Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Guest Bath Details

Thank you all for the compliments.  You're all the best!
But let's take a step back for a minute to a request by Claudia to see a "before" photo.
There's no real "before" because this new bathroom was created by
borrowing space from my dining room, two closets (where the cat
just lost a toy down a hole in the floor) and about two feet of my kitchen.
The door to the kitchen (behind the chandelier) was moved
to the left and an area about 5 feet by 8 feet was closed in for the new bath.
This created a sight line from the front of house all the way to the back.
The old bathroom is behind the sliders in the kitchen and that will now
be demolished so the kitchen can be expanded.

This is the floorplan of the new bath. Just big enough to fit everything.

The guest bath door is a salvaged four panel door that I stripped using the
Silent Paint Remover--a much bigger job than I expected--primed and repainted.
It does look great though.  The porcelain knob is from House of Antique Hardware.

The artwork is a contemporary collage by Massachusetts artist 
Bernd Haussmann.  I already had it and it fits the space perfectly.

The floor tile is Sant'Agostino porcelain tile, color is Ferro Black.
This is the 6 x 24 size and I used a 1/3 stagger that, along with the
linear striations in the tile, gives it the feel of wood.  It's a bonus that the
price point is $9 per square foot.  The grout is Permacolor "Raven."

The small halogen light on the ceiling is probably a place holder.
I have a problem with most flush-mount lights and this one
didn't give me any adverse reactions.  I wanted something modern
and inexpensive and this fit the bill.  I threw out the box with
the name but it came from a local lighting chain called Wolfer's.

This shows the junction of all the materials.

The glass towel rod is vintage.  They can be found on etsy and ebay.

The 3x6 subway tile is American Olean in Ice White which is really
inexpensive stuff.  Available at Lowe's or locally at Roma Tile in Watertown.
The grout is Permacolor Bright White.

The small shelf is cararra marble (see sink info for source).

The Greek key mosaic border is Walker Zanger, Tribeca collection
Adelphia border in Flatiron gray, honed marble.

The planks are shiplapped Southern yellow pine painted with
Benjamin Moore "Icicle," #2142-70.

The chair rail was custom made to match the width of
of the marble mosaic.  The paint color is Benjamin Moore
Stonington Gray HC-170.

The tub is the Kohler Bellwether.  I liked this model because of its
straight front edge.  I thought it was a nice match to the modern
lines of the sink and a counterpoint to the more traditional elements
of the room.

All of the shower jewelry is Rohl from the Country Bath collection.

The shower curtain is Restoration Hardware diamond matelassé in white.
Mary suggested I move the shower curtain rod up to the ceiling.
I tried it and I love it.  It adds a little drama.  Restoration Hardware
makes the same shower curtain in extra long and I think it will be the
perfect length.  Thank you for that suggestion, Mary. 

The vanity table is an antique Swedish console table from Darby Road
in Waltham.  It was too long for the space and had to be cut down in
length to fit but I really loved the turned legs so wanted to make it work.

The original wood top on the table was removed and cut down to make a lower shelf
for additional storage.  Because the side of the shelf had to be cut down, Sam used
a similar routed edge and I did a little faux finish using brown stain and gray paint
to simulate the original worn edge seen on the front of the shelf. 

The plumber did a great job of tucking the turnoff valves way up
under the vanity table to keep the look as clean as possible.
I would have like to have used a bottle trap but they're not
approved for use in Massachusetts for some reason.
The turnoff valves are made by Jaclo.

The sink is Porcher (made by American Standard), the
model is Semplice which unfortunately has been discontinued.
The price was really reasonable so it's a line you should check out.

The new marble vanity top is cararra marble that came from a
remnant from International Stone in Woburn, MA. The people at
International Stone were great to work with and I think their prices are
reasonable so if you're local, it's a place I would recommend.
The basket is from Crate & Barrel.

I took this photo to show the corner details.

The clipped corner was originally on the Swedish console top and leg
so when I found a toilet that had the same corners on the tank and base,
I thought it was a perfect match.  I had the same detail cut into the marble top.

The toilet is the Porcher Lutezia.  I splurged for a fancier
seat with nickel hardware which is by Lefroy Brooks.

Because the chair rail ran right in to the faucet, I designed a bump up
with a little integrated shelf.  The lights are the Bryant sconce by
Thomas O'Brien from Visual Comfort in polished nickel.

The antique Brasscrafters mirror has a nickel frame.  It's unfortunately
too small.  I wanted the top to hit above the level of the sconce shades
but the bottom needs to be lower to make it useful for people shorter
than six feet tall. 
The bottles are the handiwork of Artie Vanderpool from Color Outside
the Lines a/k/a the Cross Bottle Guy

The faucet was my biggest splurge.  It's the St. Germain faucet made by Horus
(from France) in polished nickel.  It comes with either lever or cross handles.
All of the fixtures came from Waterspot which has five showrooms in the area
including the Boston Design Center.

To the left of the sink is a little shelving unit that is built between the studs.
The little painting was a lovely gift from a long-time follower Dianne Ballard
who says it's a portrait of me.  See more of her work in Dianne's etsy shop.
There's another bottle of Artie's, a small vintage unmarked vase,
and a few beakers for supplies.

I think that covers it.  The bath is now open for guests so I put this
little arrangement of milk weed pods, hydrangea, caladium, ferns and ivy
together to welcome you.  It's always nice to have flowers in the house.  
Let me know if I missed anything and thanks again for the great feedback!


  1. I love it all. It's crisp, it's clean, it's modern, it's vintage. But most of all it's timeless and personal. You're pretty good at this!! ;-)

  2. oh my gosh wow...I love this all...but the Greek key tile? that could just be the best ever...but again...hard to decide. Fantastic!

  3. Steve, You did an amazing job. Everything is lovely. I have a bathroom, or three needing remodeling. Are you up for the job;) You truly attended to every detail. I have such fun watching your progress through out your home. Have a wonderful week. Bonnie

  4. Just wonderful. If you get tired of your day job, you could be a designer. Great job!

  5. I bet you smile every time you walk by. Great job.

  6. the vanity makes the room! you did such a great job steve. donna

  7. Steve when are you going to become a full time designer? I could use you and you're close enough to me so come on, come design already! I love your attention to detail so we would work beautifully together. You did an amazing job my friend...now go out and buy your poor kitty another toy. Then again email me your address and I'll send about fifty toy mice my cats shoved down the heating grates! Great job Steve!


  8. I have so much respect for your attention to detail (such as the straight front edge on the tub) and am learning a lot from you. I love everything about this bathroom. A few favorites--the sink and vanity, the edging on the marble, those gorgeous faucets.

  9. I just keep going back to each photo over and over again, staring at each detail. Truly amazing. Such perfection and soooooooooooo beautiful.
    I keep thinking of the ugly PVC pipe under my sink and I envy even your turnoff valves. The St. Germain faucet....words fail me.
    You have not missed a detail.
    Just superb.

  10. All of it is really nicely done. However, I have to say, the way chair rail was carried around the faucets was a nice design. It integrated the faucets with the sink and helped solve what could have been a ho hum pass behind the sink taking away from everything.


  11. This is excellent. I really love it all. You are amazing. I have to pin some things now!

  12. Crazy crazy beautiful. Your attention to detail is just incredible. That takes so much time, to research it and get it right. You are always spot on, and I love everything you do.

  13. I am (almost)speechless. I love that floor and the grout. The bump up over the faucets is brilliant and of course the console...

    I've just read the other comments and may I say I told you so.

    You should be designing.

    Well I realize you are but for others.

    Luckily my reservation is secure so those of you looking to take a luxurious bath or shower over Labor Day weekend: look elsewhere!

    xo Jane

  14. OMG...it's perfect! I knew it would be. :)

  15. Ah, the devil is in the details! All delightful.
    I do like your mirror - could you perhaps tilt it downwards so lesser mortals could still see themselves? It fits so well.

  16. i want the sconces, towel bar and shower curtain. love it all!!!

  17. Thank you for the detailed info! I'm sooo stealing that shelf idea over the sink! Have a great week.

  18. Well Steve, there is not much to say other than GORGEOUS!! Every detail has bee thoughtfully executed. Do you make house calls? LOL!

