Vintage Bathrooms (My Mint & Pink Bathroom)

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom

While I am patiently waiting to be able to show you my finished kitchen (insert my sarcastic face) I thought maybe we’d just ignore the unfinished projects for a bit and talk about a room in my house that I haven’t even started on yet. Since a couple of you asked to see it after I mentioned my pink tub recently, let’s take a look, shall we?

Would I design a bathroom in my house intentionally in mint green and pink? No. No, I wouldn’t. I don’t have anything against those colors or even against a funky vintage bathroom, they can be very cool. But all together, this room just isn’t working for me. At least it was nice and clean when we bought the house (for a minute). I was grateful it was well cared for.

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom

Here’s my pink tub. The combo of walls and tile colors kind of remind me of those bottles of multi-colored Tums. Upset tummies are not really the picture I want to have in my mind when I head into my bathroom. Don’t be mad if you LOVE this combo or if you always wanted a bathroom like this.

I have actually kept a quite a few vintage bathrooms in my other homes! I LOVE vintage. Growing up I had one kind of like this, too, but it had yellow and black tile. I thought it it was cute. It was like a bumble bee bathroom.

In our English Tudor we had several cool vintage bathrooms that we preserved, too. I even have some (not so great quality, but still) photos of two of them to prove that I’m not anti-vintage bathrooms. We didn’t rip these out or paint the tile or do anything to destroy their character.

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom

This 1930s bathroom room in our big house had horrific wallpaper when we moved in, so we stripped it and painted the walls. After a ton of cleaning, new vintage-inspired faucets and lights and a cool built-in old looking medicine cabinet, the rest stayed as is.

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroombathroom in my English Tudor years ago

This 1930s mint bathroom had black velvet wallpaper (!) when we moved in. It looked like something you might have found in Elvis’s estate, it was so dark and weird. But again in this bathroom, we stripped the wallpaper and gave it a good cleaning. That was pretty much it. We kept the green tile. You can’t see it but it had black soapstone counters on the vanity and a bamboo window shade. I loved the green and black combo with the natural wood blinds.

But this time I’m just not sure (yet?) what to do with a green and pink bathroom. I know people are into pink now, and that pink clawfoot tub in “pink post” was pretty cute, but I’m just not feeling this. All I’ve done to update our bathroom since I took these before photos was to put in a shower curtain, a bamboo shade I had leftover from my old house and a black doorknob. But I still don’t love it.

The tile in these old bathrooms aren’t at all like the tile in new bathrooms. You can’t just pop the tiles off. They are there to stay. That is one of the reasons it’s nice to keep the original tile.

But even if I could deal with the tile and add some accessories, there are many things I don’t love about it.

The vanity is SO SHORT (and I’m only 5’2) and the drawers are super tiny and inefficient. The grout drives me crazy and a few of the floor tiles are not actually attached any more (I’m thinking they must have replaced those at some point).

The mirrors that cover the entire wall around the vanity are not original (sorry I didn’t take a picture of those yet). They are huge and semi-broken, I’m afraid I’d hurt myself if I tried to remove them myself, but I could give it a try.

The grout is super thick in some places and hard to keep clean. The grout lines have been painted over with some sort of grout renew.

The tub is cast iron so it’s not going anywhere without a fight. I don’t really even mind the tub, other than the color. Cast iron tubs are great!

The toilet is a Kohler and looks newer so that’s a plus.

Long term I do wish we could redo the bathroom and make it into more of a small master suite layout. We have another bathroom downstairs that our son uses, so if we put in a main floor guest bath this mint bathroom could become a private master bathroom. But making even a small master suite with our particular layout isn’t as easy as I wish it was.

Awhile back I got a bid to gut the bathroom but leave it in place and just add a new door in the hallway. But the bid came in at $45,000, so for me that’s definitely a no-go for such a small bathroom!

I know I could resurface the tub and tile if I wanted to.

Or I could redo parts of the room and keep other parts (such as the vanity, the floor, the tub, etc).

I could just leave the tile and tub as is and add accessories.

But do I want to do any of those ideas?

HELP! What would you do?

To offer a little inspiration, below are some cute bathrooms followed by a list of simple ideas for updating a vintage bathroom. 

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink BathroomMeet Me In Philadelphia

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink BathroomMeet Me In Philadelphia

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink BathroomOh Happy Day

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom
Meet Me In Philadelphia

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink BathroomForbes

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom
Brownie

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom
House Beautiful 

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom
Apartment Therapy

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom
House Beautiful

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom
Domino

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom
The above two photos may not actually be vintage bathrooms, I’m not sure. But they could be inspiration for how to update a vintage bathroom without losing all the charm. Taking out a tub and installing a shower, for instance. BHG

Vintage Bathroom Inspiration - My Mint and Pink Bathroom
Entrance

The above photo is actually a kitchen, but it reminds me very much of what my vintage green tiled bathroom felt like in my Tudor. I love how the black and white, dark brown and wood tones, silver, and even the eucalyptus make this space feel vintagey, rustic and classy.

