Vanity Fair

The office bathroom makeover has officially begun!  Hip Hip Hooray!

Yes, it is awkward when I am the only one cheering…alone…in my house…with my arms in the air…thanks.

But seriously – I could not wait another second to get the vanity outta the bathroom and get to work.  I knew that the trim…the chocolate brown trim…would take a little time to paint.  Three to four coats in white = lots naps.  And because I usually need a little instant-gratification when starting a project, I thought that the trim could wait while I slapped some paint on the vanity.

Remember the vanity?  Yeah.  Builder grade basic boring stuff.  Jer removed it for me by unscrewing the pipes (obviously we turned off the water first – duh – like we would ever forget that – no never – at least not after we did it the first time) and the countertop simply came off…because it was just laying on top.  unscrewed.  and unglued.  (enter dirty joke here about laying on top unscrewed and unglued – there are too many to count)

ANYHOO…the plan was to spice up the vanity with a little color.  I am not skeered of painting me a vanity a bold color (I did it once already in this house – remember?) so this time around I picked a hue that would be a little more feminine and a lot more fun.

Some folks asked if the plan was to wash it with the color instead of making it more matte – the answer to that is no.


Well, the vanity had some issues.  First, there was the issue of the toilet paper holder…that we were planning to remove and then patch the holes.  When you add a little filler to holes and sand them down, a wash would still allow peeps sitting on the loo to see the fix.  And then there was the issue of “the door circle”.  As you can see in the picture below, the left hand door has a weird circle.  It’s like the wood was patched at some point in manufacturing.  I just hope that Napolean got this baby at a discount.

So with our errors – a wash was out and a more solid color was in.  Of course, I knew that with only a few coats some of the grain would still show…fine by me of course…so it wouldn’t look like a solid piece from like Ikea or something like that but definitely more like painted wood.

After removing the tp holder, I filled the holes and waited for them to dry before sanding.  I also wiped down the entire piece with a damp cloth.  Here’s where I get all info-tastic on ya….

Since I planned on using spray primer (oil based spray primer that claims it will stick to anything) I did not sand the entire piece.  If you are scared of painting a piece and believe your existing finish is too slick – it doesn’t hurt to sand.  If you use a waterbased primer & paint in one – I would sand.  I ALWAYS sand the tops of pieces…just simply because that is what gets the most ‘touches’…but since this piece had a countertop that was removed, it was an extra step I felt unnecessary :)

I taped off the hinges and the inside lip – just in case…

And used spray primer.

Here’s Will managing the assessment of the piece after it had dried.  And why yes, that is his official outfit for managing and assessing :)

I love spray primer.  Let me just tell you how much I love it.  It’s borderline an obsession.  I have been known to skip dinner just to drive out to get more.  A dinner with bacon! And it cuts down on the commitment.  Sure it costs more but it is totally worth it.  Because frankly, sometimes I don’t want to even start painting something just simply because the primer stage takes way too long.  And the clean up on an oil based primer or shellac based primer takes a long time too.  My time is precious to me as I am sure yours is too.  Yet another reason why I love spray primer.  I wish I could spray prime the bathroom and the office…hey…that’s an idea :)

I ended up choosing Park Place by Allen & Roth for the paint color.  I purchased one of the little $3 pots from Lowe’s (gift card in hand since they are the ones making this reno possible!) and used about half.

This is my favorite brush for furniture painting.  It’s a 2 inch angled short handled brush from Purdy.  You must own one of these if you are painting anything…ever.  It’s worth every cent.

Two coats later, we have a very muted turquoise vanity.  Fist bump me!

I carried it inside to see how it would look with the vanity top…very classy indeed.  I’ll talk Jer into removing that faucet asap :)   But so far – we are moving right along.

Sooo….what have you guys been up to lately?  Any more projects?  Any weekend house progress?  Any turquoise lovahs?  Anybody making their vanities a little fairer?  Spill.  Not the paint…the news :)



  1. says

    Love the turquoise color! Any tips for painting a vanity that is stuck in place (i.e. can’t be spray primed outside)? I have one in each of my bathrooms, and the color is just plan eek… much like yours in the before image.

    • says

      Well, if I were you, I would definitely use a Zinnser brand primer – probably shellac based. It dries really fast so just remember to work fast!
      xo – kb

  2. Rochelle says

    This is looks amazing! We are remodeling our master bath and will likely be painting the vanity. Thanks for the great tips!

  3. Jen from Ohio says

    I’m getting ready to tackle our main and half baths this year. I wish I could paint the vanities a a fun color like that, it looks amazing. Unfortunately, we’re only going to be here about 2 more year max so right now we’re still decorating for the masses. Hopefully when we build our dream home, I can get some color around here!

  4. Autumn says

    3 things I love about this post:
    1) You said “skeered.” Made me giggle. :)
    2) Will’s outfit. Awesome.
    3) The new vanity color! Gorgeous!

  5. says

    very nice!! I’m working on our downstairs bath right now too… stripes. I can’t believe your little boy is holding that paint brush and being so good! Mine could’ve had turquoise paint all over his face in about 1.5 seconds. :)

  6. says

    Looks very pretty. I really like the color. I just finished my office makeover, I’ll be showing it off tomorrow if you have a minute to stop by that would be fabulous. But I’m already onto doing my daughters nursery again, I feel like she needs a change. Which is kind of awkward bc I always work when she sleeps…so idk what I’ll do to make over her room.

