Thursday, June 10, 2010

Bathroom Resources

When we bought our townhouse the bathroom was the least favorite room in the house. The tiles are simple 12 x 12 tiles. The counter is laminate. The sink was suppose to be white, emphasis on suppose to be. The shower has a run of blue tiles. The mirror took up an entire wall and the lighting, cost less then last nights spaghetti dinner.
We debated for many months about a total gut job of the Master Bath. As tempting as it was to rip it all out, it was still in good shape (minus the sink that is). We didn't want to create more garbage for the already overloaded landfills, so we made a plan. We would change a few easy things first (the mirror, the sink, the lights) and see if it made a difference, then if we still didn't like the bathroom we would rip it out, keeping the mirror and other changes to use in the new renovated bathroom.
Thankfully, the few small changes we made, made a huge difference and we saved ourselves alot of money and saved the environment a little too.
Here's what we did:
We removed the very large mirror and replaced it with a nickel finished tilting mirror from home depot (here's the link). The tilting mirror was perfect for us, with Lee being so tall (6'8") it works so well because he can tilt it up to make shaving easier, instead of bending down to see his face.
The old sink was gross. It was a metal, drop in sink. We debated getting a vessel sink, but decided that the tilting mirror would clear the tap when it was tilted up. So instead we got a white porcelain drop in sink. It has a raised outer lip so it's a bit like a vessel but gives us full motion of the mirror.
We painted the room the same soft grey as the bedroom, because it's a semi en-suite I thought it was important to have the rooms relate to each other. To match the white bedding in the bedroom I used white towels in the bathroom. To match the white curtains in the bedroom I used a white shower curtain in the bathroom (shower curtain is from pottery barn), with a white fabric shower curtain liner. The liner was a purchase from Target it's a great alternative to the standard plastic liner. The fabric liner washes really well, I throw it in the machine with the shower curtain from time to time. It's mold and mildew resistant. Best of all it doesn't off gas chemical fumes.
The lighting upgrade was what made the biggest difference. The cheap old vanity lights had to go, ideally I would have installed a couple of sconces but to keep the renovation work to a minimum I found our light at Canadian tire (I couldn't find it on the website, but the last time I was in the store I saw it in stock). I prefer to hooks to towel bars. I've found that towels dry faster on a hook then on a bar, probably because you don't have to fold them up to fit. I also find that we are both more likely to hang our towels up instead of dropping them on the floor when hooks are in easy reach. Lee hung up a towel shelf above the toilet, it's within an arms reach from the shower making it really easy to grab a nice clean towel straight out of the shower (towel shelf link).
We put up some chrome baskets to hold extra towels and face cloths. The chrome shelves are my favorite part of the bathroom, they add a great sparkle and are super functional.

The Tooth brush holder is from Ikea (here is the link) it's awesome. The glass cup is removable so it's easy to wash, it's dishwasher safe. It mounts to the wall so you don't have to clutter up your vanity top. We were able to install it right above the sink, no more dropped toothbrushes in the toilet for us (seriously we use to store them on the towel rack and more then one ended it's life in the drink).

The compliment I get the most (and also one of the first comments I received on the blog) is about the small over the door hand towel bar. I bought it at Target (LINK) it's great because it keeps the towels very close to the sink limiting the water drops on the way to a towel.
I'm a huge fan of wall decals. Believe it or not Lee is too. We installed one over the tub,
" SOAK your cares away ". They are really easy to install, just make sure it's level before you stick it down.
We have a corner organizing unit in the shower, it keeps everything organized and the tub deck clear of clutter. It keeps everything at the level it should be, for example the bubble bath is on a lower shelf, and the shampoo on a higher shelf. If you are buying one make sure the basket lips are tall. This is the second corner unit we've bought because our the shampoo kept falling out of the first one, very scary in the middle of the night. We found ours at Target and are very happy with it, The baskets are nice and deep.
I wouldn't say this is our dream bathroom (only a bathtub I could swim in would make a dream bathroom), but it works for us really well. Now if we could only get rid of the sea shell soap holder.


  1. Hello! I love your blog. I was wondering where you found your chrome baskets for next to the sink. They are really great and would love to find them or something similar. Thanks!

  2. Thanks so much! I found the chrome baskets at Superstore Canada I think it's called LOBLAWS in America! I hope that helps But it probably doesn't! I have had a hard time finding ones for sale that are the same! I'll keep surfing the web and let you know as soon as I find some that are a good match!!

  3. Oh this is fabulous. I am about to move into a bathroom that looks identical in size in Vancouver and it's the one part of the place I'm most worried about.
    You have inspired me greatly here. I have had my eye on a shower curtain from Anthro. I love what you did with the towel racks!

  4. Anthro has fantastic everything I drool over their site at least once a week! Good luck with your bathroom! Let me know how it turns out!

  5. Love the light fixture. It is so unique and a great way to incorporate a sconce look without running new electrical. I live in California. Would love to know of an online store to buy the same fixture.

  6. Thanks, even though Lee is well versed in electrical we still didn't want to go to the trouble of wiring in sconces. This Light was the perfect compromise, we bought it from Canadian Tire, it's part of the Debbie Travis line, on time on a california craigslist I saw one for sale, Try Debbie Travis Light Fixture. I hope you find one, sorry I couldn't be of more help.

  7. Just found your blog it's giving me great ideas. Where did you get the chrome baskets for your towels?

  8. You are amazingly creative! Thank you for so many wonderful ideas. I would love to know where you purchased the wire bins for your bathroom wall?...the one's that look like they could also hold file folders?

  9. Love your blog, you have such great ideas. My one question looks like a pretty popular question, I was wondering where you got the chrome baskets that hold your towels. They are just what I've been looking for.

  10. Thanks!!!!
    The chrome baskets are from The Real Canadian Superstore!!!
    Hope that helps

  11. I love the towels on the cupboard doors! Where did you get them? Great bathroom!

    1. They're sold at tons of different stores now!
      Bed bath and Beyond, Target, I've even seen them at Walmart!
      Hope that helps

  12. Love the light fixture! It looks great!

  13. Can you order online from the real canadian superstore? How long ago did you buy the baskets


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