Category Archives: Bathroom

Hope for the Future (of our master bathroom)

Well guys, instead of sitting around and repining the state of my world (and the world) again this weekend, I feel a coffee fueled master bathroom renovation is in order.  Here are some disgusting before images to fuel me towards greatness …

In the image above, you can see the bright white on the left from painting the master bedroom versus the fleshy beige and the side and back walls of the sink nook that we inherited from the former owner.  Be gone fleshy beige!!  And boob lights and ugly, too small bath bars that are unbalanced in the space.  Sigh.  My favorite part is the wonderful designer who transitioned the floor from tile to carpet at just the right place … to leave a little sliver of white wood base next to the tile base.  The devil is in the details.

See you on the other side! (Have a great weekend, call your legislators!)  Cheers – CT

All by herself . . .

Since moving down to Phoenix and “retiring” (the nice way of saying I’m still unemployed), I have a lot of by myself time while JT is at work.  I’ve filled a lot of it with dog walking, grocery shopping, cooking, baking and helping my MIL find a place to live (we did it, she moved in last night).

I’ve noticed thought that when I’m at home all day, I’ll think up projects and plan them for the weekend and/or evenings when JT is around.  Finally the other day I had a realization that I could do it myself.  And so I did.  (Probably also spurred on by the fact that I had just read “Miss Harper Can Do It” by Jane Berentson, another way to fill some time and keep that brain working.)

I’ve already mentioned that our new house feels mansion-like compared to the small footprint of our brick bungalow in St. Louis.  For instance we now have a Master Bath.  A bathroom that is the master of all others.  I have my own sink and my own little nook for make-up-ing and other things women in their 30s do in the bathroom.  I had been looking for some artwork or a storage piece for that wall when an idea suddenly flashed into my head – I had just what I needed in the garage.


So, voila – a once empty wall now displays all my junk jewelry with the help of an old curtain rod from our STL master bedroom (we took down these wimpier rods when we hung the new curtains.)

There’s no earth-shattering invention here – I’m pretty sure this method for hanging necklaces has already been done and pinned many-a-time to Pinterest.  I just got a kick out of using something I had and getting out the handheld drill for a girl power moment.


I hung all the necklaces without clasps on the end and kept all the other in the middle so I can unfasten them to take them off the rod if needed for actual wearing but I’m thinking if this method gets too tangled, I might grab some of the Grundtal hooks at Ikea and hang each necklace on its own hook.  Oh, the thrill of being able to “grab” something at Ikea without a five-hour drive is still novel to me!  Cheers – CT

Bathroom – “Phase I” and Long Overdue!

Thanks to the online diary that is this blog, I can see that I finished up “Phase I” (AKA Lipstick on the Pig) for the bathroom on September 1st.  So that means we have been without a mirror in our only bathroom since probably sometime in mid-June of 2012 . . .

It wasn’t the end of the world — there’s a full length mirror in the little hallway just outside the bathroom and we have a little Ikea double-sided vanity mirror that filled in for our missing bathroom mirror.  We adjusted.  But with a light fixture waiting patiently in a box in the basement and some pennies scratched together, it was time to get that sucker finished!

First we reminisce . . .


This enormous clunky medicine cabinet and beauty of a 5-light exposed bulb bath bar came with the house.  When we demoed out the medicine cabinet, it turned out there was a random square of bead board missing on that wall . . . so it had to be covered!  Mirror to the rescue.


(Apologies for the picture, I took about 500 but trying to get a light fixture while it’s on and on top of a mirror in the world’s smallest room was no easy feat.)  We still have some patching/painting/trim work/caulk to do in that corner but this large mirror (29″ x 48″ with a 4″ hole cut out) is such an improvement.

Here’s a better image of the light fixture since it didn’t photograph too well:

8902-snIt’s the Trinity bath light by Hudson Valley Lighting and poor JT really had to wrestle it into place.  We had a lot of install shenanigans for this thing including hacking an extension cord to extend the wires late on a Sunday night because the mirror was getting installed the next morning.

The bathroom now feels brighter, happier and so much larger.  The combination of the large mirror and dark wall & ceiling paint really have improved this room.


