DIYer Gives 20-Year-Old Bathroom A Pretty Pastel Upgrade On A £1.5k Budget
- Emily Barratt, 36, turned her dated downstairs loo into a personality packed powder room in under four weeks
- The theme was inspired by her 'Drama Llama' moniker and Emily says “it’s the one room in the house that can be decorated a little bit wackily”
- Tackled most of the work herself and is “super pleased” with how it tuned out
Decorating the downstairs loo is the perfect opportunity to throw out the rulebook and have some fun.
Emily Barratt, 36, was inspired by her ‘Drama Llama’ moniker to inject some much-needed personality into her dated bathroom. With some imagination and clever styling, she created a stunning pastel powder room on a £1.5k budget.
“Friends have me saved in their phones as ‘Drama Llama’, because drama seems to follow me,” Emily told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk. "So the revamped bathroom, with its framed poster of an alpaca unicorn, was a source of amusement for them.”
The bathroom reno was just one of the projects on the list for Emily, from Manchester, who gave up her pottery painting shop to renovate an eight-bedroomed former church into a family home. She is now charting her renovation journey on Instagram (@our_big_renovation).
“It was definitely time for a new downstairs loo,” she says. “The old suite had a non-changeable toilet seat and I think it had been there for 20 years. Plus, it had a huge ceramic shower tray with no shower, which was a waste of space. It simply had to go.”
Always game for an interior design challenge, Emily decided to have some fun with the upgrade.
“I knew that I wanted a colourful, crazy loo because it’s the one room in the house that can be a little bit wacky,” she says. “I like the colour combination of pink and green. I’d seen a few bathrooms and toilets decorated in these shades so I decided to follow this style.
“I usually find that Pinterest has some good colour palettes for inspiration, but I could only find examples of bathrooms incorporating darker shades of pink and green. I wanted the loo to feel light and airy, however, so I took a bit of a risk and winged it.”
Once the main elements were chosen – a lick of Dulux Mint Macaroon paint for the walls combined with soft pink floor tiles and accessories – the rest of the design flowed. Emily gleaned all her DIY skills from YouTube tutorials and by learning on the job, which helped her stick to her £1.5k budget and complete the project in under four weeks.
“I’ve been renovating our home for a year now so I’ve picked up quite a few new skills,” she says. “I’d tiled our guest ensuite a few months back, which was a steep learning curve, so this was my second ever tiling project.
“I needed to pay a plumber to move the sink, change the loo and plaster the walls once I’d removed the old wall tiles, but I did everything else myself, including laying the hexagonal ceramic mosaic floor tiles. I thought they’d be easier to lay than large tiles, but it was actually harder. Plus, I had to level the floor first with self-leveler.
The under-sink cabinet was a cupboard from Wayfair, which Emily adapted for the basin.
“It was supposed to be white but when it arrived it was cream, so I painted it,” she says. “It was easy to turn into a sink unit. I just drilled a hole in the top and side for the pipes using a circle drill.
“The pink basin wasn’t cheap,” she adds. “It was £100 from Victoria Plum, but it matches the tiles perfectly.”
Emily already had the ladder shelf, which was painted white to suit the theme. She also made the macramé plant hanger from a plant pot and string, which she suspended from the ceiling. The chandelier was £45 from Iconic Lights.
“I’m super pleased with how it turned out,” says Emily. “If you are looking to do a similar budget bathroom renovation, just give it a go. Do your research, and have a look around your house to see if there is anything you could reuse or upcycle to help keep costs down.”
Tom Church, Co-Founder of LatestDeals.co.uk says: “Emily’s bathroom looks completely different to the one she inherited.
“It’s packed with fun and imagination and Emily is rightly pleased with the results.
“Teaching yourself some basic DIY skills, such as tiling, can save you lots on labour costs when it comes to renovating your home.”
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