Juggling Johns

Since the day we first saw the house, we knew we wanted to redo the bathrooms. We’re very lucky to have a 1930’s period house with 2 full bathrooms on the second floor.


But as the years went on in the home we realized that between the 2 rooms, we really only have about 1.5 functioning bathrooms.

IMG_1681The white bathroom (aka main bath or large bath) looks the nicest in pictures. Pictures can be misleading.

IMG_2690Ew. That white tile? Yeah, not originally white. That would be a VERY poorly done glaze. Mold started growing between the original tile and glaze. Totes gross people. Also, some were cracked, chipping, and the built in tower bars were practically falling off the walls.


And the shower fixtures, let’s just say this modern city gal never learned her way around 5 different knobs. It’s not that I’m completely slow, one of the knobs could be spun like the Wheel of Fortune wheel. Come on big money! Sadly the spinning knob did not yield grand prizes or results of any kind. If fact, the pressure coming out of the shower head was so minimal we became convinced there was a slow leak or drip happening behind the tiles.

We began using the tub to give Lottie baths only, and showering in the pink bath, attached to her room. Scratching your head yet?


Thankfully, both toilets worked, and we eventually replaced the pink toilet for a newer all white model (sorry seashell toilet seat) in Lottie’s bathroom, but then the sink faucet started dripping. Blergh.


We started looking at costs, layouts, how we wanted each room to function long term. Things on my wish list were more storage, a deep soaker tub, and more light. Most importantly, I wanted beautiful tile with modern taste in color, but that still paid tribute to the period of the house.

Lee’s list included proper function, better ventilation, and materials he could easily try his hand at DIYing.

Both bathrooms were going to require a full gut job, but in the white bath, we could reuse the toilet and pedestal sink, which were new as of the previous owner.


In the pink bath, everything needed to be replaced (aside from the toilet we had already taken care of) but in addition, the whole room needed to be reworked and expanded, which means we’re going to be moving some plumbing. Also, despite it’s U-G-L-Y color and layout, it has a functioning shower. So we decided it makes the most sense to reno the white bath while we have functional (albiet undesireable) use of the pink one.

And decision folks, took us almost 3 months. Then all we had to do was actually refinish it! Should take about a 3rd of the time. That’s how we operate. 🙂 Up next: Plumber’s bids, tile shopping and demoing this: (spoiler alert)

IMG_2725That’s about an inch of concrete behind the tile, then a layer of steel mesh! Good thing my man is big and strong 😉


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