Archive for the ‘Renovation’ Category

My completed bathroom renovation

Friday, January 6th, 2017


Welcome to my recently completed bathroom renovation.


The new bathroom is off the hallway. The door on the left is the girls bedroom. At the beginning of the hall is our bedroom. This bathroom services both those bedrooms. There is a level change into the bathroom. As we ripped out the bathroom and built it all new, it could have been flush, but I have grander plans. One day we will cover over the pine floorboards, so I made sure I made the height difference the same as other places in the house so that eventually, all the floors will be the same.

In the mean time, we need to install a wooden angle transition piece to prevent tripping. As well as the entrance to our kitchen from the living room.

To the right (out of the shot) is the original linen cupboard. That is also on our list of things to to. We would like to pull it out and put in new cabinetry that best utilises the space.


Charcoal 300mm x 75mm tiles laid in a herringbone pattern from FAP Ceramiche. Purchased at The art of tiles Newtown.

Ardex FG-8 202 midnight grout.


Tapware from Astra Walker.


Mixer from Astra Walker. Swivel bath spout from Pheonix.

(Forgive my niche styling. . . I didn’t know what to put in it)


Elba marble tiles. Sheridan monogrammed towels. (L for Laura, R for Robert, not left and right!! HEHE)

Top Knobs towel rail and hooks. I feel I should have purchased 2 towel rails, one on top of the other, but when I was placing my top knobs order, I was budget conscience. We still have the option of adding hooks on the back of the bathroom door for additional towel. My husband is a gem though. He takes the wet towels out the bathroom and hangs them on the clothes horses.


Wall hung vanity painted in Taubmans Charcoal Heather. Tab pulls and towel ring from Top Knobs. Stone top is Smart Stone Absolute Blanc.

My husband installed the stone top himself as we missed the Christmas install deadline and it was EASY!! I knew he could do it. We saved a few pennies doing that. I would definitely do that again in future, providing the stone piece can me manoeuvred by myself and my husband, anything heavier, I would leave to the stone masons.


Pan from Laufen. Hidden in wall cistern & push plates by Geberit. Vanity & shaving cabinet designed by me, technical drawing by my husband, built by a friend and sprayed with 2 pac poly. Toilet roll holder from Top Knobs. Toilet paper by Quilton hahahaha.

So far, really liking the toilet. We purchased high quality brands. The cost of the 3 pieces is eye watering. But it is less than the Astra Walker or canterbury art deco toilet I first wanted in the design.


Wall sconces from Circa Lighting. Recessed shower curtain track from Silent Gliss. Basin taps from Astra Walker. Basin from Duravit.


I designed the shaving cabinet to open like this. I have 2 girls. I foresee plenty of up-do’s. Sort of like a dressing room. As well as to protect the door on the right from swinging into the wall if it was hung from the other side (Which would have been much easier to make!) but could have potentially smashed the mirror (there is probably hinges that would prevent that though)


As well as a notch cut out for power cables to dangle freely without the door closing on them. I have used it several times now and it is by far 1 of my favourite features in the bathroom. I have shown my sister and my neighbour and both have been like RIGHT!!! *praise* So much sense!

My kitchen back splash is not big but it has 2 double power points on it. Useful, but I dislike that they are on full display. I really love this solution and that they are hidden. Next kitchen I do, I would like to mount them on the underside of the upper cabinets, if possible.

The doors of the shaving cabinet hang down lower. This is how you open them without getting grubby marks on the mirrors if they were push to open. They are soft close as well, so just let go of the door and it will close nicely. So you don’t have to close it with your thumb on the glass.


This is the best I could manage for a wide angle shot of this wall as my camera lens has limitations and the room is narrow.

Really happy with the shaving cabinet. It is semi recessed. Even though we built the wall out, I still made is semi recessed to gain even more storage as off the shelf cabinets are just, in my opinion, way too shallow to be that useful save for your nail polish collection. Because part of the cabinet was sticking out, I paid particular attention to what was visible. The doors are all mitred and the cabinet appears to float.


