Bringing Back the Bath

Our basement bath has been long neglected. Other fish to fry, my friends. After we slapped some paint down in there and put in a few new tiles, we figured, good enough for now and moved on over to the next thing. #Storyofmylife

But every time I took a shower down there and glanced on up above the toilet, I had a shiver run down my spine cause it was uuugggllllyyyyy. Don’t believe me, here you go.

Art in Bathroom

I don’t know why, but when I was at HomeGoods one day I stumbled across this gold razzle mcdazzle frame and thought (thought) it would look super swag in our downstairs bath. Ummmrrr yeah. But once I got it down there, I was like, yeah WRONG. You win some, you lose some.

See, when I started putting together design boards for one of my lovely clients, I got to thinking that I really, really liked some of the art I had picked out for her living room. So much so, that I decided to bite the bullet and buy those amazing little prints for my own abode! 😀 Dangerous career path I’ve got, ey?

Remember this mood board?

Lemon Grove Interiors

Well those purty little constellation prints, they made their way right on into my heart, and subsequently, right into my bathroom 😀 Cause once something enters my heart … I just can’t shut that door as hard as I try 😉

So I contacted the shop owner and ordered a few 8×10 prints stat! And let me tell you – I’m so, so glad I did. EEEMMMERRRGAUUUDD. Gorgeousness.

DIY Constellation Art

Check out this close ups, so fa-reaking beautiful.

Constellation Print

I was all ready to hang them to replace my bad decision making (aka Mr. GOLD) but first, I had some problem solving to do in the frame department. See I had intended to use some IKEA frames I’d purchased earlier this year. These guys, to be exact.

IKEA Stromby Frame

But when I trounced down to the basement to retrieve these bad boys, I was pretty darn bummed to see that they didn’t fit. At all.

Whomp diggity whomp.

Etsy Constellation Art

Now I could just pop a matted border in there to solve my dilemma, but the mattes that I had laying around the house didn’t fit, and I also wasn’t crazy sauce about the color of the frame. So, I did what any sane person would do. I went go HomeGoods and found these beauties.

Reclaimed Wood Frames

And just look how much better the bathroom looks now. I’m smitten.

Artwork Above Toilet

Added bonus – when I ordered my new fa-vo-rite prints, guess what I got in the package as a little “thank you”? This guy! The cutest little 5×7 you ever did see.

Inexpensive Constellation Art

I don’t have a spot for it quite yet, but I did have a pretty nice frame that I decided to pop it into in the interim. MEEOOOOWWW. Now that’s some fine looking star charting if you ask me.

Recycled Wood Frame

Psst!! If you’re looking to order these lovely lookers, you can get them here!

Kiwanis Collection

Yep, you heard it here first, folks. Genuine vintage prints, only $1 bill. Holllaaaa. I had it in my head that I wanted to hit up Kiwanis this weekend to get some new art, and MAN did I hit the treasure trove.

Like this little guy, popped it up in the downstairs bath. Guess how much it set me back. If you guessed one green back, you’re the grand prize winner. Yes sirree, that’s some cheap art. Sure it’s small, but it’s just so stinkin’ perfect for our downstairs bath. I’m rather smitten.

Small Antique Frame

We also found some big old prints at Kiwanis that were also – wait. for. it. – a buck!! None of the art was priced so I pretty much couldn’t contain my excitement when the sweet old lady at the art counter kept telling me all my treasured finds were $1 each.

Granted the prints had seen a bit more wear in their day, but I’m just going with the theory that it makes them look more genuine. 😉 And, the larger ones didn’t come with frames. Being highly motivated to see our new lovely prints popped up on the wall, we took an afternoon jaunt to Michael’s, where we snagged these frames (which are HUGE) for $26 each. Being used to IKEA frame prices, this was actually a wee bit of a splurge for us, but with the art only being a buck, I figured it evened itself out.

Frames from Michaels

Much to our surprise, since I thoroughly measured the prints before we went out shopping, we actually had to trim the art down a bit before it would fit in the frame. We could have used custom framing for the prints, thus avoiding the use of scissors on our freshly minted, beautiful little art friends, but let’s be honest, that’s pricey, and I’m cheap.

So we very carefully set to trim the sides of the art to get the right dimensions. Malcolm offered a paw. 😉 Five seconds flat that little orange boy was laying on the mat and “helping”. His favorite thing to do 😉

How to install art

Malcolm continued to offer a helping hand as we put the wire on the back of the frame, in order to hang the print up. Being the greenies we were to home improvement, we never put a wire on the back of our art, and over time, we started to notice that our heavier frames would buckle at the top from the weight pulling down on the frame. Since we had the wire just laying around, we figured it was best to do things the real deal, legit way and avoid ruining our new expensive frame.

