Motivated to throw myself into my home goals for 2017 and in the fortunate position of having some leave to use up, I took last week off (paid) work to get to work in the house.
Sunday evening: Prep the walls and apply masking tape
Monday: First coat emulsion (am), second coat (pm)
Tuesday: First coat woodwork (am), touch ups and whisk off masking tape (pm)
Wednesday: Shop for accessories and style the room
Thursday: Shop for accessories and style the room
Friday: Coffee, read magazines, feel smug
Saturday: Relaxing day with the boys, casually prepare a fabulous dinner for friends, the shower room “reveal”.
What actually happened
Sunday evening: Sofa, Amazon TV, Rioja (What? I’m on holiday!!)
Monday: Sanding. Sanding. Sanding. Washing paint. Wait for it to dry….Masking. Where IS the masking tape??? Trip to hardware store. What, it’s 3 o’clock?! School pick up. Homework. X box on. First coat emulsion.
Tuesday: (Paid) work intervenes. Since I’m in town anyway, it would be silly not to squeeze in a quick nip round H&M. 90 minute session in H&M.
Wednesday: Second coat emulsion. Total wobble on the colour (more on that later). First coat woodwork.
Thursday: Remove masking tape to reveal…. raggedy edges. Nooooo. Trip to the hardware shop to buy the expensive masking tape. Redo the woodwork.
Friday: Discover no one in the house has clean pants. Still not sure about the colour but too busy doing washing and getting the shopping in to think about it.
Saturday: Friends coming for dinner and nothing is prepared. House upside down with decorating equipment and displaced toiletries everywhere. And the bathroom isn’t even finished.
Who cares about the colour? It’ll do. X box on. Third coat emulsion. Ok, the bathroom’s starting to come together. What would really finish it off though is to redo the tile grouting in smart black. Houses Husband gets to work with the magic grout makeover pen. Ignore grumbles that it’s really tricky. Amazon reviews DO NOT LIE.
Need to get the bathroom cabinet rehung so that toiletries can be tidied away. But handles not sourced yet. [Quickly assesses priorities.] Trip to Anthropology.
4pm Arrive home to find grouting’s only half done. Houses Husband has had a sense of humour fail. Concede defeat with the grouting for now. Send HH for a lie down while I just quickly wash off the excess grout pen, style the room, tidy, clean and still have plenty time to make dinner.
7pm Semi clothed in the shower still scrubbing at the stained tiles. B*****d “magic” grout pen.
7.30pm Style the room.
7.35pm Tidy and clean the house.
7.40pm Begin preparing dinner.
8pm Guests arrive. Thrust alcohol at them to distract them from hunger pangs and the half done grouting.
9pm (a cocktail and two glasses of prosecco later) the Houses Husband’s SOH returns. Lovely night. Hurray. I’m on holiday!
The Colour Scheme
If you read my before post, you’ll know I had chosen Farrow and Ball’s pale and dusky Pink Ground for the emulsion and the dark contrasting Railings for the woodwork. Years ago I invested in a Farrow and Ball colour wheel, the expense justifiable on the basis that the sizeable colour plates remove the need for sample pots. And I did check my colours in the shower room and they looked fine.
However, the bathroom-compatible paint has a slight sheen and as the colour went on, it was bouncing off opposing walls. The magnifying effect of that and the slightly yellowing glare of the Led downlighters conspired to turn the gorgeously subtle pink into something else. How could I describe it? It was definitely warmer than I imagined. Less pink, more, um, ….. peach. Yes, readers, I was painting my shower room an unmistakable, fleshy, elastoplastic, PEACH.
With each application of the roller, the words of the interior design oracle Daniel Hopwood on a recent episode of the Great Interior Design Challenge reverberated in my head: “Peach was big in the 80s and I’m not really sure that we’re ready for it to come back yet.” To which Kelly Hoppen retorts distainfully “I’m certainly not”.
Was I commiting a huge design faux pas? Possibly. Could I face redoing all of the emulsioning? Nope. Anyway, events simply took over; I ran out of time to do anything else.
And do you know what? Once on the woodwork, the Railings made a difference and toned the peachiness down. By the time the room was reassembled, and I’d styled it up, the colour was growing on me. Now I’ve fully adjusted to it, I actually quite like it. The moral of the story? (a) Don’t skip the tester pot stage, particularly in a room that relies on artifical light. (b) Don’t rush to dismiss a shade. It’s true impact will only emerge when adjoining colours and textures are added.
Readers, you’ve been very patient. Here is the newly madeover
peach pink shower room:
That off schedule trip to H&M paid dividends as I found this fab basket there which adds texture and interest without taking up any usable space. The graphic elements of towels stop the space feeling uber-girly (even if there are tassels). The best bargain has to be the rug though – a steal at just £5.99 from the Range.
I was lusting after a metal edged scalloped mirror like this one but budget constraints led me to plump for a vintage scalloped edge mirror instead. It has a gorgeous hint of tarnish which sits perfectly with the existing Victorian style fittings.
There’s lots of white ceramic, tiling and chrome in the shower room. I wanted to offset that clinical aesthetic with some rougher natural elements like the beautiful driftwood candle stand, handmade by a classmate of my son (talented boy!).
This hook rail is my favourite bit of the makeover. I found the wood in a skip and we already had the hooks spare. Practical, chic and FREE.
Art and steamy shower rooms aren’t generally compatible. But this frame was 50p from the charity shop and the print was a free printable. It may not last but at that cost, who cares?
This cabinet was an emergency storage solution bought when we moved in three years ago, always intended for replacement when funds permitted. Funds have yet to permit. Although it was only £20 from the Range, it’s stood up pretty well to the heavy duty requirements of housing my toiletries.
So I’ve upcycled instead. I primed with Zinssers Bulls Eye Primer. This stuff isn’t cheap but a little goes a long way, it dries in an hour, and it meant the eggshell went on to the melamine surface with no sanding and just a single coat.
I’ve steam proofed this vintage print by adding a some clear matt varnish. And there’s the black grout.
Readers, give me your verdict in the comments. Is it blush or have I strayed into dangerously peach territory?! And black grout: Will you be risking relationship breakdown in its pursuit?