Friday, February 25, 2011


I've heard of women nesting when they become pregnant, but I think I may need to coin the term "pre-nesting" if it hasn't already been coined. My husband and I have recently made the decision to start our family and I have gone on a home improvement rampage. I've always enjoyed updating small details in rooms from time to time, but now that I know we could have a baby in the very near future, I have this (almost) uncontrollable urge to truly turn our house into a home.

My latest conquest was our full bathroom. I wish I would have taken a true "before" picture (before I put up pictures or added decorations). The best I can do is paint a mental picture: an aqua blue shower curtain that shrunk in the dryer and became too short, grimy looking towel hooks/paper towel holder, a patch the size of a dinner plate on the wall by the towel paper holder, and a padded toilet seat that had definitely seen better days (something about using a padded toilet seat that had previous owners creeps me out). The picture I took before I painted still shows a major improvement. I tried to be practical since A) we're renting & B) we've got a little more than 2 years left here.

I tried to ignore the annoying buttery yellow color on the walls, the ugly patch, and the less than attractive towels hooks/toilet paper holder. I tried, and succeeded, for 8 months... until one day I just snapped. On a whim, I picked out a new shower curtain. This led to a new bathmat, coordinating hand towels, two pictures to hang, two candle holders + candles, and a matching soap pump/covered to go with the trash can I already had.

Once I got my new little pretties up, I could not bare the thought of that horrible buttery yellow on the walls any longer. Then I thought of the color my husband suggested when I talked about wanting to paint the bathroom long ago... gray. I had not given his suggestion much thought at the time, but it suddenly just clicked. I dragged Mike to Home Depot a couple of days later, stared at various shades of gray for about ten minutes, and settled on Behr's "Graceful Gray". Once I got it on the walls, I knew it was absolutely the perfect choice... I've got the pictures to prove it...

Before: better with the new decorations, but the butter yellow is still not cutting it

After: Ahhh, much better with the Graceful Gray

After: I call the bathroom's look "Beach Chic"

I wish I could wow everyone with an incredible budget, but the makeover kind of just happened. For future home improvements, I hope to make planning & budgeting a bigger part of the mission. Anyway, here is a rough rundown of what I got and what I spent...

Behr paint in Graceful Gray: $32

Towel bar/toilet paper holder set from Home Depot: about $47

Shower Curtain from Kohl's: on sale @ $32.99

Seahorse Pillar Candle Holders from Kohl's: on sale @ $9.00 & $6.75 (if I am remembering correctly, they were 55% off at the time).

Short Pillar Candle & Tall Pillar Candle from Kohl's: on sale @ $4.95 & $4.50 (I think these were also 55% off at the time of purchase. Normally, I would not include such a small detail... but these candles smell absolutely heavenly. Even when they are unlit, my bathroom smells a-maz-ing!

Bathmat similar to this one (from the same brand) from Kohl's: on sale @ $8.99

Hand Towels both from Kohl's: on sale @ $5.99 each

Framed Art both from Kohl's: on sale @ $24.99 each (I can't find a link, but the artist is Cynthia Coulter)

Soap pump & covered dish on the sink both from Home Goods: $9.99 & $7.99 (they are beautiful & made from 100% recycled glass).

Grand Total = about $226.12. I didn't realize I'd spent that much, but it's not so bad when you consider that the price includes paint, hardware, some linens, wall art, & quite a few accessories. Oops, I forgot about the toilet seat, so tack on another $15 or so to that total.

Items already owned: small green vase (purchased @ Ross for $3.99 years ago), coordinating trash can to the soap pump & covered dish (purchased @ Home Goods a few months ago for $19.99), shower curtain hooks (purchased on sale @ Kmart months ago for $8.99).

I know I could have worked harder to complete a similar look under a better budget, but I am completely happy with the bathroom (as in: I inhale deeply and let out a 100% content sigh every time I walk into the bathroom). I was feeling a bit superficial for swooning over a room because of material items, but then I considered something else. While it is basically just a room with stuff in it, now it reflects my (and my hubby's too) personality and it brings me a feeling of comfort. So, all this "pre-nesting" business is an effort to create spaces in the rooms throughout our house that make it a HOME. What better gift can we give to ourselves and our baby-to-be than a peaceful home that brings all of us both comfort and joy?


  1. If you're updating fixtures and whatnot you should see if your landlord would consider taking them (or some sort of percentage of your cost) off your rent! ...since they will likely stay there after you leave.

  2. Actually... I saved the old ones to put back up when we move. Haha! It was a little less than $50 for the new ones, but I really like them and why not keep them?! ;D