There are some questions a mother just shouldn’t ask..like:
“What do you mean you brought that bath tub home all by yourself?”
“Is it true that you and dad were cutting tile with a wet saw at 1 am?”
You especially don’t ask if you’re fingering your prayer beads in a house in North Carolina and your ‘kid’ is working on his house all the way in St. Louis, Missouri.
At some point you gotta let go..
This bathtub remodel has been in the works for a long time. My son and his wife bought a lovely town home when they moved to St. Louis two years ago and, like is so often the case, it seems the previous residents ran out of cash right at the threshold of the master bathroom. The rest of their unit is beautifully appointed with dark hardwood floors, a gorgeous, white kitchen with stainless steel appliances and a large farmhouse sink that overlooks their private patio area.
(Did I mention there’s a fireplace..IN the kitchen?)
So yeah, it’s a beauty..which made it especially hard to understand the condition of the bathroom upstairs.. My son and his wife knew they’d need to eventually address this problem, especially their decrepit bathtub, which was starting to show signs of not only increasing general ugliness but serious wear and tear.
The pictures below tell the story. Notice how low the tiles on the wall were set.
Yeah, it was gross and rusty and very old.
My son did demolition on his own and also purchased and staged all of the needed tile and tools in anticipation of my husband flying out there for a long, post July 4th, week-end to help with the actual construction.
DEMO & CONSTRUCTION:
Choosing the right color tile was no small issue as they were trying to match the existing, but discontinued, tile on the floor. The final choice was a 4 X 16, very decently priced, almost taupe colored product from their local tile shop. It was complimented with a light gray grout. My son also picked out a contrasting mosaic to blend in with the black counter top the previous owner installed that is located directly across from the shower. The chrome shower system is Hansgrohe, and I’m not sure.. but I think the half shower door is from Home Depot. These doors are very popular right now.
Instead of installing bullnose tile pieces, my husband and son used a thin, tile edging called a shluter. These are available at Home Depot and are a much cheaper and more modern alternative to bullnose tile.
You can see in the picture below that they also took the tile all the way up to the ceiling. They weren’t initially going to do that because the ceiling isn’t perfect against the wall, but it was clearly the right choice and made the shower feel even that much more spacious.
When I picked my exhausted husband up at the Charlotte airport after returning from Missouri he had bloodshot eyes, a beard starting to sprout and basically looked like the Gorton’s fisherman coming home from a sail straight through the Bermuda Triangle. I guess that’s what happens when you squeeze 6 days of work into 4, pull a final all nighter and slightly underestimate the number of unanticipated problems.
He had already texted me from the luggage pick up zone while he waited for his suitcase full of tools to arrive: “I will pay whatever I have to for someone else to do our bathroom tile.”
If laying tile is like giving birth, he will eventually forget the pain. But these guys really did do a great job, and I am very proud of them both. I’m proud of my son for having the temerity to take on a project so far out of his comfort zone with precious little free time available to plan and actually do it, and I’m proud of my husband for being willing to help with another bathroom project while he’s still knee-deep in our own. Honorable mention must also be bestowed upon my son’s wife who had to try and sleep through all the daytime construction noise as she was working the night shift. 😧
The final product did turn out well and I’m confident that the money my son and his wife spent on this remodel will allow them to sell their home at a higher price once it’s time to move on. You know what they say, the two most important rooms are the kitchen and the master bathroom. They have those checked off now. 👍
(And yes, my husband and I are still waiting to have our bathroom floor and shower tile installed…😐)
…… Stay tuned.