One Room Challenge Week 3 – Cottage Bathroom Progress

How are we already at week 3 of the One Room Challenge? That flew by! The good news is that we have made some progress on the actual work that needs to happen, not just the design plan. So that’s a good thing, right? Hurray for progress!

If this is your first visit to Prairie Girl Home, you might want to get caught up by checking out week 1 and week 2 of our little bathroom makeover.

So what did we get done this week?


We removed the old tile around the toilet, sink and medicine cabinet. My husband in his eagerness accidentally removed one of the shower tiles as well. I tell you, it was VERY difficult not to tell him to just keep going and take it all down! I was so tempted. The problem wasn’t that the tile was hard to remove – it wasn’t! The problem is that we don’t have the time or the money right now to replace it, or at least to replace it with what I would like. Isn’t it funny how these little renovations can quickly become an “if you give a mouse a cookie” situation! If you don’t know the children’s book I’m referring to, basically a mouse asks for a cookie, but then once he has the cookie he wants a glass of milk, and so on and so on until he has asked for so many things that finally he loops back around to asking for milk and cookies again. So I had to restrain myself and my desire to just rip it all down and start from scratch. This reno is all about working with a small budget and using what you have to create something beautiful! So the tile around the tub stays!

We did get two coats of primer up on all of the walls and the ceiling. We just used some leftover primer we had from another project, it didn’t cover as great as I had hoped, so I need to go over a few more spots again.

We also got the wainscoting up! Oh, and by we, I really mean my husband.


He is completely in love with his work, and of course feels we should just stain the wood for a true “cabin” feel. Nice try, hun, but that ain’t gonna happen! He was only joking, he knows I looooove white. I like to ask what his opinion is, but fortunately he completely trusts me with pretty much all of the decor decisions around here, otherwise we would be living in a very dark house with a lot of stained wood, red and plaid! When we’ve finished a project, he usually admits that he didn’t trust my vision at first but that he loves the end result.

I really struggled with the decision about how high to make the wainscoting. It seemed everything I read online said to make it either 1/3 or 2/3 the height of your wall. Ours ended up at 4’9”, or just over half the height of our walls.


I wanted it to be high enough that it covered the entire area behind the sink, as well as that little shelf at the bottom of our medicine cabinet. My husband said he thought it should clear the lightswitch. I thought it should be high enough that we could hang hooks that hold our towels from the trim piece, but still short enough that I could hang artwork just above the trim piece. So we ended up at this height. Now I’m just a little worried I made a mistake. I’m worried that it cuts the room in half and makes our walls look even shorter than they are. Well, quite honestly, we aren’t changing it now. I’m just happy that we have made some progress. Also, things always look so much better once they are painted and the room is finished. The middle of a project is never pretty!

We ended up having just enough boards to finish the wainscoting, so the ceiling will not be planked. It was only a maybe on my idea list, not a big deal. I’m really not too disappointed, maybe next time!


I think our door needs another coat of paint. I used Benjamin Moore Onyx, colour matched in Behr’s semi-gloss interior. I painted all of our interior doors in this, but they have always look streaky when the sun is shining directly on them.

I also made a quick stop to one of my new favourite little thrift shops. I had picked up a frame there a few weeks ago, so I went back to see if they had another similar one. I found it’s twin! Check it out!


The empty frame was $2 and the frame with the oil canvas was $10. I don’t care much for the artwork, I bought it just for the frame.  I’m completely in love with the ornate curvy details. I wasn’t planning on using gold, but it would pop against all the grey beautifully. We shall see. I may end up just spraying them white. Stay tuned. I will also need to DIY some art to go inside of them. I have a few ideas, we’ll see what I can come up with in time.

I also came up with another idea this week, but I really don’t know if I have enough time to complete it before the end of this challenge. I almost forgot about these old tree stumps we have in our garage, that I had planned on turning into side tables.


