8 Nov 2015 32 comments

Planning A Bathroom Makeover: My Tips.


As you know, we had our bathroom renovated back in the summer – it was a big job, and you can see the progress and makeover posts here and here. I designed the whole room myself *swishes hair*, and it was the first time I had done anything of the sort. It was hard. I so desperately wanted a post of ‘things to know’ when I was planning everything, but I couldn’t find anything! So here goes, some things I think are important before you start planning + working…

Okay, so ours was a big job as we changed everything – the floors, the bath, the shower, the sink, even the door. The only thing that stayed the same was the actual layout and the loo – there didn’t seem to be a need to change this. I took measurements to make sure everything was going to fit – I even thought about getting a smaller bath (didn’t need to in the end, but it’s something to consider if you’re short on space), and searched Pinterest for inspiration.
The planning stage took a long time because I wanted to make sure everything I bought was exactly as I wanted, and also I wanted to get a good deal on what I bought. I’m one of those people who shops around, like ‘Extreme Couponing’ levels of shopping around.
It’s also a good idea to be patient when choosing your fixtures; consult with your bathroom fitters, measure correctly and ask for second and third opinions from loved ones or whatever.

Find Good Tradesmen
We were looking at hiring about seven different guys before we found our builders – it’s really quite hard to find good tradesmen. We needed an electrician (underfloor heating), flooring fitter, tiler, plumber, plasterer… the lot. In the end I found a company through My Builder who are totally awesome, a group of Polish lads who are lovely and tidy and always go that extra mile – we’ve hired them for the kitchen reno and to sand the floors in our flat, and they’re so good.
Ask around for recommendations, personally I prefer not to go with mates or family when it comes to big jobs. I think it takes longer as they’re doing you a favour, but by all means ask your family/friends or (even better) ask them to recommend someone.
MyBuilder is good because you can read reviews, and I also recommend getting a quote from a few places as there’s always a small chance someone may rip you off. Sad but true.

Consider Doing Some Yourself
So when we did the bathroom, our bathroom guy told us he would do us a good deal if we took off the tiles and stripped off the wallpaper. We thought this would be super easy, but because our flat is old, it was a huge job. A HUGE job.
We saved ourselves a few hundred, but it was also quite stressful for us – and we took so much longer than if the guys had just come in (and I think we probably hacked at the walls a bit too, because they stripped and de-tiled the kitchen without asking us haha!). While I do think it’s a good idea to get stuck in and do some yourself, time is money – sometimes it’s easier to just pay a bit more to get the job done quickly and properly!

If It’s Worth Doing…
It’s worth doing right. My one top tip is to follow your heart with your plans – if you really want that radiator moved to the other side of the room so there’s more space, or want to swap the floorboards for tiles, do it! It may seem like a big job, it may cost you a few extra ££, but it’ll be so worth it!
For example, I really wanted to put our bathroom door on a track as it previously opened in to the only storage space we had. I knew it would just be adding to the cost, but I also knew it would be a game-changer. I stuck to my guns, and my dream came alive (lol). It may even be one of my favourite things about the room.
Don’t back down, if you want something done and you know it’ll make you happier in the long run (more plug sockets, underfloor heating etc.), it’s worth paying for!

It’s a stressful but exciting journey, and I really did enjoy the entire process – well, maybe not so much the dusty, bathroom-less stage!

Are you planning a refurb in the future?

  • Great tips! Doing some things yourself safes a lot of money and is fun at most times! haha 🙂

    Lovely post xx


  • These tips are really great, not only for bathrooms, but renovation in general. I will have a look back at this when I move in my own flat/house sometime in the future!

  • These tips are so applicable for so many things, I definitely think these will come in handy one day for me!

    Jodie, xo // Jodie Loue

  • These are really valuable tips, I’ll definitely keep these in mind for when I own a place of my own!

    Tessa at Bramble & Thorn

  • Thank you for these tips. Planning a makeover is a lot of hard work and a good plan to have in hand before you start is so valuable.


  • missgetaway

    These are some really good tips. Thanks a lot Kate <3

    Love, Kerstin

  • These are really good tips Kate – of course I don’t have a bathroom to renovate yet – but I will certainly be here to abuse your knowledge and skill when the time comes. sorry not sorry.

