Tag Archives: bathroom

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Bathroom cabinetry - By Alex

Affordable ways to upgrade an outdated bathroom

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You go to take a shower with the bathroom you have — not the bathroom you might want or wish to have at a later time. How happy are you with your current master bathroom? This should be your oasis; an escape from the drudgery of your workday, and a place to sink into soothing bubbles with a glass of wine and mellow tunes pouring from your iPod.

That can’t happen in a bathroom that is dingy, dank and depressing.

Are you ready to upgrade your outdated bathroom? Here are some affordable ways to make your restroom truly restful.

1. Buy used or imperfect

In a perfect world, you could be replacing your basin, countertop, tub, shower and even toilet. That can end up being an expensive proposition if you buy everything brand spanking new. Instead, be smart about your fixture purchases. Start with a secondhand shop; you might just discover a few used items that are in good condition.

As for your granite or marble counter tops, think imperfection. There will be many slabs of stone that are deemed imperfect because of minor discoloration. These slabs are also less expensive than pristine pieces. Suppose those imperfections are actually around the areas you’re going to cut out or place fixtures? You might not even see the problems, but could end up saving a bundle.

2. Bring in the heat

How many times have you gone into a cold bathroom and had your toes nearly encased in frostbite from the tile flooring? Maybe it’s not that severe, but it’s still a discomfort that diminishes your ideal bathroom. If you’re going to replace tiles with affordable options, you might want to consider adding propane heating for the floor. Utilizing propane for heat can actually save on energy bills. You won’t need to blast the whole house with heat when you just want a warm bathroom. Plus, this is an upgrade feature that can add significant value to your home.

3. Grout again

The grout around your tub, shower and basin could be looking a bit grimy. A great and affordable improvement is to scrape it up and lay down a clean line of new caulk. It’s a perfect way to freshen up the bathroom, especially if you’re not going to swap out the tub or basin.

4. Think green

As long as you’re upgrading, you might want to think green with regard to your toilet and shower head. Low-flow is the way to go, and it will help you save money on your water bill. Just remember to also check your water regulator, which is where your water is piped into the house. Lowering the pressure from that point will also not only save you money by reducing water flow, it will also protect your pipes.

5. New cabinetry

Sometimes cabinets in the bathroom can warp and expand due to excess moisture in the air. This can really look ugly! You can opt for brand new ones in a more modern finish, but you can also just replace the doors and handles. Get creative! Use glass or mirror, or a bright accent colour to uplift the spirit of any old bathroom.

6. When in doubt, repaint

Finally, the most affordable way to redo a bathroom is to give it a fresh coat of paint. Two things to avoid:

  • the color white
  • any paint that isn’t a high-quality satin finish

When repainting a bathroom, you want to take extra care to tape off all the areas you’ll need to paint around. That high-quality satin finish will also be a good protection against mold or mildew, as it tends to repel moisture.

As for the color palette, you have a wide world of choices that can provide a splash of personality for your bathroom. White is OK, but it’s also very sterile and, some may say, boring. Express yourself!


Once your bathroom upgrade is complete, make sure you take some time to enjoy it all — because it’s a safe bet that the kitchen will be next!

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Bathroom design mistakes

7 Bathroom design mistakes to avoid making

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Avoid these 7 bathroom design mistakes and discover indoor space and grace you never knew you had.


1. Clutter

Clutter makes a small space look even smaller. It’s important to keep items on display to a minimum. So, this means packing away your hair dyer after you use it, along with your toiletries and other bathroom products.


2. Drab lighting

Poor lighting in a bathroom can really affect the atmosphere and bathroom design, especially if it highlights an odd or cluttered space. Try installing lights in the middle of the ceiling or around the mirror to help brighten up the room. Mirror lights also serve a functional purpose, as you won’t leave the house with foundation on your face that doesn’t match your body.


3. Using a toilet rug

A styling no-no is a rug wrapped around the base of the toilet. Besides collecting germs, it really doesn’t serve much of a purpose – except making people think you’re much older than you actually are!


4. Grubby shower curtain

Changing the curtain is an easy and inexpensive way to freshen up a bathroom – but before you splash your cash, try putting your old shower curtain through the washing machine with two towels (to prevent it from crinkling), some laundry soap and a tablespoon of eucalyptus oil. Hang it on the line in the sun – it might scrub up okay.


5. Raggedy towels on display

Having fresh, fluffy towels hanging on your towel rack can make a great deal of difference in terms of brightening up a worn-out space. Try colour coordinating your towels with the colour scheme of your bathroom.


6. Not enough storage

Not having enough storage to house all your bathroom items can add to a messy and cluttered space. Invest in a bathroom vanity with cupboards.


7. A big empty bathroom without personality

This is a good problem to have. Having a large bathroom is a great advantage – but not if you don’t make the most of it. Try adding a vase of flowers to your vanity, a mat to the tiles and an artwork on the wall. These tricks can space out the room nicely.

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