Love the bath we chose. It is Kaldewei steel 1700mm bath. Stays warm. The most important feature to mention is where the waste is located. It is not at the end of the bath. So we are not standing on it when showering. I love that the overflow is not facing out towards the rest of the room. The bottom of the bath is also flat as well to help with standing when showering.

There is a channel for the shower curtain to hang when using the bath only.


Pleased with all the hard work my husband and I have done on the windows. I think making the shaving cabinet a marble niche was a good idea as well. Love the swivel bath spout. Always have it turned  towards the wall so that we don’t knock it getting in to have a shower and for my 2 little children when they are having a bath. There aren’t many on the market that swivel unless they are goose necks, which I didn’t want because I wanted the mixer mounted above it, not to the side.


Not exactly the same angles, but good enough.

In my next blog post I will address how we got to this stage.

Bathroom Renovation – Progress Report

Wednesday, December 14th, 2016

Can you believe we are in week 7 of our bathroom renovation?

Did not see that one coming.

It definitely could have all been wrapped up by week 4 if we weren’t delayed on joinery *cough* If we want to point the finger, it will definitely be pointed fairly at my husband. *sigh*

When it did arrive. It was BEAUTIFUL. Just as I had hoped.

All that is left to do is the plumber complete his fit off. The plumber & the builder have been fighting and I don’t know who is worse and who to believe to be honest. Both have done 1 job for me prior. It really has left a bad taste in my mouth and caught me in the middle. The plumber should be here tomorrow to complete his part.

My husband and I have done a stellar job on stripping the windows, patching, sanding, no gaps etc. They will be ready to paint this weekend. Along with the 2 casement windows that we removed to strip easier. The stripper ate some of the glazing compound in parts so I re-glazed both of them. That is currently drying and should be ready to paint this weekend. I have purchased new hinges and new casement hardware.

ALL A.L.L All of the trades have pissed me off. E.V.E.R.Y S.I.N.G.L.E O.N.E of them!

The underside of the timber window sill is covered in a gloopy thick uneven mess of waterproof material. The only thing I said to the waterproofer was – “Don’t slop that stuff around on the timber windows please” Wellllll he did. It was every where. There was a huge puddle on the top of the sill in the corner and random bits everywhere. I had to pull and scrape that stuff off with a blade. Doesn’t really respond well to sandpaper as it is rubbery/elastic.

It isn’t the biggest deal as you can’t see it unless you’re sitting in the bath.

These sort of issues have plagued the entire renovation. I have been crystal clear and very vocal, but alas, something happened every time.

The electrician. Do you want it to go in this direction, or that direction? The second way please. Come back 5 mins later. It is installed the 1st way. Ummm well ok then.

Face palm after face palm.

The last item I am waiting on for the bathroom is my curtain header tape and drapery pins. I search high and low for stainless steel hooks in Australia. I was even going to use plastic, but they aren’t compatible in the tapes I want to use. Also because the track is ceiling mounted and where plastic hooks attach it would mean that part of the curtain heading would curl up against the ceiling.

After a long search and several discussions with high end and low end (spotlight) curtain places none had the answer!

(It is said time and time again, but never has it rung more true. If you want something done right DO IT YOURSELF!)

I headed to the U.S, via the internet of course. Say what you will about America, but when it comes to home decorating, they’re not bad.

Finally I found the hooks I wanted with compatible heading tape. I emailed the company about international shipping. They never got back to me plus sold in bulk. Not unreasonably large sizes, but would have made my humble shower curtain quite exorbitantly priced. Then I headed to etsy, where I found 2 retailers that sold the items in smaller batches. After I few conversations with 1 lady, the communication just stopped & she didn’t respond. Then I started to speak to the second, then thanks giving holiday rolled around & it went dead. Thankfully I have finally managed to place an order with her for what I need to make my shower curtain with hooks that won’t rust! Not sure when that package will arrive though. Don’t think it has even been sent as she had to order the stainless steel hooks from the wholesaler.