We have plenty of storage with the drawers and cabinet under the sink and the new acrylic shelves on the wall that taking out the medicine cabinet wasn’t a deal breaker.  Heck I’ve even been toying with the idea of a pedestal sink for Phase II but I’m pretty sure there’s no bead board behind that base cabinet either.

Doing a lot of this work ourselves has been such a learning experience.  It feels like everything that can go wrong usually will.  We had the glass company install the mirror because I didn’t have a good idea of how JT and I would even survive something like that.  We would be found three days later bleeding under mirror shards.  The nice thing is that by reading others blogs, I know we aren’t alone in the “old house renovating is a lot of work and unforseen conditions” pity party.  So we move on.  And enjoy the heck out of our newly refreshed bathroom and use it to wash away all that blood, sweat and tears!

So that’s the latest at Living Analog, what’s new in your world?


I think my expression says, “Um, how do I work this thing!”

Cheers – CT

It’s September. Bathroom reveal day has arrived.

First, cue the music.

03 The Day Is Coming

Okay.  Now let’s take a look back shall we?

I don’t have before before pictures of the bathroom’s state when we first bought the house but even our first stab at the bathroom was a little lackluster to say the least.

Kinda boring.

Not very functional.


Small we couldn’t change (well unless we blew out the wall and took over one of our two bedrooms but that hardly seems worth it.)  Instead we upped the ante on function and storage.

Here’s some “after” views from the hall.  Remember this is Phase One — Phase Two and Three will include a new floor, new toilet, vanity top, faucets and shower retiling.  Phase One was more the lipstick on the pig if you will.

The dark color on the walls and ceiling has made the space much more dramatic.   I also raised the shower curtain up to just below the soffit.  The curtain I snagged at Target for $10 and then added a dark, grounding band to the bottom.

Want some more?

The clunker shelf was removed and in its place we put in not one, not two but three acrylic shelves from The Container Store (aka organizational heaven).  They store so much but hardly take up any visual weight like the old clunker.  And while they look decorative and pretty, they also hold a lot of our daily use items like cotton balls, extra toilet paper and even the hairspray.  Don’t see hairspray?

It’s hiding in the vase I faux mercury-glassed at the last Stitch ‘N Bitch.  This was an item we had a hard time storing before the renovation.  We kept it in the giant medicine cabinet before but it just barely fit and sometimes if you pushed on the mirror or shut the cabinet door too hard, you would hear the hairspray hiss out and spray all over the cabinet.

Now for the one “wah wah” moment of this light renovation.

No mirror yet.  The new light fixture is still waiting patiently to go in.  However one good thing we did to increase the function of this bathroom was to add a hand towel ring (picked up for $7.99 on my last Ikea run) by the door.  Previously the hand towel hung from the bar under the clunker shelf.  When you washed your hands, you had to drip your way over the stainless steel trash can, and dry off next to the GFCI outlet.  Now you just turn towards the door, hands still dripping only on the sink top, dry off and you’re on your way.  Much better.

The one downside of giving myself a one month deadline on an unplanned project was I didn’t have the funds set aside to do everything right away (hence the delay on the mirror.)  We did a lot of “unseen” work — changing out all the wood trim, recaulking the bathtub, texturing the walls, changing out both light switches and the GFCI outlet for new white ones — the money kind of burned out fast.  JT and I have been trying to clear up some credit card debt and so I wasn’t willing to charge anything to get this one done.  The mirror should be in place soon though!

But on to more good stuff.  Really good stuff.  My favorite part.

Hello boys.

Of course Keith was the hardest to hang.  A few of these frames we already had on hand.  The rest I snagged for under $3 each (even the big on with Bowie in it — that one was actually $1.51) and then I hit them all with Krylon Satin Nickel spray paint.  One sheet of 32X40 mat board from Hobby Lobby and a bunch of images printed from the Internet on nice paper and a bathroom themed haircut/makeup/toothbrushing “art wall” it was.

What’s going on below the art wall?  Hooky goodness that’s what.  And Turkish towels.

(Don’t forget a new floor is coming.  Picture a 2″ hexagonal Carrera marble floor there.

