Friday, June 26, 2015

48 Four Week "Wait-No-More" Organizing Challenge! Week 3 - Master Bathroom Organization (and a link party)

I couldn't be more excited about the change I made to our Master Bathroom space this week.  It is the end of week three of the four week "Wait No More Challenge!", and I have been checking off some major "to do's" from our list.  In fact, each week our lives have gotten better and happier as I tackle the major home-front pains we have been feeling.

This update has been a long time coming, as our Master Bathroom is used multiple times per day, yet has really suffered some neglect.  My youngest started getting in a habit of using our bathroom and many of his belongings were taking over...

OK, not a cool mom move.  Majority of the mess was mine, his bathroom belongings were a minimal part of the problem.

You can read about the planning process here.  I started by removing everything not affixed to the floor, and even gave the room a fresh coat of paint to tone things down a bit.

The update to the paint color made SUCH a fabulous difference.  The entire room felt twice as big and so much more spa like.  The next step was to address the dirty grout, a little Grout Renew made another big difference.

Although I really wanted to freshen up this space and prolong a down-the-road bathroom renovation, I didn't want to spend a fortune.  I purchased two new shelf brackets, two storage boxes and two glass canisters.  The rest of the changes came as a result of shopping our home and doing a major decluttering and organizing session. 

Hello beautiful new-old bathroom!  Such a difference a day makes!

A reader asked what I do with old decor as I switch things around, I will cover all of those details in a future post, but look at the benefit of getting creative with things you already have.  The mirror was in our Master Bedroom, but I feel like it was always meant to be here.  I couldn't be more smitten about the natural wood paired with the new wall color.  Sure, it will drive a game of musical mirrors, but a little change is a good thing.

The previous wall shelf was so shallow, it couldn't hold most of our main bathroom items.  After I purged everything down, I realized I didn't really need it at all any longer.  But I did want to fill the space above the toilet with a place for greens, a candle and cotton swabs.  I purchased two new gorgeous shelf brackets and for the shelf we cut down a piece of wood we already had.

I dug out a spare frame and printed one of my own photos to use as inexpensive art.  The photo is of a peony in our backyard, the greens are from the same peony bush.

I did purchase two canisters from Target to use for cotton products.  I had my eyes on these, but didn't want to shell out the extra cash just to have gold lids.  So the ones from Target received a coat of spray paint paired with some gold Rub-n-Buff for a similar effect.

After I was able to relocate many of the bathroom items back to their proper homes, I found that I had plenty of room to put everything else back (children's items were put back in their bathroom, travel toiletries were moved to our closet pile and other random items were also put away).  This time, I made sure to really assess how we use the bathroom and put things away according to our daily habits.  Here is a quick tour of each cabinet and drawer.

I have been using a nail caddy for years now, and still love it.  It just received a quick cleaning and a little re-arranging and it went right back where it was living.  I lost the hardware for the handle somewhere along the way.

Quick tip: When displaying daily toiletries in glass faced cabinets or inside of acrylic organizers, simply remove any package labeling that may be distracting.  The nail polish removal bottle now looks more decorative than it did when the giant label was showing through.

As I mentioned, I ended up purchasing two decorative storage boxes.  One holds cotton pads for face washing and nail polish removal.

While the other is now the home to my hair accessories.

Previously, my hair ties (a.k.a. Loom Bands) and hair pins were spread out all over our home and a hot mess in the bottom of my makeup bag....

The small box paired with some folded cardstock for dividers, now keeps each type of hair accessory nicely divided, yet easy to take out and put away.

Our original "His" and "Hers" baskets were working out nicely, but they were short and added to the visual clutter inside of the cabinet.  They both were paired down to daily necessities, and Bryan's items now live in a taller basket inside of the cabinet (so when he tosses items back inside, the mess won't be visible).

My daily supplies now live in a bin hanging on the back of our door.

I had multiple miscellaneous canisters of bath salts, which I condensed down to a single jar.  I used one of the empty containers to now hold our dental floss.

Before, the drawers had organizers and held a variety of our supplies, but with little distinction between them, they all just become dumping grounds....

The drawers received a good scrub and were still showing signs of wear, so I got out some drawer liner and cut a few sheets down to size.

This time around, I assigned each drawer a specific duty.  Top drawer holds all of my facial care supplies.

While the next drawer now holds extra dental care items.

And the bottom drawer still rocks as hair tool storage (placed inside of empty quart sized paint cans).

Now the only items in each vanity drawer are a single toothbrush and tube of toothpaste.

Under the sink is similar to prior days, one pull out drawer holds all of our bathroom cleaning products. 

I can't get enough of these Multi-Purpose bins, they are inexpensive, easy to clean, light weight, narrow and can function for endless organizing tasks.  In the past I tried to do stacking bins for cleaning supplies, but these just work so much better for daily use.  One bin for cleaning products and one for dirty rags.

The other drawer holds the toiletry items that I don't use each day, but didn't want to purge because they still get used on a weekly or as-needed basis.

On the opposite side of the room, we removed the hand towel rack from the wall.  It was just a clutter catcher and we are ultimately going to install a door to our closet, so we have to get use to the lack of wall storage anyway.

As you can see above, the shower was also purged down and empty bottles were recycled.

