This post is written by Tricia Firmaniuk, my Senior Colour Designer who is also an artist, as you can tell by even the before photo of her recently re-done bathroom! It’s bold and colourful! Read on:
I’m so excited to share my latest project with you because I am so pleased with how it turned out!
My husband Kelly, daughter Vera, and I live in a very cozy 1950’s bungalow (950 square feet). It has only one tiny bathroom that needs to do everything.
I recently painted it a pale neutral (similar to BM Feather Down OC 6) because we were thinking of putting the house on the market and looking for something with just a bit more space. But since the neighbors and location are so amazing, we decided to stay put for awhile.
Tricia’s Bathroom Before BM Feather Down OC 6 (what were we thinking to install that roller blind like that haha)
SO, I wanted to have a bit of fun with this little bathroom since it is the closest thing I have to a powder room.
It’s been painted dramatic colours before, I’ve painted it often in the decade we’ve lived here to suit whatever I was doing with the decor. This time, to really change things up, I wanted to try wallpaper!
I spent no less than 3 days combing through the options on Murals Wallpaper‘s amazing site. There were SO many fun options.
Want to see the shortlist?
When I’m trying to visualize a design project, I often just create a Power Point file and paste the options I’m considering onto slides (with links back to the source) to see how they work with with main fixed elements and colours. It’s a great way to eliminate less viable options quickly and have your shortlist (or longlist) of favorites all in one place to flip through.
I made a general slide with my Ikea vanity and a block of colour that represents my green beige floor tile and had a great time pasting in pattern after pattern (who needs sleep?)
I absolutely love the look of vintage bird prints. And I thought the colour of this one was really pretty with my green beige tile. Vera is an animal lover, and this was her favorite pick. But it really is a mural, and it would not work well to wrap as a wallpaper in a tiny room. Sigh, moving along.
I also loved this mural of Van Gogh’s famous painting “Almond Blossom”. I thought it would be a better image to wrap a room in. Kelly really loved this one too (romantic soul ;).
I looked at several patterns that would work more like a traditional wallpaper, like these pretty roses below.
And this preppy over sized gingham.
And this pretty watercolour brushstroke.
Full disclosure: I had over 90 slides in the file! And I drove my family nuts getting excited about this option and that haha.
So what did I choose?
They had some lovely Japanese Shibori prints that I got really excited about. And considering that my house is basically mid century modern in design, you can’t go wrong with a clean Japanese aesthetic. I liked this hand painted cross hatch best.
Indigo blue is really so pretty and current. But in my heart, I knew, if I was to paste something to the wall that I could not change on a whim, it needed to be my favorite colour, the one that always exists in my decor, green.
Lucky for me, they do custom colours! I requested this pattern in a leafy green, and sent in a CMYK value for the approximate colour I was looking for. They promptly sent me a proof that was just a bit too clean, Kelly Green rather than Leaf. So we tweaked it and the second proof was just perfect.
Are you ready to see? Ta Da!
Tricia’s Bathroom After
So fun right?
And notice anything else? Funny thing, the new wallpaper snowballed into a partial bathroom renovation haha. When our dear contractor friend, Brian Geckotile, removed the strip of tile around the molded acrylic tile surround, we decided to just keep going and replace the tired and leaky tub, surround, and (why not while we’re at it?) the floor.
It was a big job, but we are so very happy with it!
You can see part of the newly tiled shower surround in this image below. We used a simple 4 inch square true white tile which I think suits the era of the house well. And a white hex floor with green gray grout. Since I didn’t want more tile on the walls to maximize the wallpapered area, we did true white PVC baseboards which won’t swell and crack when they get wet (Kelly installed these, and after a bit of trial and error I think he was pleased ;).
He also did an amazing job of taking these photos for me.
Tricia’s Bathroom After
We were so grateful for Brian’s excellent work on the tile, tub and plumbing. It would have taken us until Christmas I’m sure, to do what he did in a few days. And thank goodness because remember, it’s our only bathroom in the house.
The one thing I would do differently is have a professional install the wallpaper. It was my first time and while the installation instructions were simple and clear, being a newbie, I was in a little over my head. However, it is a very organic and forgiving pattern and I think it turned out alright 🙂
Oh, and in case you’re wondering about wallpaper in a full bath, the wallpaper company recommended a decorator’s varnish to protect it from moisture here. So far so good.
And speaking of first times, I ordered this shower caddy set with suction cups because I didn’t have the heart to drill into the new tile. I had it sitting in the bathroom in a box and Vera (who is barely 9) decided to install it during her bath because she needed somewhere to put the shampoo. I was impressed. Straight and everything, just as you see it here. Handy kid!
Because the wallpaper is so painterly, I needed something graphic for the artwork. I found these gorgeous prints on our family vacation visiting friends in Hamilton where they have lots of cute little shops.
And you may remember my recent master bedroom transformation. I really like the way the bathroom holds up to the drama of that room when seen together coming down the hall now.
Tricia’s Bedroom and Bathroom
Here again is an image of our new bedroom.
Tricia’s Black Bedroom
Across the hall, Vera painted her room a fresh blue, BM Serenata which also looks lovely (but her room is mostly a mess of artwork, books and toys, so no photos sorry 😉 Here she is rolling her sleeves up again, handy kid.
BM Serenata AF 535
Once again here is the before.
And the after.
Next up I’m going to work these fresh greens, blues and golds into our main living space! Which is really kind of backwards. Usually, you would decorate your great room and spin your other rooms off of that which is what we help you do with our Get Me Started package here.
But if a bathroom reno is your emergency, we can help you with that here.
I’m curious about your experiences with choosing and installing wallpaper. Did you struggle with committing to a pattern? Or did you just go for it?
I’m in Vegas this week in a Business course with Tony Robbins! To move your business forward if you don’t literally go back to school, you need to participate in seminars and learn from the best!
The best colour course in the world is almost sold out in Vancouver this September, we have two seats left, and I’ll also be in Dallas and Charleston this Fall, register here.
*Wallpaper sponsored by Murals Wallpaper.