Here are some simple ideas for updating or accessorizing a vintage bathroom:

play up the good

Embrace the vintage style and make it feel intentional and personal with accessories. Have fun with blinds, rugs, art and accessories.

tone down the bad

Look for a creative way to tone down what you don’t like. Place a rug over the floor tiles. Use a tile paint to cover up the colors you don’t like, or put the design focus elsewhere. Install some eye-catching wallpaper or a cute shower curtain to distract from features you don’t like.

keep it classy

Adding some black accents can add some seriousness and class to a otherwise more cotton candy color scheme. Try anchoring the room with some black picture frames, a tray, a black door, or hardware.

freshen up with paint

Try simplifying the color scheme with fresh white walls, towels, rugs or a shower curtain.

add warmth with texture

Add some natural textures (blinds, baskets, rattan, stools, cabinets, frames, etc) to warm up a bathroom covered in tile.

bring in a new sink/vanity

The vanity is one of the biggest style setters in a bathroom. A new vanity or sink could make a world of difference in the look and function of your bathroom, even if you keep everything else in the bathroom.

update the fixtures

What are some other updates that could transform the space? Think about lighting, faucets, hooks, mirror, and medicine cabinets.

resurface the tub

I’ve had companies resurface old tubs many times in our old houses. It was always worth it, but it didn’t last forever and you did have to baby your tub to keep the finish nice. But if your bathroom has a dingy old tub or sink or ugly tile, it can probably get a shiny new surface that will make it so much easier to clean, too.

So…what do you think I should do with my vintage pink and green bathroom? HALP!

PS. You can scroll through the images below to shop for some bathroom accessories!

FAQ: Where Did You Get That?

Today I wanted to fit in a quick update to answer some of the most FAQ on items I have in my house. I can’t get to all of them in one post, but I’ll at least answer some of them :).

One of my most frequently asked about pieces of furniture is our leather sofa. We bought this sofa about two and a half years ago, when we lived in our old house. We chose leather (ours is the Brooklyn Leather) because I not only love the sofa’s toffee/caramel color, but my white slipcovered sofa was starting to drive me crazy.

Once we had two pups running straight to the sofa from outside all day long, the upkeep and care of a white slipcover was just more than I wanted to deal with. I’m still a fan of slipcovers because they really are relatively easy to keep clean (you can read my post about the slipcovered sofa saga here), but at that time I was just over it. We needed a new sofa anyway so it was a good excuse to try leather!

I have no regrets in purchasing the leather sofa. I absolutely love it. It’s 100% carefree. Yes, Jack sometimes loses his mind and tries to dig his way through the sofa. Why? I don’t know. But guess what? As hard as he’s tried, he’s never punctured the leather. Even though he is able to scratch the surface, I am in love with how the sofa has aged. It’s beautiful. It is softer, more comfortable and has more character as time goes on.

I give it a thumbs up!

This little stand generates a lot of questions whenever I post it on social media or the blog. I’ve had it for quite awhile, but it’s still one of my favorite things! It’s super sturdy and versatile, so it comes in handy all the time around our kitchen and dining room. It would be cute in any room of the house, don’t you think? (PS. for those who have asked, the little house on the stand can be found here!).

The mug rack I got years ago turned out to be one of the most asked about items I’ve ever posted. Also, this is my beloved brand of espresso machine. It was pretty spendy (it was actually my parents, I didn’t buy it myself) but it made such good coffee and lasted forever (like ten years?).

Coppery French Press

I no longer have an espresso machine (sadness, at least for now) but I’m super happy with my copper French press. It’s another of my frequently asked about items!

And if you’re wondering about one of my mugs, most are collected locally or from Anthropologie. We also love our Rae Dunn Mugs (like the “Sip” mug in the above picture). You can get the big 24-hook mug rack here.

I love to decorate with art that is meaningful to our family. I got this It Is Well sign before Christmas last year. It’s quickly become one of my most frequently asked about items. You can find other meaningful art here.

This cabinet is still one of my most favorite purchases ever. I got it on sale at Restoration Hardware (in the antiqued taupe color), it was actually one of their more affordable cabinets at the time. It’s really great quality and has held up perfectly for years.

I got the blue & white lamps years ago, too. I have two sets (two different colors, navy and light blue). They survived our move and boys and dogs, so I still give them a thumbs up!

This essential oil glass diffuser (the Aria) always generates ooh’s and ahh’s and rightfully so. It’s not only a gorgeous piece, but it plays music, too. I keep it my living room and use it all the time. I’ve had mine for a couple of years now and it’s still going strong! I definitely recommend it.

It’s been awhile since I’ve showed our wood iPad stand on the blog (always a FAQ, you can find one similar here) but it will be reappearing again in our new kitchen! :)

Who knew giant tassel blankets would become such a thing? I’m glad I bought one a few years ago. It is the perfect statement throw for a bed and I’ve used it a lot. Mine is actually sold out, but you can find similar ones here and more in this round-up post. More details on the above room can be found here.

I got two of these now popular dip-dyed stools a few years back and I am still so happy with them! We use them mostly next to a chair or sofa for an end table or even just as an accent piece. They do come in handy.

Before Christmas, I decided I wanted a bigger rug for our living room. I found this cable knit wool rug on sale and it’s exceeded my expectations. I was a bit worried that it wouldn’t be as practical for our pups, but it’s been totally great. It shed a bit at first, but it seems to have finally stopped. It’s a super soft, plush neutral gray almost braided style rug. I’ve seen similar ones at Restoration Hardware for tons more, so I feel like this one was a good deal for the quality! It definitely made our room feel more cozy and inviting.

I still love my blue and white rug and continue to get lots of questions about it. It is really a great statement rug, very durable (an indoor/outdoor rug is perfect for families and dogs) and such a deal, too. See our post with a round-up of more patterned statement rugs here.

Here are a few other FAQ posts:

My Lighting Sources

Blinds & Window Coverings FAQ

Hickory Flooring FAQ

My Paint Colors

How to Hang Plates, Platters, and Bowls on a Wall

Hope you have a great day!

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