Welcome back to a new year and a brand new week! First I must say “Yay for the return of Downton Abbey!” I’ve ignored all spoilers and enjoyed the beginning of Season 5 last night with a cup of tea as a Sunday evening January tradition!
I thought I’d kick off the year with one of the projects we completed during our holiday stay at the fixer house in Las Vegas. A few months ago I posted about plans for the master bathroom vanity and went back and forth between stain and paint but opted for gray paint for two reasons. 1) I’ve had mixed success staining oak, often it enhances the grain and always requires stripping varnish which is more work. 2) Since natural light comes only from adjacent rooms it made sense to go with a pale paint instead of dark stain in this vanity space.
We began this remodel by repurposing instead of replacing the existing vanity to save money. After removing the old mirror and countertop, we updated by transforming the builder grade cabinet into a floating vanity raised to a 33″ height.
To achieve the look and new height, first we extended the floor tile so that it would continue all the way to the back wall. My Dad helped Matt modify and install the cabinet. They cut off the old base with a jigsaw so only the vanity cabinet remained.
Next they hoisted up the vanity so that it sat at a new height of 33″ (with countertop and plywood base it will be 34 ½”) instead of the old 29″ height which felt too low.
The guys secured it to the wall with the help of 2x4s. They added “legs” in the corners and 2×4 boards along the back to support the base, making sure there was enough space for the plumbing to clear the bottom of the cabinet base at its raised height. Additional 2x4s helped secure the sides of the vanity cabinet to the wall to the studs.
I had an idea to swap the doors around, as nice as the raised panel cabinet doors were, I thought I’d experiment and swap the door fronts, flipping around the back to expose the Shaker style instead.
I filled in any cracks and the holes from where the old hinges were attached with spackling then sanded it before priming.
I also beveled the edges of the drawer fronts, removing the curved ogee edge with an orbital sander so they were refinished as curved and smooth.
Primer and paint assisted with the disguised reversed doors and sanded drawer fronts, I’m so pleased with the outcome !
I followed the same steps for painting as with this bathroom cabinet makeover – priming first with Zinsser’s oil based bonding primer then following up with Benjamin Moore paint in Winter Solstice, a pale grey with a hint of blue. Since the wood is oak in this case, I applied two coats of primer and three coats of paint to help fill in the grain.
To hide the exposed plumbing pipe and 2×4 supports I added a 10″ board beneath the cabinet as a faux rear wall.
I’m going to change out the exposed hinges in the near future for hidden ones, for now I just painted over the old ones. We pulled out both of the old medicine cabinets and brass ring towel holders and replaced the medicine cabinet on the right of the vanity with a modern beveled edge version, the hole on the left will be framed and patched with sheetrock to make room for a longer towel bar instead, leaving room for art above.
Chrome fixtures, tile, and oval white mirrors will finish off the vanity area.
We’re going back and forth on replacing the tile in the shower room – it’s basic 4×4 white ceramic tile, old and a bit plain for a master bathroom. I’ll post an update if we go forward with a remodel in there.
My next step is to find the perfect white countertop, my research continues on the best solid surface for the space!
More Bathroom Makeover posts from the past: