It’s Amazing What a Little Tile and Paint Can Do.

The headline of this post is deceiving. A ton of hard work went into remodeling our bathroom.

Starting about a year ago, we began planning the bathroom remodel here at Modular 4. Being a rather frugal guy, I sourced all of the fixtures, and then bought them online through Faucets Direct. That move saved me about 50% over the retail cost here in Kansas City. Really, I averaged a 50% savings on all the hardware, and tile that went into the bathroom.

The actual job has been done for about a month but I just haven’t gotten around to taking photos, and posting anything about it. The work was done by the same guy that put in our driveway, Mike Raimo of Universal Services Construction, here in Kansas City. I want to say straight out that Mike and his crew did an extraordinary on the bath remodel. His tile guy, also a Mike is unbelievable. The images shown below don’t really do justice to the work that was done. They do give you an idea, about the attention to detail, and quality of craftsmanship that went into the project.

The work we had done for the most part was pretty straight forward. The plastic shower and tub enclosure was pulled. The cheap IKEA medicine cabinets were replaced with a Robern unit, as well as the IKEA shelves being replaced with flush mount shelves from Smart Furniture. New lighting was installed on both sides of the cabinet. Kohler hardware was installed in the shower along with new tile.

Mike and his crew went above and beyond by repairing substandard framing they found in the walls after the shower was removed, and by repairing wiring that had been run on the outside of wall studs instead of through the centers. The most complex and time consuming part of the job was the tile work. The combination of subway tile, and the colored tile from Mod Walls required days of intricate cuts to get all of the pieces to fit and look so good. There are individual pieces of tile cut to a width of less than a quarter of an inch to make the fits even across the walls.

Spending my Money on Good Design.

A couple of days ago we got the final bids on the bath remodel, and this time it looks like we will really begin the bath overhaul. Seriously, all the parts and pieces are in and our contractor is ready to go as soon as we sign off.

One item that I want to replace but hadn’t found something I like yet was towel holders. This morning though, that changed. Actually I found a whole bunch of stuff that I want to buy, but is going to have to wait until we remodel bath number two. Anyway, what I found is the TP-H1 toilet paper + towel holder + shelf from DNA +. I’m not so much interested in using this as a toilet paper holder, but simply as a towel holder with a hook for something like a robe.

I love the minimalist look, the simple angular shape, and how the main structure of the shelf/holder is made from a white composite material in a single fluid piece.  The design function is equal to the overall form, and materials. Such an overall simple shape, but so interesting at the same time.

At $480.00 it isn’t cheap, but what I’ve found out is nothing for a bathroom remodel ever is.

So Many Choices, So Few Rooms, So Little Money.

Our master bathroom remodel starts next Spring. All the parts and pieces have been purchased, we are just waiting on a date that works with our contractor and our schedules to start. As is often the case, once you have all the parts purchased, and you are set on a specific look, you often find something that makes you want to rethink the whole project or at least parts of it. Case in point this series of drainless minimal sinks from Giquardo.

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Carved from black granite, Belgian blue stone, or formed from white composite quartz the sinks are simply understated and elegant. Subtle minimal forms create beautiful round shapes and clean look without a visible drain. I really like the look, and in a smaller sized bathroom like ours, the thin wall mounted sink would visually open up the space below to help create a larger feel for the space. Now I just need to come up with even more cash, and see if I can just convince Kristy that we should get one of the double basin models, and re-think our remodeling plans yet again.

One Last Piece for the Bathroom.

Our master bath remodel is scheduled to start later this summer. Being the frugal guy that I am, I have been buying pretty much all the stuff I need online except for the tile, shower basin, and glass shower wall. By sourcing what I needed at a couple of high-end fixture places here in town, I was able to track down the same parts at wholesale cost online, and have them shipped for free to my house. I know it’s not the greenest solution, but it saved me a ton of money in the long run.

The last piece we have been trying to get is a medicine cabinet. This has been the hardest part for us. There are hardly any nice, modern medicine cabinets available in a size we need, and at a cost that isn’t through the roof. Today I finally found a cabinet that will work for us. It is the right size, right style, has built-in lights, and comes in a number of finishes.

What I found was the Galleria Medicine Cabinet from Lacava. The thing looks amazing like everything Lacava makes, and the build quality on Lacava products is outstanding. The best part is, this is something I can install myself. Designed by Paolo Demarco, Galleria is a wall-mounted medicine cabinet with two fluorescent accent lights located behind the mirror. The cabinet features one adjustable glass shelf behind two mirrored doors that have routed finger pulls. The cabinet measures 48 inches long which is a spot on match for the width of our vanity, so it really is a perfect fit.