They’ve been drying out for almost two years, but they still feel very damp. I’m not sure if that’s because they were sitting on the cold concrete garage floor or if it really just takes that long to properly dry them out. The bark has been peeled and we did start sanding them. They need a lot more sanding! I thought one would be cute right beside the tub, where the little white cabinet was. I love the storage cabinet, but it does take up quite a bit of room. I love the idea of a little stool beside the tub where we could set a little book and a cup of tea during a bath. Ah, sounds relaxing, right? I would probably paint it white, or maybe do a white wash, because that’s what I do – paint things white – but they would still look super cute and go with the birch wallpaper I have picked out. I’ll have to see if I have time to get to this little project.

I also decided to pop into a local flooring shop, just to see if they happened to have any remnant pieces that would go with my design plan. I still will probably end up painting the old lino floor with a stencil, like I originally planned, but I’m a little worried about durability. Not to mention it would save a lot of time to just have something new installed, which I’m assuming would only take a few hours at the most. Priming, painting, stenciling and then adding poly to our existing floors is going to be a big job, with lots of drying time required. Did I mention this is our only bathroom? Yikes. I’m not sure how exactly we’re going to handle that one. Quick drives to the corner gas-station? Begging the neighbours to use their washroom? Port-a-potty??? Hmm. I don’t think I really thought this idea through properly! Maybe buying a new sheet of vinyl is the way to go. The shop didn’t have any remnant pieces that I liked, but I did find some interesting options that we could order in.

IMG_5797 IMG_5798 IMG_5800 IMG_5801 IMG_5799

How completely gorgeous are those mosaic options? It’s almost exactly what I had in mind for a stencil! These are all from a company called Mannington. The patterns I have shown you above are called Filigree and Empire. They both have a few different colour options, but I think all of the ones pictured above could possibly work. I would need to bring in my wallpaper sample to see which option would be the best fit. I’m still not sure what to do, because while these are not insanely priced, we hadn’t planned on doing the floor as well. I’m just not sure I want to invest the time and energy and money into painting the lino when I’m really not sure if it will hold up to use!

So we obviously still have quite a few decisions to make, but here is how our to-do list is looking now.

  1. Remove old tile surrounding toilet, sink and medicine cabinet. DONE
  2. Prime walls and ceiling. DONE
  3. Add wainscoting to lower half of walls. DONE
  4. Add trim, prime and paint and add hardware to medicine cabinet.
  5. Paint ceiling.
  6. Paint trim.
  7. Fill the really big knots in the wood, prime and paint wainscoting.
  8. Repair chipping grout, prime and paint shower tiles. Silicone around tub.
  9. Install window privacy film.
  10. Install wallpaper on top half of wall.
  11. Install new light fixture above medicine cabinet.
  12. Add shelf above door for extra storage???
  13. Change out sink faucet. (I think I have decided on one that is affordable, but still keeping an eye out for anything used that might pop up.)
  14. Change out toilet. (I’m too cheap for even the cheapest one at Home Depot – $110 – but I think I can find a decent on at the ReStore for $50. I’m not too picky as long as it is just a basic white, round toilet in decent condition.)
  15. Prime, paint and stencil old lino floor OR buy new vinyl floor and install.
  16. Choose fabric, sew and install sink skirt.
  17. Spray paint chandelier, buy battery operated candles, install.
  18. Sand and paint tree stump side table???
  19. Decorate! (Shower curtain, artwork, hooks for towels, toilet paper holder and other small decor items.)

Hmmm, somehow my to-do list actually got longer, not shorter. Oh dear. Well, we will just have to see what can be done in the next three weeks!

Thanks for stopping by! I will be back next Thursday with more progress. Don’t forget to check out the progress of the featured designers and the other guest participants of the One Room Challenge over at Calling It Home!

As always, you can also follow along with progress updates over on Instagram, @prairiegirlhome.


