{Before & After} The Guest Bath

I have been teasing and teasing about this sweet little room. We did this back in August. August. And I’m just now dishing on the details. What can I say? We’ve been living (and peeing, a lot) since then.

Let’s just take a look at the before. But, you have to endure a story before I show you the after. Or, you can just scroll down and ignore the chatty. Your call. That photo on the left? That’s the before, before. As in, that’s how the homeowner’s “cleaned up” before they showed the house. And we wondered why it sat on the market three months. This is why. The photo on the right was my attempt to make it better. I mean, at least I got rid of the fish and that horrific bath mat. And, please excuse the wonky lighting. This bathroom gets no natural light so I did the best I could.

guest bath_01

Here’s your story. The vanity started falling apart probably because the previous 10-year homeowners only used this bathroom. That’s right, there were three other bathrooms in the house and they all crammed in this one. When we replaced the over-the-sink fixture we found live wires just hanging out by the studs. No junction box, just wires. Electricians usually call that “house fire.” So, the vanity. We found a great steal at Home Depot and bought it. We knew we had enough extra tiles to accommodate the difference. We just knew it. After we got the kids in bed one night, we smashed that bad boy up and put it on the front sidewalk. And then we went to check on the tiles. At 11pm. It probably would’ve been a good idea to reverse those steps. Either way, we had NO more tiles, a smashed up vanity and pipes now sticking out of our wall. In addition, the new vanity didn’t fit. The pipes were just two-inches too far to the right for it to fit flush against the wall.

You know where this is headed.

Let’s do a quick recap. New vanity, new floor and plumber to fix the pipes. I figured if we were doing all that, we might as well just finish the job. It’s at this point Scott said, “This is going to be a bigger project than what we thought.” Someday I’ll have to tell you how a 3-inch hole in the wall resulted into painting our entire entry and dining room.

Now, for the after.

guest bath, blog_018We hired out the tile work (yes, that wood floor is actually tile) and the plumbing, but Scott did the painting, the electrical, the baseboards and the crown molding. Thanks to his dad, he’s pretty darn handy. We kept the toilet and left the shower tile alone. It was all perfectly fine. We figured if we were going to splurge on shower tile, it was going to be in our hideous master bath. Our next project in 2020 when we save up the money.

Here’s your details:
The vanity that started it all. Oh my gosh I love this thing. The basket and towels I already had in a closet, they just got relocated. That big drawer on the bottom is perfect for our storage needs and it even came with the granite top and coordinating mirror. I’ve had that candle holder nearly 15 years and the soap dispenser? My new favorite frugal find from Bed Bath & Beyond. You just add clear handsoap to the soap line, then fill with water. Voila. You’ve saved yourself some massive buckaroos. Did you know that foam soap is 90% water? You do now.

guest bath, blog_025

guest bath, blog_02The ceiling! We decided to give the room some depth and paint the ceiling a different color, add crown moulding and update the light fixture. {Scott says it’s the last crown moulding he’ll ever install.} I still say it’s the best thing we did in the bathroom – to anchor both the floor and the ceiling in the same color and then lighten the walls. See, it does pay to watch HGTV.

We spray painted the red star a pewter color, to match the fixtures, and we replaced the shower bar and curtain. Speaking of that curtain. That was a bargain find at Bed, Bath & Beyond. I couldn’t find it in the bins, so I asked the sales associate. She said they didn’t have any more, but if I was willing to take the store sample, she’d give it to me 40% off. Yes, please. Love its texture, but because I’m the mom of stray pee-ers, that curtain stays pulled back for obvious reasons. One has to be practical.

guest bath, blog_037

The touches of Texas. I found the artwork in a book, This is Texas, a vintage-y find on Amazon. I scanned in my four favorite pages (Amarillo, Wichita Falls, San Antonio and the map of Texas), then put them in IKEA frames and painted the mats brown. In total, I think it was $25. The stars and “go to hell” quote from Davy Crockett have long been favorites of mine, picked up at the Bob Bullock Museum and my husband’s hometown. We wanted the bathroom to be Texas, but not all red, white and blue. I love how it turned out.

guest bath, blog_03

guest bath, blog_019One last gander at the real before and after.Guest Bathroom

This explains why my oldest told me last week, “Mom, sometimes I come downstairs to pee because this is the nicest bathroom in the house.” That, my friends, is called a parenting WIN. Let’s just hope he doesn’t pee on the shower curtain.

Paint colors
Walls: Glass of Milk (Martha Stewart, Home Depot, semi-gloss)
Ceiling: Rave Raisin (Behr, Home Depot, semi-gloss)
Trim: Muslin White (Glidden, Home Depot, semi-gloss)

To see more before and afters, just click on over to the house tour.


  1. Jill L on December 4, 2013 at 7:54 am

    Looks wonderful!! Don’t you love how a little project turns out to be HUGE!!! Same thing happens to us. BTW, I was looking for that same shower curtain but didn’t bother to ask. Guess I know for the next time.

  2. Nicole on December 4, 2013 at 8:18 am

    Oh my word! LOVE this. That shower curtain is so great. Love the dark ceiling and those tile floors. The vanity pulls it all together. Nicely done!

