Dude, Get On That Already! Bathroom Edition

One of my favorite blogs is Young House Love. Recently, Sherri & John from YHL instituted a project they call, "Dude, Get On That Already!" It's a feature of those projects that you keep meaning to get to, but just never quite do...

For us, since moving in, it was the bathroom. I got it started, and little pieces were coming together here or there but... let's just say, Musical Boxes was a regular game in that room for the last month or so. I wasn't partial to the Americana decor Mum had in there, but I would have been alright if it had stayed. However, in order to help us feel more at home and welcomed, Mum insisted I make it my own. So I did!

Once upon a time I had a Celestial themed bathroom and loved it, but I never really completed it. Still, when I needed a new shower curtain last year and found a Celestial one at Value Village, I couldn't pass it up! Same with this Sun basket. I had no idea how we would use it, but I knew it would look great. And hey, do you see that small shelf unit? A CD rack from Mum's office that we inherited upon moving in.

Doesn't that look so much more organized? Everything has a home, the frequently-used items are within reach but contained, and there's clear counter space available, easy to clean up regularly. Mum made me a Sun & Moon mat to go in the corner of the vanity, to replace the one she had there that was going in her room. That white basket holds his shavers, so that they can be plugged in and charging without being strewn across the countertop and tangled into things.

The left cupboard still had a box of first aid supplies in it that needed to be re-organized when I took this picture. So, 90% completed project, but done enough for the day. This side has a little wire shelf that appeared at our apartment one day, probably from a trash pile, knowing me. I kept trying to find a home for it here, and when the thing I wanted in this cupboard didn't quite fit, I had a stroke of genius that this would be perfect and it was. I organized my and Mr. Moon's stuff into baskets, with some less-often-used things tucked away in the back.

A preview of the other half of the bathroom so you can see the layout, but we will get to details shortly. I love how we were able to take this big wall on the right and make it useful, without getting anything into the walkway. The shower caddy is hanging over an existing shelf in the shower, so it doesn't jut into the actual tub-shower space at all. We had to put a hook into the wall, and Mum was a little scandalized and a little proud that I had no hesitation about using the power drill without Mr. Moon's help. This picture also shows my least favorite part of this set-up: The laundry basket that has to be moved every time we take a shower. However, I'll take that over a pile of laundry on the floor for sore legs to trip over, and I know I won't win the fight of getting the laundry back into our room right away for the laundry sorter, so this is my compromise. What you DON'T see here is a nasty, plastic white shower curtain liner. My friend Grace tested the idea of just using a fabric curtain without a liner, and discovered that the surface tension works just fine, plus the fabric dries much easier. This curtain may be nylon, but it dries much faster than my old plastic one did, and I can take it down to wash it in the machine. Plus, it lets a LOT more light into the shower, so I can see what I'm doing in there!

The shelves are 15-inches deep, so we placed them high enough over the back of the toilet that even the tallest of Mr. Moon's brothers shouldn't have a problem sitting underneath, and the best part about them? Practically free. The wood for the shelves was a Freecycle score of old cabinet doors. I put the "pretty" side underneath where you will see it, and the back is mostly flat which works much better as a shelf than the front would have. We did pick up the shelf brackets, but at $1.50 each it wasn't really breaking the bank. Mum had this basket full of fancy soaps and lotions for guests tucked away under the sink. I decided to set it out, but I didn't want it taking up precious counter space so I put it on that bottom shelf. One day I might even arrange the stuff inside the basket a little more nicely.

* Tip: When buying shelf brackets, check that the surface on which you will be screwing the bracket doesn't have a FREAKING RIVET! These ones are GREAT in that they have the wall-holes offset in the spot where it is difficult to get in a screw-driver, but then they had to put the rivet in backwards so that the bump makes the bracket bow on the shelf. You really want that to be flush with the surface.

Now, you may notice something about these shelves... they are technically upside down. The sturdiest way to hang this system is with the bracket underneath, so that the weight of the contents will push the screws further into the wood and wall. I have to be honest: We did it this way because I screwed up. I had put the shelves together upside down and didn't realize it until we went to hang them on the wall. We decided that we would just hang them as you see pictured, and if it appeared to be a problem then we could re-make them. That bottom shelf there felt very precariously hung, while we were scribbling for holes we must have shifted the shelf so my first hole was drilled a little off--too far off to use, but close enough that we just ended up with a bigger hole (solution: I put in a drywall anchor to fill in the gap). At least it's into a stud. We put the shelf on top a little further down than originally intended to discourage putting too much weight on the lower shelf, and it ended up being perfect because I can reach the top basket with no problem. But even putting some jiggle attempts on it didn't move it and everything on them is light so we think we're OK for now. Still, if they fall down on someone while they're on the pot, I accept responsibility. I just hope it will hold my Shower Beer!

That basket on the back of the toilet is perfect for our stacks of washcloths. Since we got rid of the plastic "loofahs" and weren't enjoying the real-loofah options, we switched to washcloths that get used once and then put in the wash. My face and body stopped breaking out almost immediately! Best placement since if we get into the shower and realize we forgot fresh ones, they're within reach.

My favorite part is this towel bar wall. The towel bar was behind the toilet, and it made hanging up bath towels a pain. We wanted it on this other wall, and there was a spare (shorter) towel bar sitting around so we put that in too. When checking for placement, I decided we could put something on the hook on which the picture had been hanging and make a centered, tiered effect. I love the effect, and the wall hanging Mum made me to go there that coordinates with my theme and the other cross-stitch mat on the counter.

All in all, I'm super pleased with how it all came out. There's really no wasted space, everything seems to have a home, but it doesn't feel crowded while you're in there.


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