one room challenge week 1 | amy’s bathroom remodel mood board

by amy |

UPDATE! We have decided to be a guest participant in this spring’s One Room Challenge! If you are unfamiliar with the One Room Challenge, you can head over to their website and read more about it, but basically we have 6 weeks to redo our bathroom. I’m super nervous but also really excited. For Week 1, you can read all about my inspiration and mood board below! Make sure you check back every Thursday as we will be posting updates about the progress to this space.

You can also head over to the One Room Challenge Blog to see what all of the other participants are doing!

When Casey and I were looking to buy a house, we wanted to find something that was mostly move in ready; we didn’t want a complete fixer-upper. We knew our first house wasn’t going to be our “forever home”, so we didn’t want to take on a huge project but were definitely willing to take on a few.

Since buying our house in August 2017, we have added a fence and deck, painted our little shed and some rooms in our house, installed some new technology (Nest thermostat and doorbell) and cleaned up the yard/landscaping (mainly my husband, I can’t really take credit for yard work). Our next big project will be a complete bathroom remodel.

Neither of our bathrooms are big by any means, but we are lucky to have two full bathrooms so Casey and I both have our own spaces. While both of our bathrooms could use a face lift, his is connected to our bedroom and rarely is seen by guests. Mine is in the hallway across from our guest room, which made it easy to convince him that mine needed a remodel first. Below are some pictures of what the bathroom looked liked before we moved in. I haven’t done much since then except paint the cabinets white, replace the hardware, and add some selves above the toilet. I knew this was going to be a room we remodeled in the future so I didn’t want to put a lot of time or money into it.

Honestly there isn’t one thing about my current bathroom that I want to keep or try to salvage. It’s outdated and has cheap materials that are hard to keep clean, so we are gutting it and completely redoing the space. It’s daunting to take on a project like this, but luckily we have some family that can help us along the way!

I am a planner, so before we start demo I need to make sure I have an idea of what I want the space to look like. That way, I can price out the items and materials I want to use to make sure we are staying within our budget. We don’t want to buy completely high end materials since again, we don’t plan on living in this house forever, but we want to make it a nice space for us to enjoy while we are here as well as for the future owners.

My first step was to jump on Pinterest to gather some pictures for inspiration. You can check out our Pinterest bathroom inspo board here. I already knew I wanted a black and white theme so I was able to narrow down my search.

Next step was to plan out a mood board. For me, this is such a helpful way to visualize the ideas I have in my head, especially since they don’t always come together the way I imagine. I am able to play around with different patterns, designs and colors, seeing what works and what doesn’t. For this project, I started by gathering images of individual pieces that I liked and began laying them out together. I also made sure to make a note of their prices so I can calculate cost once we measure everything.

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I love a classic subway tile and have been wanting this in our bathroom since day one. We are planning on replacing the current fiberglass shower walls with subway tile. I haven’t decided yet if I want to continue this tile throughout the bathroom the on the bottom half of the walls or just paint them.

As far as the bathtub and toilet go, we aren’t getting anything fancy but we do want to replace what we currently have. The toilet that we have right now is off white, and both are in pretty bad condition.

I want to bring in some brass elements to break up the black and white and thought the perfect way to do this would be with a vanity light. I really like the brass and black one, but I am not sure having only two lights would be enough. I do like how it would tie in with the black hardware, though. UGH, DECISION MAKING IS HARD.

Speaking of black hardware, this is one aspect in which I am willing to spend some extra money. This look is v on trend right now and I LOVE the way it contrasts with a white sink and the white subway tile.

If I do end up going with a brass vanity light, I feel like I would need another brass element to tie it all together. I’m thinking a mirror similar to the one pictured. We actually already own this mirror from Target, so I could move it from the dining room and replace it with something else if need be. Again, decisions are hard.


For the vanity, I love the idea of using a mid-century dresser, but the thought of scouring craigslist to find the perfect piece at the right price and then customizing it to fit a sink makes me a little nauseous. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good thrift find but I just don’t always have the patience. As a backup, I found an IKEA vanity that, with some brass hardware, I think would work pretty well!

Last but not least, the floors. I really wanted to do a fun patterned cement tile, but since we will likely be selling our house in a few years I decided to tone it down a little. While the cement tile patterns are beautiful, there are some cons. They tend to cost more per square foot, which for a smaller space might not make a huge difference but could end up costing you A LOT more for a larger bathroom. Cement tiles are often thicker than most flooring, therefore we would need to also install a transition from the hallway since the bathroom floor would be higher. It also tends to be more difficult to install and can stain very easily. For all of these reasons, I decided to stick to a classic porcelain tile. The retro octagon tile still adds a fun pattern, while being more low maintenance than the cement tile.

Our next step is to measure, calculate prices for everything, and make adjustments if/where needed. I will be posting updates as we go, so stay tuned!

tl;dr: Remodeling my bathroom. Inspiration is pictured above.

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