DIY My Apartment

The Navy Bathroom

June 1, 2011


Remember the bathroom from this post? Well, this is our new navy bathroom and I think it’s rather classy. Classy or not, it is certainly a HUGE improvement over what we were dealing with before:


Ugh, right? Notice that fine masking tape color applied to everything from the walls to the door and trim and every last piece of hardware. Not even the towel bar had been spared. At some point, rather than repairing the plaster ceiling and right wall of the bathroom, the building owner covered both with wooden planks. Our landlord has a reputation of covering every wall and ceiling of entire apartments with this stuff, so I consider myself and this apartment quite lucky. I actually kind of like it, just here, just in moderation.


All the black border tiles were speckled with paint and covered in a gross film. The plaster walls were cracking where they meet the tile from years of moisture. I carefully scraped the paint and film from the tile and used Ready Patch and patience to smooth over and mend the damaged walls and then sealed the edge with caulk. The picture above shows a nice clean tile on the left and a gross neglected tile on the right.

I used the crockpot method to remove several layers of paint from the hardware. The little knob on the radiator cover door turned out to be glass. Seriously, who paints over a cute little glass knob like that? I gave all the metal hardware two coats of Rust-Oleum Rust Reformer recommended by Anna of Doorsixteen. Please just ignore the sea shell sink.


Like most renters, I’m not allowed to paint. But I did it anyway. I’ve spent a year and a half in this apartment and plan to spend at least another year and a half here. The walls made me sad every single day and I just wasn’t willing to deal with that anymore. And I figure if you’re going to break the rules, why not really break them? Why not paint the walls navy?

Andy switched out the existing (horrible) sconces for two of these from Home Depot. They’re not my dream sconces but at under $13.00 a piece, I like them well enough. I used Benjamin Moore Old Navy for the walls and Decorator’s White for the trim and door. You can find the Camilla Engman prints at Studio Violet, the frames are ÖDBY from IKEA.

Also pictured but not new are the towels from Martha Stewart’s Faux Bois line for Macy’s (no longer available), the toilet brush by Marna (no longer available), and wall clock from West Elm.

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  • Reply Lacey June 1, 2011 at 10:30 pm

    Any landlord should be so lucky as to have you as a renter! Love the navy with the black and white tile. I don’t understand why masking-tape colored paint even exists, if I had my way it would be stark bright ceiling paint white or nothing.

    Isn’t it amazing that all those small details in the bathroom (of all places) can totally improve your general outlook on life?

    • Reply thesweetbeast June 1, 2011 at 10:59 pm

      Thanks, Lacey!

      Every time I look at the bathroom I smile, even if I just catch a glimpse walking by. The navy bathroom plus our new white bedroom have improved my quality of life SO much. I hope to post about the bedroom someday soon here. I’m so slow.

  • Reply Miss Manda June 1, 2011 at 11:38 pm

    Not to shabby! Someday I’ll see it in person. One on one. Looks great!

    • Reply thesweetbeast June 6, 2011 at 8:58 pm

      Thanks Miss Manda! You are always welcome. Name a date!

  • Reply Jenna October 5, 2011 at 1:24 am

    this is great to see -thanks for posting! it looks a lot like the bathroom of the new (OLD) house we are buying, and I wanted to do navy and white! now I know it will work :)

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