This post is my entry for
Here are some cheap, easy things I did to improve the ambiance (do I dare say that about a bathroom?) of a small powder room in our house. I made no changes to the existing wall color or fixtures, because that would have taken more time and money than I had available for this project. Instead, I worked with what I had to add visual interest to the bare walls of this small space. My total cost? About $40.
Since we moved into our house five years ago, it has been easy for me to jump into big projects: landscaping, built-in cabinetry, new lighting, finishing the basement. Big projects don't scare the Bionic Man and I. However, it has been far harder for me to tackle the little, detail-oriented projects like hanging pictures on the walls and putting up curtains. The decorating is so much harder for me than the construction. As I mentioned earlier, I've decided that has to change. And my little Sepia-Toned Bathroom was where I decided to start.
First, I decided that instead of being paralyzed by the thought of how much work it would be to strip all the wallpaper in the room sand down the walls, and repaint, I would work with what I had. Even though the wallpaper was put on the wall before we moved in, it actually kind of works with the direction I've taken in the rest of the house. Once I was able to see that, I could move forward with the detail work.
I went through my files and found some black and white pictures I had taken of my children a couple of years ago, while they were playing outside in the water.
Picnik, and had some fun cropping, editing, playing with lighting, and finally turning them into vintage-like sepia portraits.
Funny story: when I went to pick up my prints at Sam's Club, the photo area associate pulled out my pictures, looked at something written on the package, and said grumpily, "Ma'am, you've violated copyright law with these pictures. I can't give them to you until I have written permission from the photographer to do so." It took a little while to explain that I was the photographer. I had to sign three legal documents and withstand heated questioning. I was too flattered to be angry!!! That's why Picnik is my favorite website!
Next, I went around my house looking for 8x10 frames. Despite the lack of decor on my walls, I have a surprising number of frames and mattes stashed around the house. So many that I didn't need to purchase any frames, and I only bought three mattes. I picked up some spray paint at Home Depot and sprayed down all those mismatched frames. I was able to find a can of spray paint that created a dark brown, metallic finish--similar to the oil-rubbed bronze fixtures in this bathroom and elsewhere in my home.
These two photos, of Justone and Superkid, are my favorites of the bunch. I love the way they look in sepia!
I also discovered the vinyl for this bath sign when I was looking through my various stashes for frames. The vinyl had to be at least three years old, and I'd never used it! I quickly cut, painted, and sanded a board, and put the vinyl sign on it. It was a little tricky to get the vinyl to come off the application adhesive, but it still stuck to the board! So, in case you've ever wondered, you can still use that old vinyl sign!
light silver sage to coordinate with the wallpaper!
- Spray paint for frames $10
- Brown satin ribbon 2
- Photo prints 3
- Photo mattes 5
- Extra frame from Goodwill 5
- Hand towels 15
I'm really thrilled to have a finished space! Looking at the pictures though, I'm kind of tempted to take the two frames with the ribbons, re-paint them to look like the other three frames, and re-hang them. What do you think?