The Bathroom Remodel?

I vividly  remember reading this book when I was a kid about a man who buys new shoe strings, then sees how shabby his shoes look in comparison. So, he gets new shoes. Then his suit looks terrible. So he buys new clothes, and gets into his shabby car to drive home, and winds up buying a new car, and a new house. Maybe a new wife- I don’t remember the ending. Anyway, he changes his whole life because of one tiny thing.

That is what I am afraid of with our basement bathroom.

It is terrible.

I took the curtains down to wash, and realized the window frames are corroding there in the wall. In scrubbing the mold off the walls, I have scrubbed the paint off, but repainting means making a decision about the pink tiles that are popping off the walls, and the floor tile that is peeling up. And the shower stall. And the basin- actually, the basin isn’t so bad.

Last week, the drain got clogged, and water started leaking out of We started showering upstairs, where the pressure is terrible.



The curtains were the “new shoe strings” in this little parable, but beyond new shoe strings, the bathroom really does need work… a lot of work.

People with bathroom remodel experience- what’s next? How much can I do myself? What resources should I go to? Does anyone else remember that book, or what it is called?


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. racheycarter
    Mar 10, 2012 @ 01:39:51

    Well, I don’t want to scare you off, but we found some water damage in our bathroom (a squishy spot in the tile floor), so we ripped it up and found a whole LOT of water damage. We ended up having to replace the window and rebuild the wood supports that had rotted in the wall. However, if it needs to be done, it needs to be done. You can find some pretty high-end looking tiles for fairly cheap, and bathrooms are so small, that it isn’t terribly expensive to tile everything.


    • katsmama
      Mar 10, 2012 @ 06:12:36

      this is the kind of thing I need to know. I’m pretty sure the stud wall behind the shower will need to be replaced, and I’m not sure what making a tile shower surround will cost, versus a fiberglass one (which is what we have now.)


  2. kanniduba
    Mar 10, 2012 @ 07:45:06

    A friend and I have the saying, “It all begins with a throw pillow!” 🙂 We always get project creep…we update/paint/change one thing and it just snowballs. I feel for you with the bathroom situation. We are having ours renovated by a builder because the job is much bigger than we can handle. (Long story! See this link for details. If you have it done, a fiberglass shower seems to be the cheaper way to go. However, if you are doing it yourself, you can find some really beautiful tile for a great price. Even has a neat selection. Just be sure to do your homework. I just read an article in a tile store about the disasters that can happen if you don’t install it properly. Good luck! 🙂


    • katsmama
      Mar 10, 2012 @ 22:22:46

      The problem is, I keep wanting to start with the throw pillows, or in the case of the bathroom, the accessories, the colors and stuff. I know there are some issues with drainage and plumbing, but I would much rather think about the aesthetics.:)


      • kanniduba
        Mar 11, 2012 @ 00:18:45

        Well, that’s the fun stuff after all!! 🙂 Who wants to think about pipes and drains?! Not me! I’d much rather think about pretty tile and shiny fixtures. 🙂 Our builder was actually pretty impressed with our list of questions which involved structural issues such as heating and drainage. He said, “Wow…most people want to know where their toilet paper holder is going to go! You’re actually asking questions about the things that matter!” I will enjoy watching what you come up with through your journey. Have you discovered yet? If not, go check it out. Lots of pretties to dream about over there. 🙂

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  4. Raymond
    Mar 20, 2012 @ 10:47:30

    Bathrooms are annoying for the hidden conditions you might find, which is always the wild card. But as long as the guts are OK, you can replace fixtures and shower pans without a whole ton of trouble. If you’re the budgeting type, plan on a contingency fee for in case of unforseen conditions.
    Tile can be a lot of fun if you plan ahead first to avoid having skinny tiles in the corners, or cut tiles at window sills, or other oddities that will drive you crazy every time you are in the shower. If there’s a tile showroom in your area, I would recommend visiting. Some tiles you just need to hold in your hand to really understand, and they’ll have stacks of fun trim and accent pieces to give you ideas.


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