So all in all, Phase One is wrapped up. For now.  Back to a long, lazy holiday weekend . . . I’ll be pondering the next project to tackle as we hide out from Isaac’s rain.  Cheers – CT

Do you realize . . .

We’re floating in space?

Yes, that’s my man Wayne Coyne in the giant ball at LouFest.  Yes I jumped up and down for two hours in the mud and took terrible iPhone pictures.  Yes it was amazing.   Yes I am still hobbling around two days later because my legs were not ready to be jumping up and down for two hours.  Yes it was worth it!!

Because half of you may be scratching your heads right now at my cryptic ramblings, please amuse your ears with this amazing song.  I hope it gets played at my funeral.

Do You Realize by The Flaming Lips

Meanwhile back at the ranch, Shenanigan helps me with a sewing project:

So helpful.  I needed a giant furry paperweight just then.

And, the music room gets taken over by thrift store picture frames, soon to make their way into the almost finished bathroom!  A lot has been happening in the littlest room of our house — new trim has been installed, caulked and painted.  Shelves are up.  Hooks are up.  Turkish towels are up.  And soon, I’ll put a blog post up!  Cheers – CT

Every plant needs a home

A while back, one of the Stitch N’ Bitch girls brought me a new plant.

So far, all the other plants have received masculine names but I think this one may be a girl.  I think.  So I’m thinking Joan, like Joan Jett due to the plant’s spiky hair.  Joan’s been living on the mantel for a while now in the paper wrapper and plastic pot she came in.  I decided it was time for something more permanent and wanted it to look nice but didn’t want to spend any money.

I had the following materials on hand that allowed me to make Ms. Joan a new home without spending any money: terracotta pot, white spray paint, hot glue and jute yarn/string (left over from the ZZ plant’s snuggie and Shenanigan’s doorbell). 

The rest, as they say, is history. 

Oh, and I also had a white saucer in the kitchen that wasn’t getting a whole lot of use, so that became the base.  Now Joan’s rocking out permanently on our mantel and she adds a whole bunch of spiky green goodness.

Mainly I’ve been working on the now top-secret bathroom.  It seems to keep jerking me around, first suggesting I do things one way, then the next day recommending something else.  My own indecision is about to make me crazy.  I went out last Saturday and braved the aisles of Target, Hobby Lobby and Hancock Fabrics trying to nail down some of these final details and may have come home even more confused. 

However I didn’t come home empty handed.  These things (above) may (or may not) be making their way into our soon-to-be brand new and improved bathroom!  Well actually we have already tried out the black and white striped Turkish towels and they are really great.  Nice and thin but absorbent and as an added plus – aesthetically pleasing.  Win, win and win.  The towels actually came all the way from Turkey via The Anatolian on Etsy.  Go figure.

Countdown to One Month One Project completion is now at T minus 9 days (or however that works).  And I still haven’t ordered the mirror.  Yikes.

Progress is boring! I want it done!

While more progress has been happening on the bathroom, it doesn’t make for so much fun and exciting content on the blog.  Here’s where we’re at:

This small little room took a not small amount of effort to get patched, textured/primed and now painted (and that’s only the gyp board, I still have to do the bead board!).  Thank goodness I’m not in it alone:

Husband came to my rescue.  Saturday morning we got out, ran some errands and stopped by Record Exchange for some new (old) vinyl.  With some Boss (The Wild, the Innocent, and the E Street shuffle)  and Manassas (hey it was the dollar bin) blaring from the next room, we took turns painting — I did the brush for all the corners/trim cutting in and he wielded the roller.  JT also demoed out all the chair rail trim to make way for the new, chunkier profile stuff we’re putting in soon.  It turned up a little surprise — some of the yellow flower wallpaper was still living under there.

Yikes.  Imagine (if you dare) that instead of the nice Sea Serpent/dark grey-blue walls and white bead board there was yellow floral wallpaper and pee-yellow bead board.  Uh huh, that’s what it used to look like.  What I wouldn’t give for a “before” picture.  However that was seven years ago and this blog wasn’t even a twinkle in my eye — I just wanted it gone.

