Paint is Power! Bathroom Before & After

5 Materials
2 Weeks

When you have a limited budget, a perfectly fine (yet hideously ugly!) bathroom, and a slightly bizarre penchant for paint, this is what can happen.

Note: This makeover has been summarised slightly for HomeTalk. Find my full project, including all of the photos, here on my blog.

This is the master bathroom at my parent's house. A few months back they decided the sea of mushroom beige (circa 1992) needed to go.

I must admit, with soooo much to change, it was hard to know where to start. Though it wasn't hard to know that paint would be a major player!

Taking my parent's fondness for blue and white as our cue, we decided to begin by transforming the old vinyl floor.

We used a tile stencil from Etsy and chalk paint which we sealed with several coats of non-yellowing floor-grade poly.

Thankfully it turned out great and became a perfect platform to build the 'new' room around.

The tiles, vanity, trim and ceiling were all freshly finished in white to brighten the room, whilst the walls were dressed in warm grey for a soft contrast. The tub surround was painted navy to echo the floor.

In stark contrast to the liberal application of paint, the wall cabinet doors were stripped back and left natural to help add warmth and interest.

To compliment the navy and reference the warm wood, we added new gold tapware and sconces.

There's just something so lovely about navy and gold!

And touches of black in the wall hooks, cabinet handles and mirror help ground the space and carry your eye around the room.

There's also a shower (tucked behind the entry door) which we transformed too. Find photos of the whole room over on my blog here.

This was such a rewarding makeover. Although it's often tempting to rip everything out and start from scratch, there's just something so satisfying about making the most of what you already have.

And there's no denying the AMAZING power of paint!

I hope you like this transformation and that it helps inspire!

Visit my blog post (link below) for further information and to see all of the before and after photos.

Resources for this project:

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Kristine | The Painted Hive
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

  31 questions
  • Mec22150762 Mec22150762 on Dec 17, 2018

    It’s stunning! What was the cost?

  • Ticia Ticia on Dec 17, 2018

    What was the floor originally - tile, wood, linoleum - do people still use that? It came out beautiful. All of it.

    • Ellen Ellen on Dec 17, 2018

      She wrote: Taking my parent's fondness for blue and white as our cue, we decided to begin by transforming the old vinyl floor.

      We used a tile stencil from Etsy and chalk paint which we sealed with several coats of non-yellowing floor-grade poly.

    • Terri Terri on Dec 17, 2018

      On her blog she said she took up the vinyl tile in before post and painted and stenciled the vinyl Tile they found beneath.

  • Ginny Ginny on Dec 17, 2018

    So impressed. What was the total cost?

  • Susan Church Stevens Susan Church Stevens on Dec 17, 2018

    Looks like you replaced the countertop too?

  • Nanci Plante Nanci Plante on Dec 17, 2018


  • Jo Jo on Dec 17, 2018

    How do you make a tub surround

  • Mary Mary on Dec 17, 2018

    With what did you paint the tile with?

  • Pam Pam on Dec 17, 2018

    I checked out your blog and you say your mum had the shower base professionally done, so i'm wondering if the shower walls were painted or done professionally ? it seems to show the same soap dish , but unable to clearly see the walls.....i want to paint my shower wall and this is why i'm asking

    • Terri Terri on Dec 17, 2018
      Blog post said "Mum painted the wall tiles using Rustoleum Tub & Tile

      paint." It only mentioned the shower base and countertop being professionally done.

    • Yes, the tile on the shower walls was painted by mum. It was done over a year ago and is still in perfect condition - though this bathroom gets very little use.

  • Jill Jill on Dec 17, 2018

    Is that a picture of a person hanging above the tub?

  • Sue Lynn Morgan Sue Lynn Morgan on Dec 17, 2018

    What is the tub surround material, and what did you use to prime and paint

  • The floor is linoleum? If so, what did you paint it with?? Chalk paint, then a stencil design. Then coat with acrylic?

    • That's absolutely correct. A good clean and light sand, two coats of white chalk paint, stencil in navy chalk paint and then sealed with a few coats of clear floor acrylic poly.

  • DFischer DFischer on Dec 18, 2018

    Did you use the Chalk paint on the cabinets? Did you prime or sand...I ask because considering my Kitchen/Laundry room cabinets and I am in dismay over what type of paint to use. So many articles saying Milk, Chalk, Latex how do you choose!!!

    • I like using a good water-based enamel for cabinetry. Hard-wearing, washable and requires no additional sealer. I used a product called Aquanamel (Dulux brand).

  • CC CC on Dec 18, 2018

    Beautiful! What is the brand on the sink faucet? It looks perfect with the lights and navy blue- I do love that navy/gold/wood combo.

  • Linda Herklotz Elmore Linda Herklotz Elmore on Dec 20, 2018

    did you paint the tub or replace? I have tried painting a tub and it was not pretty.

  • Janie in florida Janie in florida on Dec 24, 2018

    What did you use to paint the tiles surrounding the tub? I am also renovating a bathroom and am considering painting my “mushroom” colored tiles.

  • Judy Weatherford Powell Judy Weatherford Powell on Dec 25, 2018

    How did you do the blue on the side of the bathtub?

  • Carol Dodd Carol Dodd on Jan 07, 2019

    Not understanding a portrait above the bathtub. Wouldn’t the moisture ruin it?

    Otherwise a great transformation and I too love blue and white!

  • Deena Addis Deena Addis on Jan 14, 2019

    Absolutely amazing. Just love it. May I ask. Do you seal your paint on cupboards and tile with a clear coat. Very talented. Love the floor too. Everything is fab and edgy

    • Thanks so much. The wall tile is painted with specialty tile paint which doesn't require sealing. The cabinetry is painted with water-based enamel which also doesn't require sealing.

