Yay, Jeff Comes Home Today!

So I can finally reveal the ultimate reason almost nothing has gotten done in past 10 days – Jeff’s been away on a business trip! (I was hesitant to broadcast over the world wide web that I was home alone or I would have mentioned it earlier.)

So now that we’ve set a date for our housewarming party of September 8th, we have exactly two weekends to get the house in shape. This may be a little ambitious because, as you may have already guessed , Jeff is by far the more industrious one. Given that he’s been in China for the last 11 days, he’ll be totally jet lagged at least until labor day weekend. He gets super duper grouchy when gets back from Asia to the point where I’ve told him he needs at least 5 days of quarantine before he’s fit for human companionship. So as you can tell, I have a FUN weekend ahead of me!

You already know about the plans for the half bath downstairs:

1) new mirror

2) new pedestal sink

3) new paint color with stencil decoration

4) new light fixture

#1 is on its way, I’m at a total loss as to #4, and as for #3, here is a bad photo of my second attempt at making a stencil:

Meh. Its ok.

As for #1, I was thinking perhaps this:

pedestal sink

Its only $88 from Lowes, can that be possible?? And has anyone installed a pedestal sink before? I’m not sure we’re going to be able to DIY this without flooding out the house or something.

That is our main project before the party, but not the only one…

The rest of the house isn’t “finished” yet but its not “embarrassing” with the huge exception of the state of the upstairs (and only) full bath – which I usually avoid posting about all together.

Well, I did post once before about it sort of in passing.. but I usually try to avoid thinking about it entirely. Now with the prospect of housewarming looming large, its time to at least make some cosmetic improvements. I mean we’d love to change the sink before the party (and just in general b/c the faucets leak!) but I’m afraid the tiles underneath would then need patching/replacing and that’s just to big a can of worms to open at this point. So, my plan is to strip the remaining wallpaper and paint the walls white. I thought about trying color here, but the tile is navy and white (not black and white like it looks in the pictures) and I’m hoping the white will give the illusion of more space.

Lest you think I’m making a big deal over nothing:

See that metal thingy sticking up out of the floor next to the shower? Its the bath tub drain!

bath drain

Bath tub drain.. it says “waste” on it! (This was very perplexing to the HGTV couple)

bathroom lighting fixture

Kiddie Sink!

Yes, shocking isn’t it? Now before you ask yourself why in god’s name we haven’t changed that sink yet, keep in mind that the width of the space there is 23″ or so. Trust me, there’s not a whole lot to choose from in that size.

The decorating scheme (if you can call it that) seems to have been white & navy blue with (rusted) bronze accents. The navy and white will stay for now, but I think it definitely needs chrome hardware including a new sliver-toned light fixture. The good news is that given the wiring of the current fixture I COULD have a chandelier in here. The bad news is I think the ceiling is much too low for it particularly for Jeff who is over 6′.

So, as you can see, we have our work cut out for us. Hopefully I’ll post back Monday with some actual progress. Have a wonderful weekend!

14 Responses to “Yay, Jeff Comes Home Today!”

  1. good luck with the jet lagged husband! but it seems like you have lots of things you can do by yourself while he charges up!!!! have a great weekend!

  2. Hope you enjoy his return and your DIY adventure!

  3. Sometimes it’s nice to see that someone else is dealing with a smaller “master” bath than I… We have a similar small vanity (19″ wide) but luckily the sink and commode share the same wall so I could hang a pretty cabinet next to the medicine cabinet (a la “making it lovely”) to have a place for all my stuff! (My hubby just gets a shelf in the medicine cabinet.) Where, oh where, do you put your getting-ready-for-the-day things?
    Okay, enough about me… I love the pedestal sink and if you’re looking for a faucet we love this one from lowe’s:
    You are right that shiny silver will make everything look better. So here is a nice ceiling light too:
    Also, if the shower doors bother you, you can hang a shower curtain rod above and in front of them, and then hang a simple white shower curtain there—it is surprising how clean it makes everything appear! I wonder if you could find a covered basket or something that would slip right over that funny pipe (if you snipped a hole in the bottom)and even leave some room for extra tp or cleaning supply storage…?

    As far as the stencil goes, have you tried the dry brush technique? You load a round stencil brush lightly with paint, off-load most of the paint onto paper towel, and “pounce” all over the stencil. It is supposed to keep the paint from bleeding under the stencil, if that is what is happening. It also gives it a faded quality that might be nice. I applaud your attempts at this project—but as others have already said, find it somewhat daunting! :)

    Good luck with everything and I hope Jeff recovers from his trip sooner rather than later. It’s weird how many people I know that have just returned from China!

