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Help! Carrara marble counter clashing!

julie S
2 years ago
So I chose a slab of Carrara marble for some bathroom remodeling. In the stone yard, it appeared much more white than gray. Installed it appears the opposite... very gray and not a lot of white. I underestimated how badly this cool gray would clash with the warm beige we have ALL over the house.... all trim, doors, bathroom cabinets, blinds, etc. now I feel as if I need to paint cabinets or walls or both to make these shades “blend” or at least, “play nicely”. Maybe even the tile floors. Any suggestions!?

Comments (76)

  • PRO
    Home Interiors with Ease
    2 years ago

    I have GE “Daylight” bulbs in my home and just love them...not warm...not blue...very natural daylight effect....perfect for bathrooms..

  • PRO
    Home Interiors with Ease
    2 years ago

    These styles would be a nice update....

    All fall between $44-$89 each....


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  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Yes, unfortunately this color must have been a favorite of the builder because he put it everywhere! I really don’t like it. It is Sherwin-Williams sand dollar. Yes it has peachy or pink undertones. Every single bit of trim, all doors, blinds, are all this color. I did get an estimate on just the downstairs and having it all repainted to white. It was over $10,000 and so I never did it.
  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    I will definitely give those lightbulbs a try!
  • Janie Gibbs-BRING SOPHIE BACK
    2 years ago

    Hi Julie,

    The stone itself is stunning!

    Completely agree with Carolyn to change the bulbs to white LED before making any big changes.

  • PRO
    Home Interiors with Ease
    2 years ago

    Well than we need to work with what you have...unless you are painting all your trim white...

    1. new sconces

    2. paint walls a soft white with gray undertones..we can help find the right color.

    3. Paint mirror trim to match walls.

    4. change out lightbulbs.

    5. leave vanity as is..it matches all your trim and doors.

    6. Add a white bath rug

    7. Add white and soft gray hand towels

    after these changes you will have a better idea of what to do if anything to vanity...that can be changed any time down the road..

    this is a good start...I think you will be pleased with these changes.




  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Love those ideas, thank you!

    I had one other thought... don’t even know if it’s possible... but can my grout lines go lighter??? That could help I think.
  • PRO
    Home Interiors with Ease
    2 years ago

    Their is grout stain you can buy..it is a time cunsumming project but worth it...the grout needs to be cleaned really good with white vinegar before using the stain...tons of utube videos and I am sure you can get some tips at your local hardware or tile store...

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    I may try that before deciding whether or not to keep tile. Wish I could just rip it all out and start over but pretty sure the hubby won’t go for that. He told me I could spend about $1000 per bath.
  • PRO
    Home Interiors with Ease
    2 years ago

    If tiles are torn out so is the vanity..the tile runs under it I am sure...honestly vanity top should have been the last thing with any Reno...I would spend your money on painting out all your trim..that color would drive me crazy...it is holding you back from everything...I wouldnt spend anymore money on those bathrooms until you paint out all your trim and doors...I would paint the trim yourself and hire someone to do the doors.

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    I’m not going to invest in painting out all of the trim/doors, etc. bc we plan to be in this house only a couple more years.
  • PRO
    Home Interiors with Ease
    2 years ago

    Ok well because that runs through your whole home..you need to work with it...I would do my check list above..I think it will update the look and help blend in the new counter tops..have you taken a look at YouTube on that grout staining idea...might help calm the tile down with light grout?

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    I briefly looked up the tile option. I may call grout doctors and have them give me an estimate. I really think lightening up the grout would help.
  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    Julie S, people also paint their tiles, and some turn out so cute. Check pinterest and here on Houzz....

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Laura... you mentioned above a link where there was a bathroom with dark cabinets. But I couldn’t find it when I started looking?
  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Laura... wish there was a way to tag people on here... I LOVED the decorative tiles you linked that had both gray and beiges.... I’m trying to figure out how to use something like that in at least one bath. They are a bit feminine, which I love, but I also have a house full of boys and so I don’t wanna overdo it on the girly.
  • felizlady
    2 years ago
    You could consider using a subtle wallpaper (with the white, light gray and beige colors in it) just for the sink area and adjacent wall or for the whole bathroom. It will allow the colors to relate to each other. You don't have to consider how the bathroom colors relate to any other room unless you have a strict color palette selected for the whole house.
  • PRO
    Home Interiors with Ease
    2 years ago

    Julie you need to be sure the tiles don’t run under the vanity ..or the vanity and sink..new counter will have to be taken out to put in the new tile....it is a huge messy job...

