Tuesday, June 23, 2015

25 Four Week "Wait-No-More" Organizing Challenge! Week 3 - Master Bathroom Organization Plan

Welcome to Week Three of the "Wait-No-More" Organizing Challenge. To recap, I am focusing on four main areas of our life that need a lot of organizational help. Instead of biting off more than I can chew all at once (and subsequently becoming quite overwhelmed), I am tackling one space each week.


And many of you are joining in and working on a few of your own spaces, which I totally love! For this week's organizational challenge, I am focusing on our master bathroom.

We haven't done anything cosmetically to our bathroom since installing it about 8-9 years ago.  It is beginning to show signs of wear and love, and we don't have any plans on doing a major bathroom renovation in the near future.  But something needed to be done now.  Being that it is so uninspired and dated, I have completely let it fall to the wayside.  The counters have become magnets to clutter, the cabinet is a dumping ground for unused toiletries and each wall is covered in small storage solutions, yet we don't properly use any of them.


The view above isn't awful, it could be worse considering the traffic this bathroom receives.  But a closer look would show you empty bottles in the shower, random Lego bits on the hamper, miscellaneous items sitting on top of the hand towel holder, tub toys on the floor and a slew of random toiletries.  Then, you turn to the sink and counter area and it gets so much worse.  I suddenly feel very naked and afraid.


Sorry for the bad photos, this bathroom has always been problematic to photograph due to the lack of natural light.  This side of the bathroom is just a cluster of nonsense.  Toiletries I use daily are piled near the sink, I have no room to store the towel warmer I was gifted for Christmas, and the cabinet holds items that I only use on occasion, if at all.  Sure, my small jars of bath salts are pretty and I love decorative soaps, but are they really necessary to keep if I don't ever use them?  I don't even know what is in two out of the three cabinet drawers.  And the small shelf above the toilet, although cute, doesn't hold anything of importance.


As I mentioned, the bathroom is tired and dated and although this challenge is more about getting high traffic areas of our life back to a happy place, I decided to take on a little extra this week.  Nothing major, just a little refresh to keep me excited to maintain the space and motivate me to bring back some order.  

But first, the plan of attack.



There are some things we have implemented that are working:
  • A place for dirty clothing
  • His & Hers toiletry bins
  • Cleaning products under the sink
  • Hooks on the back of the door
  • Keeping toiletries pre-packed for travel

And a lot that is not:
  • Countertop clutter
  • Makeup storage
  • Hair accessory storage (do bobby pins reproduce while we sleep?)
  • Too many unused toiletries
  • Too many unused storage options
  • Laziness - we are not always great about putting things back where they belong
  • Gross grout

What is it about toiletries?  I was having a convo with a friend about them the other day.  Instead of trying something new and then not loving it and letting it sit in a cabinet or drawer for a few years because I feel too yucky about tossing it out, why not just stick with the products I love time and time again?  Darn marketing, I must be a sucker for it! 

For this organizing challenge, just like all others, I completely emptied the space.


Like 100% emptied it.  I sorted everything into my Keep, Toss, Donate & Sell bins.  Any toiletries that were newer and over half full, I set aside to see if any friends or family would be interested in them.  I ultimately purged over half of the belongings in the bathroom and was left with a single bin of items to keep.


After I wiped everything down, the bathroom was already in much better shape.  But I was ready to freshen things up a bit more, so I reached for a color I had previously tested on the walls for our living room/kitchen, and painted the entire bathroom a coat of Sea Salt by Sherwin Williams.  So pretty!


I actually quite loved the color before, but it was always hard to decorate around and felt a little bit dark for the windowless space.  In fact, it almost felt like a college student's bathroom, not a space for two grown adults.  The new color is essentially a lighter version, and one coat later the room already felt much larger and much more soothing.  Definitely worth the few hours of my time.

I am amped up and ready to start putting things back and organizing the heck out of this bathroom, but first I have to address the floors and grout.  The last time I cleaned it, it looked amazing for a good month before it started to show wear again.  I would never recommend white grout for a bathroom floor.  Especially white, unsealed grout. 

