Our 5x8 Bathroom - From Drab to Fab

Katrinka Yobotz
6 years ago
last modified: 6 years ago


Worn out and outdated.


We took it down to the studs and started over. We modified a Target cabinet to match the vanity, by gluing pieces of a plastic placemat over homemade wood pulls. We moved the electrical outlet to a safer location. The towel bars and flip-open toilet paper holder (not shown) are Moen "Method".

We recessed a Robern medicine cabinet and installed a new Progress "Joy" light, and new Broan recessed light/fan combination (not shown). Wall picture shown in mirror was found elsewhere in the house and restored with a silver paint pen.

Caesarstone "Dreamy Marfil" vanity top. American Standard "Tropic" vanity, "Orbit" undermount sink, "Portsmouth" faucet and "Cadet 3" toilet. Water Shed shower curtain.

We added a nightlighted outlet inside the vanity for recharging toothbrushes, and shavers, and for additional light inside at night. We made an extra large plumbing escutcheon from a wall doorknob protector.


A plastic shower curtain had provided better privacy than the textured glass, but mold was always a problem on it and the painted wood window frame. The 5 foot by 30-inch tub was too small. Showerhead caddies were always a mess, as were the shower door frames.


We installed the niche liner and framing, then had the Panaria Ceramica "Herald" porcelain tile professionally installed, including around the window. We had them put in plastic shelf clips in the sides of the niche for our thick glass shelf. Preferred Bath curved shower curtain rod provides more space in the shower. Drilling through porcelain to put up the brackets was a challenge! We added Brewster "Mosaic" static privacy film to our frosted windows, but after testing it at night realized it still wasn't enough. So we cut pieces of a drop-ceiling plastic light panel for another layer. Now it's safe for the ladies!

Moen "Wynford" tub and shower trim with new Moentrol valve. 3M Command hook for washcloth.

American Standard curved front "Ovation" (a/k/a "Saver") gives us a noticeably wider tub in the same 30" floor space! The loose lay Karndean flooring was easy to install but very difficult to cut through the thick wear layer. We used pieces of reinforced carpet tape around the edges, and a little spray adhesive where needed to keep a seam together.

We installed two drawer pulls on the side of the cabinet as extra guest towel hooks, and covered the glass with the same plastic as on the window panes. We used a brass tag from a purse to make a "Washcloths" label for a basket found new at a secondhand store.

Now shown: We took layers and layers of paint off the 1950s adjustable cold air return register by boiling it on the stove twice and scrubbing it using steel wool. Then we sprayed it white with Rust-Oleum Universal Paint & Primer In One. It came out looking like new.

This is the first time we had hired a contractor for a major project, having them use our supplies and fixtures. But after two days the electrical and plumbing were a mess, so we fired them and started it all over as a DIY. We're glad we did.

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