Category Archives: bathroom

getting practical

so remember when i wanted this beautiful light fixture from restoration hardware. i dreamed about how wonderful it would look above my farmhouse sink…

yet the $400 price tag always woke me up abruptly.

there just never seems to be a good time to spend that kind of money on a light fixture. because quite frankly we don’t have that kind of money to spend on a light fixture. boo hoo.

so. when mr. hutch and i were aimlessly wondering the halls of home depot a few weeks ago, and i saw this, for a mere $30, i resigned to the fact that we needed a light fixture, and we don’t have $400.

then that got me thinking about the $250 wall sconces i wanted for the bathroom. and how we also don’t have $500 to spend on lighting fixtures in there. and more importantly how sick i was of those blue boxes and holes in the wall staring at me. so i found some sconces and clear shades for the bargain price of $15 each.

so with my $60 worth of light fixtures in tow, what i really had a desire to do was call alex, my favorite ukranian electrician, and watch him work his magic. but, we’re practically experts in home remodeling these days, and the days of having no idea what we were doing when it came  to  hard wiring light fixtures are long gone. this unfortunately was no longer anopportunity to call alex.

instead, my other favorite electrician got to work – mr. hutch.

look! we’re even smart enough to turn off the electric when working with electric. experts i tell ya. so later that night we had this.

and this.

whadda ya think? so that’s what’s happening around here. we’re being a bit more practical in order for things to actually get done. which means i’m probably going to have to give up on the $150 per roll wallpaper, if there’s ever going to be any wallpaper in that bathroom. (although i’m so overwhelmed with wallpaper i think i might give up on it completely.) it also means mr. hutch thinks he’s a certified electrician and he now has this crazy idea that he would want to try and do all the electrical work when we finish the basement. it’s not that i don’t believe in him, it’s that we wouldn’t get to see alex again….

we’ll see how practical we get then.


thought i was a pioneer, realized i’m just jumping on the bandwagon

so i want to wallpaper my bathroom. i was hoping that would allow me to put another notch in my design/remodel/diy/renovation belt. i mean – it’s only the ultra hip, best designers out there that are brave enough to do something like wallpaper. after all – wallpaper has a horrible stigma. in case you forgot why, let me help you remember.

(side note: i just googled ugly wallpaper and kinda liked a lot of what came up. that can’t be good. then i searched hideous wallpaper and found these beauties.)

pretty. ugly.

this is special.

as i was saying – all the trendy design blogs out there are giving wallpaper a serious comeback. and my assumption was that if i used wallpaper in my bathroom – i get to be automatically elevated to trendy, great designer. so i set up to scour the earth for rare “cool” wallpaper in an effort to help all those other designers bring it back.

then i found out (in .06 seconds) that target carries cute wallpaper.

what!?!?! so much for it being this rare gem i would search google the earth for. if target carries it, it’s as common as sliced bread. which means that my idea of wallpapering being a lost art that i would help bring back, is totally delusional. in fact – it might even imply i’m just jumping on this whole wallpaper, decorating bandwagon.


oh well. i’m still wallpapering my bathroom. let’s forget the whole trendy, cool designer thing and focus on what the bathroom is looking like these days. and then you can help me pick the wallpaper.that sounds fun, right?

to remind you of what we’re working with here.

the bathroom as it appears to date. don’t mind the missing light fixtures, holes in the wall, or unfinished trim work. mr. hutch – will you pleeeeaaaaassssseeee finish the trim work?
what we’ve got going on on this side.

so obviously i’m looking for wallpaper to go above my pretty painted beadboard. here’s another perspective.

right now there is a lot of white. a lot of clean lines. a lot of geometrical shapes (the tub accents & the floor tile). a lot of charm. a lot of texture. a lot of i have no idea what i’m talking about.

with that said -here’s what i’ve got so far.