After all the effort with this shower curtain, I hope it does come together as planned. EEK!

Another item we are waiting on is the mirror for the shaving cabinet doors. Hopefully should be ready tomorrow or Friday.

*Fingers crossed*

We are nearly there!

I just came across this image on Pinterest from Architectural Digest. Quite enamoured with it.


Reminds me of our bathroom a little bit. Window in the shower/tub. Shower over bath (ugh a compromise but had to do it, no other choice beside forgoing one) & of course, shower curtain!


Also loved loved loved Emmy Rossum’s New York apartment renovation. Especially the tiny bathroom.

I have never been fortunate enough to be afflicted with the indecision and copious amount of options that a large space offers. Only ever had to come up with solutions for small spaces and I think I am getting quite good at it. Some times there is only 1 solution and that is that and move on! Good! Decision made.

Plus, you need less of everything, with a small space, so you can splash out on some items. Although because space is at a premium, some things are better getting custom made to use the space wisely or because off the shelf (well priced) doesn’t fit.

Darn it.

My bathroom design was signed off before I saw this apartment reveal, but it has a lot in common with my bathroom and brought a smile to my face. Marble tiles. Shower over bath. Small vanity with 2 drawers. Simple shaving cabinet mirror. The same lights (just different size & finish) as the ones I purchased. Wall mounted basin taps. I even have a brass bathroom door handle and silver fixtures inside! Well then! hahaha






I love that roman blind with those stripes. I found similar fabric at the curtain shop and I want to make myself up some for my laundry/WC project next.

Speak to you soon!

Laundry Renovation – Mood Board

Wednesday, December 7th, 2016

I am already over the bathroom renovation and have moved on to the next thing.

Our Laundry.

Only since cleaning the laundry to make it ready to use whilst doing our bathroom renovation did I start to appreciate the space. The AMOUNT of space we had. Boy, we never use it! I am ashamed.

I always thought we would knock it down and extend out the back, but I don’t want to lose any backyard space and a friend gave me the genius idea of where to put the staircase if and when we do a second store extension that I never though of. Because until that I point I thought it was going in the laundry or our second bedroom. Lose the bedroom, have a stair case and a small study space and put the bedroom upstairs. But there is no need to do that. As I can put the stair case in the living room dead space. Knock out 1 wall.

Since I have been spending a lot of time in the freshly cleaned out laundry I have come up for a plan. Drawn up preliminary plans for joinery. Worked out the function.

The laundry will become a laundry/water closet/butlers pantry all in one.

Currently it is a laundry with a shower in the corner, a separate room with a toilet in it and one tall cabinet.

The only change we will make is by removing the shower. We have NEVER used it in 5 years besides doing this bathroom renovation which we are extremely grateful for. So I am guessing once the bathroom is back operational, we will never need it.

Instead we will replace it with floor to ceiling cabinetry as we are short of storage space. Somewhere to put my sewing machineS! Fold out iron board for quick touch ups. Mops! Plenty.

This time we will take charge and not use a builder. Try and take on more d.i.y and project management. The trades that I liked from the bathroom renovation will be asked to quote.

The bathroom trade bill is astronomical and I don’t think it needed to be that high. And I have personally been micro managing the builder to no end.

This room is much bigger than the bathroom and requires a lot more joinery. I just tallied up everything I will need to buy/employ for the laundry and the price is dazing. Ugh Oh well.

On that note, let me share my mood board.


This room needs A LOT of work. New window. New WC door. New cornice, bulk heads. A lot of cabinetry. More stone counter than the bathroom. More expensive sink. Thankfully less tap ware and I got it already on super sale with Masters closing down.

Less wall tiles but more floor tiles. Going to do the same flooring I did in the bathroom as I have 3sqm’s of tiles left over.

More cement rendering once I remove all the wall tiles and there is a lot of that. Bigger surface area than the bathroom.

