If you remember, this is what it looked like when we purchased the house:
Keep in mind that this photo makes it look WAY nicer than it currently is (see photo below for a reality check). The tiles are starting to move around, there is most certainly mold growing in a few spots, and the paint is peeling off of the ceiling.
Oh and PS, this photo is a great example of adjusting your white balance to make it look way brighter than reality :-)
And here is where we are on the reno:
See that box on the bump in the wall?
Hubs and the contractor cut a hole into the wall to get an idea of what was behind it. As you can see, that is the vent that goes up and into the attic. From what I see on Holmes on Holmes, venting is VERY important :-) Good news is that it looks like that 'eyesore' can be made a lot smaller once we get moving on the renovation.
As far as timing goes, we are slated to start the demo mid-May. Joe, the contractor, is away in Italy until then so we are sort of waiting. Although we don't mind because we are currently....
WORKING WITH A DESIGNER!!!!
You heard me...after all my himming and hawing, hubs and I decided to take the leap and work with a designer for the bathroom project.
Why? you might ask?
Well - we learned a LOT from our basement reno, and that wasn't half as challenging as the bathroom will be. Or as expensive.
First up - we had NO CLUE how to work the budget. We had a budget in mind, but clearly we were DELUSIONAL as to what things cost and to what we needed to include. We weren't too far off on most things, but the biggest issue was actually not budgeting for certain items at all.
For example, our contractor didn't include the trim work in his quote. Of course, we didn't even think about asking for that when we agreed to a price (as we'd never done this before) so halfway through the reno, when I asked about trim, we had to pony up a bunch more money. That wasn't fun.
We also forgot to ask about refinishing part of the stairway. It was in rough shape:
So yeah - to take it from that to this:
cost money. (the 'after' photo is prior to paint, of course)
Secondly: I was making myself CRAZY with self-doubt. Since this is our main family bath, I didn't want to get in over my head with making a bad decision. I'm not talking about 'little' things like tile choices (although that would have been NOT fun for anyone involved) - but the major decisions like layout.
Finally: This is NOT going to be cheap. We don't have the skills to DIY this project, so there is a lot of money at stake. Again - it was starting to feel like too much pressure to "go it alone".
So, after a little bit of convincing, hubs agreed and I placed my order for an E-Design by none other than Carol Reed of Carol Reed Interior Design.
I have been obsessed with Carol's design work for a very (very) long time and actually had a lot of her design work in my inspiration files. Like this:
Carol's incredible design work wasn't the only reason I wanted to work with her. She has an "E-Design" package that is perfect for someone like me.
Basically, she sends out a bunch of surveys and instructions to fill out to get an idea of who we are, what we are using the space for and what style we like. I then sent a hand drawn layout of the bathroom with the dimensions and some inspiration pictures.
With the package you basically get a few layout options - of course you then work with Carol to figure out what works best, make any changes you might like etc. Once you've settled on the layout, she gets to work figuring out the 'design'. She will make cabinetry and lighting recommendations and provide options for things like tile, paint colour, fixtures etc.
Additionally (and most importantly) - she provides you with a great budget breakdown showing what percentage of your budget is taken up by what. Also included is a realistic price point for each item (i.e. xxxx dollars for each faucet, etc.).
Since we are still in progress, I can't let you in on all the nitty gritty, but I will tell you that the first design-related email that Carol sent me basically confirmed our decision and justified her entire fee.
More on that to come :-)