master bathroom before after entry

After months of planning and three weeks of construction, the master bathroom renovation is done! I am thrilled with the results and the photos speak for themselves.

before after vanity2

The biggest change was transforming the shower stall into a vanity for my husband.  While it was never a hardship to share one vanity, having two is superb. There are many things I love about the new vanities: there’s a medicine cabinet! Two drawers of storage! My favorite is the One Forty Three light. I love color but kept the finishes neutral. The light is my one pop of color and it makes me smile. One Forty Three made them in a custom size and color but they were still affordable at $175 each.

before after mb vanitiy1

A million times better, right?  The bathroom feels larger and the amount of storage we gained is insane. I *actually* don’t have enough stuff to put in the medicine cabinet, vanity drawers and the tall cabinet near the tub.

before after tub

For the floors, I used a 14″ x 16″ porcelain tile by Storka. For the tub and the vanity alcoves, I used a 1.9″ x 7.8″ matte white subway tile laid vertically.  I can’t find a link for it but it came from Home Depot. I also added 2 overhead 9″ LED lights from ylighting.  The faucets and shower are by Moen, the Eva line.

Next on the agenda is adding art and accessories.

Shout out to Justin Mattice of Mattice Designs for taking my ideas and making them into a reality. He was instrumental in sourcing the tile, cabinets, and vanities. He was also really patient. I had 8000 questions and concerns.

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chevron doorOn Friday, my husband and I took the train to Philly to visit with some cousins.  It was fast and furious but tons of fun.

My cousin took Friday off and set up an epic walking tour of the city. We explored a couple of new (to us) neighborhoods like Fishtown and Northern Liberties. This crazy door is the entrance to Frankford Hall, one of the many beer gardens that populate Philly. We also stopped off at the La Columbe and grabbed a snack from Snap Kitchen.

Side note: I’m fascinated by Snap Kitchen. It’s a fast casual, healthy meal shop and I can eat the majority of the stuff in there.  Do you know HOW EXCITING that is???  I asked if they were going to open on in DC and they said “real estate is expensive”.  Le sigh.  Anyway..I tried their Silken Chocolate Mousse and it was delicious.  Imagine-Vegan, Dairy and Gluten Free mousse and it was actually *delicious*.  See why I got excited?


My cousin also knows how much I love decor shops and took us to one of his favorites, Minima. This store is incredible! FYI-they said a lot of their clients live in DC.  If this type of furniture is your jam, check out their website or better yet, go visit.


On Saturday, there was an art fair in Rittenhouse Square. We meandered through the show and my favorite part was the poppies. Next we did some shopping. Just like on our last trip to Philly, we hit Joan Shep, EYEsite and Egan Day.  Do not miss these shops next time you’re visiting.  They’re so fun!

In between all the walking and shopping, we also ate and drank well. We had lunch at High Street on Market (my husband LOVED his roasted pork with fermented broccoli rabe sandwich), cocktails at Circa Green and dinner at Veda. 

While it was a whirlwind trip (we were there a a little over 24 hours..I had to work on Sunday) we had a blast. Thanks for showing us your city, cousins!!

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master bath before1

After months and months of planning, the master bathroom renovation has begun!  It started on Monday and currently the bathroom is a big mess. They’ve torn out everything and slowly, what I imagined is coming to life.  It’s exciting and I can’t wait until it’s finished. Already I’ve been daydreaming about my own vanity.  It’s not been a hardship to share but it’s going to be amazing when we both have our own space. We’re on track to finish everything at the end of next week except the new counter tops.  Updates forthcoming!


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bathroom plans1

Earlier this year, I mentioned I was going to renovate my master bathroom. Happily, things are progressing and I have plans!! (I’m going to use a lot of !! in this post as I’m super excited).

This is the first time I’ve ever had use plans when doing a project in the condo.  When I renovated the hallway bath, I knew I wasn’t changing much.  I painted the original vanity, swapped out the fixtures and re-tiled.

bathroom plans2

This renovation is going to require more finesse.  I’m converting the shower stall into a vanity for my husband and keeping the tub. While neither of us like to take a soak, it’s the only one in the house.  For resale, it’s important to keep at least one bath tub. Some buyers are really attached to their baths!

I’m retiling everything, adding an angled cabinet for storage, replacing the vanities, adding medicine cabinets and new light fixtures.

The tile I mentioned in this post was no bueno in person.  It was frustrating and a good lesson. Make sure you get samples!  I was sure it was “the one” and it wasn’t! Gah.

The next step is organizing the timeline and getting the materials ordered. I’m shooting for the reno to begin mid to late May.  Hopefully it’ll all work out! Stay tuned.




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vertical tile

I’m still waiting on one more quote for renovating the master bathroom but I’ve already decided on the tile I’d like to use.

Last week, Amber Interiors published this gorgeous bathroom.  It’s so amazing!  Stylistically, it won’t work in my condo but it can definitely influence some choices.

cement line tile

For the floors, I love the idea of Moroccan influenced tile. However, a more modern look will work better in my place like this white and grey hexagon cement tile. It adds visual interest but I don’t think it’ll date itself in five years.

I also love the vertical tile in the shower in Amber Interiors photo except I plan to use a matte white tile in around the bathtub and in the vanity nooks.

