Pictured below wearing her mother’s favorite dress from when she was younger, Katie Sullivan, of Pretty Domesticated, shows proof that this bathroom remodel was 100% customized to suit its owner – her mother. Katie took on the extremely personal and deeply gratifying work of renovating the bathroom she spent her childhood splashing in. Her goal – bring it down to the studs and make it new without wiping away its roots. Take a peek at the beautiful photos by Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss to see how this North Dakota bath came together.
From the designer… The house was built in 1995 and overall was in good condition. The home, including the bathroom, was professionally decorated in the early 2000s, but the bathroom had sustained general water damage, the wallpaper was peeling some and the large window was in rough condition and had extensive water damage. To fix the issues the bathroom was brought back down to the studs. Since the rest of the home was not being redone and is decorated in a classic style, the goal of the renovation was to brighten and modernize the space, without it feeling like an obvious update. The goal was for it to feel like an extension of the home’s original style, regardless of if the adjoining spaces are renovated in the future.
Aesthetically, we paid homage to the original blue and yellow color palette, which is repeated in the connecting bedroom, but gave it a refresh with white walls and blue and gold accents. To keep the new walls from feeling too stark and new, we applied delicate picture frame molding. It still feels traditional but not dated.
The bathroom is pretty large and open. To keep it from screaming new, I knew I wanted to do some kind of pattern on the floor, but a small-scale pattern felt busy for such an open space. Before we even started with selections, I showed my mother a picture of a subtle checkerboard floor and she was sold. So was I. It’s a traditional look, but also fairly fresh. The design concept was based entirely on a light marble and soft gray stone checkerboard floor. However, when it came time to source the floors locally, it was more of a challenge than I anticipated. My parents wanted to use a specific local flooring company, but everything we looked at was either the wrong shape, too big or too high contrast. When we finally found two porcelain tiles that fit the vision, we were informed they didn’t come in the right size. Unwilling to sacrifice the original vision, but needing to move forward, with the help of the flooring company we produced a creative solution. We ordered them in 12×24 then had them custom cut on-site to 12×12. We have no regrets. The floor makes the room.
When I randomly came across William Morris’s Mallow fabric on Etsy, I immediately ordered a sample. Once it arrived, I knew it was the one for the curtains in this project. However, once I contacted the seller, I was informed that not only was this fabric meant to be sold in smaller lengths it was being discontinued after the current inventory sold. By some miracle, we were able to secure the fabric in the lengths we needed, making these curtains likely one of a kind!