+ Our Basement Renovation – Part 1

On the face of it, we moved into a flat with the bathroom of our dreams. When viewing the flat before buying, we were blown away by the giant shower enclosure,freestanding bathtub and the sheer space it was going to offer us. Our surveyor suggested we consider making the main bathroom an en-suite and adding a walk-in wardrobe between that and the master bedroom. From there, we could then transform the spare toilet/utility room into a family bathroom. After all, 3 beds 2 baths is far more appealing than a 3 bed 1 bath to any future buyers.

We kicked the process off over six months ago, popping over to Ripples Bathrooms for their free design service. For my first appointment with designer Joel, I talked through my suggestions for fixtures/fittings and tried as best as I could to answer questions like “how about a closed cup WC?” or “would you like a porter with the shower?” Based on this, Joel then spent a week or two sketching out proposed designs and pulled together a quote for bathroom fittings, as well as suggesting a reliable builder to carry out the work. The results of the designs and plans can be seen below!

From Utility Room to Family Bathroom

The current utility room is finished in two different types of tiles, with a tiny sink and the oddest assortment of boxed-in pipes. It currently fits our washing machine and laundry baskets. The goal is to turn this from a standard utility room with zero style, to a fully functioning family bathroom. The focus of the room will be gorgeous hexagonal graphic cement tiles from Terazzo Tiles.

I visited Scandic by Haymarket last June and this was where I first spotted this style of tile, used on the floor at Greta's Café! The middle picture is how we tesselate them, and the pic on the right is our sample from Terazzo Tiles I visited Scandic by Haymarket last June and this was where I first spotted this style of tile, used on the floor at Greta’s Café! The middle picture is how we tesselate them, and the pic on the right is our sample from Terazzo Tiles.

To accompany the grey tiles, we’re going for brushed gold fittings, a standard single-ended bath with 8-jet whirlpool system and some beautiful grey Ural Blanco tiles. The doorway to the old bathroom will be sealed off, and the washing machine moved from the main room to a new cupboard in its place.

Main Bathroom >> Master En-Suite & Walk-in Wardrobe

We’re essentially converting the bathroom into new rooms – an en-suite and a walk-in wardrobe. For the main bedroom, the main changes will be new Covent Garden Oak flooring from Ecora (with underfloor heating) and the addition of a new, very handy ledge behind our Warren Evans Sunday bed.

Replacing the freestanding cast iron bathtub, too-small sink and old walk-in shower will be a Hans Grohe Raindance Air Overhead Shower and a double trough sink in the custom-made vanity unit painted in Farrow & Ball’s Downpipe.

We initially wanted to tile the shower recess with special hand-painted tiles from Made a Mano in their beautiful petrolio blue, but we just couldn’t justify the cost. The builders are going to plaster this area and leave it prepped for a custom-made walk-in wardrobe from Neatsmith.

It took Ned and I a few months to agree to get this all done at the same time as the en-suite – I was initially very hesitant to shell out more money given the fact that we’re paying for the ENTIRE basement to be renovated. That being said, we’ve had to wait so long for our freeholder and his inept solicitor to approve, that I’ve been able to save enough. One Saturday we went to meet Valentina at Neatsmith on Finchley Road, where we spent about an hour and a half talking through our budget and exact needs. A few weeks later we then received this design:

I can’t wait to share updates of each room once done! For now, you can see week one of progress in the video on Instagram.