My husband and I want to do some wood panelling/wainscoting in the water closet. I am sure it will be very tricky especially as it is brick walls not cavity gyprock walls. Then we want to do wall paper above. No idea how we will do these d.i.y’s ourselves together as we will hardly ever be together with our conflicting work schedules, but where there is a will there is a way. Hopefully if I draw up detailed plans and leave it with him, he can put it all together.

I am sure this room renovation will consume all of next year, just like the bathroom consumed all of this year.

We will purchase things slowly slowly. Pay off the credit cards and purchase more and then once we have everything and a detailed plan. We will commence. I have already purchased a few things for this project such as some floor tiles. A toilet. Taps. Window hardware. But that is about it.

Just need that U.S Dollar to drop so I can purchase the rest of my lights for my house. That would be nice.

Bathroom Renovation – Week 4

Tuesday, December 6th, 2016






In hindsight. I wish I didn’t choose cheap subway tiles, to me, they look cheap. I wish I also went SMALLER with the tiles. These are 200mm x 100mm. I wish I went for 150mm x 75mm.  Or longer but skinnier.

I didn’t seem to compromise on anything else besides these white tiles and here I am thinking, well, you went this far, should have just kept going. YOLO. Pffft bank balances.

Oh dear.

The marble niche isn’t how I wanted it. I wanted the tiles centred. Not to have a skinny tile at the top. The 3 bottom marble tiles are very similar and the top one is darker. We were running out of marble tiles, no idea where all the tiles went! So I couldn’t be as picky as I hoped. It was also close to 7pm when they tiled the niche, so everyone was kind of over it by that stage. I was standing there and in my inner dialogue was screeching “Say something! Tell them to start again” But alas, I was too tired and so were they.

Hopefully when I put stuff in the niche, it won’t be a big deal.

I still don’t have a picture of the floor grouted and now it is covered over with cardboard. I chose a very dark grout, pretty much the same colour as the tiles. It looks good. I have 3 sqm of those tiles left, thinking of doing the same in the laundry. Is that weird?

Bathroom Renovation – Week 2

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2016

Cement rendering. Timber framing. Waterproofing. More plumber rough-in.






Bathroom Renovation – Week 1

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2016

Demolition. Electrical and Plumbing Rough in. Paint stripping on the window.





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Bathroom Renovation – Before Photos

Monday, November 21st, 2016

This is the main bathroom between the 2 bedrooms. Accessed from the Hallway.


Those floor tiles have come back into fashion. The sticky tape on the floor was me laying everything out to see if there was any way to have a separate shower and bath. It was just too small.




Those 4 different tiles there is when I went to grab some tp and most of the wall tiles came down. My husband used the ones that didn’t break and had to buy some new ones to put it back together.

Besides that, we haven’t touched this bathroom.

Bathroom Renovation – Inspiration Pictures – Part Two

Sunday, January 31st, 2016

The previous post featured my Pinterest Pins, but ohhh my do I love Instagram? Yes, Yes I do. So let’s look at my screen shots!

I love this mirror. I would like a medicine cabinet that is recessed with a door like this. A metal frame with a shadow. Where would I find this?? Or just a mirror like this that I could attached to a medicine cabinet?

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Horizontal light above the metal framed mirror.

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63 weeks – STALKER. Bahahhah

I like the small square undermount basin. Has been hard to track one down. Everything is OVERSIZED!

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Herringbone floor! Subway tiles and capping/dado tiles. Except this is inverted. Marble on the bottom and white capping tile.

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Oh heaven! I love this bathroom! This is the tiling I would like to do. Large format marble subaway tiles on the bottom. Capping/dado tile and then smaller tiles on top (except mine will be plain white subway and white capping tile) Medicine cabinet. Horizontal art deco style light above mirror.

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Horizontal light above metal framed mirror.

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Wall mounted art deco taps (just not on the mirror) Undermount basin. Grey vanity. I like the wall treatment. VJ, Beadboard I don’t know what it is called. I was going to do this, but then I thought it was just getting too busy. I LOVE that wall light. Ralph Lauren do one, but too expensive for me.

