When we first moved in to our little house a year ago, we were thrilled that the whole house had a fresh coat of cream paint! Some of the other houses we had looked at had different, odd paint colors for every room, or hadn’t had a fresh paint job in 10 years. We were so happy that we didn’t have to shell out a ton of money for new paint right after buying our first house!
After a few months of living in the house however, we realized that the cream color had strong yellow undertones… which is not so thrilling. (I affectionately refer to them as our “butter-yellow” walls.) They give everything in the house a kind of yellowish-greenish cast. So I’ve decided that they’ve got to go!
My plan is to update and repaint the whole house… but here’s a little secret about me. I don’t like painting. I never have really, though now that we have a house of our own the promise of a fresh, new look motivates me to grab that paintbrush and conquer those walls! Even so, I figured it would be best not to let my newfound enthusiasm run away with me. I decided to start small. Maybe the smallest room in the house? Ok, so I started with the bathroom.
My goal was to give our guest bathroom a clean look (something the butter-yellow walls definitely did not do) and lighten it up since it’s kind of small and dark. Since we’re kind of on a tight budget, I tried to get the best look I could for the least amount of money. So replacing the tan shower tile or putting in new flooring isn’t on the agenda just yet. This bathroom is one of two (the other being the master bathroom), which means that both our little baby girl as well as guests have to use this bathroom. So I also wanted it to be “grown-up” for the guests, but fun for our baby girl.
The First Attempt
The first time I painted the bathroom, I went with a light seafoam color. I was hoping the aqua color would brighten the bathroom and make it fun and happy! After I finished the second coat of seafoam, I stepped back and took a look at the room… and realized that I didn’t like it. The color was beautiful, but the cool bluish tone of the paint was not jiving with our honey-colored vanity, tan flooring and tan shower tile. Instead of looking bright and happy, it looked dark and mismatched. Even our new flamingo shower curtain looked dingy in the contrasting tones.
It was disheartening for me, as a non-painter, to spend several hours dutifully taping and painting and repainting to see my very mismatched, almost-but-not-quite cute bathroom. Sad sigh.
The Second Attempt
Never one to be discouraged by failure (at least not for too long), I set out to our neighborhood Home Depot and got myself the right color. The color I had been planning on in the back of my mind all along. White. I spent a while looking at all the different “whites” and brought home Behr’s Ultra Pure White.
After another 4 hours of taping and painting and repainting, I finished the bathroom and was very pleased that we finally had a bright, clean-looking guest bathroom. I quickly put up our new flamingo shower curtain to see how it looked. I couldn’t help but smile seeing the playful pink flamingos pop out against the white bathroom!
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This bathroom is small and somewhat lacking in the storage department- the only storage it had before the makeover was under the vanity and one bar towel-rack above the toilet. To maximize storage while keeping a clean, uncluttered look, I added a wood shelf for towels on one wall, and a row of towel-hooks on the other. The shelf is made out of wood leftover from our kitchen shelving project, along with some rustic black brackets.
Now we finally have room to store our clean towels and other bathroom necessities! Don’t the Qtip and cotton ball jars look cute sitting on our new shelf? 🙂
Doing a room makeover on a budget can be a challenge sometimes, but I think we did a pretty good job! I’ve listed the details of our bathroom makeover below. (I didn’t include the seafoam color paint in the cost breakdown, since it doesn’t really count towards the final look.)
- Behr paint in Ultra Pure White semigloss = 28.97
- Painting kit (included paintbrush, 2 rollers, 3 roller covers, tray) = 9.97
- Shower curtain = 16.99
- Towel hooks = 16.98
- Wood shelf- leftover wood (free) + 2 brackets (4.99 each) = 9.98
- Anchors- (1.98 for 6 Sharkie anchors + 1.98 for 4 anchors) = 3.96
- Bathtub art = free!
After finishing my first room makeover I’ve definitely learned a few things.
It’s okay to try something that might not work. I’ve always liked light aqua walls, but I was afraid to try it in our house in case I didn’t like it or it got old. Even though it didn’t work out for this particular room, I’ve discovered I really do love the color and I will definitely try it again in a room with more natural light. Don’t be afraid to try something new.
A white room can be fun! Depending on how you accessorize it, a white room can be minimal, sophisticated, rustic, or even fun!
Make your own art. After all the other, necessary stuff we bought for the makeover I didn’t want to spend any more money. But the wall above the towel-hooks was very blank and just begging to be filled. So I painted a simple watercolor and used a frame I already had on hand. I love how the little bathtub and bubble picture adds to the fun atmosphere of the room! Even if you aren’t experienced with drawing or painting, try something simple and give it a go. You might surprise yourself! And there’s nothing like displaying handmade art.
So, what do you think? I was hoping to give the bathroom a cleaner, brighter look on a small budget, and I think I succeeded! I hope our small bathroom makeover can inspire you to tackle the makeover you’ve been thinking about!