Bathroom Ruminations

Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.
A. A. Milne

Another day has come and gone and I'm happy to report that the decluttering and reorganizing project continues and much progress has been made in the bathrooms and in organizing the master bedroom.

The master bathroom does not have enough cupboards and drawers to keep everything nice and neat. In this country you will rarely find adequate closet or bathroom storage. I'm guessing this is the case where you live as well, especially if you live in some of the older buildings in Europe.

Years ago, I purchased a kitchen pantry unit to address this deficiency in bathrooms. Currently the unit is standing in the master bedroom to keep things organized and out of sight. The pantry unit has served me well for a number of years in this way. It is a simple, plain white pantry. I could paint or stencil it but I like in its simplicity in white.

Right now this unit is housing many items. Mainly overflow items from the master bathroom. For example, it contains a basket of items that I need when I travel like a cell phone for use in Europe/Africa. The phones we use in North America do not work in Europe or Africa though I understand this will change within the year. The basket also holds things like extension cords and converters, passport holders, plastic rain gear, small sized containers for carrying shampoo and lotions, etc. Another basket contains small gifts for those occasions when I have to have a gift item ready on short notice. I also keep a few cds on hand for those occasions when I want to listen to some soothing music in the bedroom. Finally, the unit holds some decorating magazines and some books I placed there recently.

I also placed a wing chair in the corner of the room. My plan is to add a lamp and make a cosy reading nook. The wing chair was one of my excellent thrift store finds. It is in perfect condition and only cost $35 (Canadian). The chair was previously languishing in the front room until I found a good spot for it. Here is a photo of it along with my cherished Pendleton blanket.

Now let's go back to the bathroom shall we? Both bathrooms in the apartment have these generic light fixtures above the bathroom vanity as in the photo below. They are great for throwing a lot of light but I really don't like them because they take too many bulbs and are hard to clean.

The master bathroom in the photo above has not had any decorating attention since I moved in. In fact the shower curtain is 23 years old and the hand towel is from the thrift store. I think it needs a change to liven things up a bit. Do you have any suggestions in terms of colour, pattern, solid, etc.?

Here is a photo of the adjacent bedroom to help you make your suggestions. The wall colour is a deep navy. I know some people find it a "cold" or "cool" colour, but I find it restful. The bedroom is a nice place to be in the heat of summer here. In winter months, I simply add flannel sheets, a mattress pad warmer and more bedding as needed. Since it can get rather chilly here in winter with a lot of rain, I have more blankets than I would actually like to have. But most of the blankets have been purchased to last my life time and I will only need to make the odd purchase of bed sheets and pillow cases when required.

If you have decorating suggestions, just know that the bed covers are not always floral in design and the wall colour will likely stay. In summer, the bedding could be a white matelasse coverlet or a large quilt with blue, gray and off white squares. A lot like this one here except the colours are not as vivid. In winter, the bed sometimes wears a wool Pendleton blanket with geometric design (as in the above photo) or a floral quilt from India in brick red, black and off white.

All the bed coverings, except the floral one in the photo, have sentimental value or have been purchased as investment pieces meant to last a lifetime. That means they will likely remain as part of the decor. This also means that I won't have to spend more money on bed covers.

The main bathroom in the photo below is going through the final stages of re-plumbing, as are other areas of the apartment. The light fixture above the vanity will be changed to a brushed nickel light fixture in a more traditional look. It looks a lot like this 4 light vanity fixture here. This fixture can take energy efficient light bulbs. Yeah! I hope to purchase another one like this for the master bathroom. The old fixtures can then be recycled by taking them to the thrift store.

The bathroom tub and floor tiles, towel bar, toilet paper holder and vanity were all replaced in September and new towels purchased in shades of teal blue, gray, and tan. We still need a waffle weave shower curtain which will likely be purchased in a tan colour (I may sew a contrasting colour like teal blue on it to brighten the room and blend with the towels). The previous towels in this bathroom were all about 16 years old so I think they have served us well. The shower curtain which was a green/burgundy/tan floral and the green soap dish, were still in good condition and they have been taken to the thrift shop.

Besides the organizing described above, the master bathroom was given a good cleaning and a lot of extraneous items were tossed or donated to the thrift store. I dropped off two bags at the thrift store today and several last week. I have a few more to deliver there later in the week. Two boxes of computer discs, old appliance warranties and old video tapes in the living room were sorted and eliminated altogether.

I will tackle the final two unpacked boxes in the living room and the other two in the master bedroom later this week. Once the plumbers are gone, the master bedroom closets can really be culled and a home found for the remaining photos and pictures which have not yet been re-hung. At the end of the month, the master bathroom will be re-grouted and re-caulked and some minor updating done to the fixtures. Then I can see about painting, changing the light fixture and adding new linens. So you have a few weeks to let me know if you have any suggestions. I hope to hear from you!

By the way, watch this blog as soon I will be posting about a giveaway. It will be my first one and I think I have just the right thing in mind. I'm excited and will be telling you more soon.


  1. How exciting to be working on decorating! I quite like a very pale light green for bathrooms. I love your bedspread!

  2. I'm really glad to discover the blue you mentioned in your's a very soothing blue ! actually me, too , i'll have some blue in my room..
    For the bathroom one of my suggestions would be to swift to a nice pale aquablue or aquaverde..
    Have fun decorating!

    ps: and thank you so much for your comment...yes i reserved the last notebook for you..(lady on the moon).Am glad you liked it !

  3. Thank you Frugal and Lala, you have both inspired me and now I'm excited to start looking at paint chip samples in light blue/green. See here for some possibilities

  4. We must have had the same designer for the bathroom fixtures. They are often called Hollywood Vanity Lights, maybe the designer thought he was in Hollywood.

    Same lighting fixture and the same mirror, one big sheet of glass. I'd really like to see what you come up with.


    Best of luck to you

  5. Juliette, I hear you, lol. That is exactly the kind of mirror I have. I have already purchased the vanity lighting (see link in the post) and will keep the mirror for now. I don't want to get into bigger renos, just minor ones. The electrical wiring box is smack dab in the middle of the wall (and mirror) not over the sink vanity so I have to keep the same positioning. Perhaps another time I will move it. It depends on how it works out. I checked out your website. There are some nice bathroom vanities there with plenty of storage options.

  6. I loved having a peek through your home today - it's lovely ! (I'm not great with decor ideas though, I'm afraid !) I see you have been busy sorting and clearing and decluttering. I find that when I do this it's not only my home that looks and feels lighter - it's me, too ... a weight off my mind and making way for the new things in my life .... such a great feeling to get rid of all the clutter :)

  7. Thank you for letting us visit your home!

  8. Lynda, thank you for dropping by! I'm glad you enjoyed the visit. I totally agree that sorting, clearing and decluttering is a weight off the mind and a great way to make way for the new things in my life. The jumble and chaos created by the quick evacuation due to the fire and the difficulty I have in having enough energy to do the work that needs to be done make it challenging but I am getting there. Bit by bit. Baby steps as the "Fly Lady" says :-)

  9. Laura, thank you for stopping by and visiting with me :-)


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