So today I am back to scrubbing trim and grout, caulking in some bad spots near the shower and then using some grout renew and sealer to fix things up a bit.  I have been wanting to do this for well over a year, so no better time to just get it done while the bathroom is emptied out.  I will be sure to share my thoughts on the process as I have read a few mixed reviews.


Once the floor is done, then I have a few small projects up my sleeves and a lot of organizing ahead of me.  Let the fun begin!

You can find all of the challenge details in this post here, and also download some FREE project planning printables to help you get started!

25 comments:

  1. Our main floor bathroom has charcoal grout and small tiles and it is brilliant. It NEVER every looks dirty. Even after 105 years. The upstairs is the same as yours, white unsealed grout, and it never looks clean.

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  2. I soo love your blogposts and this 4 week challange and it gave me the energy boost I really needed! with 3 little boys around the house and a demanding (though part time job) I'm feeling so overwhelmed and not on top it is keeping me even up right now! I'm ready to print your list and get at it... tomoron as I'll wake all the boys up at this hour ;)

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  3. I really like the new color. I painted a bathroom blue a few years ago, and have always felt that it didn't quite make the mark. I need to get around to repainting a better shade.
    I do want to share that while I appreciate the heart of "wait no more" your comment that you've neglected this room because you've felt it was dated sends the message that a space must be the latest and greatest to be worthy of keeping organized and tidy. On the contrary, I feel that any space can be a refuge and inviting simply by keeping it tidy and organized. I'd love to see you encourage your readers to live with the space they have and not feel the constant need to spruce up/redecorate.

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    1. Thanks for the feedback, I can completely understand where you are coming from. I have definitely organized this room in the past a few times without any decorating or updating (example: http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2013/04/monthly-organizing-challenge-organizing.html). I just felt like since I was emptying the room completely, why not do a little extra at the same time. And sometimes I do feel like if I am not in love with a space, I do let it slide more than a space I have worked really hard on. While I don't think you need to redecorate or project with everything that you organize, I do believe that many individuals (myself included), are more inclined to maintain a space they love and take pride in. xoxo!

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  4. What a beautiful remodel!

    Her Heartland Soul
    http://herheartlandsoul.com

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  5. This is an interesting conversation that has been really good food for thought for "moi," so I thank all of you. Just pure organizing does definitely make me feel better--removes stress from life. But since reading your blog and others, I have been trying to inject some "makes my heart sing" attractiveness into the organizing projects I do and I have to admit, it does help me keep them that way longer and draws me to the space. . . I have a closet office that I love so much more since I dressed up basically the same organizational arrangements with some paper-covered boxes, etc. Despite a lot of years of decorating experience, it never occurred to me to take that bit of extra effort, and it adds a little pure fun to everything.

    One thing I wanted to note. . . where I live, the homeless shelter welcomes any personal care items--even things like partially used shampoo--with open arms. If your family doesn't want your extra items, you might consider dropping them off at a shelter. It's a little extra work but you know they will be put to good use.

    Best,
    Anne

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    1. Such a great reminder Anne! I know some places won't take opened toiletries so I am glad you chimed in with a great option for people to look into.

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  6. Love the color! I'm about to completely gut my bathroom and am looking for a color. We, too, will have a one piece shower with a white vanity but with wood look tile flooring. We have white, unsealed grout too currently from the previous homeowners and it is horrible.

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  7. Inspiring me to get mine organized. Definitely need a keep/donate/trash pile.

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  8. I like the new color. It's great that you can just paint the bathroom yourself. I would love to paint my master bath, but my husband would never let me just go ahead and paint it. I also need to work on organizing my bathroom cabinets and drawers.

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  9. Love the new updated color! You said it took you a few hours to paint? It would have taken me all day! Did one coat cover? Or did you need to do two? I've used Sherwin Williams before, and always need two coats. Any painting tips you could give me to make the whole process go faster?