  4. I like the white and navy floor tile, I would love to see the walls in a mid-toned blue to play up the navy. Also, the tub drain thing? Totally bizarro! But I think a pedestal sink would look really nice in there.

  5. It will be so nice to have your hubby back home, I hate it when mine is away. Looking forward to seeing more projects!

  6. You can totally install a pedestal sink – it isn’t any harder than installing a faucet. Depending on the age/condition of the water shut-offs under the sink you may want to consider replacing those while you’re at it. The sink part might be wall mounted depending on the model (and if it is will provide you with lots more stability and less danger of someone ripping it off the wall). It will probably take two people, even if one just does things like hold the sink in place and run up and down to turn off/on the water main. The tile is probably fine under the sink cabinet but the wall behind it might be questionable depending on what the original sink was.

  7. Slip one of these tall white tables over the top of that funky pipe and set some fluffy towels on top…
    or paint this one white & do the same:

    Looking forward to seeing it when it’s done—the space is quite a challenge but white and navy aren’t that bad. Maybe get a navy bath rug & just go with it. :)

  8. Ooh, I like Jane’s idea for the pipe.

    If you can get a table the same height as the tub you can use it for a box of bon-bons and glass of champagne if you ever choose to treat yourself to a bubble-bath.

  9. Pedestal sinks are not too hard to install. I’ve installed a couple of them at my place, and This Old House has some easy to follow instructions on their website (they’ve added a lot more pictures since I installed mine).

    As for that pipe sticking out, what the heck does it actually do? Is it the vent for the tub drain? Or is it physically tied to the tub drain? That’s so odd.

    Good luck

  10. Yep, Jane, ALL such good ideas! I love the west elm thingy. To answer your question about the getting ready stuff, That’s why I had to put a vanity in the guestroom!

    The only thing about covering up the “waste” pipe is that its actually the only way to drain the tub.. (that’s what it is). But neither of us are bath people so I guess its ok.

  11. It looks to me like the tub used to run under the window: and that drain pipe was for the original location of the tub. You may want to “switch it back” eventually: that will give you loads of space for a decent vanity. Right now, you’re probably bumping your elbows everytime you brush your teeth!

    I don’t really understand how it drains the tub now–all the way out there! I think it’ll be money well spent to consult with a good plumber.

    Oh–and installing a pedestal sink is easy peasy. Have fun and walk softly around that jet-setting dh of yours.

  12. Why don’t you use a wall vinyl ather than a stencil – much easier and quisker and there are loads of great ones about now.

  13. Whoa, I love your style!! I just stumbled onto your blog from Mabel’s House and I’m glad I found it. We like a lot of the same colours and decor pieces ( I, too, LOVE chandeliers). This site is too good not to share…would you mind if I added you to my favourites??

    Stop by and visit sometime,

  14. You may already know that following information, but thought I would offer, just in case:
    As an experienced stencil artist, I would ask if you are stenciling on flat or semi gloss paint. The application technique is different for both as the flat will grab and hold the color quickly and on semi gloss or satin, the paint will slide around. I recommend rolling small pieces of painter’s tape or masking tape (whichever you like to use) to give it two sticky sides… one side for wall, the other side for stencil, flattening the pieces, and placing them underneath the stencil in problematic places to give it better stability on the surface to be stenciled. Load your stencil brush by dipping it in the paint (for this one-color stencil use a larger bristled brush, preferably a boar bristle type, not one of the blond, smaller ones), then remove most of the paint by rubbing the brush in circular motions on a couple of folded paper towels . To help stabilize the stencil, hold your other hand against the stencil in places where it tends to “move” and apply paint in circular motion. For flat painted surfaces,rub it on with very little pressure to begin with, an then increase that pressure if you wish to have a darker effect.

    For satin or semi gloss, do the above loading and rubbing off on a paper towel, except leave a bit more paint on the brush and pounce it all over the stencil design. Latex and acrylic paints will “slide”, rather than be absorbed by the shinier wall paint, so do not go over the stencil more than once with the loaded brush or the paint will just be taken back up by the brush. If the color comes out too light, wait until it dries, then, reload brush and repeat application.

    Hope this is helpful. I enjoy your blog very much!


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