In my very first post, I said that I would blog about the good, the bad, and the ugly side of home renovation, and this post definitely has “ugly” down. I don’t know if you have ever torn a 45 year-old cast iron/porcelain bathtub out of your house, but it’s an adventure, and one you most likely won’t want to repeat. We had researched all of our options to see if we could salvage the old tub before going to the extreme of tearing it out, but none of them looked to be long-term solutions. It simply had to go. Before we got started, though, we researched all of the different ways to remove a bathtub. We came across videos of people taking a sledgehammer to their tub (it worked!), but we decided to go a different route. The first thing we should have done, was cut off the water main, right? This is our third bathroom reno, we should know that by now. Did we do that? No. We disconected the drain and plumbing from the bathtub to prevent them from breaking. Guess we thought that was good enough. Then the wall that contained the plumbing needed to come out. We did not think that the pipes would be imbedded in mortar, so when were trying to pry the tile and lath loose, a water pipe broke turning a dusty mess into a muddy mess. So, turn the water off before you tear out a wall bearing pipes. This is such a no-brainer…
Since I have posted most of our completed projects, that brings us to where we are today. The master bath. This one has taken longer than we anticipated. We had it almost to the point of completion…and just stopped. All we lack is for me to finish the doors to the base cabinets. That’s it.
But, here’s the deal: I have never built cabinets before. I knew exactly what I wanted this bathroom to look like: white subway tile; Carrera marble counter tops; classic white cabinets with inset doors (like I had seen and bookmarked numerous times on houzz.com). The only problem was that we could not afford the marble counter AND the custom cabinets I wanted — and I really did not want to set our pretty new counter top on contractor-grade base cabinets. So, the only obvious choice was to build them myself…right?
I’ll go into more detail on the cabinets later, but let’s get started with the demolition. Since this is the master bathroom we are about to gut, the first thing we did was move all of our furniture and clothes out of the bedroom and close off the vents. We wanted to keep them as dust-free as possible. Then we hung a zippered tarp between the bathroom and bedroom, and another one between the bedroom and the rest of the house.
Now, for the ‘before’ photos. Guess what? We actually took ‘before’ shots, but I can’t find them. So, let me set the stage: Brown and white tile that was dull and cracked with age; a porcelain tub, with no finish left; (no matter how hard we cleaned it, it never looked…clean), cabinets with french provincial-type trim…oh, why can’t I find my “before” pictures! Anyway, don your dust masks and eye/hearing protection and break out the jack hammer. Here is what it looked like after our first day of demolition: