Week 1: One Room Challenge

A week spent sourcing and creating the mood…

The Goal: Complete this bathroom within the 8 weeks designated for the One Room Challenge with sponsor Better Homes and Gardens.

The Mission: Sourcing aka look for and purchase fixtures to include décor -making final design decisions.

Captain’s Log: Guesteen Bathroom Update: I’ve changed my mind a million and thirty times. Yes I know the saying is actually a million and one, but dag-gum-it I feel like it has been 29 more times than needed. Taking part in the one room challenge is going to help me get it done! I’m also hoping it helps me better identify how I need to structure my next DIY/Design projects. Remember, I’m new to all of this – approximately two (2) months new, as in just started DIYing towards the end of June.

Let me add that I am presently sharing my bathroom with my teenager. One would think that would be enough incentive to get this bathroom done. Right!? Keep in mind this bathroom is also the guest bath; however primary usage is for the teenybopper. Remember over the summer when I did that accent wall for her? She loved it but she stalked my IG stories to give her unsolicited feedback. All that to say, some elements have to receive teen approval. I could pull the “I’m the mom card”, but I like The Girl (aka my daughter/ teenybooper) to have a voice in some things. Check out our reel during the hunt for a bathroom mirror and you’ll see what I mean by her “input”. Now, let’s talk One Room Challenge.

Here’s a little of what I’m working with thus far:

Hooks and abstract lines…  this seems to be my vibeHooks and abstract lines…  this seems to be my vibe

Hooks and abstract lines… this seems to be my vibe

This cute abstract shower curtain I found was teen approved, thankfully because I didn’t get her say on it. The hooks are still up for debate. We’re going to bring some type of foliage into this windowless space; but first we’ve got to figure out what kind of plants we can keep alive. I’ve also fallen into deep like with lanterns. I spray painted this one and isn’t it cute! Not sure if it’s going to jive with everything else but for now, it’s a keeper. I’d like to also bring in some elements of artwork in this space. We’ll have to see what that flow looks like in our windowless, small space.

Lanterns, Hooks, and PlantsLanterns, Hooks, and Plants

Lanterns, Hooks, and Plants

Captain’s Log: Guesteen Bathroom ProjectCaptain’s Log: Guesteen Bathroom Project

Captain’s Log: Guesteen Bathroom Project

In my stories on Instagram, I’ve shared the fact that I am still exploring what my design style is. I feel like I am a modern minimalist with hints of eclectic. What do you think represents your design style? Though I’m slowly figuring it out, my main focus is FINISHING THIS BATHROOM! <That’s me screaming at myself>.

Continue to follow along with this project’s progress on Insta.

Keep track with me to see if I meet the budgeted plan for this project on the Budget Bathroom or Budget Bust post here.

You can also see other guest participants in the One Room Challenge on the ORC blog site: www.oneroomchallenge.com/orc-blog

Budget Bathroom or Budget Bust

Which will it be?

There are only 2 bathrooms in my home – the one for my daughter and the one for myself. I wanted to update her bathroom first because it also serves as a guest bathroom. Since there isn’t any natural lighting, I am opting to do something that would brighten and potentially enlarge this space. I also want to add storage, but I haven’t been certain if adding a cabinet would cause the spot to seem smaller. I’ll explore other options -depending on cost.

As previously mentioned, this area will serve a dual purpose (teenage daughter/guest bath); so the update needs to fit the bill for both teenager and visitor. Now I am no designer; I’m just going by sight and what I think will work. Design and DIY can really rack up the bill -especially one without a full vision. Will this be a big splash or big flop?!

Splash of Color.JPGSplash of Color.JPG

If you recall, there wasn’t a real budget for the Teenybopper Room Update, -meaning there wasn’t a solid number though I stayed mindful of what was being spent. On the contrary, the same approach will not be happening here with this project because ya girl (that’s me) just paid for school uniforms and back to school supplies! As a single mom, bearing it all on my own, that ‘add to cart day’ becomes limited to “Girl knock it off; not today”. With that said, we’re going to stick to the budget and make this space happen!

In an effort to cut cost, I won’t be changing the already painted grey walls. I will use the remnants left from the initial paint job for touch ups as needed. Here are some of the updates I am thinking to do in this space. I’ll go into more detail on a separate blog post for some of these, but for now…here’s the game plan. You can also follow along in my stories over on my insta feed or catch up via my “In Progress” highlight. I encourage you to shop my feed over at my LikeToKnow.It page.

  1. Paint bathroom floor using Rustoleum Home Floor Coating (we’ve already started on this one and had to change the order of operations -meaning the floor will be last).

  2. Add Board and Batten

  3. Paint vanity

  4. Paint vanity countertop

  5. Replace builder grade mirror

  6. Replace builder grade lights

  7. Decor

My goal is to keep this project below or at $500. Now the biggest question…is it doable?

Hang with me in my stories over on the gram’ to keep up with this update and find out if this bathroom makeover will be Budget Bust or Budget Friendly! Also to note, I will update this post periodically with materials and cost so check back from time to time to see how the numbers are looking. We’ll call it a budget check-in; to monitor and make sure we’re tracking at or below our $500 target.

If you were updating your bathroom, how much do you think it would cost you? More like, how much would you be willing to spend? Share in the comments.

The beginnings of a $500 bathroom update… I hope $500.The beginnings of a $500 bathroom update… I hope $500.

The beginnings of a $500 bathroom update… I hope $500.

Purchases (prices may vary based on region):

  • Rustoleum Floor Paint Kit: $42.98

  • 1x3x8 feet Common Board (2 pieces): $11.78

  • Kiwi Seal Tub & Tile: $5.38

  • Respirator: $20.97

  • 1x2x8 feet Select Pine Board (3 pieces): $17.46

  • Caulk gun: $3.97

  • Liquid Nails (3 tubes): $11.61

  • Circular Saw: $49.97

  • Baseboard: $10.20

  • Krud Cutter Caulk Remover: $8.48

  • Hardboard: $10.33

  • Painter’s Tool: $7.47

  • Nail Setter Kit: $6.97

Captain’s Log: Bathroom Budget Check In

As of August 22nd, the running total is $197.24 leaving $302.76. Mind you, we still have another half of the bathroom to take into consideration [to include décor]. The good part is some of the budget went to needed tools that will be used on other projects.

August 30th: Needed a drill driver with more power to get the nails into the floating shelf. I ended up purchasing the Ryobi ONE + 18V 3/8 in. Drill/Driver Kit. I’ve linked some drill/driver kits that you can shop for yourself over on my LikeToKnow.It feed.

  • Cost: $49.97 (I probably could’ve gotten a cheaper one, but I liked that this one came with the same kind of battery I use with my Ryobi brad nail gun and orbital sander. Now, I have two batteries that I can interchange when needing to charge the other one.)

Total as of 8/31: $247.21, with remaining budgeted amount being $252.79. (Presently biting my lip wondering about this budget I set with respect to what I want to do with this bathroom). There’s still a light fixture and sink faucets to purchase. PLUS! Did I mention the vanity still needs to be painted, and no paint has been purchased. <Le Sigh>

Total as of 9/8: $261.07. I needed to purchase joint compound (to fix the drywall) and 400 grit sandpaper (for the floating shelf). Remaining budgeted amount: $238.93. To Note: I still need to purchase the final materials for fixing the drywall, where I removed the glued on builder’s grade mirror. In addition to this, WE STILL NEED DECOR! (and yes, I am screaming because I didn’t want to skimp in this area but ummm…

Total as of 9/10: $276.04. Purchased sealer for the drywall fix after removing the builder’s grade mirror. Remaining budgeted amount: $223.96.

Side note: the mirror replacement I wanted cost $300! That’ll be a NO‼️

Total spent as of 9/13: $350.43. Purchased a little something something that I’m going to keep as a surprise. Remaining budgeted amount: $149.57 out of the designated $500. And yes, we still have fixtures to purchase, as well as a mirror to replace and décor. For real, for real…

Here’s the skinny on the budget. Found a mirror. Forty smackers (aka $40). Remaining budgeted amount: $109.57 out of the designated $500. Now we’re on the hunt for a light fixture and praying to have all that’s needed for the vanity so there can at least be something for décor. Sheesh…I’m really living on the edge with this budget!

