I See London…

We wanted to make a quick post about something we’ve been working on for quite some time now…our bathroom theme! Introducing, the world’s cutest and most awesomely-themed bathroom (own horn = tooted). The theme for our bathroom is “I See London, I See France…” Pretty clever, huh?

Bathroom Decor Wide

I’m a total Pinterest freak – absorbing as much media as I possibly can at a clip, even if I’m never going to bake that fancy pie or DIY that pallet coffee table, I like seeing it, reading about it and being inspired. So, although Pinterest and the internet cannot take full credit for this idea, I must say I am always inspired by what I see out there. I’ve never seen or heard of anyone else doing this same theme for a bathroom. However, inspiration for the little details comes from all over:

Bathroom Canvas Prints

  1. White ceramic faux animal head: You’ve probably seen these before, mostly in the form of a deer an antelope, or some other long-horned creature. Ours comes in the form of the majestic, elegant creature that is…the English Bulldog. Our inspiration for the piece had to do with a few things: 1. It was 5 bucks at Christmas Tree Shops. 2. We like the faux animal head idea, especially the all-white look. And 3. This little guy:Crumpler the English BulldogThis 65-pound beast beauty is none other than Crumpler. Some of our devoted readers and followers know him well. For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure, just take it all in – this little bugger is a true English gent with a colorful personality and a face only a mother could love. Cheerio!
  2. White floating shelves: We used this in a different space in our last house. Now that we have a normal-sized bathroom, we thought they would make a lot of sense in this space. Now we just need to really deck them out with some more London and France-themed things.
  3. Canvas prints: These museum-quality canvas prints come from one of the many online spots where you can fashion your personal prints onto just about anything. I made both graphics in Photoshop and we used EasyCanvasPrints.com to get these fun and vibrant pieces of art slapped onto a canvas. Nice touch with the “Oui Oui”, right? Gotta love bathroom humor…

We also have an older piece of wall art featuring a sketched, black and white Big Ben. This fit perfectly with the theme, so of course it belongs in the bathroom.

Big Ben Avery Tillmon

We still have one blank wall to fill, which just means more London and France-themed fun to be had.

Our love of London comes from the time Andrew and I spent abroad, studying in Kingston-Upon-Thames back in college. You can read all about that here.

Bathroom Before and After

Tally-ho, monsieur!

A Room of a Different Color

We’ve already talked a lot about painting in house #2, especially since that’s what we have been doing non-stop since we got the keys. We told you all about our love for using National Trust for Historic Preservation colors from Valspar and what the heck a “Hotel St. Francis Clay Angel” is, but we still just have so much to say about paint!

In our last house, we painted cabinets, doors, ceilings, trim, walls, tiles…you name it, we painted it! You can read about all these projects here:

Painting Walls
Painting Ceilings
Painting Kitchen Cabinets
Painting Doors
Painting Trim

Needless to say, we had a lot of leftover paint from our first house, so, naturally, we wanted to bring it along with us in case we found a need/want for it in house #2. We are definitely glad we did because there are a few colors we re-used in the new place!

Valspar’s Wave’s Crest

You may recall, we had 2 bedrooms in house #1. At first, we used the 2nd bedroom as an office. We originally painted this room a bright yellow color and quickly realized it was just too much. Then we started our subtle revolution! That’s when we fell in love with Wave’s Crest. We ended up revamping the office and turning it into more of a guest space, added some new, sophisticated bamboo blinds, a futon and the calming touch of Wave’s Crest.

Wave's Crest Office

We loved Wave’s Crest so much, we decided to bring this color into our master bedroom at the new house. This color is so interesting! In house #1, it really looked like a very light, blue-ish gray or slate color. In house #2, it looks almost minty green! Perhaps it has to do with the color of the floors. In house #1, the floors were darker and in house #2 they are more of a light maple color. Either way, we found this to be quite fascinating. I didn’t think I could love Wave’s Crest more, but I think I do now. 😉

Master Wave's Crest

Valspar’s Vanilla Steam

In house #1, we used Vanilla Steam when we painted our kitchen. We painted the kitchen tiles with our favorite go-to white color, Du Jour, and used Vanilla Steam to paint the walls above the tiles. This color is somewhat of a greige (gray-beige). However, it can pull a slight pinkish hue, depending on the light.