The small stool received a new coat of paint and works great for holding a towel and robe while showering.  We only keep two towels per family member, so while two are being used, two clean ones are waiting in the basket on the hamper.

And that completes the Master Bathroom tour!  So fresh, clean and organized and such a dramatic difference from what we have been living with.  Even after taking my first shower in the space, I felt so much more relaxed than I had been previously.  There is something to be said about the impact that visual clutter can have on your feelings.

Between painting the walls, updating the grout, small DIY's, completely purging and reorganizing the space, I easily invested 12 hours into this project.  However, I don't regret a single second of the time spent. 

To really celebrate this week's hard work, let's check out a few side-by-sides of the before and after pictures.

Now!  Who wants to win a $50 Gift Certificate to The Organizing Store!?  Whether I am DIY'ing my own organizer or purchasing something for a project, I love finding storage that is pretty and meshes with our home and decor.  The Organizing Store is a prime "go-to" spot for the most beautiful, current, trendy and stunning organizing supplies around.  Using, one link party participant will be selected to win the gift card at the end of this week's challenge (no need to participate each week to win)!  Time to share your Week 3 stories and projects with me!

I really have been in awe of the projects you are sharing each week!  And each party is receiving between 35,000-50,000+ views!  Let's keep the organizing momentum going this week!

You can find all of the challenge details in this post here, and also download some FREE project planning printables to help you get started!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

20 Four Week "Wait-No-More" Organizing Challenge! Week 3 - Master Bathroom Grout Renew

I still have plenty to get done to hit my deadline of having a completely organized master bathroom by the end of the day.  But I thought I would stop in quick and share a quick review and tutorial of how I handled our gross grout situation.

The bathroom grout is about 8-9 years old and was originally done in a white color.  And it was never sealed.  Seal your grout right away people, this was a huge mistake we made.  Over the years, it has become dirty, dingy and impossible to keep clean as grime absorbed deep into the unsealed grout.  Because I was emptying the bathroom to sort, purge and organize, I knew it was now or never to check this project off of the list.  After some quick Googling, I discovered a product called Grout Renew.  We were the perfect candidates for this product as it is intended to easily restore and seal old, dirty grout.  Count me in!

This is NOT sponsored, I completely opted to research and do this myself after becoming sick of scrubbing clean our bathroom floors.  Off to Home Depot I went and picked up a bottle of Grout Renew in Delorean Gray.  They have limited colors at our store, but as I was just looking online, it appears they have an endless variety of shades.  Learn from me, they have just about any color you would want online!  Doh!  Now you know.

I stood at the store and read the directions on the back of the bottle, and it recommended using one of their products to get the floors super clean prior to application.  Even though I have done my share of tile and grout scrubbing, I decided to use the recommended cleaner just to be sure I was happy with the end result.

This stuff is on the strong side, so it is recommended that you use gloves while scrubbing.  But first, a before close-up of the grout.

I started by filling two mop buckets; one with a mild dishsoap water and the other with the Sulfamic Acid cleaner.  I also grabbed my gloves and a bristle scrub brush.

Prior to scrubbing with the grout cleaner, I mopped the floor with the mild dishsoap to prep the surface.

Because I was wearing gloves and just trying to get things done, I didn't take any pictures of the scrubbing process, but I essentially just scrubbed the entire floor with the cleaner and bristle brush.  I followed up with a damp mop one more time and here was the end result.

The tiles and grout looked great, the cleaner really got things back to a nice start.  I let everything dry for a few hours while I played with the kids.

The directions for the Grout Renew stated to place a small blob at the cross section of the tiles and work your way out.  With an opening like that, no small blob would be coming out of that bottle.  I decided to head to the kitchen and transfer the Grout Renew into a fine tip plastic squeeze bottle instead.

I also quickly learned that a little bit goes a long way!

The directions also state to use a toothbrush to spread the Grout Renew into your grout lines.  Um, no.  It makes such a big mess and spreads it everywhere.  There is zero precision with a toothbrush.  Thank goodness I had a slew of craft brushes on hand (a reader also mentioned Young House Love did something similar and a craft brush worked great for them as well).

I still made sure to sort-of scrub it in so the grout could really absorb the new color.

Again, nearly impossible to do without getting the product on your tiles, so be ready to follow behind each line with a damp rag.

Speaking of the damp rag, the wetter the rag, the more the product will smear while touching up.  It seemed to work better to let the Grout Renew set for a minute or two (but not too long or it will cure), and then go back over the grooved edge of our tile with my fingertip and the barely damp rag. 

It is a time consuming and slow process, you definitely have to practice a bit of patience while you work. 

And for the end result?

After getting up close and personal with the project, I think the product worked quite well.  As it dried, it seemed quite durable and really did clean up the previous grout to a brand-spanking new finish!  Everything is sparkly clean which makes me happy.

On a side note, I think the darker color dated the look of our tiles.  Although they will now hide dirt and grime and clean really nicely, I probably should have gone with a slightly lighter shade of gray.  I realized it quite early on, but decided it was one of those projects that I had to wait until we were completely finished to make any final judgements.  I may do one more coat in the lighter gray if I can muster up the time and motivation.

Now, I must get back to work.  I finally get to tackle my favorite part which is the small organizational projects and details.  See you back here tomorrow!

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