the beige blues

The Lion, the Witch and the Washroom - Final Reveal

Ta Dah! I present to you one very bonkers DIY bathroom which is my first bathroom design and my maiden One Room Challenge voyage.

If you’ve followed this eight-part mini-series from the beginning, you may remember the ladies powder room at Annabel’s London inspired this space.


Deviations commenced almost immediately upon execution.

To the point, the only things this bathroom has in common with Annabels are (1) MAXIMALIST TO THE EXTREME and (2) there’s swan faucet on the sink. Oh and we have some pink. That’s pretty much it.

But without further ado, I shall take you through a photo tour of the new baño in our 1902 Queen Anne which, btw, still is not COMPLETELY finished although truth told NOTHING in our house will ever be completely finished as long as I’m above ground and available to drag things out.

(This is how the bathroom looked shortly before we demolished it . . .)

(. . . and this is what the bathroom looked like after demo. Someone along the way tore out the original hardwood floors and portions of the subfloor before laying down sheets of plywood and vinyl. Because the subfloor was wrecked, we had to rebuild it. We then installed hickory, which is a hardwood commonly used in homes within our historic district.)

The vantage point for before and after photos is standing in the upper stair hall. The bathroom is DIY with some exception, including the fabulous koi fish floor mural by Nashville-based artist Shannon Nelson. We also had someone else drywall the space and do some rough-in work, both of which Mike can do but neither of which he had time to do. As for the color, originally I wanted the bathroom to be fuchsia with a metallic red and gold cabinet, but then things evolved, as they always do, and I let the color choices unfold as we built out the space.

The cabinet surrounding the tub/shower was inspired by a combination of the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and a Victorian cabinet I saw on Pinterest. Because the space is long and relatively narrow, I felt a traditional sink vanity off to the right would feel imbalanced, even with the window as a visual offset. Plus, a traditional design would waste a significant amount of space and just plain look bulky and awkward. Yet, we needed a moderate amount of storage so a pedestal sink with no cabinet was not a viable option. So, necessity met fantasy in this design and we built the tub/shower behind the cabinet, thus opening up the space and creating a visually pleasing and balanced design.

Mike built this cabinet or “armoire with passage” much in the same way he did our kitchen pantry and hutch – by framing around garden-variety ready-to-assemble cabinets and then gooping it all up with moulding and architectural detail. The crown was a leftover from our kitchen renovation. The rest of the architectural detail is from Pearlworks and the furniture feet are from Osborne (all of which we sourced via Architectural Depot). The whimsical cabinet hardware and outlet covers within the cubbies are from Susan Goldstick. The gorgeous red and gold are Modern Masters Ruby and my own mix of various Modern Masters gold paints (the gold on the smaller details is Liquid Leaf). The coral is a pearlized paint I mixed myself using Modern Masters Flash Copper with a tiny amount of the ruby, golds and a Behr paint called Love Bird. The navy metallic at the tub base is Modern Masters Sapphire.

The tub/shower, as you can see, is walled in behind the cabinet and accessed through an arched opening. The blackish-colored tile (which is not yet grouted because we went to the lake instead) is from Tile Bar and is called Diesel Camp Black Glaze (by Architectural Ceramics). The AMAZING Alphonso Mucha reproduction tile mural framed by the arch is a piece we bought via Houzz from a Minnesota company called Picture-Tiles. We didn’t initially plan on a tile mural, but we were struggling to find a tile product that would look interesting behind the arch and not cost an arm and a leg. We therefore splurged on the mural and used a more affordable product for the rest of the tub/shower interior. The faucet assembly is from Signature Hardware.

We designed the cabinet to include counter space for my usual collection of bathroom debris, fancy lamps and to provide the occasional landing spot for hairdryers and handbags.

We also included side pull-outs behind faux columns for storing smaller items such as prescriptions, sun lotion and lots of clearance face product from TJ Maxx.

The spectacular tin ceiling and crown is from American Tin Ceilings in Pattern 29 with the Artisan Oil Rubbed Gold finish. This is our fifth American Tin Ceiling and we love them. The chandelier is by Cyan Design and appropriately called “Cindy Lou Who.”

The wall effects were a product of many happy accidents, starting with two coats of a fuchsia by Behr called Glamorous. Mike wasn’t thrilled with the color, so I rag rubbed Modern Master’s Ruby all over which gave the walls a gorgeous crushed velvet appearance. I couldn’t leave well enough alone, however, and therefore stenciled fish scales (by Royal Stencils) using many layers of metallic and flash paints and which turned out very badly because I didn’t line up the stencils right. So I covered areas with crooked and overlapping scales with gold foil/imitation gold leaf. I then layered more metallic and pearlized paints over the gold foil and gold foil over that. The overall visual effect, which I assure you I didn’t plan, is that of a geode.

The sconces are vintage and we found them on eBay. The decorative candle covers are by Kaarskoker and we bought these from The beaded diffusers are from an Etsy shop called LumiereSF.

The high tank toilet is from The Renovator’s Supply. The crazy fun toilet seat is hand painted and was given to me by the zany and sensationally talented artist, Diane Woodward.

The zebra sink was a spurge. It's a basic Toto pedestal with a decorative finish and kiln fired by The swan faucet is by Rozin and purchased on Amazon. The Venetian mirror is a consignment shop find which I’ve had for many years and have hung in two homes before this.

That’s all for now folks. We’ve got some finishing touches to add here, including the door which is not yet done, possibly a backsplash for the sink, some quarter rounds and of course the grout. Other than that and with the proviso nothing in this house is safe as long as I still have paint in the basement, IT’S A WRAP.

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