  • thinkdesignlive
    2 years ago
    I’m late to the discussion so didn’t notice if anyone has recommended just wallpapering this room in a pattern you like that mixes tan, grey and white? Then leave everything else as is except the sconces?
    Modern Bamboo Wallpaper, Gray and Tan, Sample · More Info
  • PRO
    Home Interiors with Ease
    2 years ago

    Julie mentioned only going to be in this home for a couple years so wants it to be ready for resale..so my suggestion would be no wallpaper..for resale it is a big no no.

  • Laura Hill
    2 years ago
    Hi, agree with HIWE’s checklist! Those changes will help a lot. You asked about potentially changing the floor tile in, perhaps, one of the bathrooms. You should be able to find a tile that ties together the gray, beige/tan, and white/cream... here are some examples to get you started.
    julie S thanked Laura Hill
  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    HIWE... pretty sure tiles don’t run under but I’ll double check when I’m home later. We’ve redone tile before so yes it’s a big messy job by itself... moving a vanity would be worse. And I am NOT getting new cabinets!

    Prob no wallpaper... wanna keep it pretty simple for future buyers, whether that’s next year or 3 yrs down the road.

    I’m leaning towards doing new tile all all 4 baths. I don’t think I’m gonna be fully happy with it unless I do. But all 4 baths don’t have to be identical. One is upstairs and 3 are down. I’d probably match the jack and Jill vanities but the other two could be different.

    I am leaning towards painting cabinets white or a deep charcoal....

    With all of this said, I need to make sure it’s still goes in with beiges that pretty much run thru the house. Is there a porcelain or ceramic tile that has a marble look but with both grays and beiges and whites?
  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    @Julie, take a look here at these encaustic-look tiles. I personally love them, not feminine unless you do a floral pattern. If you can redo your floors, it would be like a new bathroom, and paint the vanity....(but they are fairly inexpensive if you do have to get a new one).

    https://tilebar.com/collection/porcelain-tile/shop-by-look-porcelain/encaustic-tile.html


    Here are a few bathrooms with black/dark navy vanities:

    https://www.houzz.com/photos/chic-farmhouse-farmhouse-bathroom-chicago-phvw-vp~125780896


    https://www.houzz.com/photos/courtyard-remodel-austin-texas-bathroom-transitional-bathroom-austin-phvw-vp~115678134


    https://www.houzz.com/photos/north-shore-master-suite-transitional-bathroom-chicago-phvw-vp~126949597


    This link has more...

    https://www.houzz.com/photos/query/black-vanities/nqrwns


    Or here with white vanities:

    https://www.houzz.com/photos/marble-master-bathroom-in-san-diego-transitional-bathroom-san-diego-phvw-vp~124042149


    Not that you asked, but this would be my list if you can't redo the floors and you are on a budget:

    1. Vanity / paint white, gray, navy, or black.

    2. In the small bathroom, remove the floating crown (should be at the ceiling).and the trim around the mirror in the smaller bathroom. You can find a big mirror at TJMaxxx and mount. Or re-frame with new MDF casing (can cut at HD) so it fits to the edge of your vanity, and paint white. If the walls are okay without the trim, just patch and leave as is....(no casing, all depends).

    3. If you can't redo floors, then big throw rugs (non slip).


    If you can re-do your floors, then a few further tweaks. Not sure what your showers or tubs look like or the shape your tile is in....? Are your shower tiles beige?


    julie S thanked Laura Mac
  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Tile is in great shape. No chips. It must be tough stuff. Thankfully the tubs and showers and all white!
  • thinkdesignlive
    2 years ago
    How about a large rug that blends your colors, and new paint and sconces like HIWE suggested. Also, towels in beige/grey/white will also make it look a lot more intentional. It will take some hunting to find the right size and colors. Carpet where we are staying in Scottsdale AZ made me think of you again
    julie S thanked thinkdesignlive
  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago

    Laura Mac.... finally sat down at the computer to check these last links you sent.... LOVE that san diego master bath. Wow, would love something like that.... but probably for a master! But I do like the look with the hexagon floor and white cabinets. Definitely gets me ready for mine to be painted! I'm leaning towards white...

  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago
    last modified: 2 years ago

    Yes, I think the white would be your best bet for now! Then see how it feels after that....


