Queen Anne Bath: The Result
Did you read up on the design direction for this Queen Anne condo bath? Good. Here is the rest of the story.
After deciding on a rough plan and color palate etc, I sourced all the stone hex tile I could find. And every shade of light gray subway tile ever. Well, all the ones that seemed to be a reasonable price, and simple finish. It was actually huge amounts of fun, mixing and matching and watching how the shades of gray played together. One combo made this tile look green, but with the other hex tile it looked purple. Science. My design lab assistant, Nox, was instrumental.
The tile meeting with my client was swift and decisive. Slate hex tile from Home Depot made the team, as did a matte "dorian gray" subway tile from Seattle Tile Company. We both loved the slate tile, and although it came on mesh sheets for easier install, there is a huge height variance from tile to tile. The contractor was less than excited, let me tell you, but I gave it my all to find another small scale slate hex tile, and I struck out. Seriously, I dare you to try to find some. So we ordered a little extra so we could pick out the worst height offenders and replace them.
Okay, so now that we had all the big stuff purchased an on its way, it was finally demo time. No going back! Ahhhhhhh! No no no. Relax. It's going to be so great. Deep breaths. So great.
And so it began. Very messy. Very fun.
As expected, the drywall could not be salvaged. Those pink tiles all the way around the room had some serious cementing which just tore the walls to shreds, and since the room had no insulation, it was an opportunity to make it more cozy. And if you know me at all, you know that coziness is my top priority. Although Seattle winter is not what I would call harsh, once this insulation went in I could instantly feel a difference in the warmth of the room. Toasty toasty.
Now you may have noticed, that the client elected to keep her existing tub. I was totally on board with that. It was budget friendly, and eco friendly. And since it was cast iron, back friendly, as we didn't need to have anyone carry it down a few flights of stairs. We did think it might need refinishing, but the contractor gave it a deep clean, and it came out bright and shiny.
Next, the walls were rebuilt and in went the the new floor!
For me, once the tile goes in, a bath transformation just accelerates so fast into forming this tangible new space. And when I received this photo from the contractor just a few days later, I had an instant sense of accomplishment. Sure, it wasn't close to done, but we had hit some mark that subtly tipped the scales into "yup, this is all going to work out" territory. It really wasn't a moment of ego, it was just a sense of knowing. Like if you're an avid baker, you can look down at a cake in the oven, even before its all the way done, and have confidence that all is well, it's going to be delicious. So when I got this photo, I thought, "yup, that looks yummy."
Last but super duper not least, we chose a paint color for the upper walls.
We went with the darkest charcoal shade for a number of reasons. 1) It was exciting. 2) The lighter tones were too close on either the light side or dark side of the shower tile. And we didn't want it to blend too much or look odd. 3) it was a great tone match for the slate floor. 4) You can always repaint, especially the upper half of semi-short walls.
Lets pause for one moment, to talk about a design challenge and compromise. Every project has some, that's just life. But obviously don't tell me that in the moment because I will become enraged and refuse to accept "just life". But afterwards, totally. Live Laugh Love or Whatever. It looks great. And in this case it really does.
So here is the story, I would have preferred for the vanity to float in front of the wainscoting, like a piece of furniture. But unlike my bathroom, where the vertical boards magically lined up with the edge of the vanity (which I now realize was amazing, because I didn't plan that out), the spacing repeats in here did not, and there would have been an inch or so gap between the vanity back and the wall on either side. It didn't bother me, but I could see how it would be bother some, and since in this tight space, an inch or so is precious, the contractor suggested we "build in" the vanity. Confused? Visual aids to the rescue.
In this case, I let the client choose what made sense to her, and she went with option B. Is it ideal? No, but there were a lot of factors to consider, and ideeeeaaaalllly, the bathroom would have been bigger, brighter and filled with baby bunnies. So it was the right call, and in the end, looks seamless. Which is all one can ask for.
The Final Result
And then the next time I visited the site it was done! Horaaaahhh! Who is ready for the pretty pictures? Me!
So what are you thoughts? Better right? :)
I am so happy with how everything came together. This bathroom has such a quiet confidence now. And is a great mix of tailored and organic. Sleek and matte. Crisp and cozy.
This bathroom would bring champagne on a picnic under the pines. And I would definitely drink some. *clink*
- Wall Paint: "Arctic Seal" by Benjamin Moore
- Trim Paint: "Super White" by Benjamin Moore
- Floor Tile: Merola tile/ Home Depot
- Shower Surround Rile: "Dorian Gray" 3x6 ceramic tile at Seattle Tile Company
- Vanity and Sink: Ikea (painted by me)
- Lighting: Progress Lighting
- Faucet: Kohler
- Shower Kit: Pfister
- Shower curtain: Target