Oh Mylanta! Found a light fixture and the total with tax was $75.76, leaving $33.81. Guess what? I had to spend $15 on a dang basin wrench to remove the old faucet. So of the $500 bathroom budget, the remaining amount is a whopping $18.81! I am truly teetering on the edge and crossing my fingers I don’t NEED anything else… at least nothing greater than eighteen bucks!

Latest Update!

Currently, I am participating in the One Room Challenge to finish out this Captain’s Log: Bathroom Update. The budget… well the latest Home Depot purchase has been an adjustable cross bar kit that I hope will help get the light fixture hung. The cross-bar that came with the newly purchased light fixture won’t do the trick. Amount spent: $4.67; leaving a budget of $14.14

Remember you can keep up with this project and all other projects over at my corner of Insta World and within my stories or highlights. There’s usually something IN PROGRESS. Check back here next week to see if there have been any budget changes.

This is gonna be fun! Or I’m going to cry. One or the other…

Ya girl, Kim!

Teen Room Accent Wall

My First DI-trY and Lessons Learned

Since my daughter is off visiting the OG’s (Original Grandparents), I decided to give her room an update. She’ll soon be a teenager…A TEENAGER! Insert tear drop in the eye. Pardon me as I gather myself.

Splash of Color.JPGSplash of Color.JPG

Now as I was saying, she’s growing up right before my eyes; and I wanted to gift her a room a little bit of newness teenage newness, yet not growing up too fast. Truth be told, I can still see her taking her first steps as a baby. I’m stepping into newness the newness of being the mom to a teenage girl. Shucks! I feel like I just got this “in between” phase down. You know where they want to be independent but still want a night light?!

I suppose the first thing I learned in doing this wall paneling DI-trY carried more intrinsic value.

  • Be welcoming of learning, allow for growth and be open to changing things up.

Now let’s get into the DI-trY part. Here are the Top 5 Things I Learned doing an accent panel wall.

  1. To paint the wall first or to not paint the wall, that is the question.

I read other DIY blogs and searched Pinterest posts. The more I read, the more conflicted I was on if I should first paint the accent wall, then nail the paneling or nail the paneling then paint the wall. I chose the latter and quickly found I should have chosen to paint first. Le sigh for me having to paint those small tiny nooks and crannies. Let’s add the fact that I have a love/hate relationship with painting all together. This one will probably still be a question for me, depending on the space I’m updating.

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The WallThe Wall

2. Wood is expensive!

I know this thought is subjective, but to me; it’s especially expensive when you’re a novice to the woodworking game. A good number of woodworking DIY bloggers have been at it it for a while. They have scrap pieces of wood in their stockpile and can do projects like this for far less than mine. I spent a whopping $51.00 on this wall (and that’s just the wood panels). Initially, I was going to use poplar, but it’s priced per inch and 6 feet would have cost me about $8.43. I opted to use 1x2x8 select pine board which cost me $7.48 per piece (without tax), and I ended up using 7 pieces for this project.


As a newbie to the world of power tools and DIY, I’m still learning about cuts and measurements to accommodate certain angled cuts.

Read about my very first DI-try, cutting different angles on my baseboard project. It was a doozy!

3. Buffing/sanding is your friend (and the enemy at the same time) …insert eye roll.

I had some edges of my wood to kind of splinter after I cut it with the miter saw. Totally operator error; but recall, I am a newbie to this power tool game. Anywho, I recently ordered a Ryobi nail gun, that came with a Random Orbit Sander. Did I use it? NOPE! Why not and how are you going to tell me it’s my friend yet you didn’t use it? This is how… later, after already nailing the wood panels to the wall, I was perusing Pinterest and came across a post where “they” (the bloggers who I cannot recall but will do much better going forward)… they kind of sanded their edges after cutting. That’s when I had the ah-ha moment of ‘oh I should’ve done that’. I think this might also be about preference, but I would have liked my edges to be a little cleaner.

