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the bathroom renovation: almost a year later

Ever since our bathroom reno (which happened almost a year ago now!), I have had some reader questions about how we are liking some of the products we chose.

Here is a reminder of the before + after of this wee little room.


collage 11

The tiles. The white subway tiles and aqua glass tiles we chose from Home Depot for the shower and sink areas are still rocking my socks. They are classic and so easy to keep clean. I just wipe them down every now and again with a spray tile cleaner and they look good as new. The white grout we chose also hasn’t discoloured and still looks great.


The marble tiles on the floor make me weak in the knees. I love those guys. They appear shiny in the photos (more so than they are in real life), and aren’t slippery or cold. We do use a bath mat when we step out of the shower so we don’t get water everywhere, but there hasn’t been any slipping or sliding around. The grout does get dirty and needs to be vacuumed from time to time (the sweep + mop combo that happens on the regular isn’t good enough to get the little bits out of the grout). All in all though, still a lot of love going on here.


The fixtures. One thing I hadn’t thought too much about when we were buying our fixtures was brushed versus not. We wanted to go chrome, as we liked the look next to the marble and aqua tiles, but I sort of wish we had gone for brushed chrome. The regular chrome is lovely and shiny, but it does get marks on it really easily. Not a big deal to just wipe down, but I’m slightly obsessive about it, and so the brushed might have been better for my streak-free nature. Other than that though, we have loved the fixtures we chose (Moen in the shower, and IKEA for the sink).


The sink. The sink is a trough sink (the Lillangen from IKEA), and we love it. We had been worried initially about whether it would be deep enough not to splash back, but it is great (no splashing to report!). It also has this handy little ledge along the back of the sink that is perfect for putting our toothbrushes or soap dispenser on. The water doesn’t usually reach out to the sides of the sink unless you are filling it up, so you can get a bit of dirt on either edge. I just wipe it down every few days with a washcloth and it’s no biggie. On the whole, we are still loving it’s sleek and sexy look.


The vanity. If you remember this reno, you’ll recall that we built the vanity ourselves due to very limited space (needed to fit into our narrow nook, but be floating high enough to not cover the heat vent). The vanity itself has worked out really well. I love the floating aspect – it makes cleaning underneath so easy and gives the room more floorspace to help it seem larger than it is. I also like having the two deep drawers. You can store SO much in there, and it has meant that we were able to move a ton of stuff out of our linen closet and into the bathroom. Yay for storage.

There are so many great options for bathroom vanities out there now, so DIY’ing one definitely isn’t necessary. From antique bath vanities, to ones with a more modern design, there are tons of different options and styles to choose from.


The tub. We went with a fairly low-end tub from Home Depot (this one). It has been really comfortable (yay for being able to take baths again!), and I like the simple, sleek look of the tub. The one downside is that we have found that it tends to stain more than other tubs. In the summertime with our dirty feet, it would get dark marks on the bottom of the tub pretty easily. My usual non-toxic bath cleaner isn’t enough to get it out, and cream Vim has been the only thing that works. Ever since then, we have started to buy those plastic bubbly mats that go on the bottom of the tub floor, which has really helped. So not the end of the world, but a little bit frustrating.

All in all, we are happy to report that despite a few small things, we have been really pleased with all of our choices. It definitely has that spa feeling, and is still one of my favourite spaces in the house.

Have you used any of the same products? Got any bathroom renovation tips or things you learned along the way? Planning a bathroom reno yourself? 

*This post was sponsored by Modern Bathroom. All content and opinions are my own (no free product was received by Modern Bathroom). Head on over to their site to check out their huge selection of bathroom goodies! 

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  • Kaileigh

    I think it’s funny because we went with a brushed faucet and I was wishing we went chrome because it gets so many streaks. I guess it’s a lose lose situation!

    • gemma

      Shoot! Well then I guess I’m glad to hear that it happens to any finish :)


  • caroline

    Hello, I was browsing and found your site. I am thinking of this exact sink. Are the Ikea components durable? also, did you use a non-Ikea faucet? You mentioned water does not splash. May I ask what faucet you used? Thank you!

  • Rona Bernstein Diaz

    Do you have to drill your own holes at the bottom of Lillangen cabinet to attach the steel legs?? I am not clear on the instructions.

    • We made our own cabinet that just looks like the Lillangen cabinet. I would reference the IKEA instructions or call their customer support for some more help.

      Good luck!