Loving Living With Right Now- Bathroom Makeover for Under $50 Bucks

Sometimes it takes literally transitioning to a whole new environment to really gain perspective on what the heck is important to you and what you are willing to give up to get it. Reflecting back to 6 months ago, my life was a million times different than it is now. The hustle of NY, the constant need to "keep moving," being forced to be creative with tiny spaces- my life felt rushed, disorganized and incomplete. It was not until I moved to Georgia that I really felt the ability to breathe. Never mind the fact that I was starting from scratch on the furniture front ( 980 sq feet to 3,000 sq feet will leave you feeling like you own literally NO FURNITURE), I felt inspired to start building a HOME in Georgia.

So when the time came to start planning out my home decor in this blank new canvas, I felt inspired but lost on where to start. One of the first things I knew I wanted to change was the nasty, laminate countertops in the kitchen and in all of the bathrooms. The countertop was a yellow/ brown faux marble- probably the cheapest thing the builder could find in terms of materials. The countertop, mixed with the overload of beige paint EVERYWHERE made the space feel dark, dated and really BROWN. Consulting with Pinterest dreaming of light, airy spaces, I immediately started researching options for updating the countertops without replacing them. Of course, I would love to actually replace all of the countertops with butcher block or quartz, but spending 2-3k on major renovations was NOT in the budget- so I had to get creative.

Disgusting countertop complete with hubby's deodorant on the counter

Many blogs have talked about using contact paper to give your countertops a fresh, faux "marble" look for literally less than a venti frappacino from Starbucks. Researching all of the methods, using marble style contact paper seemed simple enough and removable if I hated it. A full roll of contact paper is like 8$ on Amazon and comes in a variety of shades and textures. For the first project, I decided to tackle the guest bathroom and try using the contact paper there- If I hated it, I wouldn't be too mad about wasting my time and the bathroom vanity is tiny so it was a good place to practice.

THE GOODS YOU NEED TO MAKE THIS MAGIC HAPPEN

1. A roll of contact paper ( depending on how big your space is)

2. Soap & Water

3. A credit card ( not for spending, but for application)

4. Exacto Knife

5. Scissors

6. 3M Spray Adhesive in clear

First, I made sure to scrub the nasty, brown countertops with basic Dawn dish soap and water. When doing this project you want to make sure your countertops are REALLY clean since contact paper is basically a really sticky sticker and any grime will cause bubbles in the finished application. After everything is scrubbed and pretty, I started out by basically unrolling the contact paper and laying it out over the vanity to measure how I wanted to apply it. I started applying on the right side of the vanity, only leaving enough overhang to actually cover the "lip" of the counter.

Very carefully and SLOWLY, I started to remove the sticky back of the contact paper, making sure to smooth out the air bubbles on the countertop as they came up. The key with getting the application right is making sure to A- take your time and B- Make straight cuts where need be. Following the first panel of contact paper, I slightly overlapped the next panel onto the first and repeated the entire process. The positive thing with using the faux marble print is it is very forgiving when it comes to overlapping the panels, the marble pattern not showing where the seams are.

Once you get to the sink area- things get tricky. Using the exacto knife, carefully cut along the sink seam, making sure to give an 1/2 inch allowance over the actual sink edge. Remember, you can always trim the excess away, but once things are cut, you can't get them back. In certain areas along the sink, I cut small strips to enclose the total sink edge- I found this to be helpful in camouflaging the exposed areas. For the vanity ledges, I also cut small strips, measuring the width of the ledge while giving an 1/2 excess to help blend everything together.

Once the entire counter was covered, I used a spray adhesive to smooth everything out and make sure it stuck. Many bloggers use caulk around the sink surface which also helps with adhering, but I haven't needed to do that yet.

After the last 3 months, the countertop has been able to hold up while still looking great. Most people have NO IDEA that it isn't "Real" and it really helped to transform the once dated vanity. To complete the look, I ordered a new faucet from Amazon (the old one was SO DISGUSTING) and used my absolute favorite paint- Schwerin Williams Sea Salt for a calming look. I accessorized with a wallpaper accent wall and some minor accessories from Target.Instead of splurging on all new electric outlet plates, I spray painted the ones I already had to save money. In the future, I plan to frame out the basic, builder-grade mirror using some wood planks and possibly add a nice shelf on the adjacent wall for additional accents. If I can find a good DIY tutorial, I would love to replace the track lighting with something more industrial like gooseneck lamps.

While its not the spa bathroom of my dreams, I love how the basic remodel came out, especially the fact that the entire bathroom cost me under $50 to redo. After an afternoon of sweat and a bit of creativity, I felt accomplished and happy that I made my "right now" space freaking amazing.

Until Next Time Lovers

-XOXO Nikki

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