Project Bathroom: De-80s-ification

I have finally given in and am going to do some cosmetic updates to the bathroom. I kept saying that we’d wait to do anything to it until something broke and/or we had the money saved up to redo it completely, but I’m just so sick of looking at it in its current 1980s glory. Peach and forest green, who would’ve thought that color combo wouldn’t age well?

Of course I can’t quite decide what’s the best way to kick these 80s to the curb, so I am asking for your input! Here, so you can get the idea, are some pictures of the room in its current state.

bathroom: before

As you can see, it’s not a large room. It’s 60″ wide from wall to wall, and about 80″ from the door to the tub. This is going to be a purely cosmetic redo – we’re not moving pipes, we’re not ripping out the shower insert (even though it hides a window. Thanks, stupid former owners!), and we’re not planning to do anything that could appear to be a quick fix but then turns into a major freaking deal. Which happens 150% of the time in bathroom and kitchen redos, right?

Also, I’m thinking that since this floor is peel-and-stick vinyl tile, we can just stick a new layer of peel-and-stick vinyl tile on top, right? Maybe sand it first? It doesn’t have a texture, really, so it should just stick on, right? (Someone please tell me this is as easy as it looks.)

To the left:

bathroom: before

You can’t really see it behind the towel, but there’s a Totally Awesome old laundry chute on this wall.And ofcourse the best shower head! I made fun of it when we first looked at the house but I have come to completely adore it. Everything falls into a laundry basket right near the washing machine. It’s perfect!

To the right:

bathroom: before

You can see the “vanity” here. I put that in quotes because in reality it is just a bunch of plywood assembled into a vanity-shaped object. But I fear that removing it will make chaos ensue, so we’re going to repaint it and call that good enough.

And here is Hideous Light Fixture #1. The 80s loved their theatre dressing room lights, didn’t they? We also have the “medicine cabinet”, which is really just a void in the wall and these two framed mirrors attached as doors. Removing the doors to paint and then putting them back up doesn’t seem like it would be too dangerous. Also it’s HUGE compared to most medicine cabinets and I really don’t want to decrease the amount of stuff we store there.

bathroom: before

From the back (in the shower):

bathroom: before

Bonus dog appearance!

And up above:

bathroom: before

And that is Hideous Light Fixture #2. Which, like a lot of things here, should probably be in quotes. It is a recessed area in the ceiling, framed with the plainest base trim molding available at Home Despot, with a basic fluorescent tube fixture mounted right in the middle. Yep, right where that aluminum slat rests to hold up the two pieces of plexi or whatever the hell that stuff is. I struggle to imagine what the person who installed this was thinking.

I put out a quick paint color poll on twitter/fb earlier this week and a lot of people recommended going with other shades of grey, since the fixtures are grey. I picked up a couple of paint chips at Home Despot and set them on the oh-so-lovely green faux marble countertop to see how they look.

bathroom: before

What do you think? Is there some other color that would tie together the green of the countertop and the grey of the fixtures? Or is introducing another color just pushing it? There do seem to be a fair number of greeny grey paints out there. As you can see above, the towels we have right now are either purple or a wheat sort of color (same as the bathmats.) (They went with the decor in the bathroom at our previous house.) And what can we do about these light fixtures? I’m ALL EARS, people!

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Auf Wiedersehen, weed tree!

Behind the garage, there’s a bit of space that has been mostly taken up by this really ugly weed tree. It shaded the area, hung over the garage, and made it impossible to access a majority of the space back there.

compost bin behind the garage

We had pruned the lower branches but it was definitely growing back in full form. The photo above is older (I show it because it illustrates the bushy lower branches that grow in every summer), but here’s what it looked like a little over a month ago:

behind the garage

Today I got motivated, dragged K out with me, and we took that motherfucker out!

behind the garage

Nice stump, eh?

weed tree stump

Another day soon, when this has dried out a bit and we have more energy, we’ll take the Sawsall to it again and get it down even closer to the ground. I’m also planning to spray it with pruning seal, so it can’t continue to grow.

Here’s a view of the entire area, including the existing compost bins. We’ll also take out those branches and chop them up sometime soon. I just didn’t have the energy after doing all the other work today.

behind the garage

I need to come up with a plan for how to use this area now that it’s more accessible. I’m toying with the idea of making new compost bins farther in (perhaps using these? A bit pricey but cool) and then extending the existing veg garden into this area, but I’d also like to do something to hide this ugly fence. Oh, and to keep people from hopping over the fence, which they seem to like to do (on the far end – they go through on the other side of the garage). We hung a No Trespassing sign on the fence today after clearing out the brush, but I’m wondering if there are any quick-growing plants that would climb up the fence and be thorny/otherwise discouraging to potential fence-hoppers. The other factor is that there’s a manhole cover at the far end (that dirty, smudgy looking area), which obviously can’t be covered up or made completely inaccessible. Anyone have any ideas? What would you do it if it were your area?

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