add to the texture. stick to the white… this stuffs at target – who knew!?
go bold and pick up on the orange – this lady is a creeper btw.
something soft, floral, & romantical? i’m sure mr.hutch would love that.
something simple yet whimsical
shiny & gemotric – kinda looks like the tile…

ok – that’s enough. this is getting dangerously close to way too many choices (how many was that – 5!? yikes. and i’m not even sure one of those is the winner!) i don’t like a lot of choices. especially when i have no idea what i’m doing here. so what route should i go? what’s perfect for that space in there? (btw – those last four choices with a million other great other choices can be found here.)

thank you for voting and i hope we’ve all learned something today. i’m not as cool as i would like to think. there is a lot of great wallpaper out there. and you have to help me decide.

progress & priorities

i don’t even know where to begin. we made so much progress on our house this past weekend and i think our priorities really showed their true colors.

i’ll try to sum things up in some weekend statistics, some pictures, and a little tale for your listening reading pleasure…

friday thru sunday stats:

combined hours mr. hutch & i spent working at the house this weekend: 93

number of friends that showed up: 9

trips to home depot: 11

meals that consisted of fast food: every single one….so that makes 9 (i think i should probably leave the nutritional stats out of this list)

amount of showers taken: 0

gallons of paint used: 8

staples removed from the floor: 2,348,745,23o,430,458

marital fights: 1.5

beers consumed: can’t say in case my grandma reads my blog.

and now for the picture portion of this recap:

a little QT with the cabinet guru (more on him later) on saturday morning. mr.hutch would like for you to know that he was sweating while holding this up. “take a picture of me holding this thing up! it’s really heavy!”
refueling after the sweating
starting to look like a kitchen! fancy that.

a little window framing and painting - damn that sliver of pink you see on the left. it's all that remains from the original PINK bathroom.


beginning the work on transforming the antique dresser into a bathroom vanity. mr. hutch’s pants were also mad at the pink sliver and decided to rip.


just in case you were hoping for a close up. mmmm...

so excited about how this little project is turning out and check out the painted beadboard on the walls. sexy.

end of the day saturday. can you tell what's wrong with this picture??*

apparently our construction dog worked hard too.

appliances showed up to party. one day i'll tell you about how we fit a 36 inch fridge thru a 32 inch door. until then - anyone know how to hook these up?

we worked really hard...

sunday the bathroom became completely functional. best. day. ever. i'm now not only in love with the electrician, but also the plumber.

the first shower head this house has EVER seen. i hope ardie is smiling down from heaven at the sight of this.

end of sunday. after all the tack board and staples came up. it's about 1:00a in this picture and these floors are ready to be refinished.

ok – so now for the tale.

(*the tale explains what is wrong with that picture in case you couldn’t figure it out.)

here’s the reason we we’re pulling staples out at 1a and why there is still a sliver of pink in the bathroom. because the tv was our someone’s priority on both saturday and sunday. first on saturday with the guy installing it, needing to track down the right cables,  blah blah blah. and then on sunday when we had to install the wall mount and hook it up there. and then worst of all when mr. hutch went to re-hook it up in the kitchen it didn’t work. sound the alarms because the time he decided to de-hook and then re-hook  happened to be in the 4th quarter of the pats game and someone (it wasn’t me) was freaking out. and then those football players lost (and thanks to making sure we got that tv hooked up we had to see it with our own eyes) which of course hurled someone into a deep dark depression (again not me) and then he ripped out all of our new cabinets the productivity level really dropped as far as work went.

so the moral of this tale is. make sure your priority is getting the tv set up before anything else (sink, toilet, appliances – even before finishing the tile to get rid of the pink in the bathroom**) so that the stuff that absolutely must get done by monday morning (pulling up the staples people) doesn’t get started til 1op and you get to work on it til 1a.

*this might have something to do with the marital fight stat you saw above.

there you have it. a weekend recap. can’t wait to post some pics of our refinished floors!

good news and bad news

good news. i’m a little less crabby and the house is a teeny weeny fraction closer to being done. we painted the bathroom and put trim around the window. we also got lots of staples pulled up out of the floor.

bad news. we’re not very good at trim. we need a bit more practice. friends that helped with the staples started bleeding and got blisters.

good news. mr. hutch looks hot working on trim. friends say they will still be our friends.

bad news.  a sprinkler pipe burst at some point today and we now have a four inch ice skating rink in our back yard.

good news. our backyard looks like a winterwonderland.

bad news. we probably won’t be able to afford our water bill.

good news. friends loved on us today in many ways after my p.s.a about how crabby, down, and desperate i was feeling. thank you friends.

bad news. the floors are not getting refinished til monday and won’t be done til thursday a.m. we are not moving in til thursday.

good news. my pretty faucet came today. and our appliances, cabinets and sink come this weekend.


bought on amazon

bought on ebay

all appliances bought at home depot for secret reasons we'll never tell.

bad news. iit’s almost 1am and i’m blogging.

stealing (paint colors)

it’s time to pick out paint colors.

here’s the thing. i’m not that good at envisioning how things will look. i neglected to steal my mom’s artistic genes on the way out of the womb. i hate boring (read white and beige) but am scared of over doing it. i don’t care about being original. and there are 103,924,587 different colors of paint to choose from.

i’m hyperventilating just thinking about it. that leaves me with one option.

steal other people’s ideas.

so after stalking blogs and shamelessly asking people for the names of the paint colors on their walls while at their house – here’s what i’m thinking stealing….

for the main floor living area (kitchen, dining, and living) i shall go with this scheme in one way or another:

maybe a bit more olive on the brown one?

for the bathroom i point to these colors:

i want to paint wainscot that blueish color??? and i love the idea of a pop of orange somewhere.
i want to paint wainscot that blueish color??? and i love the idea of a pop of orange somewhere.

for the guest bedroom i shall be the most daring:

i really want to paint at least a couple of the walls the really dark blue, maybe even darker

for the master i shall sneak in some romance:

master bed = romantical?

whadda ya think?

here’s what i think. i think i’m screwed. on the other DIY/home renovating blogs/people with more time than me  – i see them buy paint samples and paint walls and sit and think about it for days. then slowly they narrow it down (like an art) one by one, til choosing the perfect color and then live happily ever after with it. gag me.

i’m serious. one blog i stalk (and trust me they don’t read mine so i can  be jealous of them mock them) literally stuck up tons and tons of paint chips on ONE wall in their house and day by day eliminated chip by chip until they ended up with the perfect color. it took them weeks to decide.  i ain’t got no time for that. (i’m too busy reading their blogs.) i want it done last week.

the bottom line is that we’ve got to choose paint colors and we’ve got to choose them now! we’re going to cali for the weekend for a fabulous friend’s wedding  and when we get back we have to paint.

i’ve never been one to think things through or make rational decisions. i’m impulsive. hence the fact that we sold our house in a day and landed in this mess a renovation project to begin with. so i’m fine with being irrational about choosing paint colors as well. however – it’d be nice if someone put a stop to the madness.

so this is your chance to help the irrational naive home renovator. give me some feedback ’cause the color schemes/walls will be these colors if you don’t stop me now.

stop me.

i don’t know what i’m doing!!

p.s. – mr. hutch what do you think? i know we haven’t talked about it yet. you got an opinion or what?

tile wars

before i get into the tile wars – i have some breaking news: the most interesting man in the world is not in fact the creepy dos equis guy. it’s my dad. that guy may have dolphins appear every time he goes for a swim but check this out. my dad drove a thousand miles with a car full of tools only to arrive at bungalow hutch, work his behind off for three days straight tiling the place, and upon finishing get back in his car to drive the thousand miles home!

who does that? i’m intrigued. he must love us a lot or something.

ok so the tile wars officially commenced upon our arrival back to denver. we arrived after our trip home late wednesday night to check out bungalowhutch with our master tiler in tow (that’s my dad btw. we’ll call him JT – he tiled over 2200sqft of his house. not saying, just saying.) and plan our work for the next couple of days.

JT “where’s the tile?”

mr. hutch & me – “oh um yea, we haven’t gotten that yet.”

JT sighs.

so we came up with a plan. i would head to the store first thing thursday morning while JT & mr. hutch got the floors ready (which is actually a lot of stinking work. if you care to know we they had to put a million and one screws into the old original floor boards and then try to even out those old rickety things with this other stuff that i forget what it’s called and this other stuff called liquid nails which i personally think should just be called glue. this is a bad DIY informative blog. fail. if anyone ever does care to know the actual process. email us. i can give real details with the help of mr. hutch.)

so back to me at the store. upon entering i tried to remember the instructions the master had given me. something about getting tile that would be less likely to crack (since our house is old, uneven floors make a great breeding ground for cracked tile – who knew!? not us…) he also told me to ask the sales people for recommendations. so i did. i asked this shaggy hair’d pimply kid about tile that wouldn’t crack with our situation. his prepubescent response: all tile cracks.

sweet. the “sales guy” just gave me free reign to get any tile i wanted despite the master tiler’s instructions!

so i walked around and picked out beautiful tile. then JT & mr. hutch showed up.

“no, no, no, no, no.”

that was the sound of the first shots being fired. a war had begun.

the tile for the kitchen was too big. the tile for bathroom was too expensive. my idea of putting tile that looked like wood in the shower was too ridiculous. ugh.

i fought for that tile aggressively at first by arguing my side (which had no merit ’cause i have no idea what i’m talking about when it comes to tile) so then i took the passive approach by walking around the store sulking and “mugging” them with my looks.

when that didn’t work, i got on my hands and knees and threw a huge temper-tantrum in the middle of the store.

in the end. my war tactics didn’t change the fact that 16×16 tiles in the kitchen would still crack on an uneven floor, tile that looked like wood in the shower still seemed ridiculous, and spending a couple of grand on the bathroom floor was still out of the budget.

i lost that war. which is secretly a good thing, because i’m super excited about what we ended up with.

we had a few other tile wars.  including an epic battle involving my favorite brother in law. it was JT & i v. mr. hutch & adam (the broinlaw). JT and i had the kitchen, mr. hutch & adam assigned to the bathroom. the battle was to see who could get the tiling done first. we totally won by implementing my other favorite war tactic: cheating.

a little taunting of the other team while JT yells get to work

adam was unphased and hard at work

despite my best attempt to look threatening with the thin set

JT & i made up the rules as we went, took the better tools, butted in line for the tile saw, stole their thin set, and made them go on a beer run. ahhhh, the smell of sweet victory!

well on our way to victory

victory indeed! JT finishing up the last bit of grout in the kitchen on day 3


meanwhile mr. hutch's partner has left him for a clean pair of clothes and some starbucks

luckily the saster contributed with placing this one piece of tile in

at the end of three very long days of nothing but tiling. bungalowhutch is tiled! and looks beautiful if i may say so myself. JT called the whole process a knowledge transfer. (imparting the master tiler’s wisdom on to us wee little baby home renovaters). and i would say the transfer was a complete success. mr. hutch & i would definitely be confident taking on any tiling project in the future. (which is good ’cause down the road we’ll have to tile our kitchen backsplash. can’t wait!)

just in case you thought i never did any actual work, fear not. i'm quite good with a tile saw.

very happy with the finished product. we went with a white subway tile with a cool little accent border thingy.

closeup of the border. i had to cut each one of those circles out with the tile saw! that's my story and i'm sticking to it.

our sweet reto looking floor (pre-grout) that did not end up costing us thousands of dollars.

okily dokily. back to my dad job since enough of you don’t read my blog. boo hoo hoo.

the master and his apprentice upon completion of bungalowhutch's tiling.