Single Mum Builds New Bathroom For £200 - With Free Sink & £50 Bath
- Clare, 34, took on a bathroom renovation project and completed the job for just £200
- She picked up a free sink and a bath for just £50 by browsing Gumtree and Facebook Marketplace
- To avoid waste she made decorative concrete bowls with leftover screed mixture
- DIY bargains were picked up from Screwfix and Toolstation
Installing a new bathroom can easily cost thousands, but one savvy DIYer has managed to complete the job for just £200 - picking up some incredible freebies along the way.
Clare Bryson, 34 from Perthshire and mum of 2 kids aged 5 and 7 who works as an Advanced Clinical Practitioner in the Emergency Department, told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk: ‘I started trying DIY when I left home at 16. I was painting kitchen cupboards and laying laminate flooring, wallpapering and so on 18 years ago! It was far from perfect but you learn as you go.
‘At 23 I designed, project managed and helped build a ‘dream’ house with my ex husband. It took me months to decorate on my days off but I got lots of practice painting and now I’m a pro!
‘My ideas are my own but if I’m looking for inspiration I search on Instagram. I’m passionate about recycling and upcycling old materials, making things look great on a budget. I like to inspire others, especially females, to give DIY a go and so I share tutorials on my Blondy Builder YouTube channel.
‘This bathroom was a boring, dated, disabled wetroom. I wanted to make it feel modern and luxurious for as little as possible. I wasn’t sure if you could paint over a wet wall but I read up on exterior paint for PVC windows and figured it would be similar to this. I decided to test out some different colours before making a final decision on the shades I would use.
‘Once I had my vision I set to work. First, I removed the bathroom - which left unsightly holes. I then decided how I could cover these with tiles and mirrors. Afterwards, I turned to Facebook and Gumtree to look for a new bath and sink. I was pleasantly surprised with the bathtub and tap I found, which I picked up locally for £50 in great condition. I found the sink for free, and recycled the tap from the original sink.
‘There was a big hole in the floor from the old shower tray so I used some leftover floor screed I had from another project and levelled the floor. I then made decorative concrete bowls with the remaining mixture.
‘Next, I applied sugar soap to the wet wall, lightly sanded it and painted it with Bedec Multi Surface paint using a mini foam roller. It took 3 thin coats to get the best coverage. One wall was in the shade Anthracite and the rest was in Soft Satin White. These tubs of paint were £20 each from Toolstation.
‘Then I scored the wall and tiled it approximately one metre high around where the bath would go and finished the edges with tile trim. The tiles were £13 per square metre from B&Q and the tile trim was £8.99 for 2.5m from Screwfix.
‘A friend of a friend did the plumbing for me, and I finished the look with some mirrors from The Range. I’m sure they were only £6 each at the time. I made my own macramé plant hanger and painted over the concrete floor with some masonry paint. Finally I upcycled the door with mouldings from Wickes and painted it.
‘The painted wet wall is no longer a ‘wet area’ as such, other than the odd splash from the bath, but the paint has proven to be wipeable and hard wearing - it’s suitable for exterior windows which take a lot more wear and tear than this.
‘This was such a cheap and effective makeover and the total price came to around £200. I recycled and upcycled where possible and I was so pleased with the result. It’s so much more satisfying doing it this way. It took me a year to do this project on my days off while the kids were at nursery and school. COVID caused an extra 6 months delay with various lockdowns.
I wouldn’t do anything differently. It just took me a long time to decide what I was doing and I was working on renovating the whole house at the same time, while working full time in my day job and looking after the kids so the biggest challenge was finding the time and energy!’
Tom Church, Co-Founder of LatestDeals.co.uk, said: ‘Wow, Clare is clearly a woman of many talents and this project is truly impressive. If you’re considering upcycling a door by adding molding panels, here are my top tips:
‘Make sure you measure and mark the doors. This way you will know exactly what size of panel to buy.
‘Fix any chips before starting your project. These issues should be a priority so that you can begin on a fully functional surface.
‘Get the right supplies. For example, use construction glue and a level to make the finished job look as professional as possible.
‘Cut the wooden trim at a 45 degree angle. Otherwise, they will not slot together nicely and the overall result will look messy.
‘Give the adhesive time to set. You don’t want to risk it sliding off the door! Try using sticky tape to hold it in place while it dries.’
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