16 thoughts on “One Room Challenge Week 3 – Cottage Bathroom Progress

  1. Kari!! I love how your bathroom is coming together. I think your bathroom and my living room would be great friends. It’s going to be soo cute!!!

    1. Thanks Jessica! I just love how your “Glamily Room” is coming together! Yes, they would be great friends;)

  2. Kari!! I love how your bathroom is coming together. I think your bathroom and my living room would be great friends. It’s going to be soo cute!

  3. I love the wainscoating, I think it makes your room look taller in your door picture. You can totally send me that outdoor painted canvas from your picture frame 😉 It would go great in my next project! So would the wood stumps! LOL

    I like the picture of the last flooring sample. I think that it would add a subtle design but not take away or distract from the wallpaper. My to do list gets longer the more I work in my bathroom and think of other things that I could do to it as well.

    Looking forward to see what happens this next week!

    1. Thanks Jaclyn, good to know what you think about the wainscoting – that makes me feel better! I’ve been collecting vintage paintings for a gallery wall I’m planning for our bedroom, but it’s so hard to find the colours I’m looking for. This one is nice, but I really love ocean paintings with soft blues and jade greens. I keep finding mountain and lake scenes!!! You might be right about the flooring sample. I’m going to take in my wallpaper today and see what looks best together! Thanks for the advice, now off to check your progress this week!

  4. Filigree pewter! I must hunt that down. Oh my heavens, it is to DIE for! I want that for my bathroom now (it is not much bigger than yours.) oooh this could be our Fall ORC project. Oh boy, now I am giddy. Tell hubs his walls l ook fantastic! They really do. The stump idea is brilliant! Please do it. This is going to be great!

    1. Isn’t the Filigree Pewter just gorgeous? I’m sure you can find it in your area. I’ve seen it at a few stores now. It seems to always be in the Armstrong flooring section. I saw it at Co-Op Home Store the other day. I will tell the hubs you complimented his work, he will appreciate it! There were a lot of small cuts, so it was a bigger job than he originally thought. I really hope I have time to finish the stump table! Thanks for commenting!

  5. Looks like your making good progress. I think you will enjoy the pop of pink.Painting the floor sounds like a lot of work. I like your new floor idea. If the budget doesn’t allow, why not choose between floor or wallpaper.Pay a little more for one of them and add the other later.

    1. Thanks Lynda! Painting the floor does sound like a lot of work. The more I think about it, the more I want to just buy new. I already bought the wallpaper and opened the package, so there is no taking it back. It was only $35. The floor would be $158 plus install. So – not what I was planning to send on the floor. I think I could paint it for
      less than $50. I’m thinking it might be time to dig in my hoarder’s basement for some junk to sell, so I can afford the new floor 😉 😉 Thanks for reading!!!

  6. So much progress! I can imagine the finished room already, beautiful. I love that you found the frame twin, what are the odds of that?! Must mean that this project will be a great success! All the little things work out then the big things will too. I really like how gold and pink look together, just saying…on to week four!

    1. Thanks so much Lesley! Yes, I was really happy to find the other frame – now just to decide on what to put in them. They’re so beautiful, I might just leave them empty;) Gold and pink, yes good combo! As is gold and grey!

  7. You’re doing great! So much has been accomplished and it looks so good. Vinyl floors sure have come a long way. I really like that pewter filagree option. Good luck!!!!

  8. I’m in love with the pewter vinyl flooring! I need some too. :) Is it less expensive than tile?

    The wainscot looks amazing so far! It’s going to be so pretty when it’s white.

    1. Thank you Emy! The flooring options I showed were all about $2.50/sq foot CAN. So you could get tile for less, maybe in a ceramic, but tile is so hard to install or you have to pay a lot for someone to do it for you. It comes in 12 foot lengths, so you have to get at least 12 x ___. Which is more than we need, but I think then we will use some of the leftovers to do our very tiny back entrance. Thanks, the wainscot is now primed and I am already in love!

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