      The floor (which is vinyl) is painted with chalk paint which I sealed with several coats of a clear floor based sealer.

  • Carol.jussely Carol.jussely on Jan 14, 2019

    Please let me know where you bought the sink for the vanity. I am going to have wooden counter tops put in my master bath and I really like the broad porcelain area around the sink .

    • Nancy Wright Nancy Wright on Jan 14, 2019

      I have bought 2 similar sinks on Amazon and they were really reasonable. One came with handles and faucet. I was concerned about how they would actually look and perform having not been able to see them except online but I was really surprised at how nice they were. Make sure they come with the stopper as well.

    • The sink is from IKEA.

  • Vicki L Vicki L on Jan 14, 2019

    Did you paint the tile? What paint and what sealer please?

    • Aprile Aprile on Jan 14, 2019

      If u click on the More button across from Tile Paint, it will take you to Amazon where there is a video on how to use the Tub and Tile Paint; very informative - a lot of steps to go through though.

    • I used Rustoleum Tub and Tile Paint on the wall tiles. No sealer needed ☺

  • Jo Jo on Jan 14, 2019

    What did u do to the exterior of the tub?

  • Cristi Cristi on Jan 14, 2019

    How did you do the sink? Just found one bigger than your existing one?

  • Mario Mario on Jan 16, 2019

    how bad was the smell of the epoxy paint for the tiles, and how well does it hold up to water

    • The smell isn't great though it's quite bearable. Apparently the paint doesn't hold up well to pooling water though it's been great on the wall tiles.

  • Heje Heje on Jan 16, 2019

    Have you thought about? The eye tends to do down rather than up - a navy stripe or something is needed to pull the view from the floor. I like the soap sign better than the portrait which needs something to go with it. Otherwise it looks fresh and clean, good work!

    • In my opinion anything further would be too much for the space and isn't needed. I much prefer the edge of the portrait.

    • Linda Linda on Jan 18, 2019

      I like your whole room and the transformation is amazing. You are so talented.

    • Thanks Linda :)

    • Dee Dee on Feb 27, 2019

      Beautiful job. I agree, I do not like the painting on the wall. Needs something more grand, to tie in with the rest of the room.

      Great job

    • Jeannie Jeannie on Apr 07, 2019

      Kristine this bathroom turned out amazing. I think the portrait is perfect and moves the eye with the glint of gold. Perfection. I also love that you left the natural wood on the stripped cabinet. Beautiful job. I wouldn't change a thing. 👏👏👏

    • RJ RJ on Apr 07, 2019

      I loved the portrait idea.It was a surprise to see and I figured it meant something special. Floor is amazing as well. I think decorating is more about what you love vs traditional the special touches make you feel😎

  • Jackie Jackie on Jan 22, 2019

    I'd it safe for inside of tub.

  • Jayme Jayme on Apr 07, 2019

    My bathroom needs a wrecking ball, but in the meantime, I have a very sad, old trailer home fiberglass tub,’s textured....will the tile paint actually stick to it, or am I out of luck?? I LOVE this makeover and gold and navy..gorgeous...

  • Sandra Sandra on Apr 07, 2019

    Amazing! You should be very proud. I have been trying to find a budget friendly idea for my masterbath (1991) and you are an inspiration.

    So afraid of the floor stencil, any tips before I start?

    Thank you


    • It's a bit daunting though's only paint. If you muck up you can always re-do it. Of course, no-one wants to muck up though in order to make a start you've really just got to go for it.

  • Nomsa Dube from S.A Nomsa Dube from S.A on Apr 07, 2019

    Can I paint my cast iron bath

    • Do you mean the exterior of the bath? Yes, I've seen this done before. You can also get paint to re-finish the interior. Never done it myself though.

    • Fly Fly on Apr 07, 2019

      I have refinished a cast iron tub-inside and out. The inside is a lot of work, needs lots of flowing exterior air because the fumes ar , and last about ten to fifteen years. The legs we spray painted white and the exterior of the tub we also spray points and then put three coats of satin poly on. It has been in my master bedroom for 17 years. I need to redo the inside of the tub as the finish starting coming up in a couple of spots a few years ago. All in all, It was a lot of work, but I don't regret one minute of that work.

  • Pat Shavet Pat Shavet on Apr 07, 2019

    Can you tell me the gray color please? Thank you,

  • Gretchen Gretchen on Apr 07, 2019

    Did you replace the vanity countertop or did you paint it? It looks like cultured marble instead of laminate now. Looks great!

    • The vanity counter was professionally refinished (sprayed) with a stone look finish.

    • Divababiexoxo Divababiexoxo on Apr 12, 2019

      this bathroom looks wonderful! you did a great job and only using paint and adding a few touches. I need to ask my apartment manager if I can change my bathroom with paint. I would love to do something like this with purple paint! thanks for the idea!

    • Gretchen Gretchen on Apr 12, 2019

      Thank you. Ah, the countertop was sprayed and then you added the vessel/top mounted sink! I was looking at the sink and wondering about the cultured marble!

  • Diane Diane on Jan 09, 2020

    Can I paint tile floor as well as walls. Mine is so dark and ugly


Join the conversation

3 of 151 comments
  • Suezanne Wenel Suezanne Wenel on May 29, 2019

    well done, looks great

  • Janis Lentz Janis Lentz on Jun 27, 2019

    Great transform! One thing—the picture of family member just seems out of place—maybe move to family room?

    • Thanks. I wanted something unexpected and personally love portrait art in bathrooms. Many of the bathrooms I have pinned on Pinterest have portrait art in them so I guess it's just something I'm drawn to. I'm well aware it's not for everyone.