with the downstairs bathroom I was all for gutting it and starting over.  The bead board was covered in years of paint, revealing where the paint had chipped off and been reapplied….again, and again, and again. There was no symmetry to the room.  It has a very low ceiling as it resided under the stairs to the second floor.  You could barely stand in the tub without hitting your head and the sink was under the slant in the ceiling so you had to tilt your body to wash your hands.

Powder Room before

It had the original claw foot bathtub that was not in the best shape. I vividly remembered taking baths in that very tub as a child, the rim of the tub just reaching my chin. While that was a sweet memory,  I just couldn’t see us using that bathtub – after oh so many years.

Powder room 2 before

My contractor really challenged me to keep the bead board and keep the existing framing of the room.  “People pay extra to have this kind of look put in their bathroom”, he said.  REALLY?!?

So I decided to take his advice and declare the bathroom QUIRKY and  just run with it.  I gave my sister the bathtub (to keep it in the family – she plans to use it as an herb garden in her yard.) We salvaged what we could of the badly damaged hardwood floors from the first floor and we barely had enough to fill this small bathroom space.

File Sep 12, 6 30 53 PM

I added bling with the mirrored vanity. Found a mirror frame made of mirrors. I splurged on the lighting with Restoration Hardware sconces and painted the walls Dix Blue (Farrow & Ball) reminiscent of an original color we found hidden in the house.  I adorned the wall opposite the sink with the family photos of my great grandparents who built the house and my grandmother on her wedding day, with room to add others who have lived in this house (Not So DIY, dated August 17, 2016).

Edited Bathroom


Then, I put my favorite Gone with the Wind quote on the vanity to remind myself that while this bathroom is a little quirky, this Charleston home is back where I belong.

Post renovation photos by Gillian Ellis Photography.

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  • Reply Kelley September 14, 2016 at 12:49 pm

    I love love love how you kept the shape and the history, but updated it! The bead board looks fresh, and everything works, as quirky as it is 😉 Can’t wait to see more rooms!

    • Reply English September 14, 2016 at 8:07 pm

      Thanks Kelley! It is now one of my favorite rooms in the house!

  • Reply Savannah September 14, 2016 at 3:05 pm

    Oh I adore this! Farrow and Ball is my favorite hehe I can’t wait to see the rest of the house!


    • Reply English September 14, 2016 at 8:08 pm

      Thanks Savannah! I friend who is a master colorist pointed me in the direction of Dix Blue and it was strikingly similar to a color that had been in the house decades ago! I do love it!

  • Reply Cayleigh September 14, 2016 at 3:06 pm

    Oh my gosh! Love what you have done with that bathroom. It looks amazing! The blue walls really soften the space as well.

    • Reply English September 14, 2016 at 8:09 pm

      Thanks! It is a sweet little space now (not nearly as scary!)

  • Reply Shantel September 15, 2016 at 1:42 am

    This bathroom update is full of so much character! You’ve got great style sense!

    • Reply English September 16, 2016 at 9:29 pm

      Thank you!

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