Before and After: Saying Goodbye To a Faux Japanese Pink Carpeted Spa

Carpeting in a bathroom is always horrifying, but a carpeted tub surround and platform?!? That’s a new level of nightmare. Bri of the blog Collected spent a lot of time deciding what to do with this bathroom, but she knew one thing for sure: “I imagine back in its day, this Japanese spa vibe was extremely hip and luxurious. But the carpeted floors and faux Japanese screens (with fluorescent lights behind them, to make it appear like a window) had to go!” Let’s see what she did with the space…

Wow! This is a truly stunning makeover. Confused about how the before and after photos line up? Collected has the details on the reno:

We switched where the tub and shower were from the previous owners and moved the toilet to the far left corner.

Even knowing how the room was rearranged, it’s still a mindblowing renovation—it’s rare that a room is utterly unrecognizable! Bri removed the tub platform, as well as a wall dividing the space, then created a perfectly monochromatic base with black and white tiles, white tub, white walls, and marble shower, and finally added warmth and color via brass accessories, wool rug, wood stool and bath caddy, natural basket, and landscape photo. I especially admire the way the photograph pulled out the subtle blues in the marble while playing so well with the predominantly pink rug.

Another view of the “before” space

(Image credit: Collected)

While the “Japanese” aesthetic of the tub area is a bit unusual, this vanity aesthetic—taupe countertop, colonial drawers and cabinet doors, crystal faucet handles—has been seen countless times, including in my very own current bathroom. There’s nothing wrong with it, as all of the surfaces seem to be in great shape and the palette is definitely inoffensive, but it’s dated and easy to see why Bri wanted a change.

Will this beautifully clean black-and-white redo, highlighted by brass accessories, someday feel as dated as the taupe Colonial look above? Perhaps, but for now it is gorgeous. The clean lines of the cabinetry play nicely with the small hexagonal floor tiles, the matte black hardware is Batman-level cool, the smaller sinks maximize counter space, and the brass accents can be easily swapped out if styles change.

Such an inviting shower! The marble tiles are to-die-for, and the spaciousness is certainly a luxury. I did balk a bit at the size of the built-in cubby, as that would be too small for my products (shampoo, conditioner, body wash, body scrub, shaving cream, razor), let alone those of my partner, too. How do you do it, Bri? Respect.

It’s no fun to end a Before & After on a downer note, but in the interest of full disclosure, here’s what Bri regrets about the makeover:

Now as much as we love the look of this room, this is where we have the biggest regrets… In fact, we messed up big time on the shower…so much so that we will be slightly redoing it in the next month or two. Our problem is that in a normal house, you can do an open glass shower like we did because your ceiling is usually a foot or two above the glass, keeping the heat in. However what I didn’t account for was the fact that we have 20 ft. ceilings in there and so all the warm air is immediately sucked up, leaving you pretty cold. So we will be adding a second shower head… and adding hand held sprayers and possibly a few body sprayers. We will only have to tear out a channel of tile to add the plumbing and then repair that, so it won’t be TOO costly or time-consuming, but still a bummer for sure!

Thank you, Bri! Readers, see and read more about this project on Collected.

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