Bedroom/bathroom makeover: The big reveal

I don’t know why it took me so long to actually *do* something about our dull, dim, personality-less master bedroom and bathroom. Probably because those are the only two rooms in the house that our guests never see? Takes the pressure off for sure.

In this weekend’s Chronicle Herald, I’m showing off the final finishing touches we added to these rooms, and breaking down the total budget for the projects we’ve been completing all month long (hint: $300 CDN for both rooms).


We’ve reached the chevron-printed finish line in our Master Makeover in May. If you haven’t been following it closely (no offence taken), I’ve spent the month making over our master bedroom and top-floor bathroom (which is shared with our two small children).

We started off with two dull, dark spaces …

and I’m pleased to say they’re much brighter, lighter, and more homey …

We kept the same furniture and repurposed bedding we already owned, about just about everything else in the two rooms is brand new. 

Leading up to this week, we’d re-painted the walls (Benjamin Moore’s “Revere Pewter”), made no-sew curtains, hung new curtain rods, built and upholstered pelmet boxes, frosted the bathroom window, and created engineering print artwork. 

For the final week, I finished the two rooms by adding five inexpensive finishing touches …

  1. Recovered throw pillows: I’d only bought our patterned teal pillows about six months ago, but they certainly weren’t going to waste just because they clashed with the new decor. I snagged leftover curtain fabric and sewed easy slipcovers for them. I also recovered two smaller pillows from another room, using a small piece of red geometric fabric from my stash.

  2. Painted frames and mirrors: I’m a big fan of the $1 or $1.50 wooden frames at the craft store, so I painted four yellow and printed black and white tub photos of our kids — perfect bathroom art!

    While I was scrounging a home decor department recently, I found packages of three mirrors for $14.99 each. I grabbed a textured, round set for the bedroom, and a set of fancy baroque mirrors for the bathroom.

    Everything was unscrewed, sprayed with a few light coats of paint (red for the bedroom, yellow for the bathroom), and screwed back together. We had a casualty with one of the red mirrors, though, so I planned something different for it.

  3. A “C” accent: Since one of our mirrors was now glass-less, I decided to hang it on a different wall as a frame. I bought a $1 metal “C” at the craft store, spray-painted it red, and stuck it inside the old mirror frame. It looks like it was meant to be there!

  4. A wedding date tribute: The craft store had a clearance bin of wooden letter and number tags, each hanging on strings. I snatched up nine, six, and eight, since we were married June 9, 2008. Once I cut off the strings, they were the perfect addition below a few existing frames — including our “marriage motto” of the lyrics to Bon Jovi’s Livin’ on a Prayer.

  5. Framed greeting cards: I’m a huge fan of Emily McDowell’s unique cards, and I had two marriage-related ones that were begging to be framed: “There is nobody else I’d rather lie in bed and look at my phone next to,” and “Home is wherever I’m arguing about what to do for dinner with you.” I popped them into a $1 frame, and they were ready to hang.

We were able to get two completely new rooms for less than $300 — about $30 cheaper than buying one queen-sized quilt from Anthropologie.

(I think if I spent that much on a single piece of bedding, I’d be terrified to drool on it in my sleep.)

But that’s the beauty of DIY, isn’t it? Putting in a little elbow grease to create something for much, much less money than it would cost in a store?

Of course, DIY life means that when one project is finished, there’s another ready to begin. Check back next week to see what we’ve started in the kitchen!


Look back at the previous weeks of this makeover:

Inexpensive art
No-sew curtains
Pelmet boxes

So what do you think?

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