12 Refreshing Ways To Update Your Bathroom on a Budget
Reviving a tired washroom needn’t require a total overhaul. Learn how to add style and character at an affordable price.
1. Coordinate Accents
Give your bath a designer touch with matching accessories. Here, the medicine cabinet’s silvery frame is echoed by the decorative metal outlet covers.
2. Tile the Countertop
An alternative to a stone slab, a tiled counter resists water but costs a lot less and is easy for DIYers to install. This terra-cotta top has white-painted wood edging to go with the vanity below. A bead of clear caulk keeps water away from the wood.
3. Refinish Fixtures
Rather than replace an old cast-iron claw-foot tub and sink, save a bundle by reglazing them instead. A pair of fixtures can cost upward of $2,000, compared with about $800 for having both reglazed by a professional.
4. Paint the Floor
Give worn wood floors new life by brushing boards with glossy porch paint tinted to match your bath’s color scheme.
5. Salvage a Towel Rack
6. Make Your Own Wallpaper
Make your own graphic wall covering out of pages from a vintage book. Brush the page backs with wallpaper paste and adhere to the wall. Then seal the surface with a clear top coat.
7. Install a Salvaged Slider
When space doesn’t allow for a traditional hinged door, install a sliding one. This salvaged schoolhouse door glides on a wall-mount track patterned after barn-door hardware. Glass in the door’s top panel ushers light from the hallway into the windowless bath.
8. Create a Harmonious Color Palette
Create a striking monochromatic effect by painting walls to match your floors, as was done in this sunny space. Similar to shown: Mildew-resistant Bath Paint Semi-Gloss Finish.
9. Frame a Mirror
Frame mirror glass with fluted door casing.
10. Use Elegant Lighting
Turn the ceiling into a focal point by installing a medallion and handsome hanging fixture, such as this bronze-toned light with crystal teardrops. If installed over a tub, as seen here, be sure there’s at least 8 feet of clearance from the tub rim to the bottom of the pendant to comply with electrical code.
11. Install Plantation-Style Shutters
Install louvered interior shutters to provide privacy and direct streams of sunlight for subtle illumination. Vinyl ones are mold- and warp-resistant, and require little upkeep.
12. Make a Rustic Towel Rack
Make a wood holder by cutting a 2×4 into five 12-inch sections and nailing each to a mounting strip cut from the same board. Brush on a wood stain and fasten the assemblies to the wall, leaving space in between for rolled hand towels.