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I do like that wall treatment. . .  What is it. The stripe wall thingo?? I do like it. . . Part of me says to keep it a bit contemporary. . . hmmm.

I’ll return with the tiles I have short listed, the taps/fittings I like and my plans.

Bathroom Renovation – Inspiration Pictures – Part One

Saturday, January 30th, 2016

Next up in our house is a bathroom renovation.

If we were to sell tomorrow, we would have to renovate the bathroom prior. At this stage we are not looking at selling.

In the shower the tiles have come loose and water is getting behind them and soaking into the wardrobe of our bedroom. I had to toss most of my shoes as they grew mould.

We got 2 quotes on just replacing the tiles in the shower area. Then the tiles would be different and the whole thing would look worse than to begin with. We decided to just bite the bullet and redo the bathroom, which was on the list of things to do already.

As soon as I got the green light from hubby, I was off like a rocket. PINNING to my heart’s content.

Here is a look at some of my pins.

All image credits can be found here –


This is very similar to what we are going for. Dark floor tiles. Marble wall tiles. Vanity that touches are half wall to the shower. A bench in the shower. A horizontal light above the mirror. A window in the shower area.


What I am on the hunt for – capping tiles. I really dislike how they finished the subway tiles in this picture. It looks unfinished. I like the vanity though. Simple.


Similar again to the layout I would like in our bathroom. Vanity that touches the shower half wall. Capped with marble slab. Recessed medicine cabinet.


I have decided on 75mm x 300mm charcoal tiles to do a herringbone floors. But I do like this medium grey as well.


Bench in shower capped with a marble slab. And a concealed niche. Art above the toilet.


Vanity that touches the shower half wall. Horizontal light above the mirror. Window in the shower area. Marble wall tiles.


Stone slab capping on the shower half wall. 2 different size wall tiles. Diverter, slide bar hand held shower, wall mounted shower head. Dado capping tile.


Dark floor tiles. Capping tiles to border the window in the shower.


The tiles I have chosen for the floor aren’t as long as these ones and not as shiny, but I am digging the herringbone.


This is elba marble slab.


Dark herringbone tiles.


Vanity touches the shower inclosure. Bench in shower.


Vanity with marble slab. Touches the shower half wall. Bench in shower. 2 different wall tiles. Stone capping on shower walls.


Wall of bright shiny white subway tiles!!! And the tiling doesn’t go to the roof and is finished with a capping tile.


Capping tile.


Small window in shower area which has been tiled.


This is pretty close to what our space will look like. Marble tiles on the bottom part. Capping tile (except we will have white capping/dado tiles as capping tiles in marble to match our marble is not a product that is made) Then smaller scale white subway tiles above.



This is the real estate listing picture. The greenish wall paint has all flaked and peeled. The laminate on the vanity is peeling.

Pretty much everything is going to stay where it is. The layout works. We are deleting the bath tub. I am vehemently ANTI shower over bath. I get why they are put in, But I absolutely HATE them. Grew up with one. DISLIKE. Also no good for elderly or people with limited mobility. The demographics in this area seem to be to geared to downsizers and empty nesters, so I think it will work out ok in re-sale terms. But we are making it to suit us (even though I will have 2 small children) Mostly Audrey showers with me and stands/sits at my feet. When she was really little, I bathed her in the laundry tub and then I started showering with her in my arms to get the skin to skin contact as I didn’t breastfeed.

When she showers with me, I much prefer her to sit as she has had many a tumble in the bottom of that stupid tub even with a non slip mat!!!! No part of the floor is flat. I have fallen with her in my arms too! Frightening. (She wasn’t too little then and all that happened was I got quite a bruise on my bottom but just very lucky I believe)

These kids will just have to learn to love the shower like I do!! But while they are still little, I want to hunt out the biggest flexi tub to place in the bottom of the shower. They will love it and won’t be deprived and when we go to grandparents house or on holidays they will be treated with a bath, it will be exciting.

The toilet is to the right, cut out of the picture. The only other change is to delete the window on the left and have a mirror centred over the vanity. To make up for deleting one window (the room isn’t bright even with both windows) is to put in a skylight.