    Benjamin Moore WHITE DOVE (semi-gloss) for cabs, doors, casing/trim and moldings...so pretty. A gallon would do it...


    I agree, all the tiles are so pretty and choices are overwhelming!

    julie S thanked Laura Mac
  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Yes I have BJ White Dove in my kitchen and I love it! Such a pretty white and in my house, has no color casts. I think I’m going to start with having all walls and cabinets painted, then evaluate the floors. Possibly have the grout cleaned and stained more to a white/gray. And big white bath mats.

    I just got all new counters in my kitchen too, and it was a HUGE mess. So much dust. So I’m not excited about more dust with taking it tile at this point....

    Annnnddddd we have to redo (retile) a leaking shower in the master. Considering trying to incorporate some of the painted decorative tiles in there somehow.... do you think that’s ok for resale or would I be better off with something more classic and simple???
  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    Julie, are you able to update the floors in your master while you're at it? If so, then you could create something gorgeous! If not, it may be better to keep it very simple and keep white, but do a newer style/size. Don't do a horizontal band (outdated). Keep it light and bright. If you have a niche, then you could add some carerra hex or something to tie into your counters.


    This is pretty with a little sparkle:

    https://www.flooranddecor.com/porcelain-ceramic-decoratives/artisan-frost-porcelain-tile-100500982.html#q=white+porcelain&start=7


    See how this has a little sparkle?

    https://www.houzz.com/photos/steveston-townhouse-traditional-bathroom-vancouver-phvw-vp~18182486


    And this is a simple white (looks like a 4x12):

    https://www.houzz.com/photos/upper-west-side-pre-war-contemporary-bathroom-new-york-phvw-vp~509386


    Just clean and simple....

    https://www.houzz.com/photos/minneapolis-victorian-bathroom-remodel-traditional-bathroom-minneapolis-phvw-vp~6969728



    Or, do a carerra marble (real), to match your counters.

    https://www.flooranddecor.com/stone-decoratives/carrara-white-honed-marble-tile-931100279.html#q=carerra&start=8


    So many at Floor & Decor or Tilebar.


    If you have a Floor&Decor near you (it's like a Home Depot sized tile store), go visit and get inspired.


    I think you deserve a new bathroom since you already have to remove the shower tiles! Can you budget pulling up the floor too? Then you could really create a beautiful master bathroom that you can enjoy, and good for resale.


    Did you check your pipes/stems in the walls/stems? If they need to be replaced, then do the whole bathroom right.... ;-)


  • jbknowlt
    2 years ago

    I just went through this. I have marble in 2 bathrooms and the kitchen. I chose Chantilly Lace from Benjamin Moore as it goes really well with marble. I would replace the floor. There are some gorgeous porcelain tiles that are super cheap. I put in a medium gray. Also probably need to paint the cabinets. One thing leads to another!

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Haha Laura!!! Well the good news is that my master doesn’t have the same floors as the baths I’ve shown you. I WISH I could redo my whole master bath but that’s not gonna happen at this point. We redid it 9 years ago when we moved in and while it’s beginning to look a bit dated already, it does have travertine floors and marble counters already. I’d love to rip out floors in there and have my cabinets painted. Then redo shower and tub area. Ahhhhh dreams.... hah!

    Here’s my attempt at recoloring the grout in this one bath.... not sure what I think so far....
  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Jb... you’re so right!!!! Snowball effect!
  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    Oh my goodness, looks 1,000% better!

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago

    It is definitely better than the grungy dark grout but doens't have the pop something new would! I think I'll do all the grout white and then have walls/cabinets painted. Then re-evaluate floors... although tearing up flooring could cause some damage to cabinets.... ugh....

  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    Yes, it would need to be a full redo. Be sure to search YouTube and 'painting and stenciling on porcelain tile'. It might be something you could try. There are many creative people covering up their older tiles.

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    So I’m wondering how Revere Pewter would work with my trim color?? I know it’s a light Griege. Guess I’ll have to go get a sample.

    I painted SW white dove and SW extra white... next to the marble... ?!?!?!!

    And Laura.... OMG on the painted tiles look.... wow! Never thought of that. I asked my husband about it and he told me to go for it, and if I screw everything up, we can get new tile. Maybe I should just not try and get new tile… Lol
  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    Yes, I never would have thought either! Search some youtube videos and see what you think. They look amazing and may just really be your answer! I think stencils for these are fairly easy to find....


