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DIY Powder Room Makeover

A dark and dated half-bathroom gets a DIY powder room makeover on a budget with board-and-batten, a beadboard ceiling, and a custom vanity.

After a couple of weeks of trying to find time for those pesky “finishing touches”, I finally give you our DIY Powder Room Makeover! This project made a big impact with a relatively small budget — I had $1000 to spend on everything.

DIY Powder Room Makeover with Benjamin Moore Wickham Gray walls and a DIY vanity

Originally Published April 27, 2014

To save on costs, we included many DIY projects in this room: a DIY bathroom vanity, a custom beadboard ceiling, a board-and-batten wall treatment, and I did all the tile work and painting myself! (Looking for tips on how to mix-and-match tile? Check out this post!)

DIY Powder Room Makeover with Board-and-Batten, a Beadboard Ceiling, and a Custom Vanity

Collage of a powder room makeover with tile and carpentry.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I may get a small commission (at no extra cost to you) if you shop my link. Please see my disclosure if you’d like more info!

I conquered the tile saw, and I am now a little obsessed. I’m looking for more things to tile…

Here’s a before photo. The terra cotta colored floor tile was cracked, and the vanity was rotting from an old leak. We ripped out the baseboard heater when we replaced our heating system, so the trim needed replacing. The paint color was a little too bold for my tastes. The light fixture was dated, and the room originally had gold/chrome combo accessories which I removed before I took this photo…

Powder Room Before

Dated orange powder room before makeover

We replaced the tile floor, added a board and batten treatment (painted BM Simply White with the paint sprayer), with a tile border.

I painted the walls Benjamin Moore’s Wickham Gray, which I love. Depending on the light it can be gray, blue, or green. It’s a mood ring color!

Seascape oil painting


This beautiful painting provided inspiration for the entire powder room makeover. My grandfather painted it of the beach in Ogunquit, Maine where he and my Gramma used to bring us when we were little. I absolutely love Ogunquit, and our beach trips were such special memories. I also love the soft colors of this painting, so I tried to carry them out through the room. I have many of my grandfather’s paintings throughout our home.

DIY Bathroom Vanity — PB Newport Console Knock-Off

DIY Bathroom Vanity with yellow branches

We built a knock-off of the Pottery Barn Newport Console and recycled the existing granite countertop. I found the basket at Homegoods. They have discontinued the Newport Console in the years since we completed this project, but here is a similar source!

Yellow branches on top of the bathroom vanity in a powder room makeover

Another view of the vanity. I learned the challenges of photographing a tiny room during this project. The room measures 5’x7′. You can read about the building of the vanity here!

Shelf with yellow candles and daffodils

This crown molding ledge was the one from our breakfast nook that was displaced by our DIY crown molding shelves. I love it here! I used items I had on hand to decorate it, but I am on the hunt for some colorful antique bottles.

DIY Beadboard Ceiling

DIY Beadboard Ceiling in the powder room

This is our beadboard ceiling treatment. This room had the same seashell plaster textured ceiling that the rest of the house has. I’ve mentioned before that it absorbs a lot of light and never looks quite clean. This beadboard ceiling solved this issue in this room, and we love how reflective it is!

We aren’t sure that we will do beadboard on every ceiling, although I think it worked well for this powder room makeover. You can read a how-to on how we made this ceiling here!

Yellow forsythia branches

It was a lucky happenstance that the forsythia in our yard bloomed just as I needed fresh flowers for these photos. I think it looks perfect in this room! This was exactly what I imagined, and I love seeing it pulled together.

Who would have thought that my new favorite room would be the smallest in our home? Of course, I have a new favorite every time we complete a project.

Powder room refresh with classic updates

Want to see the powder room refresh from a few years later? Visit it here!