    • Beth on October 5, 2016 at 7:38 pm

      The shower curtain is Gigi from bath body works…is one in pic cream or white?

      • Kathryn on October 6, 2016 at 1:58 am


  3. Megan Ryan on December 4, 2013 at 8:24 am

    And where can one find the frugal favorite soap dispenser?

    • Kathryn on December 4, 2013 at 11:30 am

      Bed Bath & Beyond! I think it was $5 and the money we’ve saved in NOT buying foam soap has been HUGE!

      • Jenna on June 18, 2015 at 9:10 pm

        Where did u purchase the shower curtain?

        • Kathryn on June 18, 2015 at 11:02 pm

          Bed Bath & Beyond

          • Kettia Charles on September 7, 2015 at 9:44 pm

            Tried looking for that shower curtain but can’t seem to find it online. Help?

          • Kathryn on September 8, 2015 at 8:23 am

            I’ve only seen it in stores here in Austin and haven’t looked online. So sorry!

  4. verdinalouisa on December 4, 2013 at 8:53 am

    You’ve done it again! You (and Scott) are amazing! I watch HGTV all the time and just marvel at the imagination some people (like you) have. The pipe thing reminded me of “Love it or List it”! Poor Hillary… something major always trips her up.

    God bless!

  5. Abbey on December 4, 2013 at 9:28 am

    Can you tell us your paint colors?

    • Kathryn on December 4, 2013 at 11:32 am

      Abbey, I just updated the post with all of that. Thanks for the reminder!

  6. Karen on December 4, 2013 at 11:50 am

    That is AMAZING! I love the wood/tile floor.

  7. Susan on December 4, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the ceiling!! I’m stashing the pic away with my “some day we will build a house” file of 10,000 pictures and ideas. You did a great job! 🙂

  8. Elise on December 4, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    Beautiful, Kathryn! So fun to see the before and after pictures. I especially love the shower curtain!

  9. Bonnie on December 4, 2013 at 2:04 pm

    Oh my gosh- LOVE!!!!!

  10. Kim on December 4, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    I have some major bathroom envy right now. Really, truly. You did a PHENOMENAL job. We have a bathroom that is the exact same layout (and looks a lot like the before picture, sadly). I’m totally going to tackle that baby, when I’m not sure.

    And I am SO giving that soap dispenser to my hubby for Christmas. Nice score!

  11. Aileen on December 8, 2013 at 9:50 pm

    Beautiful!!! Awesome job!! I love your new bathroom, it looks so elegant. And from another Texan, I love your Texas touches. 🙂

  12. Kayla on February 5, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    Where did you get the shower curtain? I just love it!

    • Kathryn on February 5, 2014 at 5:14 pm

      Bed, Bath & Beyond, Kayla. They have great stuff.

  13. Leigh on January 11, 2015 at 7:53 pm

    Where can I find the big Texas Star? Love this bathroom, touch of Texas without going overboard.

    • Kathryn on January 11, 2015 at 7:57 pm

      That is a great question! The original star was red and I believe it was purchased at Hobby Lobby. During the bathroom reno, I wanted to keep it, so we spray painted it to match the bathroom fixtures.

  14. Karen on January 20, 2015 at 6:38 pm

    Your redo’s are very nicely done! I also love DIY projects, Catholicism, party ideas, etc. I will check back to see what you are doing now!

    • Kathryn on January 21, 2015 at 10:41 pm

      Oh, thank you, Karen. So kind!

  15. […] used the same color as the ceiling in our guest bath and it was perfect! I also added some drapes made by a very talented friend. That fabric and I have […]

  16. Jennifer on February 28, 2015 at 1:23 pm

    Perfect! You nailed it ! Great job!

  17. Jennifer B on March 29, 2015 at 9:38 am

    Where did you get the vanity? Love it! Also- what is the size?

    • Kathryn on March 29, 2015 at 11:35 am

      Jennifer, we purchased the vanity at Home Depot. I believe it was the smallest size, 33″? I know they had several lengths/variations of the same design. And, it came with the granite top. We just had to add the tile surround.

      • Jami on January 18, 2016 at 6:20 am

        Are the knobs on the vanity nickel or the bronze to match the other fixtures?

        • Kathryn on January 18, 2016 at 6:32 pm

          Nickel, thanks for asking!

  18. […] Source: kathrynwhitaker.net […]

  19. Angie Knollenberg on August 23, 2015 at 9:09 am

    okay, I’m simply amazed! If I take a picture of my bathroom can you give me some ideas? I wish I had the talent you do!

    • Kathryn on August 23, 2015 at 12:49 pm

      Happy to! Just email me. Link to my email is on the main page of the blog under my pic.

  20. Hannah on May 14, 2016 at 3:05 pm

    Do you know what the name of the shower curtain design is called? I’ve searched high and low for something like it and can’t find anything that comes remotely close! Thanks.

  21. Emily Rowen on May 14, 2016 at 3:44 pm

    These curtains are still sold by Bed, Bath & Beyond and can be purchased online. Just search Gigi Ivory Curtains. They are a petal design.

  22. 2015: A Year in Review - Team Whitaker on March 20, 2019 at 6:04 pm

    […] {Before & After} The Guest Bath Who knew toilet paper and paint could be so exciting? […]

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