Monday, April 8, 2013

Taking the 80s Out and Putting the 50s In! My Bathroom Transformation

In early December 2012, my husband and I decided to refinance our home due to historically low rates. In order to complete the requirements for approval of the new loan, we needed to renovate.  We replaced our garage door, replaced doors in our sunroom, painted walls, re-finished ceilings, replaced toilets, sanded, spackled, power-washed decks, and cleaned like crazy. During this arduous process, I decided to finally tackle the 1980s "country nightmare" that was my downstairs powder room.
The walls were coated in wallpaper similar to what's depicted above.  For years, I tried with all my might to avoid it. I even attempted to conceal the country-themed abomination by decorating the bathroom with 50s knick knacks and chalkware.

Since 2010,  I have been slowly transforming my 1985-constructed home into a mid-century showcase. I have taken most rooms from 80s "shriek" to Eames-era "chic." While most of the house has enjoyed a 50s facelift, the powder room was the "lone holdout."

Despite my frustration with the poorly-timed renovations (uh, hello, Holiday season!), I pushed the impending stress from Holiday shopping and cooking aside and focused my rage on the hideous bathroom that seemed to taunt me! It was like the wallpaper was my kryptonite, rendering me powerless to defeat it and take it down (figuratively and literally).

The bathroom in question is about 20 square feet. It has a toilet, cabinet sink, and mirror. Just the basics.  Not a big deal, right? Even though the work involved many steps, I was able to complete the transformation in about a week.

After taking the gross paper off the walls, this is what the bathroom looked like:
I washed any remnant of wall paper and glue off the walls and began spackling patches. I let the spackle dry and the sanded. Talk about DUSTY! Spackle dust gets everywhere!

I washed the walls again and then began the white primer coat. I got so dirty and covered in paint! But I loved it! Reminded me of art school!


After the two coats of primer were done, I painted the ceilings flat white. Then, it was time for the fun part! Color paint in a satin finish! The color I chose was a bright pink. I had read that pink or teal were popular colors for mid-century bathrooms. Despite Big Daddy's initial hesitation, he decided to let me "run with it."


The blue paint tape was applied and the pink went into the walls! Let me tell you, the bathroom glowed with Pepto-pink realness!

After the walls were dried, I began to re-do the standard brown wood sink cabinet. I painted the cabinet black and added pink diamonds on the doors.
When the paint was completely dry, I added two coats of polyurethane. It was so stinky and took forever to dry!
When I was young, my mother used to buy untreated wood furniture and stain it herself.  She also would search for vintage pieces to renovate and refurbish. I remembered watching her work in our garage until late and I learned quite a bit along the way. As a result, I was so thankful that I was able to utilize the skills my mother taught me for this project. Nevertheless, I sealed off the bathroom for a few days with a fan on to help diffuse the clear coat fumes.

When the clear coat was dry and smooth and the poly coat no longer smelled, I then added gold starburst transfer decals I bought off Etsy to the walls.
I also bought a white shelf from Target and spray-painted it gold and mounted it on the wall above the toilet. I added my two Holt Howard ceramic cats and also added two hand-painted shadow boxes.

To finish, also purchased a bronze-colored mirror from Target and spray-painted it gold. I refreshed the caulk bead on the edge of the sink and wall and viola!, the bathroom was finally done!
I am pleased with my work and I cannot wait to start on my master bath! The color I have picked out is a Bermuda/South Florida-like teal. The color is bright and lively! I cannot wait!








17 comments:

  1. Wow your bathroom looks amazing! I love the pink and color combo. It turned out great.

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    1. Thank you! I was so glad when it was done and I was pleased with the way it turned out! I had been wanting to do pink and gold forever but I kept putting it off!

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  2. Pink bathrooms are the best. My parents recently redid their (which WAS actually originally 50s) and I had to beg them to keep it pink

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    1. Laura,

      Ack! I bet that bathroom was so cool! My in-laws live in South Florida and one of their friends converted their 50s era home into a modern look with new everything. The pink and white tile bathroom and all the linoleum was taken out. Ohh! I would have to have loved to have seen if any of that tile could have been reused.

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  3. You did a fabulous job! I love the shade of pink you choose, and the gold starbursts are fabulous. Can't wait to see how the master bath turns out!

    We're working on some home projects right now--we just ripped out the horrid carpet in the master bedroom to reveal the original stained concrete and will be painting and hanging curtains (hopefully soon as all of the bedroom furniture is currently in the living room!)

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    1. Thank you, Amanda! I am glad the powder room is done and I cannot wait to tackle the upstairs! I also need to rip out the carpet in my master bedroom. It is ugly and needs to go! Why was everything in the 80s beige?!

      I hope you post pictures of your renovations! I bet they will come out well!

      Btw, I saw you at the car show at Viva but I did not want to bother you since it looked like you were working!

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  4. Its super cute!My home was the victim of a 70's remodel and its been pure hell trying to restore it.Love the pink bathroom

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    1. Thanks! My home is/was so 80s! Most of it is gone but a few rooms remain coated in 80s shame. The 70s and 80s were just terrible! lol! When I was a kid in the late 70s/early 80s, every room was practically wood-panelled and we even had shag carpet! Why?! My parents updated it years ago but I can still recall my mom lamenting "What were we thinking" as she and Dad took down the wood panelling off the walls. Nevertheless, I hope your updates in your home are going ok!

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  5. LOVE the pink and gold. Those decals are fabulous! Well done!

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    1. Thank you! The decals came in three different sizes and I had a sheet containing about 24 total. I found them on Etsy in November.

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  6. That bathroom is fabulous! Great job!

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  7. Pink and gold is just SO great! Love it!

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  8. Looks fantastic! I am in the middle of renovation my new home from a 1960's house with horrid 70s and 80s decor into a mid-century inspired haven! Looking forward to seeing more of your renovation posts!

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    1. Thank you, Clare! The 80s just so rubbish for interior design! Lol! When I was little, my parents installed wood-panelling in our 1971 home and it looked so bad! You can really see it in all the photos! Mum says it was all the rage and she and Dad thought they were so cool whilst installing it! In 1987, they took it down and just did plain walls with paint! Looked so much better!

      I hope your renovations go well too! I cannot wait to see updates if you post them!

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