Revealed: The new bathroom

It’s been a couple of months since we nervously chipped the first granny tile off the bathroom wall, and – after a lot of grouting, a leaky toilet and two attempts at choosing flooring – we can now declare this new, fresh bathroom officially open. What we had was perfectly fine, but tired and old fashioned. Here’s a reminder:



And here’s what we have now:



Paul and his dad deserve a special mention here, for tiling, grouting and laying the floor, and generally saving us loads on the cost of professional fitters.We also got the trendy metro tiles really cheap, having seen exactly the same design for much more in shops like Topps Tiles. We haven’t had any issues with the quality and they look great.

We also removed and scrubbed the taps as they were clogged with limescale, so bath time is officially back on, and added some aqua accessories to lift the blue.

Tiles: Metro white wall tiles (16p/tile) from Stone Trader
Grout: Silver grey ready mixed grout (£7.69/1.5kg) from Topps Tiles
Vinyl flooring: Carpetright (£13.49/m2) from Carpetright
Paint: Maritime Hush by Valspar
Towels: From a selection at Home Sense
Handwash and toothbrush pots: Asda
Artificial plant: Asda
Candles: From a selection at Home Sense


We need to talk about the bathroom

Hello, and welcome to our bathroom…


Instead of giving each other big Christmas presents this year, we agreed to put most of our budgets towards the next house project – our upstairs bathroom, which has been lying dormant with its gammy hot water tap (no lounging around in the bath for me), perfectly nice but old fashioned tiles and peeling bath panel since we moved in.

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To keep costs down – around £350 if we do the work ourselves – we’re keeping the original fixtures but replacing everything else. Here’s what’s left to do:

  • Hope that gammy tap is caused by nothing more than a dodgy washer and replace all taps with fresh chrome ones
  • Replace tiles with white brick tiles. We had LOVED crackle glaze putty coloured tiles but quickly learnt that when it comes to tiles, white is always cheaper. Putty has been earmarked for “the next house” 😉
  • Replace shimmery lino with simple rustic wood effect vinyl
  • Buy and fit replacement bath panel, which doesn’t seem to cost a great deal but who the hell knows how you fit this kind of thing?!
  • Give all fixtures a damn good scrub and polish
  • The fun bit – buy new towels, shelves, accessories and artwork. I’m painfully aware that 90% of our house is grey and that our ‘Maritime hush’ choice is not far from it, so am deliberately pushing our colour boundaries with a peacock feather theme. Think teal, blue, navy and golds…

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Lovely items from:
Zigzag bath mat, M&S; Blue candlestick holder, Maisons du Monde; Peacock print inspiration, Papier; Blue agate bookend, TK Maxx; Green glass vase, H&M; Print towels, Asda; Peacock feather artwork,; Vinyl flooring, Carpetright; Paint – Maritime Hush by Valspar.

Feeling blue in the bedroom

Anyone who grew up in a house with super patterned carpets, endless wallpaper, sofas with fringing around the bottom, or all of the above may have grown up to be (understandably) a minimalist.

Once you’ve stripped rooms and rooms of thick floral wallpaper or seen the difference a one-colour carpet can make on the feel of a room, you get quite keen on beige.

But there are only so many duvet covers and rugs that can lift a neutral room scheme. Once you’vepaint done a few, they can feel pretty samey. So when it came to decorating our main bedroom, which had clearly been given some beige treatment of its own before being put up for sale, we took a brave step in a completely different direction – waterloo blue.

The colour, once on, is pretty dark, so my immediate instinct was to accessorise with crisp white bed linen and do what we are often told – to KEEP IT LIGHT.

But it’s a big room so it’s already quite light, and our white furniture is doing a great job. So the challenge – now the paint is on – is to embrace the blue and enjoy something more dark and mysterious.

Here’s the inspiration, which shows how you can make a bold colour just as bright and lovely as something neutral, and the kind of accessories which will add detail without making it a car crash of colours:


This colour scheme (below) is probably closest to the direction we’re going in, mixing the blue with dark grey bed linen, prints, texture and the occasional hit of copper:


And here (below) is where we are so far:

blue room

Below is the plan when the budget allows! We are definitely lacking in the detail – a print rug, curtains and more artwork are definitely on the shopping list. I’ve also developed a bit of a thing for William Morris prints, particularly Strawberry Thief. While taking care not to go too far with it, I’d like to frame a couple of small pieces to add some interest (and make myself look cultured…)

blue room finito

PS On the blue room front, people who sleep in blue bedrooms are also thought to sleep better – just one to bear in mind if you’re decorating!

Lovely items from:
Artwork, HomeSense; Mirror, Dunelm; Terranium and fake foliage, Dunelm; Jardin Botanique print,; Rattan lampshade, Wayfair; Clock, Karlsson; Grey heart cushion, Dunelm; Head board, John Lewis; Slate plain dye bedding, Dunelm; Bedside table, Ikea; Duck egg cushion, Dunelm; Rattan drawer unit, The Range; Rug, Ikea.