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    1. I typically love Sherwin Williams paint, but this time I just used some Behr Marquee Interior in Eggshell and it covered in a single coat. It could be that I was only changing a few shades of a similar color that helped me out. I don't tape things off which speeds up the process, I cut in with this brush: http://www.homedepot.com/p/Wooster-Shortcut-2-in-Nylon-Polyester-Angle-Sash-Brush-0Q32110020/100357411

      I then use a really good microfiber roller to ensure good coverage for the remainder of the walls: http://www.homedepot.com/p/Linzer-9-in-x-3-8-in-Microfiber-Roller-Cover-RC-173/202097067.

      Once I am done rolling, I check for any spots that may need touching up, sometimes the cutting in sections don't completely cover in one coat. The bathroom is a smaller sized space so it only took me a couple of 40 minute episodes on Netflix and I was done. :)

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  10. I loved reading this & seeing how you broke up the project. I too liked your initial color but I could see how it'd be hard to decorate around so I love the new look. Excited to hear your progress!

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  11. I love seeing "real life" before pictures! Thank you for being so honest about the trouble spots around your house. It make me feel normal for struggling with my cluttered master bathroom. I can't wait to see what you do with the space!

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  12. Young House Love has a great tutorial on making grout look like new: http://www.younghouselove.com/2014/01/how-you-like-me-now-grout/

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    1. Thank you! That is the same product I purchased so it was good to read her tips for application. :) Although, I am thankful my space is not nearly as large for such a time consuming project.

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  13. Even just emptied out and cleaned, I can see how much more "spa like" your bathroom looks! This might just be the push I need to do a minor refresh on my master bathroom; I'm thinking maybe this weekend! :-)
    My vanity especially needs some work: need to clear everything out, fix a couple drawer glides that needs repaired, fresh coat of paint (already have) and install new drawer pulls (already have, but haven't installed yet).

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  14. I also have a bathroom that has no natural light. I feel like it looks great, but has the worst lighting ever. Do you have any tips on how to make a room with no natural light feel comfy? Also, I should tell you that I can't paint my walls. Got to love renting...

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    1. Hi Heather!

      In rooms where we receive very little natural light, I have been switching to Reveal bulbs (http://www.gelighting.com/LightingWeb/na/consumer/products/highlights/reveal/overview/) or white LED bulbs. I love the difference a blue/white light makes vs. a standard yellow hued bulb. I just picked up a couple of the Reveal bulbs for the bathroom yesterday and hope they work out. :) xo!

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  15. Love the new color, and I can't wait to see the details you add to this space! I'm wondering what you do with the items you no longer need when you redecorate a space? Over the years I've started to accumulate wall art, shower curtains, old shelves..etc. Just wondering if you gather and sell or donate? I'm also wondering what your thoughts are on gallery walls? Your decorating is very streamlined, so I'm curious if you prefer a gallery wall to look very orderly and symmetrical or what you think about gallery walls that have a more random look? Thanks so much!

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    1. That is a super question about making the most of decor pieces, I think I will add it to my list of post topic ideas since I have been asked this a couple of times recently (as well as how to decide what to donate/sell).

      As far as gallery walls go, I love the look of an eclectic gallery wall, but creating one is not the easiest for me since I typically gravitate to cleaner lines and symmetry. Every time I try to create one organically, I find myself rearranging it to make it even, lol. For the most part I have stopped fighting it and typically just stick with simple and straight frame layouts. I also think it may depend on the type of space and ultimate look you are aiming to achieve. xoxo!


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  16. Sooo.. I'm about to do this.. like.. right now. I think "Spring Cleaning" needs to happen about 4 times a year. Haha. Clutter accumulates and it drives me nuts. Thanks for the pointers! :)
    www.GlossyFinds.com

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  18. Here's a tip I've learned over the years about beauty products you are unhappy with...most of the time, if you call the 800 number on the back of the product and tell them you aren't happy with it, most companies with send you your money back or a coupon for the same amount as you spent for the product. It makes it easier for me to throw out something I am unhappy with if I have the money I spent on it, or the equivalent in the form of a coupon, back in my pocket. Can't wait to see how the bathroom comes out! I know it will be gorgeous!

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    1. Genius! Thank you so much for the suggestion! I find myself trying new products and being disappointed but yet either using them anyway or letting them sit. It is great to know some companies are willing to help you out in that situation. xo!

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