Monday, June 24, 2013

"Backdating" the master bath

Yes, I did mean backdating. Most people update their spaces, but I wanted a vintage look that might have been here in the original house...and I had to do it with a non-existent budget. 

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It's funny how one little thing can jumpstart a whole series of projects. 

For me the catalyst for change was tongue and groove boards from my grandparent's house. If you remember, I took a board as a sample to get paint mixed then found, at Walmart of all places, a swatch that was an exact match, "Grand Smoky Mountain" in the ColorPlace paint. I painted my living room french doors and windows with that and fell in love with it. 

Then the kitchen cabinets...

I really wanted to give the bathrooms more vintage flavor like the other rooms were getting, but I wasn't sure where to start. 

I finally just decided the cabinets had to be painted first as the starting point. I would love this wood if it were stained dark, but I did not want to strip off the factory finish to stain it, so I painted. First, I sanded just to rough up the finish.

I painted one coat of latex (satin) paint, then sanded the corners and "high" places with my electric sander after they were dry.

I only sanded the places where it looked like natural wear would happen...which is a very important detail to me. I then coated with dark Minwax finishing paste wax. They do not carry this anywhere here, so I had to order it online and I was really pleased with the finish. I have used stain before, and I liked this better, plus it was easier. 

The finish is exactly like the old boards, and that's what I authentic vintage look.

After the cabinets, I finally decided on pink walls. Really, I went through so many colors from blue to grey but decided pink was what I wanted. I used "Sandy Rose Marble" Color Place paint, again from Walmart, in the satin finish. It is a peachy color, which is closer to the vintage shades of pink I have found here from the old house. 

I actually had some help painting!!

...and they did a great job:-)

Then I had to get on with finding vintage accessories...

I wanted a vintage chrome towel holder, but could not find one at my parent's and realized they are kind of expensive to buy, so I came up with another idea. I have these squares that came out of the old house, so I added two plant hangers and came up with this. I love it. 

I "borrowed" some gorgeous vintage botanical prints and vintage towels from my mother, and added a fern to the corner of the tub. The iron piece holding the fern was one my grandmother always had outside with a plant inside the same black iron pot. I'm not sure exactly what it would have been originally, but it makes a great plant stand. 

These prints were passed down from a family member and they really are beautiful and framed so nicely. 

I found this sweet floral and made new curtain panels.

I went out on a limb and painted the two little mirrors pink and blue, which I ended up loving. The antique wool rug was brought from China by a relative who passed down the whole set to my parents. 

A tray my dad made holds some of my grandmother's prettiest accessories and perfume bottles. 

Lilies from my garden in a blue Mason jar I found in the old cellar here. 

...and I cannot forget my favorite locally made soap from Hazelwood Soap Company. We love their liquid and bar soaps. They are all natural, do not dry my hands and smell so great. 

So you can see the transformation from the beginning...

During... after. I could not make big changes since this was a low-budget makeover, but I achieved the vintage look I wanted and only spent money on paint. 

I promised my husband it would not be too pink for obvious reasons, and I really think it did not turn out too feminine. He likes it and I just love it. It really has the feel I wanted and I'm happy to have gotten that with very little money spent. 

Thanks for stopping by:-)


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  1. Oh Anita ... what a perfect backdate.
    I luv it. The soothing colours of the past with the weathered grey and the pale peachy pink with the little bits of blue. I would luv to visit your home sometime.. I can feel the warmth and hominess.
    Happy Monday.
    Hugs, Gee

  2. Your "new" bathroom is so charming and cozy, and it truly has a vintage feel! I am really impressed with the cabinets!! I need to look into the wax you used. I like to see others incorporate more of the bygone era into their homes like you do.

  3. I like it.."backdating" it could be a new trend! Great idea. I love the pink!

  4. I LOVE it, Anita!! My Granny had a pink bathroom and to this day I can smell her lotion every time I spy a pink walled bathroom. I love the curtains best. I adore vintage fabrics and these are so beautiful. Thanks for sharing your beautiful home with us.

  5. Beautiful. I love your corner tub and the color on the walls. You are so unbelievably creative, Anita. Your sweet daughter is a great painting assistant. xo

  6. Anita- I love it- it looks so much brighter and fresher with the lighter colors and accents. You did a wonderful job and I don't think it looks old-fashioned at all. I just think it looks beautiful! xo Diana

  7. Wow. I love it Anita! The look is so much better and really goes with your vintage theme in the house now. The dark framed flower prints are perfect. I love the colour you painted the cabinets! It all really is sweet. Pamela

  8. You did a wonderful job. I love the dusty mellow pink paint. That is what I grew up with in my grandmother's bathrooms, and homes. Thank you for sharing all the details.

  9. Oh I just love it Anita. I have been wanting to change our bathroom as well. Funny I have some crosses over our tub as well, that I love, but it needs a change. I simply love what you did!

  10. Your bathroom is very vintagey and pretty. You did a great job!

  11. Anita...It looks beautiful! Again, you did an amazing job on such a little budget. That's my kind of makeover! And you have to know that I am lovin' the pink walls. ;0)

  12. Anita, I love the new old look in your bathroom! It's just wonderful. I do love the pink walls!!! xo marlis

  13. SO beautiful! I absolutely love the color of the cabinets!
    Therena @

  14. This change is so refreshing and the floral fabric, just what gramma would have chosen, and love the mix of towels and the painted cupboards......nice job!!!

  15. love this sooooooo much! Om goodness my friend, well done. I love the idea of "back dating" great colors too. Thank you for sharing. I'm hopping over from the Scoop hop today xo

  16. Gorgeous!!!! Love .... love .... the cabinets!!!! It is perfectly "Vintage"... but not tooooo girly!!!! Congrats!!! Terri

  17. Oh I totally love it. How fabulous and it really does look vintage. Great job. Thanks tons for joining Inspire Me. Hugs, Marty

  18. I love the painted cabinets, you did a great job!

  19. Your bathroom layout looks so close to mine! You have to see it to believe it... lol. You can't see it but I have a similar sized window where yours is as well! Makes me want to paint mine now! <3 Brooke

  20. Love it! You want to come to Oregon and makeover my bathroom? Better yet - my whole house?

  21. Your bathroom turned out great Anita! Love the painted cabinets and the wall paint.

  22. You did a great job. Staying true to the vintage past on a dime.

  23. Oh my goodness! I really do love it. It has a warm, vintage, feel to it and is very much my taste. I'm pinning this so I can remember how you did the cabinets (which I am in huge favor of painting, btw.)

    And I would love to see the photo you mentioned on my blog.
    My email is

    Go ahead...make my day!

  24. Good job!
    The colors you have playing against one another are wonderful.
    Looks so different.

    You have transformed the room beautifully,

  25. This is very pretty! I would never have thought of mixing those colors together. They are beautiful together! It all looks so soft and soothing!

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  27. Just discovered your blog and have been looking through old posts. You are in my dream location--the Smokies--and the old house is such a dream. Anyhow, just wanted to let you know that I also have one of those iron things that you have your fern in, and it is some part of an old hot water heater. Enjoy your lovely home.