I think from here on out, the bathroom’s going top secret.  That way we can have a nice “ta da” come September 1st.  Although if I finish it sooner, I will post it sooner.  No need to keep you in heedless suspense.  So the One Month, One Project continues . . . .

In other One Month, One Project news, Stacey over at A Goode House went crazy and finished her king sized king bed project already.  So much for one month, more like one or two days!  Congrats on taking the leap AND getting it done.  That’s REAL progress.

Cheers – CT

Don’t Worry, I Didn’t Fall In

After a long and list-y post about bathrooms and then a week of no blogging, it occurred to me that you guys might think I have had an unfortunate mishap with one of our bathroom fixtures.  Not to worry, I didn’t fall in. 

Although I did squeak in Item #1 (Apply textured wall finish as primer coat to walls and ceiling)  from my “To Do” list, I’ve also been buried under a mountain of furniture.  And not the stuff I’ve been hoarding in my basement.  No, we just had a big furniture bid package go out at work yesterday and it took up literally every spare minute of my time.  I have a hard time with this whole “balance” concept and always seem to fall off on one side or the other.  These last few weeks, work won the delicate tug-of-war that is my life. 

But enough complaining! (although I will say if you had to specify three floors worth of furniture for a new building on a small midwestern college campus, you might complain a little too . . . ).  Onward and upward!  By announcing my “One Month, One Project” goal to the interwebs, I was also gave myself a few days head start and used up the last weekend in July to texture over our un-smoothable bathroom walls.  It was a simple matter of buying a little jug of Sand Finish paint additive for around $4 at Home Depot and mixing it up with a gallon of white paint the previous homeowners had left in the basement.  It took a few coats to get an even texture but I think it will be worth it in the long run because it covers up all the weird patches and ugly bits that were making me crazy.  At the end of the day, it is a little more texture than I would have liked but I also just wanted to stop obsessing and be done! 

So be done (with this step) I am. 

I snapped these pictures this morning . . . the nasty light fixture is now done to three bulbs.  Soon very soon, he will be all the way gone and I will be so happy!

So, texture.  Next step is paint.  Although the blue we had picked for the bathroom was much darker than the blue we used in the kitchen and music room, it was reading so much lighter in our little bathroom.  Like almost the same.  Since I did the texture primer, I figured that gave me an opportunity for a fresh start with the paint color.  I picked up a gallon of Sherwin Williams “Sea Serpent” last night and I think painting will be happening tonight.   I grabbed a generic bathroom image via the   Sherwin Williams Color Visualizer to test out our new color —  it was the closest thing they had to our bathroom — some white beadboard and some painted wall surface.  Here’s Sea Serpent in action:

A little grayer, not so “happy” blue as the kitchen.  Just what the doctor ordered. And on the ceiling too, it’s going to be so nice!  And one step closer to One Month, One Project completion.  I also may have done a little internet shopping/ordering last night as well . . . the things I can fill my time with when it’s not absorbed by work (Enough complaining CT!) 

Since we are speaking of bathrooms, I thought I would share that my sister-in-law has also shared a makeover of one of hers and started up a blog!  You can see all the details at French Grey and Chrome: . The Interwebs welcomes another Thompson to its midst.

I’m having a hard time going from “To Do” to “Ta Da”

All my projects seem to be draaaaaaaaaaaaaaging on . . .   First world problems, I know, but (whiny voice) I just want something to be done already!

This led me to a *shocking* realization.  If I want something to be done already, I better damn well do it!  With this revelation ringing in my ears, I focused my new-found determination on our half-destroyed, no-mirror bathroom.

Bathroom. (Phase One) Will. Be. Done. By. September. 1st.

