Monday, October 17, 2011

before & after: bathtastic! powder room renovation

Pow­der rooms are usu­ally the small­est rooms in any house. Given that, ren­o­vat­ing or sim­ply redec­o­rat­ing the pow­der room can often be accom­plished on a rea­son­able bud­get and deliver impact far beyond than the expense involved.

How many of you have this exact con­fig­u­ra­tion in one of your pow­der rooms?  The light and mir­ror — seri­ously, who made these choices?

powder room before

pow­der room before

Builders are often afraid to add any sort of per­son­al­ity lest they offend a poten­tial buyer. Home­own­ers are like­wise wary of changes that might impact the dreaded "resale value". This pow­der room puts me to sleep! At the min­i­mum, a home­owner could add some color on the walls with­out much expense, then switch back to beige before sell­ing. But they did not, and this is what my client had to see beyond.

Notice in this pic­ture, the mar­ble floor is actu­ally the most inter­est­ing fea­ture in the room. The "art" slays me. From look­ing at this house, you would not think a young fam­ily lived here.

powder room before

pow­der room before

The charge from my clients after pur­chas­ing the house was to cre­ate a mas­cu­line pow­der room suit­able for the tall hus­band. The mini toi­let and low pedestal sink were not get­ting it done.

First step, replace the toi­let with a stream­lined Toto ADA-compliant model. The higher seat height is per­fect for taller peo­ple and the water-saving flush options is great for the envi­ron­ment. Next, choose a wall-mounted faucet and counter-mounted sink. Design and install a new wall-mounted counter to suit the pri­mary user. This route allows the height of every­thing to be cus­tomized — no set­tling for the stan­dard height van­ity or pedestal lavatory.

We chose a Duravit sink in tra­di­tional white ceramic — it's the shape and instal­la­tion that cre­ate the inter­est. I love all wall-mounted faucets. The sim­plic­ity of the one selected for this pow­der room is per­fec­tion. We replaced the over-the-mirror granny lights with a pair of sleek sconces. The mir­ror itself, a custom-sized beveled sheet, is under­stated. The counter is mahogany, built by Steve's Fine Wood­work­ing and stained and sealed by Sabino's Paint­ing and Wall­pa­per. A wood coun­ter­top is per­haps unex­pected, but in a pow­der room, with the proper seal­ing, it works fantastically!

The pièce de résis­tance in this small space is the wall­pa­per. Hand-painted, it's from Vahal­lan Papers. Each sheet is cus­tom made to order and fea­tures lay­ers of color and tex­ture. Adding to the tex­tural effect is the "torn" instal­la­tion (also by Sabino) , where each sheet is torn into ran­dom sec­tions and applied. This par­tic­u­lar paper has a dark core, so vein­ing appears through­out the appli­ca­tion. 

The final touch is the over-scale ante­lope wall sculp­ture. Mas­cu­line, yes?

Here is the after:

powder room renovation after

pow­der room ren­o­va­tion — after photo credit: Michael Partenio

Sim­ple, clean lines with neu­tral col­ors and a vari­ety of tex­tural mate­ri­als = not bor­ing! This space now fits the home­owner to a T, and still wows guests with its rich min­i­mal­ism. What more can any­one ask from a tiny lit­tle pow­der room?

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  1. Darlene Graham says:

    Cindy, you are soooooo good at what you do. Some­day when my ship comes in, …

  2. Debbie says:

    What pat­tern was the paper? It turned out so lovely. Gotta luv Vahal­lan papers

  3. Cindy,
    I LOVE the coun­ter­top and sink idea!!! Excel­lent job!!!