Friday, July 3, 2009

Changing the Look to builder’s Vanity

Who wouldn’t want a Master Bath with all the latest fixtures? Wonderful stone flooring, counter tops, shower and bath surrounds. A retreat, spa like, with every amenity you could think of to pamper both body and soul. Vanities that have the look and feel of fine furniture. I think we all have dreamed of such a room.  In remodeling a bath, it can be one of the most expensive rooms in your home to do so. Many times you have to enlarge the space to have all that you want . You might have to rearrange the fixtures that at present, are not working for you in their present lay out. Then there are the ones that are just out dated in their look, every thing works and they are in good condition, but so builders bland.

Many of us would want to start all over when it comes to our bathrooms, but it is expensive and takes many weeks for a change to happen. If you can’t spend the thousands of dollars it would take for that prefect bath, do the quick inexpensive fix of paint, new knobs, new lighting and maybe a little added trim to keep you sane till you can up date.

Such is the case with this nice sized Master bath. When this home was purchased, the walls in the bath were wall papered. That was the first to go and the walls were then painted. The color scheme came from of all things, polished small stones, a small painted iron and wood table, and gold Fleur-de-lis.


The paint color (large paint sample)matches the iron part of the table.  Benjamin Moore #1564 named Beach Glass.

The wood part of this table is painted a green that closely matches BM #474. The fabric for a chair seat and a round ottoman was chosen because the pattern’s scroll was that of this green color but with it’s iridescent quality changes to the blue and had the gold back ground.

A ceiling fan was removed and replaced with an iron and crystal chandelier.

Now on to the Vanity:


Well, we have all seen these, painted the same color as all the trim work in the house.

New pulls were purchased and had a wider spread so first thing was to drill new holes and fill the old. Sanding and priming came next.CIMG0470

 The Vanity and two medicine cabs were painted the same color as the walls.  Then just the fronts of the doors and drawers were Lime washed. *At this point you might want a smoother feel to the vanity and if so, skip the lime wash as this will add a texture to the finish. Also, plaster Fleur-de-lis were applied to the fronts of the medicine cab. doors.


The next part is where you want to work in a messy way with a buff color wash. Spread it on with a sponge brush and then wipe some of it off with a rag.  At this point it looks bad.



You will want to add more of the wash to the edges. I should stop here and say that if you need every thing to be in pristine condition, this might not be a treatment you want to try. This is an old looking paint treatment.


Add a gold metallic paint to edges and to any crevasses. Again, I didn’t want this neatly done, if you do, there are gold leafing pens that you can use.


This is the point that you might ask yourself “What in the heck am I going to do with this mess?”,Well there is more washes to come, so don’t give up and call a painter. Add more washes and wipe off the glaze till it has an old look.

I used two different color glazes for the wash, one in a buff and one in taupe. The taupe color that is darker was used on the outer edges of the doors and drawers and the lighter buff in the centers.

The finish look:


With new pulls in brass that adds a French look to the paint treatment.


The chair that’s cane seat had seen better days was removed. The dark stain was sanded and it was washed in a gold metallic paint then waxed. Webbing was used for the base of seat, foam and batting made up the seat cushion then it was upholstered in the fabric.

Other small changing to this once white master bath was the replacement of the ceiling fan with the chandelier, switch and outlet plates changed to brass, and a mirror that was framed with beveled mirror was framed in wood molding and also painted with the gold wash. The glass block window had plantation shutters installed.

In the Water Closet room the walls were plastered in the green color and a raised Plaster leaf frieze was applied and gold leafed.






This was a easy fix for an all white Master Bathroom that didn’t cost that much, and the time to complete was only a couple of weekends. This might not be the look you would want but it might help you to see that even if you can’t have that spa bathroom now,  There is always something you can do now to have that feeling.


  1. What a beautiful bathroom! Thanks for showing us the process!

  2. I second that...beautifully redone...
    So true that to redo completely would cost the moon and the stars above, you did a wonderful job...must be great to have a bubble bath with the small lamp on and the wreath in the bath area.

  3. This looks wonderful! and i love that house - who will save her? I would love to!

    thanks for the comment today - I like my lights on all day, can't help it!!!

  4. you did a wonderful job...must be great to have a bubble bath with the small lamp on and candles.

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