4. It doesn’t take a lot for impact.

I honestly thought I was going to need a super intricate design for this wall to not look a hot mess. At first, I wanted panels to cover the entire wall with some sort of design. This is definitely where I am a proponent of using your painter’s tape to get an idea of your layout. I used a combination of Blue painter’s tape and Frog tape -trying to determine if there’s a big difference. I can’t see any as of yet.


Using my brad nailer, I created a “frame” to begin the panel design.

Painter’s tape created the first design outline.

Additionally, let me say, after pricing the wood panels and realizing how many different cuts I would need, I scaled back (see #2 above). I really was hesitant on changing the plan I originally had because I felt like I was being a quitter. Sounds so childish now that I’m seeing my thoughts in words; but I’m slightly competitive- even with myself. To my surprise, and a slight design change, it came out better than I imagined.


Minor design change.

A few cuts in and I realized more cuts than wanted would be required.

Overall, be flexible (and give yourself some grace). Plans are there to help guide and recognize when/if changes are needed.

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The plan was for this wall to be the accent wall, but moving the bed to another wall made the room look smaller.The plan was for this wall to be the accent wall, but moving the bed to another wall made the room look smaller.

The first plan was for this side of the room to have the accent wall, but moving the bed to another wall made the room look smaller.

5. Small additions will help your wall panel design tell its own story.

You didn’t hear this from me, but my daughter is low key artsy fartsy. I placed a few of her art pieces up (and throughout our home) so that she could be surrounded by her uniqueness. This mushy mom moment has been brought to you by all mushy moms across the world. But really, gather things from around your home and repurpose them. You may come to see your “old” pieces in a new light. Depending on your wall’s design (and of course your preference), this will fill in spaces where panels were not placed. In the case of my wall, I intentionally left open spaces for adding shelves.


Painted these shelves purchased from IKEA.

Sample paint size kept cost down.


Added this light up “K” that was a birthday gift (found at Amazon).

Adjustable wooden figure hitting the ‘dab’ for this cool mom!


Added a few boxes to this corner to create additional storage and decor.

Did you check out those purple circles? They’re peel and stick!

Check out the slide show below of the before and after for this Captain’s Log: Teenybopper Room Update.

Let me know in the comments if you do this DI-trY or what you think of this one. In the meantime, you can head over to my corner of Insta’ and see more of the little knickknacks added to this Teenybopper Room Update.

Talk with y’all later!

Starting My DI-trY Journey…

Captain’s Log | DIY Journey:

In this life journey, I’ve added another DIY to my log. At 40 years old, I started a business handmaking vegan nail lacquers @relaunchnailpolish. Now, at 41, I’ve decided to learn woodworking and become a tool belt diva -learning how to operate power tools and DI-trY around my home.

First up, I’m replacing a baseboard I originally paid someone to do for me almost 7 years ago. Now I know everything has a time limit -even baseboards. However, when not in a high traffic area and seldom being bumped by the vacuum cleaner, this baseboard should have not looked as damaged as it did!


How it started

This baseboard was in desperate need of replacing, but I wasn’t about to pay someone to come do it again.

I chose to do the baseboards as my first DI-trY because I wanted something that would give me a chance to practice cuts with my Dewalt miter saw and practice nailing with my Ryobi brad nailer. I was extremely afraid of the miter saw, particularly the thought of losing my fingers. I also wanted a project cost friendly. All in all, I spent approximately $25 on trim and materials. You can always rent the saw and brad nailer, but I knew I had other projects on my list. Overall, here’s what I learned:

  • Youtube University is your friend: there are so many baseboard videos out there. I mainly wanted to figure out how to do angled cuts.

  • Properly measuring and cutting was a challenge for me. Maybe you’ll be okay, but I had to creep into the cut -meaning I would rather slowly cut from a piece too long than end with a piece too short.

  • Take your time. You’ll see other DIYers swimming through a project -making cuts, painting, and then on to the next. Be gentle with yourself. I had to tell myself this multiple times. All of this was a learning curve, and probably will continue being a learning curve. The point is to start, learn, and pace yourself.

All my practice pieces and FINALLY… the finished product!All my practice pieces and FINALLY… the finished product!

All my practice pieces and FINALLY… the finished product!