When we bought this house our biggest issue was that we would share a bathroom with our 1 and 3 year old children. We generally like them a lot. Love, even. But despite our general obsession of them, sharing a bathroom with those two for the next 10 years (or so) didn’t make us want to do that jump and click your heels thing. If I were to rate them on the disgusting scale they are a solid ‘5’. They pull off their pull-ups and throw them in the trash without needing us in the morning, which seems like a ‘win’, but that definitely depends on the contents of said diapers. You get my drift, although hopefully you never have to.
So we gave our architect the challenge of adding a bathroom to our already very conservatively build bedroom floor.
For the record, this is why you hire an architect. I thought it was impossible. But after 100 years of people living happily (albeit crowded) in this house and sharing a bathroom, he figured out how to reconfigure the second floor to allow for two bathrooms.
And boy am I glad he did.
Bedroom 1 (which had the best light with two big sets of windows overlooking the backyard) was the smallest. Bedroom 2 is awkward and small already (but with a beautiful wall of old windows) and bedroom 3 (previously perceived as ‘the master’) was the biggest. We didn’t have the skills or imagination to know where that second bathroom would live. There was and is BARELY closet space and yet we have more closet space than before and yes, another bathroom.
Here is what he gave us for the kid’s bedroom layouts:
Our fear was that it would feel forced and look like we had shoved a bathroom in a small second floor that didn’t have the space. We didn’t want to sacrifice the other bedrooms just to accommodate a kids bathroom.
But we did… because we wanted it that much. Birdie’s bedroom was already awkward with very few right angles – so making it even a weirder shape seemed kinda ok.
So we stole from Charlie’s bedroom like so …
We also stole from Birdie’s bedroom (while making her closet bigger and deeper).
It looked really good and almost natural.
Stealing from the kid’s rooms and adding a bathroom for them is literally the best thing we did for the house and our family, and walking up into the second floor you would have literally NO IDEA that it wasn’t always that way. People are shocked. It feels so natural and obvious. Of course there should be a bathroom here and obviously, the house should have been built as it is now, originally.
Both the kids rooms are smaller, but neither are compromised. Birdie’s is still small and awkward (but way more functional) and Charlie’s still feels like a good size and absolutely big enough for a 4-year-old.
My intent for this bathroom matches the result – a playful take on a classic English tudor. The herringbone floor is timeless, the matte subway feels updated, the wallpaper is fun and unexpected but appropriate for the house. I didn’t go super graphic or trendy, it’s an updated toile that looks the part and our kids love talking about what’s in it (and pointing to it). I LOVE IT SO MUCH. Having cows and horses on fields and farms in a simple color palette is apparently my jam.
We chose a readymade vanity that had furniture legs – thus looking less builder-grade and it has a step stool built into it that can pull out for the kids when they need to use it which is why 9 million people have bought it since I originally posted about it. Our kids are just now getting old enough to use it, but when they do it’s not to brush their teeth. PARENTS! Don’t fool yourself into thinking that if they can see themselves in the mirror they’ll actually scrub a brush on a stick around their molars. They are still going to just suck the paste off the brush and tell you they are done, just like they did before.
For the wall tile and shower surround we went with this beautiful (the pics don’t really do it justice) matte white subway tile from Fireclay. We decided to go with this option vs. the glossy option as it not only visually is more soft and textured but also because it helps hide water spots which you know the kids love to adorn the wall while splashing around during bath time.
Speaking of bathtime that little toy cubby behind the bath is one of the best things we did in the bathroom. I was able to find a plastic basket that fits perfectly in there and it keeps all those toys contained and off the floor. We also added a little niche halfway up the wall for shampoos and soaps for when they eventually are old enough to bathe and shower themselves. Which by the way if you are wondering, once that happens we will either install a glass shower panel or some sort of shower curtain. We haven’t yet as bathing them is so much easier without it getting in the way.
We brought the wainscot over to the bath which was a mistake, but a pretty one. If you don’t have two toddlers splashing for 1/2 hour all over the bathroom every night then you might be fine with having wood on the front of your bathtub as I am sure the water doesn’t get everywhere. But we do, and because we were rushing I didn’t properly ask our contractor if the materials he was using would stand up to water. If I were to go back and do it again I would have done some research to see if there was a waterproof version that mimicked the look of the wainscoting or may have continued the shower surround tile all the way down the front of the tub as well.
We love their little bathroom, and they do too – and if you are into the look then here are all the sources below linked up for you. Let me know if you have any questions on anything. And for your viewing pleasure, we created this little “style school” video a while back, before we shot the bathroom, which is why the styling is slightly different. You’ll also have to pretend that those big black annoying bars don’t exist as this was shot vertically for instagram. 🙂
1. Wallpaper | 2. Toothbrush Holder | 3. Soap Dish | 4. Ceiling Light | 5. Shower Tile | 6. White Fringe Bath Towels | 7. Shower and Tub Combination | 8. Toilet | 9. Beadboard | 10. Beadboard Paint | 11. Faucet | 12. Vanity | 13. Tub | 14. Floor Tile | 15. Wood Horse | 16. Planter | 17. Bath Mat | 18. Striped Towel (similar) | 19. Facial Brush | 20. Bath Letters and Numbers | 21. White Bin (similar) | 22. Submarine Bath Toy | 23. Toothbrush Set of 2 | 24. Wooden Comb | 25. Wooden Brush
***Photography by Ryan Leibe for EHD