DIY Powder Room Cottage-Style Makeover

Powder Room source list

Upper Wall Color — Benjamin Moore Wickham Gray
White Paint Color — Benjamin Moore Simply White in Semi Gloss
Floor Tile — 12×24″ Silver
Wall Border Tile — here (color is much more neutral in person)
Window Shade —  Driftwood
Ceiling Treatment — Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial
Ceiling Light Fixture — here
Vanity — DIY Tutorial, or similar here
Vanity Knobs — similar here
Faucet — oil rubbed bronze
Mirror — Matte Black
Hardware (towel holder, etc) — here

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49 Comments

  1. What tile did you put on the floor? I am sorry if I missed you talking about it already. Thanks!

  2. I may have missed it somewhere, but you pulled out the baseboard heaters, (always good riddance to those), but what are you using to heat the bathroom? When we redid our bathroom here in Montana we put on warmwire for heated floors, and I love it, can’t wait until we redo out kitchen and install the warmwire there, too.

    1. Our furnace quit on us, so we took the opportunity to install forced hot air! It was a big project, but now we have more consistent heating AND cooling. Best decision ever!

  3. This looks great! I’d love to do the same in my powder room! Can you tell me what kind of wood you used for the board and batten? Is it hardboard mdf or plywood? What thickness was it? One of the things I’m trying to figure out is how thick the wood should be so that the mosaic strip won’t stick out further than the wood. Thanks!

  4. W O W !!! that is incredible and soooo inviting!
    Love it and never thought of this awesome tiling
    around the room!! love it!! thank you again for sharing
    your beautiful instructions and tips!

  5. Can you PLEASE do a tutorial on how you did the Board and Batten with the tile trim and the wood border I loved your powder room makeover and want to be able to re-do ours! We already have the floor tiles & paint! I cannot get onto instagram..just an old fashioned person, w/o a smart phone (imagine that!)who’d REALLY like to be able to read/see a how-to on your site!!

    1. I would love a tutorial on the B and B too! I am getting ready to begin our Powder room and need some tips on the size board you used! I am doing this exact layout with a different vanity! Love love love this! Please help!

  6. I love this!!! This is right up my ally :) Would you mind sharing what color of paint you used on the walls? Thanks!

  7. I just came across your blog tonight and I love your powder room makeover! Especially the pottery barn vanity you built. Will you be doing a tutorial on it in the near future? I also love the finish on it and would love to know how to achieve that myself! I’m now a subscriber to your blog!

    1. Hi Tami! Welcome!! So excited to have you as a new reader :) My very next post will be about the vanity- either this evening or tomorrow!

  8. Nina, your bathroom looks amazing! We used a similar floor tile in our bathrooms and I love it! I did our powder room floor myself too :) Those 12×24 tiles are no joke to install! I also really love the Benjamin Moore Wickham Gray in here and would love to feature this on my paint color blog, Involving Color. Let me know if you’re interested!

    1. Hi Jena! I would absolutely love to be featured on your blog, thank you so much! :) And yes, those floor tiles were something- I figured it would be easier with the larger tiles- apparently not!

  9. LOVE! What a stunning makeover! I love the board and batten and the mosaic tile used. I have been wanting to do this in my powder bath for a while. Yours is very beautiful! That ceiling is dreamy! lol I have not done a lot of molding / trim work, but after seeing your bathroom, I sure want to. :D Fantastic job!

  10. This is such a gorgeous transformation! I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with our 1/2 bath (the smallest room in our house too), and I think you’ve given me some great ideas. I love how you put the tiles in the board and batten. So pretty!

  11. What a change! It’s beautiful. Love the soft yet powerful color choices. And the vanity is amazing!
    (I came over from AtoZ’s link party. Happy to find your blog!)

  12. Love, love, love with a capital L. :) Can I ask where you got the tile? That is the perfect pattern/color for a flip house I am getting ready to start renovating. Thanks for sharing and linking up at The Scoop Link Party.

    1. Hi Barb! Thank you :) The tile is from Home Depot- It’s called Arctic Storm. It’s made from honed marble so it has a really nice matte texture in person. They also carried it in store, so that was perfect. Hope that helps!!

  13. Absolutely gorgeous makeover! I love all your choices of tile, colors, and fixtures! Fabulous job! Thanks for linking up to Inspire Me Monday!

  14. Really great job, Nina! I love that you built the vanity and reused the top – so gratifying, isn’t it? The bathroom looks fabulous and you should be proud!

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