Bathroom Remodel and String Scrubbie Project
We have this 1852 Carpenter Gothic house, on the edge of a very small (dwindled, to be more exact) Gold Rush era town in the Sierra Nevada foothills. When we bought the place in October 1998, the water had been disconnected from the house for many years, and the previous owner had been living in a double-wide for 16 years before moving in with his daughter. Reconnecting the water and getting the system running again was only one of many tasks that took six months of steady work on my hubby's part to make it possible for us to move in.
I painted the concrete floored zinc shower with a special epoxy "tub and tile" paint when we first moved in (neutral beige), but it was time for an update. Also the rotting floor needed to be replaced, and the toilet needed to be moved across the room to give us enough space to put in a clawfoot tub (how had I survived for six years without a bathtub of my own?). Glenn spend a day redoing the plumbing underneath the house, another couple reflooring, and then painted the clawfoot tub on the outside with some lavender enamel paint that we had, adding gold leaf from my art supplies for the claw feet.
The glorious newly-painted tub, with faucet set awaiting installation.
We went out shopping for floor coverings about a month ago, but were pretty disgusted with the "vinyl" offerings, and disheartened to learn that, while REAL linoleum (Marmoleum is one brand) still exists, it was made in six foot wide rolls, too narrow for our eight foot square bathroom. On the way back home, we decided to paint the floor, which we have done successfully with some of our softwood floors. I dug around and found a large natural sponge, either slated for or left over from some other project, which Glenn could use to sponge paint on top of the deep red base he painted the floor. Presto! Now, it looked a bit like old-fashioned linoleum.
Close up of floor paint, using brick red base with mustard and dark green spatters.
Once the floor was painted, Glenn could install the tub, and so I went out and splurged on bathing salts from Vitae (great all-natural skin care line based right here in Nevada City, but they don't seem to have a website). I was such a good customer that they sent me home with my purchases in a cute little recyclable tote for my smaller knitting projects - how did they know?! We were able to start taking baths about two weeks ago, even though the faucet set we had ordered on Ebay hadn't arrived yet (hose connected to wall method).
Now that a new bathing option was available, Glenn decided to repaint the shower.
Shower paint drying; note the window frame. We have a very large window that overlooks the small inner back yard and wooded end of our land, for viewing while in the shower or tub. This epoxy stuff takes five days or more to cure, and the temperature isn't supposed to drop below 65 degrees during the process, so we have had to run an electric heater at night to keep the temp up. Lucky for us, spring came early and day time temps have been warm. We are down to the last day of waiting ahead, then things can return to some semblance of normalcy and we will be content with our bathroom for a while. The towels, walls, showers, new knitted washcloths, NOTHING matches the purple tub....but it sure looks great sitting in there.
Being do-it-yourselfers, we tied a plastic bag around the showerhead to catch drips while the paint cured for five days. Shower curtains were re-installed this afternoon, and we are back in business!
Now, for the scrubbie part. There is a group of Knitzilla charity knitters making up dishcloths/washcloths/scrubbies (depending on what you call them and use them for) to raise money for Asian tsunami relief. They formed the String Scrubbie Project, and have links to lots of washcloth patterns. Here is another link for similar patterns, for you pattern collectors.