  • Rachel

    Great tips and advices! Your bathroom is beautiful!

    Rachel x

  • Love these tips!

    Xx, Daria

  • The bathroom tiles sounds stressful!! Bet it was great to see it all come together!

    Hannah | Oh January

  • I can’t wait to do a bathroom makeover! And these are such a good tips!


  • Marnie

    “if it’s worth doing. . .it’s worth doing right.”

    ABSOLUTELY YES. Such a lovely example of doing it right as well!

    Marnie, Currently

  • Great tips, we are just about to renovate our bathroom (i was hoping before christmas but I dont think it will be now) and finding the plumbers/tilers ect are the hardest I think. My husband is an electrician luckily but like you I dont want to go through friends or family to do the work. I can’t wait to have a new snazzy bathroom, you’ve done an amazing job!

    Liza | Glambeautys

  • Quest for Calm

    Your redesign was lovely, these are great tips!

  • Great tips, thank you for sharing! Your bathroom is so gorgeous (as are those peonies!) x


  • Ana Banana

    Amazing tips, if you want it that way, just do it! Totally agree on the stressful part. Especially when my boyfriend takes out the drill…

    Luxury Makeup Organiser

  • Really great tips, it’s posts like this I store away for (much) later reference!

    Kirstie | Kirstie Pickering

  • These are great tips and I am sure I will need them in the near future!


  • Thank you so much for sharing these tips lovely x


  • Kimberly Ann

    Great tips! I live in an apartment and unfortunately can’t do very big rennovations but new decor is always nice 🙂


  • Brilliant tips, sometimes you need to delve deeper into businesses and know what you want, and you’ll find the right tradesman for you!

    Lauren x

    Britton Loves | Lifestyle Food Beauty

  • You honestly do give some of the best tips out there! Love it x

    Ceann // From Brighton and beyond

  • Rhona

    I’m hoping to start our bathroom in the new year; we’ve been in our flat for 18 months now and I’ve been dying to scrap it and start from scratch from day one! I’m a total perfectionist so I’m petrified of leaving the job in the wrong hands. We’re in Glasgow (Partick) – would you mind sharing the company you used? I need my future grout to be as neat as yours!!

  • Dorota Gornicka

    I hope to start bathroom next year. I love your ideas and thanks for sharing your planning tips


  • I wish I had had this post to pass on to my partner when we did our renovations. I ended up having to settle for a lot of things I didn’t really love because my partner was getting annoyed that it was taking so long to find things. We also did the tiling ourselves (my partner did) and I am not really happy with the finish. BUT DON’T TELL HIM THAT. I wish we had paid the extra and got a professional to do it now. We do intend on extending our house in the FAR future so I am holding out hope that I will be able to change some things then!

    Melanie | melanie.sylvia

  • Amazing tips Kate, thank you for sharing! You are the queen of interiors so I will be saving this post!!

    Jasmine | jasminehardingmakeup.com

  • I have an apartment that desperately needs a makeover! Or a bulldozer but you know…I rent so there’s no chance of renovating but I can’t wait to get a place with my fiancé so we can start making it our own!


  • Great advice as always. I love that MyBuilder website too! x


  • Maggie

    Oh I love these tips! I just want to redo my entire house!


  • I moved into another flat last year and my bf and I designed decided on how to design the bathroom. As you can assume it was so hard to find a perfect fit for everything but I’m happy with the results. It’s not all white, it kind of looks like a bathroom of a luxurious hotel, at least some people told me that. 🙂 I think most important is that you feel comfortable in your bathroom since it’s a place to calm down, take a nice bath/shower, calm down and relax. Nice post!



  • Your bathroom looks so lovely! Your home is definitely an interior decorator’s inspiration <3

    Thank you for sharing these lovely tips 🙂

    XO, Elizabeth

  • kerry longmore

    Can you tell me specifically who your builder were? Im also looking to have my bathroom ripped out and I have a fear over finding guys to do a good and reasonable job. Cheers! Great job on the reno!!