I summoned the husband to a meeting of the minds and we looked at my (lack of) progress so far and brainstormed for the future.  I had left the walls half smeared with blue and froze when the patches were not blending away.   After a little internet research, we decided on trying to add a (subtle) wall texture.  Then I hit it, list style (perhaps we should call it a “Ta Da” list rather than a “To Do” list . . . ) 

Phase One  “Walls”  Work to be Done:
1.  Apply textured wall finish as primer coat to walls and ceiling.
2. Paint walls and ceiling Sherwin Williams Rainy Day.
3. Demo out clunky wood shelf.
4. Demo nasty disintegrating caulk around sink.
5. Caulk/seal any areas that need it.
6. Sand and clean all paneling.
7.  Install new chunkier chair rail.
8.  Paint all paneling and trim.
9.  Demo nasty light fixture.
10. Order and have custom mirror installed – this will be too large for JT and I to attempt ourselves.  I would rather have someone with big mirror suction cups hoist this into place then face dropping and shattering a mirror and the ensuing bad luck . . .
11.  Install new light fixture.
12.  Install shelf/cabinet/TBD storage above toilet.
13.  Install hand towel ring

This is the work/hard/boring stuff.  Now for the fun stuff — shopping!  Here’s my list:
1.  4 Turkish/Peshtamel towels.  Like this (via The Anatolian on etsy).

2.  Knobs/hooks to hang the above turkish towels on that will be installed on our soon-to-be chunkier chair rail.  Maybe like this (via Anthropologie)

Or this? (via Hobby Lobby.  So it’s a Hobby Lobby Knobby. Yikes)

And a bath mat  — a fun woven one via Bed Bath and Beyond . . .

I’m considering adding to my month-long challenge with a sewing project — an extra tall shower curtain like this one from Mothra, I mean Martha Stewart (found via Escapade).

So what do you think?  Does anyone want to jump off the one-month-one-project challenge cliff with me?  I’ll hold your hand and scream with you on the way down.  Should I post up some in-progress stuff or just save it all for an extra big “Ta Da” on September 1st? 

All right, it’s off to the races, folks . . . or in my case Home Depot!

Bathroom, Phase I (slow progress)

Its been slow going around the Living Analog household lately.  We’ve been enjoying the long hours of sunshine and spending a little more time outdoors and a little less time around all the technology.  There may have been some guitar buying going on as well . . . in fact a lot of guitar buying has gone on, but that is a separate post.  For now, we are here to discuss the bathroom.  Yes, the bathroom.  We are a house of only one bathroom, so changes in here are hard to come by — you can’t tear the room up and leave it sit while decisions are made or parts are ordered.  However, we did accidentally tear it up just a little bit . . .

I wanted to see what was behind the world’s largest medicine cabinet — did the previous owner continue the bead board?  Was there a crazy paint color or some huge hole to deal with?

There was no bead board . . . . on a whole wall of bead board.  I don’t want to complain too much about the former home owner(s) because I’m sure they had all the best intentions.  But sometimes, I tear at my hair, gnash my teeth and scream “What were they thinking!!!” when things like this appear.

A solution has been decided on — we’re going to do a full height mirror over the sink (top of backsplash to the ceiling with a few inches of finger space to get it hung and help when the sink gets demoed out later).  The mirror should also cover whatever lurks in wait for us under that god-awful light fixture.  The new light fixture . . .

will sit right on the mirror, giving it maybe a little bit of a hotel vibe.  We shall see.  In a series of fortuitous events, I was able to snag this fixture from eBay for $152 + free shipping versus the $260 price tag I was seeing for our local lighting source.

It arrived the other day and I love it.  Now we are just getting some quotes on custom mirrors and soon there will be a Bathroom, Phase I Complete stamp over these images.

But not so fast.  Remember my paint color dilemma?

Well I picked a color — Rainstorm (Sherwin Williams) and started painting, after carefully patching and sanding.  Well the former owners have me a little bit worn out again because these walls have just had horrible things happen to them and every inch of every patch/repair/old adhesive or whatever they put on these walls is showing through.  I’ve called a little bit of a cease and desist on the painting thing til I can get it figured out so right now it just looks like a smeary blue mess/Smurf murder scene #2:

Don’t mind the horrible beige plastic shower surround — that will come down in Bathroom Phase III (there’s actually a window hidden under that beige disaster).  I also had another head shaking moment when I took the cover plate off the vent and saw that the interior of the vent is some sort of duct tape mess.  . . . I’m not even sure I want to tackle that one.  Which means that someday in the future a new homeowner may open the same vent and wonder what the H. E. Double Hockey Sticks I was thinking!