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mmFvHwpgST4


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bPHEGlVNkNk



    Hummmm....the lighting might be off, but I promise White Dove (semi-gloss for trim) is so pretty. I think the yellow trim by your mirror is making it appear more yellow? White Dove (semi-gloss) is very neutral (not too blue or yellow). I'd paint out your mirror molding, door and baseboards with white dove (at least 2 good coats). Then do a very light silvery gray on your walls. Maybe Gray Cloud, Gray Owl, Stonington, Collingwood or Bunny Gray? Just the very lightest titch of gray...

    https://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/color-overview/color-palettes/color-families/gray-paint-colors




  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago

    Thanks Laura... I like the hint of gray idea for the walls. But if I CAN'T change door/baseboards, is the hint of gray still ok for the walls? I plan to paint the mirror molding and the cabinets for sure.... but am not sure about the doors/trim/baseboards b/c that runs throughout my house (the color).

  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    So would you update the baseboards and door (side inside restroom) white? Just keep it in the bathroom. Yes, a greige could work. I think you'd like a tiny bit of contrast from your trim/cabinet color.

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    I was showing my hubby this dilemma and talking thru ideas. He feels that all trim/cabinets etc inside the bathroom needs to be painted. So no more beige. So I guess my doors would be white on one side and beige on the other (bedroom aides). Guess that would be ok. There are baseboards but not crown molding in baths, thank goodness.
  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    Yes, that would be perfectly fine, people do it all the time with front doors, inside doors. Once you get to a painting the beige in the house later on down the road (if you do), you can do white trims. I think you'll be happy. You can DIY your bathroom paint, super easy.... A gallon of paint of each, some brushes and tape.... Can't wait to see it!

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Sharing some progress! I started playing around in my upstairs guest bath bc it’s a low risk and little used area. My husband said if I mess it up, we’ll just hire someone to fix it (since that’s what we had decided to do before I decided to become Ms DIY!) I’m having fun working on it and seeing the transformation.

    Im kinda at a crossroads now. The vanity is now Hale Navy, Carrara marble top, and White Dove mirror trim. I’m trying to decide what to do with the floor and remaining trim... keeping in mind that this house is BEIGE trim everywhere.... it is difficult to move to these updated colors when just outside the bathroom, it is off white/beige trim/doors/blinds etc.

    I’ve decided I’m going to stencil the tile floor, thanks to Laura’s suggestion. Should I do a white/charcoal or maybe a light beige/charcoal? Now that the mirror trim is a true white I’m realizing the bath tub is not... it’s just a tad creamier than I thought. Help!
  • senab
    2 years ago

    Wow the white trim looks so much better, just choose a light grey wall cover, replace shower curtain same vein and add some rugs. UPDATE

  • PRO
    Beth H. :
    2 years ago
    last modified: 2 years ago

    paint the baseboard bright white. you can get the tub reglazed to brighter white if you want.

    I'd paint the walls a different color. What you currently have now is rather blah. What might look cool is doing the walls in a nice white and the ceiling in a satin medium blue. (they're high enough so that it won't look to enclosed).





    For your floor stencil, you could do white w/something like Indigo and Denim,

    (this just shows the stencil process over tile)


    or, try a lighter shade of blue like this tile (but using the stencil). this would look great w/the vanity and the marble top.


    this is a stencil with primer and porch paint


    and if you look on Etsy, you'll find decal vinyl stickers that go right over those ceramic tiles






  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Thanks for the recent suggestions, ladies! I’ve been hard at work in these bathrooms and have some made some awesome changes with just paint, new sconces and hardware. Here is the first one.... this is shared by my two sons who are 10 and 7 so it never is actually this clean... hah!

    We got the countertops put in and then I took these... so this is BEFORE....
  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    And here is AFTER....

    I opted to keep the same floors for now, but I did refresh the grout with a soft gray and got a couple new bright white rugs to help camouflage. I did white around the mirror and the upper cabinet, and a charcoal for the lower.

    I love how this turned out! (Also i realize the hardware is a little crooked but it’s not drilled in yet!). Just iPhone pics...
  • Laura Mac
    2 years ago

    Ended up looking great Julie!!!

  • senab
    2 years ago

    Great blend of cool and warm palette. It looks very nice.

  • julie S
    Original Author
    2 years ago
    Not decorated yet and missing a piece of furniture for the room, but here is my upstairs guest bath before.... cultured marble counters, builder beige tiles, beige cabinets, beige trim... yeah lots of BEIGE.... (barfy beige if you ask me)....