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Before & After: From Eyesore to Eye-Catching in Scotland

by Garrett Fleming

Before & After: From Eyesore to Eye-Catching in Scotland, Design*Kumbhalgarh

Last year we walked you through the newly-renovated Edinburgh flat of blogger Liz Engelsen. The overhaul was extensive and did wonders for her living space, bedroom and one of her bathrooms. Before she could get to the guest bathroom, though, her budget was blown. Since then, I’m happy to report the guest bath has been given its fair share of love and now packs just as much of a punch as the rest of the flat.

One of the biggest problems with the old bathroom was the location of the commode. Many flats in this part of Scotland – a UNESCO world heritage site – are quite old and feature one long hall right down the middle of them. At the end of the hall in Liz’s home sits the bathroom. The problem? Before she renovated the space, if someone came in the front door and the bathroom door was open, they could see the toilet from the entryway. In order to make the view into the room more tasteful, Liz kicked off construction by moving the entrance, the toilet and the accompanying plumbing.

When it came time to decorate the space, Liz began by installing the sleek, black shower wall of her dreams. From there she paired the piece with softer, rounded accessories so the room wouldn’t feel so stark and stiff. The most eye-catching of her additions, though, has to be the custom vanity she had up-cycled for the bathroom. It was once a simple, wooden, Mid-Century dresser, but now it features a kaleidoscope of colors, a vessel sink, and has proven to be a major conversation starter. Scroll down to see the piece and more of the changes this determined homeowner has made to her flat. Enjoy! —Garrett

Photography by Mairi Helena & Liz Engelsen

Image above: “The most irritating feature of Edinburgh flats is that the bathrooms are typically located at the end of the hallway with the toilet on full display,” Liz says. Moving the location of the bathroom door so it opened into the vanity instead of the commode was one of her top priorities.

Before & After: From Eyesore to Eye-Catching in Scotland, Design*Kumbhalgarh
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Before the renovation, the waste pipe and radiator were exposed, and the wood paneling was beginning to rot.

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Liz is “constantly underwhelmed by bathroom vanity furniture.” She explains, “The interesting pieces are really expensive and the accessible/affordable ones are so bland.” Instead of settling, Liz enlisted Jen of Happy Retro Furniture to help her turn a vintage dresser into a vanity.

 

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The project taught Liz that turning a dresser with drawers into a vanity is much more difficult than working with one that has doors. Drawers make fitting the pipes inside extra challenging.

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In order to make the best use of the space and move the toilet, Liz and her contractor had to move the doorway. The change-up turned the hall bath into an ensuite.

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The location of the door may be new, but the door and its accompanying leaded glass is original to the home.

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The shower wall’s “bold, sharp angular lines” prompted Liz to incorporate curves elsewhere in the room. The move helps soften the space.

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The wallpaper design is by Spanish artist Marcos Navarro. “I fell in love with the punchy green color and the many softer shades of blue and green that give this wallpaper real depth,” Liz tells us.

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This heated towel rack gives the room a spa-like vibe.

SOURCE LIST

Builder – Thistle Trade Group
Wallpaper – Marcos Navarro “Persecution Wallpaper,” exclusively at Feathr
Dresser paints – Little Greene Paint “Canton,” “Hellebor,” “Basalt,” “Pall Mall,” “Trumpet,” “Berlin Blue”
Vanity – painted by Happy Retro Furniture
Wall paint – Farrow & Ball “Calamine”
Black frame shower screen – Drench Showers
Black shower system – Tap Warehouse
Black iron mirror – Maisons du Monde
Basin – Victorian Plumbing
Black tap/faucet – Crosswater
Floor tiles – “Luka” tile by Tile Giant
Wall lights – Spark and Bell
Brass tray, glass vase – Hay
Black ceramic vase, wicker basket – H&M

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Comments

  • What wonderful unexpected changes. This bathroom is a delight. It looks like a really complicated remodel. Thanks for sharing.

  • It’s amazing. I love the renovation of the room but one item I prefer to love most that is the vanity which is beauty pattern design with various neutral colors mixing.

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