Boys’ Bathroom Upgrade: shiplap, wallpaper, and a bit of a coastal feel
Every house we’ve owned so far (you know, all two of them, ha!) have had at least one room painted a super, bright yellow. In our first house, it was a spare bedroom and in this current house, it’s our upstairs hall bath. Truly, it was like someone took in a highlighter to get paint matched. See bottom of post for a few of the before shots!
Our hall bath is primarily used by our boys but Jake and I, of course, spend a ton of time in there, too- the nightly bath, brushing teeth, etc. And if you have kids you know that the whole bathroom routine is quite drawn out. So with all that time we’re spending in there (especially in the evening hours), I knew I wanted the room to feel soft and airy but also wanted it to have a fun (but not overly baby/kid-ish) vibe. Also: looking to keep things budget-friendly!
My design inspiration came from a bunch of different elements: these wood mirrors, shiplap, and this post by The Blooming Nest. Never threw around the idea of wallpaper until I saw this adorable wave-like pattern she put up in her laundry room! Our vanity was already painted a pretty, neutral gray and I knew I wanted to keep it and work with the current color. I loved the idea of mixing natural wood, the horizontal lines of shiplap, and a gray/blue toned wallpaper- it just seemed like a fun palate for my boys!
Then, I went and fell in LOVE with this wallpaper by Magnolia Home called Pick-Up Sticks (I went with the color gray, which almost looks slightly blue in person). It was a bit more subtle than the wave pattern I originally liked, but still so fun! Thankfully, this particular paper is pre-pasted- just had to spray to activate the paste and go (okay, ‘go’ might not be the most accurate word. This was our first time hanging wallpaper and it was, uhh, tedious! Thankfully, my husband is WAY more patient than me, so he helped a ton in ensuring we measured each section accurately and hung the paper straight. Also, did I mention we ended up working on this project on the day of our ninth anniversary? If we can hang wallpaper together after nine years of marriage successfully, pretty sure we can do anything.)
We applied the wallpaper to every wall with the exception of the one behind the vanity/toilet, which we were saving to shiplap. We figured the shiplap accent wall would be a pretty straightforward installation, until we ran into a slight issue with not being able to reach the tight spaces behind the toilet. So, off the toilet went- not a step that we thought we’d have to do, but that’s generally how projects go, right?! Minor setback and now we know how to properly remove a toilet: check.
Now for these mirrors! The natural wood is gorgeous in person and once they were up, I definitely started to feel a coastal vibe. We got a simple natural, bamboo shade for the window which definitely has a beachy feel, too. I kept the decor super simple above the toilet (went back and forth on putting a shelf up, but felt it would compete with the mirrors) and instead put up these super fun gold frames from Target. I absolutely love these two prints of my boys- they’re some of my favorite shots taken in Cape May Beach, New Jersey, where my parents have a home. Cape May is one of the most near and dear places to our hearts so it makes me smile (and my boys!) every time we see those photos.
As for finishes, I opted for a matte black light fixture- I loved that it wasn’t too farmhouse-y and has a more modern shape. I ended up spray painting our existing oil rubbed bronze hardware matte black and hung up these great, oversized hooks for towels to match. Another super easy upgrade: switched out the white shower tension rod for a black one and hung our simple white curtain with black rings. Love how the black pops against all the white!
With all the neutrals, I thought a shot of color would be fun- loving this orangey-peach and blue/gray rug. I absolutely love how a pop of greenery adds so much freshness to the room, too. And somehow, my boys have yet to knock down this snake plant/play in its dirt- success!
Next on the list are the higher-priced upgrades: replacing the vanity top, sinks and hardware. I have my eye on a bright, white quartz with built-in seamless sinks. Still debating on hardware- thinking of branching out from matte black and going brass? Also, although the floors aren’t bad at all (simple, square tile), we would eventually like to replace- possibly a dark gray hexagon tile? Still making some decisions!
The point is, our bathroom upgrade/transformation isn’t 100% finished, but that’s okay! It isn’t realistic for everyone, either budget-wise, time-wise, or product availability-wise, to do everything that you’d like to do all at once (but its also awesome if you can!) We are super happy with the transformation that’s taken place so far (and happy with its budget-friendliness as well) and nothing has to be 100% perfect or 100% finished before we can enjoy it (that’s me preaching to myself!) So, go ahead and make those smaller changes until you are able to make some of the bigger ones. It’s all about working with what you have!
Can’t forget where we came from:
All to say, we’re so very happy with the transformation- feels so much more calm, bright and refreshing, especially after the blinding, yellow bathroom we had before. It’s incredible how a fun wallpaper, an accent wall, and new fixtures work wonders!