Happy Canada Day! Its a perfect day to share a before and after of a clients red & white cottage bathroom. This boathouse bathroom evokes a classic canadian cottage style and what's even more dreamy about it is the sound of the waves lapping against the docks below you.
Last year I completed a whole Cottage renovation for a client that involved updating the main cottage and boathouse to incorporate all new finishes and fixtures but without doing extensive construction. I find these type of projects incredibly enjoyable because its so exciting to explore the potential of the existing space and see the dramatic improvements that can result by making a series of simple but thoughtful changes. By simple I don’t mean the modifications didn’t still require a lot of time, effort, and co-ordination but they were simple in that they didn’t require new construction or complicated modifications. I made a visit to the cottage a few weeks ago to check on the status before this season got underway.
|Boathouse Bathroom Before|
The entire interior of the boathouse (which is only used seasonally) was knotty pine, with exception of the floor which was carpeted in the living areas and tiled in the bathroom. The biggest change I made was that every bit of exposed natural wood on the interior was painted white, and then we added new but reclaimed wide plank engineered pine on the floor. Essentially I took all the wood away from the walls and ceilings and put it on the floor. This effectively doubled the brightness of the interior, emphasized its dramatic vaulted ceilings and painting the wood panelling created interesting tone on tone texture. The best part was the lake view and exterior landscape became the focal point. The white paint transformed the boathouse interior to a fresh, bright, summery oasis.
The boathouse bathroom is a good size with interesting ceiling lines but was dated with respect to its fixtures and accessories and the ceramic floor a bit too suburban looking. Everything about the vanity was perfect though, it was excellent quality and was hand built from solid wood with lots of storage and was in perfect condition, that and the mirror were definitely keepers. I even loved the natural pine countertop and wanted to preserve it because i think its an excellent choice for this application it’s not the place for expensive marble or quartz. I saw loads of potential for this space merely with paint and new fixtures. A main criteria for selecting new items was we had a very short timeline to complete all the changes so everything needed to be readily available and/or deliverable to cottage country. Below is a rough concept I put together for the owners and they quickly agreed with all the proposed changes...
|New proposed finishes, Carol Reed Interior Design.|
The vanity and the existing mirror would simply be updated with a red paint and some new striped ceramic knobs. New engineered plank fooring replaced the tile and was in the same tones as the existing wood countertop. The key to retaining the wood countertop was replacing the old drop-in sink with a vessel style sink that would fit over the old sink cutout. I decided to mix in some more contemporary fixtures with the otherwise very traditional space but keeping the metal finishes in a dark bronze gives them a more relaxed nostalgic look. A gooseneck barn light fixture with filament style bulb gives the bathroom a modern rustic vibe.
|Boathouse Bathroom - After|
In the end we opted for a countertop mounted faucet in lieu of the wall mounted (from the same series) for an easier install. A simple hook for a hand towel (I’m obsessed with turkish towels ones and stock up on them whenever I find them!) its rope fringe and blue stripes evoke a nautical vibe, an oversize seagrass basket and more wall hooks on the opposite wall (not yet installed) store large beach towels.
|Boathouse Bathroom Vanity - After.|
My visit to the cottage last month was my first since all the major installations were completed in the boathouse last summer so its was a thrill to see the progress. I took note of some final details that still need to be addressed, one of them includes installing new knobs on the vanity, I'm in love with the white ones I found with a stripe around the rim which i think will be the perfect finishing touch. Lastly I think the floor needs a fun colourful indoor/outdoor rug for in front of the vanity. But so far the transformation of this lakeside loo as been a dramatic improvement - I think its now bursting with character and style!
Happy Canada Day!
All Photos and Room Design by: Carol Reed