Bathroom(s) progress – the floors!

Well helloooo there! I’ve been meaning to show you updates on our two bathroom renos and today is the day. And we’re talking flooring. SO EXCITING. ;)

I say “renos” but one bathroom is coming up from nothing and other isn’t exactly getting walls knocked down or anything, but almost everything will be new it in when I’m done. Which will be in four years I’m sure.

First up is the basement bathroom. I’m SO glad we had plumbing roughed in down here all those years ago! We paid for a half bath, just a sink and toilet, but we ended up getting plumbing for a full bath. (Score!) We didn’t realize that until later when we asked someone what the huge hole was in the floor (that I saw a huge spider come out of once and covered up from that point on). It was roughed in for a bathtub, but when we started the finishing process last year we knew a tub would be a waste of space down there:

basement bathroom

So obviously we went with a stand up shower instead. I much rather would have the space for a bigger storage room than a bath instead of a shower. So this bathroom is long and not very wide – only four feet wide to allow for more space in the storage and laundry rooms.

All along I had planned on tiling the shower, but when it came time to do the walls and framing I decided at the last minute to just plan for a standard shower. (We needed to decide on the size during the framing process.)

So for almost a year the bathroom has sat like this – the only things done were the drywall and shower. The hold up was two-fold – saving up the money to tackle the room and I was trying to decide on heated floors.

I had finally decided to just go ahead with them but after talking with the guys who helped us out with a lot of the work (and who were going to install them), I decided against it. The kit and the thermostat thing were going to be more than $300 all together – and for that price I decided we would just wear socks. ;) I mean, the tile does get chilly down there, but only in the winter, and we do have socks on most of the time.

So I saved $300 right there, and I don’t regret it at all. I love the thought of toasty feet, but I couldn’t get past the thought that if it breaks there’s nothing we can do about it. I don’t know how well those heating elements hold up over the years. Maybe in our master bath someday, but not in the basement bathroom.

Soooo…it was time to pick out tile. I had been eyeing the gray version of this stuff at Menards for months:

linen tile

I liked the linen, strie kind of look to it. But it was special order (when I want it I want it NOW) and it was not cheap. So I kept looking, and found JUST what I was looking for at Lowe’s:

Leonia Silver Glazed Porcelain tile lowes   

It’s called Leonia Silver Glazed Porcelain tile and I looooved it! The price was awesome too – you have to buy it by the box, but each box is $31. The Menards tile was almost five times as much! This tile is the same size too – 12 by 24 inches.

We spent about $90 on the tile for this bathroom and had plenty leftover too:

Leonia Silver Glazed Porcelain tile lowes

The grout color is called warm gray:

warm gray grout

It was hard to get good close up pics with the light but here’s an idea of how it looks with tile:

Leonia Silver Glazed Porcelain tile lowes

I love it! We went ahead and had the toilet and a vanity installed too while we were at it. I figured it’s almost done, let’s just do it.

I still have to finish painting and install baseboards and shelves, but it’s already looking so good! We love it – I’m just sharing the floors today because I want to hold off showing the rest:

Leonia Silver Glazed Porcelain tile lowes

We’ve already used the shower (OK, not we, together – me. Alright let’s just move on.) Anyway, it’s a tiny little thing, but it functions! It was helpful to use it because I realized some changes I might make, including adding some tile in a couple spots on the wall around the shower.

But it’s functioning GREAT and we love having a potty down there. ;) Which brings me to the next flooring decision we made in the powder room on the main floor. It’s a good thing we have the basement bathroom done because our toilet for the powder room has been sitting out in the garage for three weeks. Perfect spot for it really.

If you’ve been around for a while you know this is the bathroom that I just simply cannot finish. I shall call it that from this point on – The Bathroom That Will Never Be Done. Anyway, the main reason it’s been held up is because I knew I didn’t want to make all the changes until one big project was done.

I thought about it long and hard and decided about a year ago to add hardwoods to this bathroom. We didn’t have them done when we had the rest of main floor installed a couple years ago, but back then I asked how much he would charge to come back and do it. He offered to do it for $300 total and I thought that was pretty darn good.

Fast forward to now and I asked him if he would still honor that price and he said no problem. So we got some help pulling up the vinyl floors, underlayment and removing the toilet and sink:

prep for hardwoods

I had planned on removing the sink myself but that turned out to be the biggest bear of them all – it was glue to the wall so it took a huge chuck of drywall off when they removed it.

Good thing that’s all getting covered up. ;)

It took the flooring guy just a few hours to cut, install and get the stain and then a coat of poly down. It was so fast – all I could think about was how long it took to do the main floor, so this was a nice surprise. He came back the next morning to do another coat of poly and we were walking on it by that night.

The animals were in awe:


;) I thought that picture was cute of them checking him out while he worked.

It looks SO good. So so good:

jacobean stain minwax

You can see the ever so slight difference in the tone of the floors from the threshold on – hardwoods will darken over time and ours have already gotten quite a bit darker. But when you stand back and look you don’t really notice it.

I thought about doing hardwoods for quite awhile. I asked the guy who installed them initially about having them in bathrooms and he said it’s fine for powder rooms, but he hesitates to use them in main bathrooms with showers or tubs. I thought that made sense. I asked friends who have them in their powder rooms and all said they hold up fine.

I’ve also learned over the time we’ve had our hardwoods that they hold up to water amazingly well. At least our on-site finished floors. I’m thrilled with how they look!:

jacobean stain minwax

We used white oak with the Jacobean Minwax stain like the rest of the main floor. I love it.

But, like I said, it’s been sitting without the regular bathroom stuff for three weeks and I NEED to move on this room. I’m kicking myself for not getting the walls treatment up and painted before the floors – it was just too busy at the time and I spaced on it. Not a big deal though, I’ll just protect them like I do in the rest of the house when I paint.

So there’s the tale of the flooring in two bathroom renovations! One is almost done and one is just getting started. You’d think a toilet in the garage would spur me on, but no, I find plenty of other things to do. This weekend. For sure.


Do you have hardwoods in a bathroom? How do they hold up for you? In our main baths upstairs we still have vinyl, but someday they’ll go to tile. I considered the wood-like tile for a while too, but just liked the one I found better (and it was cheaper).