"Getting rid of everything that doesn’t matter allows you to remember who you are. Simplicity doesn’t change who you are, it brings you back to who you are."

Monday, May 21, 2012

Decisions, Decisions...

I have to admit it.  I hate shopping. 

SM is a much better shopper than I am.  Every once in a great while though, I can be coerced to go out into the great big world so I can help SM make decisions on what to do about our own feathered little nest.

Yes.  It's time to remodel.  Past time in fact.

The house we live in is 20 years old.  Still a youngster compared to most.  But old enough to look a little worn and frayed around the edges.  She's definitely seen better days.

Everything is a priority though.  Look here, look there...Stuff is falling apart everywhere you look.  It's hard to concentrate on just what should happen first. 

And while it is tempting to hire someone to just come in and fix it all by tossing a bunch of money at them, SM and I just can't do it.  We don't mind being do-it-yourselvers.  This isn't Buckingham Palace after all.  And while I don't consider myself cheap, I am practical above all else.

So what's first in that long list of must be done-s around here? Everything seems important.  But we've decided to start with the Master Bathroom.  It's in the worst shape. 

The molded acrylic counter tops and sinks are yellowed and stained.  The faucets are gold (yuck) and are all chipped up.  The shower stall insert has wall partitions that are falling apart.  The window is splitting.  The vinyl flooring is also yellowing.

This is not a custom home with granite and tile.  This home was put together like many of it's generation with contractor grade features that have served it well but were never meant to last forever.  Everything is disposable isn't it? 

So SM and I have gone back and forth and forth and back over just how much we want to spend on this project.  Should we redesign?  Stone or Formica tops?  Vinyl or tile floors.  Another shower insert or tile it? 

The one thing we both decided to get rid of was the bathtub.  This fiberglass tub has never, ever been used.  What's the point?  It would take an hour to fill it up the thing's so huge.  A waste of space to be sure.  We're thinking we'd like to add an amoire here to house towels and supplies.

The other thing we both knew is that we weren't going to buy a new cabinet.  Have you priced those suckers lately?  Our old fiberboard cabinet will be painted and new door/drawer fronts made that will also painted to freshen it all up.  That by itself will save a bunch of money.

Speaking of money...When did everything get so expensive?

SM was pretty sure he wanted a solid surface counter.  That means acrylic mold (had that already), granite, marble, quartz or glass.  It's shocking how much they want for this stuff.  Our counter measure 88'' long.  Try finding a remnant that long.  The cheapest place we found wanted $1200 for it.  Hook, line and sinks.

I admit I was tempted.  SM really wanted this stuff but it bothered me that I'd have to "seal" it and use special cleaners on it.  I want no brainer stuff. Stuff I can't kill.  And I want it cheap.

Enter Formica 180 FX.

We were this close to putting money down on the granite.  We were wandering Lowes Home Improvement last month trying to get ideas on wall tile for the shower area when we came across this product that Lowes had started displaying 2 weeks earlier.

I was smitten.  Half the price with the indestructible promise that I have known and loved my whole life.  Laminate or Formica...Heck, lets call it what it is...Plastic!...has been around me my entire life.  Easy to care for, durable.  Whats not to love.


So that's what we did.  Shopped for 3 hours and came up with 2 basic choices to work around.  Pardon the pictures, they're not the best.

Choice # 1 is the Travertine Silver countertops with bisque subway tiles and a complementing mosaic glass pattern that we can cut up for accent pieces.  The cabinet would be painted a deep brownish grey.

Or choice #2 Bianca Luna with white subway tiles plus black and white mosaics for accents.  The cabinet would be painted black.

Drum roll please...

Choice #1  Travertine Silver!  The color mosaic accents are what swayed us.  We could paint the walls anything from aqua to light blue to gray to beige.  We also have oak trim and doors throughout the house, even in the bathroom.  The beige in the tiles and countertop will help pull those in. 

Even though I loved the marble look of the Bianca Luna countertop, the black and white combination is just too contemporary for us.  Too fancy.  And it made the oak trim and doors look out of place.

We also shopped for sinks and faucets and lighting while we were there. 

I asked the lady if very many people came in with cameras to photograph ideas.  Nope.

Lowe's is having an 18 Month No Interest Sale next weekend.  We try to take advantge of those sales whenever they happen. 

So hopefully, we'll be able to get this ball rolling soon.

And then you get to hear me whining about the bathroom reno...


  1. Ah, what fun. Glad it's at YOUR house and not mine. What a mess-but it will look great. Nothing like "freshening up" the house to make it feel special again. Best of luck--can't wait to see pics!

  2. Ah, yes, remodeling. (Sigh.) If we hadn't been neck deep into ours for so long I could maybe get excited for yours. But don't listen to me being a wet blanket. As Sue says, remodeling does indeed make the house feel happy, new and chirky. (Very soon I'm gonna need something to make me feel happy, new and chirky! I have a feeling being finished will do it.) I, too, will be eager to see all your pictures. They're great to look back on and see how far you've come.

  3. We redid our master bath and it really did make me fall in love with it again. I know yours is going to turn out great! We took pictures at Home Depot, too, lol.

  4. Looks like it will turn out very nice. Best part is you are doing it yourselves. Keep telling yourself how much you will love it when it's done. When you get tired of your bathroom being tore up. It will be so worth it.

    @ 3Beeze Homestead

  5. And the adventure begins...It'll all be worth it, I promise!

    Have y'all looked into any Habitat ReStores for materials? I think there's one in Charlotte.