  19. Steve, thank you for sharing your sources for this beautiful bathroom. Your taste and attention to detail are never ending inspiration for your readers.

  20. Man, what a happy accident to have that trim run into the wall mount faucet, because it's such a nice little detail to have it both frame the sink AND provide a ledge. Also, and I meant to say this earlier, nice arrangement.

  21. Excellent summary! Thanks for showing the space that now houses the new bath. It's a wonderful room with perfect details. Congratulations on a job well done!

  22. Great choices in every way. Couldn't help but comment - love the shot of your cat looking for the lost toy. You're thinking demolition and renovation and your cat is all about trying to reach that toy - cat priorities.

  23. Who would think after being informed wonderfully of the Guest Bath details I would be charmed by the milk weed pods in the arrangement . . . who would think! Love, love the bath you have created!

  24. Ok I just have to say a friend recommended your blog to me and I'm so glad she did. I don't even know where to start with what I love, but the first thing would be that you live in Boston- my fav city!
    Anyway, this bath is amazing. It's great that you were able to increase it's size...my bathrooms are both very small and now you have me thinking of the possibilities....
    Here's what I love...the console into vanity (I actually want it and am searching Darby Road for it). The black tiled floor and grout- I particularly like that it has the appearance of wood. Great pics- thanks for sharing!

  25. How lovely! You have a wonderful eye and your attention to detail amazing. I know you will enjoy this space for many years to come. Beautiful!

  26. Gorgeous Steve - perfect!! Sorry I am late to the party (I've pretty much taken off the summer from blogging, but just haven't admitted it yet). You've done a simply perfect job of piecing together all the elements. It looks so coherent, which is hard in a small space and I applaud you. Bathrooms and kitchens with all their myriad decisions completely terrify me. You must be so pleased!!!! I am! (I think I will fit in the tub).

    I just adore the greek key trim and the flooring is insanely handsome, and your sink and the faucet (adore....). Luckily I speak french so I will not confuse my chaud with my froid.

    Giant high five. :)

    xo Terri

  27. Love Love Love it!

  28. Thanks for sharing all the sources, Steve! I'll be searching for similar towel rods. You are so clever to carve out / create this gorgeous guest bath. It will add so much value to your home. Super job, my friend :)
    x Loi

  29. Looks great and so nice of you to include the project details. When I'm ready to do the bathroom over, (many years from now, though it should have been done many years ago) will hope this post is here!

  30. It looks fabulous...love all the details, the marble, your sink and the Greek key pattern...great job!

  31. This is the definition of the perfect jewel box bath. Every detail reflects considerable thought and a keen design eye. The glass towel rod (!), the greek key marble, the sconces, the bump up over the sink. Even the clipped corner detail of the vanity and the toilet. Basically, I have printed the entire blog and it's in my 'bathroom reno' file....you've done all the hard work, including generously providing the sources!! Just beautiful, Steve.


  32. WOW! So many decisions to be made for such a small room and all of them spot on - it looks terrific!

  33. Steve, I love the bathroom! It looks wonderful! Also, check out on instagram the kitchen we redid here in Brasilia at a friend's apartment. I am sure you will like it very much. My instagram name is isabelflecha or my name Isabel Flecha de Lima (on facebook). It has a sixties feel to it (the Kitchen and my name :)), because the building is from that time, as is Brasilia (as am I). So we played up the "cobobó" which is a wall of open tiles for ventilation very sixties(we are, after all, in a tropical coutry). The floor, which came out beautiful, is black cement tiles. I am sure you will love it.

  34. oh, and I love the greek key frieze, a compliment to the house.

  35. Very nice job. I love it. The vista you created through the house brings so much value.

  36. What a gorgeous bathroom!! I love your attention to detail, it makes all the difference between a nice bathroom & one that is exquisite!!

  37. great work you are doing on your cottage, Boston has so many beautiful houses like this just looking for a new way to shine

  38. Beautiful bathroom!! The honed marble, greek key border just stole my heart and ran away.