Before & After: A Family Home Gets Two New Bathrooms

Melanie’s rowhome had a surplus of bedrooms and a deficit of bathrooms so the math was easy to do. The actual renovation, however, was not so easy. After an extended timeline and a few plumbing snafus, they now have one newly remodeled bath and one entirely new one.

From Melanie: Our 100-year-old row house in the Petworth neighborhood of Washington, DC, had a generous four bedrooms on the second floor but just one tiny interior bathroom for two adults and two kids and no closet in the master bedroom. The existing bathroom was cramped and also tiled, on the floor and walls, in an unpleasant beige.

In addition to giving the old bathroom a gut-makeover, we decided to convert the former “nursery”, a wood veneer paneled room with drop ceilings (next to the master bedroom) to a master suite with a new bathroom and walk-in closet. As our kids (ages 2 and 5) grew, we knew we would need a larger or second bathroom upstairs to accommodate everyone.

From beginning to end the project took almost 12 weeks. An architect friend did the plan for the new bathroom and we hired another friend, a general contractor to do the demolition and help us hire subcontractors in electrical and plumbing. The plumbers had a difficult time reaching the main sewer line for the new toilet so a huge hole was cut into our dining room ceiling for about a month. That was the biggest setback. The biggest surprise was how long it actually took from start to finish.

I love the whimsy of the renovated kids bathroom – the white floors, white subway tile and stenciled wall feels clean and modern but fun enough for small kids. There’s not much I would have done differently in the kids bathroom except maybe choose a darker tile in anticipation of kids dirty bath times!

In the master bath, I love how calm and relaxing it is. I love that it only needed plants for decoration and that it feels our style without being over the top.

Melanie’s words of wisdom: No matter what anyone says to you, even if you think it will take longer than expected, multiply time and expenses by two to get a realistic vision of schedule and budget.

Resource list:

  • Kids bath:
  • Tratto Lines porcelain tile in White (floor), Stone Source
  • Standard subway tile with Delorean Gray grout (shower)
  • IKEA Hemnes vanity
  • Vanity knobs, Kohler Purist in brushed bronze
  • Kohler Purist faucet and showerhead/faucet in brushed bronze
  • Wall stencil from Royal Design Studio
  • Feature wall paint from Home Depot/Glidden in French Gray, Barely Blush and Lagoon Green
  • Master Bath:
  • Azulej Redna Nero porcelain floor tiles, Stone Source
  • 4×10″ Maiolica White tiles, shower
  • 48″ Kitchen Bath Collection Vanity, All Modern
  • Fixtures, Kohler Purist Collection in Brushed Bronze

Thank you, Melanie! You can see more on Melanie’s blog, Alley Squash.

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