Final Painted Kitchen and Tile

In house #2, we used Vanilla Steam in our dining room. There is so much light in this new house (which we’re really excited about!), so Vanilla Steam is perfect here. It does give off that almost pinkish hue, but I think overall, it flows very nicely with the rest of the colors in the house so far!

Dining Room Vanilla Steam

Behr’s Fresh Day

This is a bathroom color, through and through! We used Fresh Day in the bathroom of house #1 and we used it again here in house #2. The serene feeling of a blue hue in the bathroom is calming and, well, clean! The before and after going from the previous owner’s green color to this lovely light blue is dramatic! It makes the mirrors and cabinets look completely different and we love it!

Bathroom before and after

Valspar Fresh Day

We like to be adventurous, but we learned (the hard way) that if you’re too adventurous you end up with bad color flow from room to room. That’s why this time around, we opted to go for clean, subtle hues that were true to the classic, beach-y Cape Cod style of this house. We branched out with new-to-us colors like the sandy-hued Hotel St. Francis Clay Angel for the main living spaces in the house, as well as La Fonda Ecru, used in our small spare room. All in all, every color we are using in this house is true to the era, true to the home, and truly our style.

Doorbusters, Part 1

If there’s something strange, in your neighborhood…who ya gonna call? Doorbusters?? You read that right; Doorbusters. Let’s face it. The doors in our home are super strange “and they don’t look good” (I swear I’ll stop with the Ghostbusters references now). So we decided a simple upgrade would go a long way. Of course, nothing we ever do is simple because this house was built from scratch by the previous owner and it was a 1-owner home. Until now, no one has come in and done a major overhaul on the place.

We currently have what are called Luan doors.

Luan door

They are flat-panel and plain, plain, plain. Not to mention, they’re all painted/stained with this ugly brown color and you know our mantra; “down with brown.” Obviously we needed to eliminate these awful doors, but challenges presented themselves almost immediately. No two doors or doorways in our home are alike! The office and our bedroom are identical in size, yet the doors and doorways are off by a quarter inch or so.

Since we knew this wouldn’t be easy, we decided to start off with ordering just one door – the bathroom. It’s the smaller of the 3 doors and would ultimately present the biggest challenge, so we figured if we could get this one right, we could definitely do the other 2 no problem.

We ordered our door from our trusty friends in Millwork over at our local Lowes. The same person who sold us our Pergo flooring for our kitchen helped us with our door. While we were at it, we ordered two bi-fold doors for the closets in the office, shown below with the old dingy doors removed.

Office closets without doors

The bi-fold doors will also be 6 panel, giving us that clean-cut, new home look we’ve been craving.

Of course, nothing in our house is a standard size, including the doors. Thus, we had to special order. This upped the price a bit from about $30 per door to $50 or so, but no matter what we did, the door was going to have to be custom. The bathroom door arrived about 2 weeks after we ordered it (the bi-folds are still M.I.A.) so we picked it up and blocked out an entire Sunday to tame the beast. We started by laying the door down on a drop cloth so we could paint the 1st side. We went about our business and once the paint dried on side 1, we flipped the sucker over and painted side 2.

While waiting for side 2 to dry, we ran out to Lowes and got all the supplies we needed; new hinges, new wood screws and a new door knob. Then it was time for the hard part…cutting the hole for the door knob. Andrew has gotten really good at using the jigsaw and other cutting tools. We do a lot of cutting in our house, not sure why. Anyway…this handy door lock install kit was really easy to use.

Door lock kit

Door lock kit

The pictures don’t show the door “before” but we started with a solid door. We measured the height and attached the Irwin Door Lock Template. The template came with a saw that attaches and is powered by a regular drill. The saw cuts the hole for the door knob as well as the side, without moving or removing the template. It’s not like cutting through solid hard wood or anything so the whole process is relatively quick and easy.

In retrospect, maybe we should have cut the hole for the door knob/lock first and then painted because we ended up having to touch up some marks that were made in the cutting process. I think that’s what we’ll have to do when we tackle the rest of the doors.

Once the holes were cut, we installed the lock and door knob.

Cutting out a door knob

Installing a door knob

Then it was onto the hinges. And that, my friends, is a story for another day. Cutting for hinges requires chiseling and we just don’t have the time or the space to continue this saga right now. You’ll have to check back for our next update to see how it all turned out!