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Would love help updating 70s bathroom for 80 yo mother

13 years ago


My 80 year old mother is moving to an independent living facility about an hour and � north of us, into a one-bedroom, one-bath cottage. The cottage is "unrenovated", meaning that the kitchen and bath are original, from the mid-70s. I am trying to make the place fun and cheery, to offset the general shabbiness of the place. It was reasonably well-designed, with a skylight and wide hallways (to accommodate wheelchairs, I think) but the materials used were builders� grade (if that) and the appliances are old. I think the kitchen and bathroom cabinets are melamine.

There�s a strong 70s sensibility to the place, with finger hole sliding doors in the kitchen, a "built-in" desk in the living room, etc.

My mother likes Scandinavian design, Marimekko, mid-century modern....(although she is not interested in going hard-core Eames, Saarinen, etc.) She also says she loves turquoise, but I am afraid of going with too much color because her current place is decorated in all beige, brown and black.

It�s a rental so I am limited in what I can do. I am also limited by my lack of ability. :-) They will let me paint, so I am thinking of going with a black, brown, turquoise/aqua and lime green color scheme. I think I will paint the kitchen with Farrow and Ball Blue Ground, and "tile" a backsplash with black and white mosaic "peel and stick" tiles. I am also changing all of the hardware to boomerang pulls (Rejuvenation Hardware).

I am really stymied by the bathroom. My first thought was to paint in dark chocolate brown, but there is only one small window in there and I�m afraid it�ll be too dark. I am going to pay to have them replace the toilet with a Toto ADA height toilet (Drake or Ultrmax). I was thinking of a curtain below the sink � but what color? Should I put FLOR tiles on the floor? Should I try to create a barrier between the sink part of the bathroom and the shower/toilet part? I can replace the mirror � but with what?

I would appreciate any ideas. My 12 year old daughter will be spending a lot of time there too, and we�re both pretty depressed about the bathroom.

Here are some pictures. I�ll include some of the rest of the place so you get a sense of what I�m dealing with.

Thank you!


The kitchen


The "built-in desk" (forgive the mop)


The bathroom








The pulls I've ordered


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