What do you think?  Yea or nea to the floor tile?

 photo via Amber Interiors

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master bath inspo

In 2016, I had grand plans to renovate both the bathrooms in my condo. Instead, I went on some kick ass trips and renovated one of my bathrooms (priorities people!).  The master bathroom is on the schedule for 2017 and I’ve started getting quotes. When it’s all said and done, I hope it’s going to look similar to the photo above, a bathroom designed by Alexander Design.  How gorgeous is that bathroom???

master bath before1

This is my master bath.  Excuse the disaster that’s my towel storage but hey..real life. As you can see, it’s ugly and the space isn’t used well.  First, we have a tub and a shower stall.  We don’t use the shower stall and I’m getting rid of it.  I’m keeping the tub because I think all homes should have at least one tub and our second bathroom has a shower.  The shower stall I’m converting into a sink for my husband so we’ll have two: one on each side.  All of the tile is getting ripped out, I’m replacing the toilet with something more modern and storage is going to added next to the tub.

vanity master bathroom bye

This is the current vanity situation. It’s going “bye bye bye” and I can’t wait. It’s been functional for the last 10 years but it’s time to upgrade it. I’m imagining white, modern vanities with marble or quartz countertops. Our bathroom doesn’t have a window and I want the space to look bright.

While the project will likely take place sometime in May/June, the prep has begun.

First photo via Domaine magazine. The rest of the house is amazing too!

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bathroom after bed1

Although the guest bathroom renovation finished in July, it wasn’t photo worthy until recently.  I’m thrilled with the final result!

before after guest bathroom bed

It’s unbelievable how new tile adds to a space.  For the floor, I chose a 5 x 5 carrera marble hexagon tile.  It’s a small space so it made a big impact.  I used a matte white subway tile and grey grout for the rest of the  bathroom. I am overjoyed not to see brown, builder grade tile anymore.

before after shower stall

My only regret is not adding a niche in the shower wall for shampoo and soap.  I can’t believe I spaced on adding one!

before after guest bath hallway

I also replaced the original toilet with a Toto dual flush toilet, tiled behind the toilet for a more cohesive look, added a shut off valve for the shower and switched the shower hardware to match the sink hardware.

The art is by Kristi Kohut as detailed in this post.  The ocean print above the towel bar is from Urban Outfitters.  It’s by Tina Crespo and it says “the cure for anything is salt water. sweat, tears, or the sea”.  True words.

Total cost was around $3,000 for labor and materials.

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Wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday season!  I’m at home in NC, the mantel is decorated and Christmas Eve prep has begun. This year, I went with a classic red, white and silver palette on the mantel. Mom approves and that’s all that counts.  Merry everything!

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flush mountsI have an ongoing list in my head of stuff I want to change in our home.  Since I’ve started the great bathroom renovations of 2016, I want to do it all at once. This isn’t realistic but it’s fun to dream.

This week I went down the flush mount rabbit hole. It started with Emily Henderson’s post (so.many.good.choices. I would buy this one and this one if they came in a matte silver finish….but they don’t.  Boohoo.) I know this is a minor detail and most people don’t notice them but I do. Ours are boring little bubbles and I can’t stand them.  Sure they’re functional but blurgh.  I want interesting and pretty!

The current rage is a soft brass finish but I’m sticking with matte silver.  While I love the look a brass finish, I’m always thinking about resale and buyers still aren’t on board. If you’re a design geek, you’re all over it.  However 90% of buyers have no idea what’s expensive or cheap and all they see is brass and they say “yuck”.

Which one do you like?

lucerne flush mount

square 1 flush mount

cadence flush mount

puck flush mount

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krisit kohutMy bathroom reno began this week and I’m on the hunt for art to finish the space. When it was dark grey and camel, I had a series of black and white photos with black frames.  Now that it’s going to be light and white, I want to add colorful prints with white frames.  When I was tooling around the web, I discovered Kristi Kohut and I love her playful style.  What do you think?  Too girlie (that’s a lot of hot pink) or just right?

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I have a penchant for changing things up in the condo.  I’ve painted kitchen cabinets, redesigned the living room, added art in the foyer and updated the guest bathroom about 15 times.  For a long time, I didn’t want to invest in any major renovations because I thought we’d sell this place.  Now that a Whole Foods is being built across the street, we’re here for the duration.  While I’d love to have a back yard, two parking spaces and a Whole Foods trumps all in DC.

This year, I’ve decided to invest in renovating the bathrooms.  In the guest bathroom, I’m going to retile.  As you can see from the photo on the left, we have some nasty builder grade tan tile.  I hate tan.  It’s boring and bland. I know there’s people who think beige is the best thing that ever happened but not me. It gives me the shivers. I still love everything else about the bathroom but the tile has to go.


For the floors, I’ve chosen a 5×5 Carrera marble tile to match the vanity in the guest bathroom.  For the shower, I’m going with your basic white subway tile. The tile guys are going to lay it in a cool pattern and I’m using a light grey grout. While the project won’t begin till sometime in July, I’m already envisioning the final results.

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victoriatelierI know some people find Etsy overwhelming but I love it.  I enjoy supporting small businesses, the variety of prices appeals to me and it’s not cookie cutter. Whenever I’m shopping for home goods, I check out Etsy first.

VictoriAtelier.  When I was redecorating my living room last year, I stumbled across the VictoriAtelier shop.  I purchased an original 23 x 23 oil painting for $165.  It’s gorgeous and every time I see it, I smile.  Her work is colorful and abstract (my favorite!). She lives in Spain so it took a couple of weeks to reach me and was in perfect shape when it arrived.

urban pillowUrban Pillow I enjoy a colorful throw pillow and it’s the accessory I change the most. Therefore, I don’t want spend $150 for a pillow. Urban Pillow has a wonderful selection that costs between $22-36.  It’s only the cover. You have to provide the insert yourself but those are easy to find too!



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