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Whether or not you’re a “do-it-yourself” enthusiast, a bathroom renovation can be a pretty exciting prospect, but if you are on a mission to accomplish it by up cycling or repurposing, things can get even more interesting!
So where do you start? Both urban and rural areas alike offer a whole world of possibilities when you get creative. Garage sales are a great way to start your search for items that still have a lot of life left in them.
As they say, one man’s junk is another man’s treasure, and you just never know what you come across that will perfectly serve your purpose. Head to a local auction, dig through the nearby junk yard or even scroll through adverts on Craig’s list or Kijiji. They’re all good places to find solid items on the cheap.
Your sink vanity can be the focal point of the entire bathroom, and done right, it can certainly lend that “wow” factor! Depending on the style of your home, almost anything can be retrofitted to hold your sink and some counter space.
An animal trough looks fabulous topped with butcher board countertops and can allow for as big a sink space as you desire. If you’re active, why not repurpose that old bike into a vanity stand, complete with a basket to hold hand towels and scented soaps?
Old dressers or chests work wonderfully if you’re looking for a vanity with under sink storage. We’ve even seen an old boat motor put into use as a wall mounted stand for a little lakeside cottage sink. Whatever you find, think outside the box and make sure it goes well with the mood you’re trying to create.
You can opt for a large shelving space (think a solid wood wardrobe) or bolt an old ladder against the wall for easy shelving space in a smaller room.
Pallets, which have found a use for every nook in the home, can easily be converted into storage for magazines, shampoo bottles, and linens. If you find an old bedside table or small dresser, think about taking out the drawers, papering the insides, and hanging on your bathroom wall for picture frames and bath salts!
Those drawers, with an eye popping paint colour, can also be hung and serve as bathroom cabinets.
Whatever you find that has a flat surface to hold things can be repurposed into some creative shelf or storage space.
Another great storage idea we’ve seen is to take old canning jars, mount them to a board, and hang above your vanity. They’re perfect for the little items that get lost or dirty in your vanity drawers (Q-tips, toothbrushes, combs, nail clippers, tweezers).
Ah, those pallets. If you want to cover a bad drywall job why not create a rustic look by using those pallet boards as wall cover?
For the bold DIY’er, there’s also the option of using old dishes or tiles to create a full mosaic for a backsplash or steam shower surround.
If your bathroom floor leaves a lot to be desired, get those creative wheels spinning! Those same pallets that can add a gorgeous feature wall can also be sanded and put into use as your flooring.
If you’ve got lino that’s outdated but in good shape, consider using specialized paint that will adhere and compliment your current bathroom colours.
You can paint the entire floor one colour or even dress it up using a pattern of stencils in a contrasting colour. Look for medium to large sized bathroom tiles on sale (or from other home renovation jobs) and use them for your flooring; a small grout job is all that’s required for a look that will stand the test of time.
Trim and baseboards
One style element that seems to blend into the background but makes a huge difference in the overall appearance of the room is the trim and baseboards.
Instead of buying new, look for simple recycled wood; give it a glossy paint job, and use a nail gun to nail into place. A wide, flat board can be just as beautiful a finish to the room as a more detailed trim piece.
The more important thing is to keep them wiped down and keep the paint job fresh and neat.
The lighting features in the bathroom can make or break a room. Look for renovation projects, garage sales, or even your local landfill and repurpose those cast offs.
Paint goes a long way; if you find a piece that is perfect in style but the gold finish is off-putting, use a can of metal paint; there is an entire rainbow of colours at your disposal.
A simple hanging bulb with an interesting wooden frame can look wonderfully industrial, while several pendants hanging in a row within large mason jars would be the perfect fit for your old farm house.
No matter your level of expertise, there are always creative solutions if you’re ready to roll up your sleeves, and find a use for salvaged treasure!