Next up is my screen shot inspiration pictures.

Kitchen Renovation – Part THREE of three – reflections

Sunday, July 20th, 2014


The layout of the kitchen. I spent YEARS on this. I was always playing with the layout. I drew it to scale and moved everything around and in the end I believe I came up with the best solution. Having utilised the kitchen for about 9 months now, it is working nicely.

The knobs and handles!! They are so glamourous.

I like my down lights. They are pretty inconspicuous when turned off. And when turned on they give amazing light and I like the way we wired them. 2 sets of 4 on an individual switch.

The kitchen sink. I am so glad I swapped to a big single bowl! I can wash the tray from the high chair, the fridge shelves, the oven racks all with ease! I also have a small suspended drainer that acts like a small secondary sink/drainer without taking up any extra bench space. Thankfully I was able to get one from ikea for less then $40 as opposed to the the abey optional extra drainer that was ~$180 (from memory)


This is how my sink normally looks. I really try to avoid having the dish cloth hanging off the tap. When I want to quickly wash up a 1 or a few items I just place it in the drainer, if I washing up more, I just lay out a terry dish towel to drain everything that place it over the back of a dining table chair for the sun to dry it.

I love my pull out bins! SO HANDY!!!!!!!



I am not a fan of the bench top colour. It is a warm white. Obviously not what I wanted. I just wanted a white. I hate my range hood. It honestly serves no purpose. It does nothing. I couldn’t get anything else or would mean touching my cornices which I wanted to keep as is. I couldn’t duct it out through the wall behind, because that is a bedroom. If we are frying something on the cook top, all doors and windows are open . .  even in winter. . . I am constantly wiping the cabinets door fronts above too. To keep everything pristine. The 2 pac poly finished makes that easy. It honestly is driving me to the point that I want to make this kitchen a show kitchen and put a butlers pantry around the corner (where the current laundry is) in an extension. An induction cooktop, ducted quiet range hood and another fridge! HA!


The fridge. I wish it was built in. I hate the way it is just plonked there. Doesn’t look well resolved. We wanted to use the current fridge because it wasn’t that old and we were trying to keep costs down.

The grout colour of the backsplash tiles. I am not entirely happy with the grout colour of the back splash. It should have either been white or DARK grey. The grey we used just matches the tiles and blends in.

 Would have chosen fake stone tiles that look like slate. We spent a small fortune on sealer for the slate tiles and it doesn’t appear to be working and they are staining. Even though we are diligent with cleaning up spills straight away.


Art work for the wall between the windows. I would love a demi lune console table to go between those 2 windows.



And have a grand ginger jar or really nice ceramic on top OR this GORGEOUS lust-worthy candy dish I spotted the other day from on Juliska’s instagram.


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But I have visions of a rogue ball hitting it and smashing it to smithereens. Or kids bumping the table. I think this idea might have to go on the back burner until kids are moved outta home!

I am yet to make curtains for the dining area. I want to make curtains for that space to mark that it is a different zone or space from the rest of the kitchen as this house does not have a dining room!

(Ohh I wish!) I am going to make dreamy soft flowing white cotton curtains.


But with an aqua trim tape to pull in the colours of the bench seat and the back door. And also to just add some colour. Because I don’t want it to be too monochromatic. I am not that bold.




With the window above the banquette. I want to make a fake roman blind valance and use the same trim tape.


The windows need extensive work. They need some TL C and some painting. Then I can swap out all the old painted over hardware for shiny new brass hardware that I purchased. This is a big job and I can find people that will do the fixing up of the windows but also point out that they won’t paint the windows.

This is also a very dirty job! Probably should have been the first thing to be done.

Chandelier. If I can pick one! I keep going back and forth about what I want. I still like the original one I picked out from my mood board.


The French doors need to be painted white. Along with the laundry door. Lots of bits of trim painting here and there. As well as the architraves.

Thanks for reading! I can’t wait to return with the reveal of more finished projects.