How to Hang Large Art

Here is the first print above the bed in the guest room. It’s not perfect, since technically the print could use a larger frame that would allow a mat the entire way around, but ya know what, it’s good enough for now. We can always get a larger frame down the line and add matting. The frame actually matches the bed frame perfectly. Win.

Vintage Mountain Landscape

Here is a close up. It doesn’t fit perfectly, but I’m calling it good enough for now 🙂 Not bad for a buck!

Antique Art Print

My last one dollar find at Kiwanis was this guy, that I decided to put above the dresser in our living room. It’s in the same frame as the one in the guest room (they were buy one, get one free! :)), but I think the rooms are far apart enough that it isn’t too distracting. It’s not like we are the Louvre here people. 😉 We initially had intended to pop this guy up above the couch, but it just looked too small there. On to plan b.

Vintage Art Print

My final find at Kiwanis this weekend, was this awesome dude. Still trying to find a name. Thinking Geoffrey, or George. he he. One of my friends mentioned that he’s kinda scoping out anyone that comes in the door and protecting us – see how he’s looking right at the door! 🙂 He was a SPLURGE at $6. Overall, (4) pieces of art for $10. That’s my kind of shopping.

Antique Painted Portrait


Fancy Flusher

The downstairs bathroom has been looking pretty swankified since we wrapped up on our reno a few months back, but alas, different projects started calling our name and left a few essentials untouched. Like the mirror for instance. Yes, our bathroom sat like this, sans mirror for 3-months. Sometimes, ya just lose your mojo.

Marble Tile Bathroom

The other thing that was kind of driving me bonkers was the curly cue toilet handle we had on the loo. Fancy shmancy, but not our taste, per say. Here it is stinking out like a (gold) thumb on the side of our ceramic white bowl. Time for the heeve ho.

Hex Marble Floor Tile

Since we had 5% cash back on our credit card at Lowes when we purchased our kitchen cabinets, I was pleasantly surprised to see some extra dolla billz in our rewards account this month. We like to use the rewards balance to get gift cards for things we know we will already be needing/wanting around this joint, so I decided to cash in $25 for a Lowes gift card. You better bet we’ll have that one spent before someone can say Davey Crocket. Did you just say it – cause we’ve already spent it. Word.

Turns out, in addition to being totally not our taste, the handle was also rusted and corroded on the inside of the tank, so we’ll just say this was a “necessary” home improvement vs. aesthetic. 😉

How to Install Toilet Handle

We were headed to bed last week, and since I thought this little house “to-do” would take 5 minutes or less, I asked the hubster if he wouldn’t mind just popping on the new handle. Since it would only take 5 minutes … Because it was super corroded on the inside though, this little task landed up taking a wee bit longer. 😉 Can you see the green spots of corrosion on the handle inside the tank? Unfortunately, all the wear and tear meant that instead of just using a wrench to loosen the handle connection, we had to basically break off the metal handle from the fixture attached inside the tank. Although we always try to give our house parts a second life by selling them on craigslist, or repurposing them, this little man was on his way to toilet handle heaven. RIP.

How to remove toilet handle

About 20 minutes of working on the handle later (really there wasn’t anything highly technical about how we removed the handle, so I omitted those “steps”, since it was really just working, and working, and working at it with the wrench… :)) we were ready to install the new guy, which was as simple as reattaching the handle to the “float” (which is what bobs up and down in the tank), and then fastening the nut on the inside to the tank with a wrench.

Installing new toilet handle

Voila!! Looking much better, no? That’s a fancy flusher for ya.

Moen Brushed Nickel Toilet Handle

The next night, we decided to move on to installing the new mirror. Now, I’d been searching for a while for a mirror, and in complete honesty, I really didn’t find anything that was calling my name. Since nothing was jumping out at me, and we really needed to solve our mirrorless b-room dilemma, I decided to go plain jane (for now) and just get a beveled one that will do it’s jobs without any of the frills. Basically, what a mirror should do.

Plus, when we were out and about, I spotted this mirror, for only $14.98. Score. My general thoughts are that if something else comes down in the line in a few months or a year, I won’t feel too bad about replacing a fifteen dollar mirror. Plus, for now I’m actually digging the clean lines that it adds to the space. Not crazy town about the little pegs that hold the mirror up on the sides, but for the price, I can’t complain.

Traditional Marble Bathroom

Now I’m thinking the final details for this space are some art work above the toilet, and perhaps a wee little basket for some hand towels as well.

Artwork Above Toilet