  7. Nicole says

    I love the color! We are renovating our bathroom too, painting trim this week!

    Random, but I saw that Jack and the Box has a bacon milkshake now, and I thought you should know!

  8. says

    That looks fantastic! I love the soft blue with the white countertop, so pretty :-)

    I picked up a vanity for $25 at a garage sale over the weekend that is the exact right size for our bathroom, so I’m looking forward to prettifying that!

    I can’t wait to see how the rest of your bathroom makeover goes. The number of bathrooms in your house almost makes me glad we’ve only got one. Almost.

  9. says

    Katie!!! You are ridiculous….ly FUNNY! You put me in a good mood on bad days and a better mood on great days! I love the color….beautifully classy! I was wondering what kind of spray primer you used. I am about to redo our laundry room cabinets and I want to NOT sand ;)

  10. says

    Love it! And I’m so jealous that you live in a place that’s warm enough to do this outside right now… I’m itching to paint some of our furniture, but in New Hampshire, that’s not happening for a couple more months…

  11. says

    Love the new vanity! It is really looking great. The picture of Will with the paint brush is super cute! I actually have been a small project frenzy lately. I just actually did a project that was inspired by pinterest.

    Awhile ago though, I take on the huge task of painting my old bedroom furniture to become “renewed” guest bedroom furniture… My lucky guests :) heehee. The thing about this furniture was that it was laminate. Turned out great though!

    I can’t wait to see how the bathroom turns out… I am sure it will be fabulous (as always) :)!

  12. Kyle Storms says

    Hi – my fiance and I have just recently discovered and really enjoy reading about your remodeling projects. We have a kitchen and bathrooms full of the builders grade oak cabinets that you just painted. We’re curious to know how much of the woodgrain shows through the paint after you used the oil-based spray primer along with the paint? Any suggestions would be truly appreciated!


    • says

      That last photo is probably the truest representation of how much grain you can see. It has some evidence that it is still wood but it’s not the first thing you think when you see it.
      xo – kb

  13. says

    LOVE me some turquoise and any shade close to it! I’m working on a half bath myself…need a new vanity or pedestal…still in debate stage! First I have to find a new light fixture! Can’t wait to see the finished bathroom! Good luck!

  14. Aimee says

    I’m excited to see you tackle more painting jobs around your home. I was wondering, how will you take on the high high ceilings in your living room? Will that be a DIY job, or will you call in a painter? I ask because we are purchasing a home with very high ceilings in the main living area and they are painted a not so pretty builder neutral, but I have no idea how we would even be able to reach the tops of the walls.

    Good luck with the bathroom makeover!

    • says

      We kinda have two options. One – do it ourselves with scaffolding. A friend told us that you can rent it for $25 a day…so that’s an option. Or we could pay someone to do it…which actually sounds more reasonable for us because both Jer & I are afraid of heights.
      xo – kb

  15. says

    It looks great, Katie. I’m currently working on a small end table in a turquoise color. Mine may be a little too bright, though. I tried adding a glaze, but it muddied it up too much, so I’m going to paint it again and see if I like the turquoise any better second time around. Yep, I’m kinda’ fickle.

  16. Kelly says

    The color looks great, Katie! My parents have the same builder’s-grade cabinets (same color, too) in their kitchen and all three bathrooms. They’re thinking of painting, so this is good to see!

  17. Keilah says

    I never would have thought to buy the little sample paint pots! But aren’t those usually flat paint?? Is flat paint a problem in a bathroom, with the moisture and the ease of cleaning the cabinet? (My boys do not aim too well when they tinkle)

    • says

      Some lines of paint have flat and some have semi gloss! I don’t know which is which right off the top of my head but I know the Valspar mini pot I used was a Satin finish.
      xo – kb

      • Keilah says

        thanks! you’re the greatest! I will look into it, and hope to have a newly painted cabinet for a few bucks soon!

    • says

      You can subscribe with lots of different options – it’s worth clicking out the little icon above our face that looks like it’s on fire :)
      xo- kb

  18. says

    Looks great! We’ve run into a problem with the vanity in our master bath. Before the previous owners left, they whipped in some trim and it wasn’t until we moved in that we discovered the drawers won’t fully open! We would love to move the vanity but the sink-top is grouted to the wall. Where’s the easy button?! Did y’all have to remove any grout attached to the back lip of the sink topper?

    • says

      No. There wasn’t any grout. I would recommend a Dremel with a grout tip…that should allow you to grind through it without damaging anything. Hope that helps!
      xo – kb

  19. Debora Cadene says

    Love love love it. I have a builders cabinet that requires some love and I think its looking for some aqua love.. Can you tell me again, so I don’t get mixed up, what brand and color of paint you used? Did you do any distressing when you were done, or glazing?

    thanks muchly.
    Debbie Cadene,

  20. Kwisin says

    Gorgeous! Katie, is the vanity wood or particle board like something from Ikea? This is very inspirational. Great job.

  21. Fallon says

    I love this redo! I’m afraid of picking colors because we have tile that just looks dirty (it’s not I promise). I’m so jealous :(

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