Bathrooms are an essential part of any home, but they’re often overlooked when it comes to renovations. Many homeowners shy away from bathroom remodels because they believe it can be so costly! Today I want to show you how you can transform your outdated bathroom into a beautiful and functional space without breaking the bank. In this post, I’m sharing an adorable small bathroom remodel featuring ideas that can help transform your bathroom into an inviting space on a budget.
My brother and sister-in-law have an adorable 1970s home, and they’ve been renovating it room-by-room over the past few years. You might remember that we helped them with their kitchen renovation, and I also gave their daughter’s nursery a sweet little makeover. This summer, I had the opportunity to help them remodel their small guest bathroom, and we took it from dated to ADORABLE with some paint, trim, wallpaper, and some new accessories. Here’s how it turned out with some tips on how you can do the same to your small bathroom.
The bathroom BEFORE:
This small bathroom had most of its original 70s features: an old painted vanity, linoleum flooring, peach coloured wallpaper, a dated light fixture, and a honey oak cabinet over the toilet. It has a typical guest bathroom layout with a sink & toilet side by side. My brother & sister-in-law wanted something more fresh looking that matched the traditional cottage aesthetic they’re loving for the rest of their home.
My brother took the old vanity and flooring out of this bathroom, and then he installed luxury vinyl plank flooring to match the rest of their home. Next, I removed the old wallpaper, hardware, light fixture and wall cabinet and got to work on the new design!
For the design, my sister-in-law wanted to incorporate colours of blue and green with brushed gold accents. We were gifted a gorgeous blue-green vanity by Thomasville Cabinetry from Home Depot Canada, which we incorporated into the design.
When I found this blue, green and gold floral peel-and-stick wallpaper, I knew it would be the perfect wow factor for this room. Boldly wallpapered powder rooms are always a favourite of mine, and this wallpaper is stunning!
Paint & Trim
One of the simplest and most cost-effective ways to give your bathroom a fresh look is by painting it and adding new trim work. A fresh coat of paint can make a world of difference in any space, and your bathroom is no exception.
For this bathroom, I installed some beadboard wall panels I found at Home Depot using a finishing nail gun and construction adhesive, and then trimmed them with some inexpensive casing. Next, I painted the paneling and trim in Behr Whisper white for a fresh, bright look.
We completely swapped out the old vanity because it was falling apart, but you could also paint your original bathroom vanity for a budget-friendly upgrade.
Instead of more expensive & labour intensive tile, we used some trim painted with a kitchen & bath primer and durable paint that connects to the built-in vanity backsplash.
Approximate Cost: $250 CAD
I love the look of a “jewel box” powder room with patterned wallpaper on all the walls. Wallpaper can add a whimsical look to your small bathroom, and give it tons of personality! Rather than using traditional pasted wallpaper, consider peel-and-stick wallpaper. It’s affordable, low-commitment, and comes in a variety of designs.
That’s what I used in this little bathroom, and it sure made a massive difference in how the room looks and feels! The blue, green and gold colours of the peel-and-stick floral wallpaper ties so well into the vanity colour, and all the gold accents.
Approximate Cost: $200 CAD
Lighting is essential in any bathroom space, and changing your light fixtures can instantly update your bathroom. Consider replacing your light fixtures to more modern, energy-efficient LED lights, which will help save on your energy bills in the long run. You can find inexpensive vanity light fixtures from places like Amazon, Home Depot, or even from Facebook Marketplace. My sister-in-law found this stunning brushed gold and glass fixture here.
Approximate Cost: $120 CAD
It’s easier than you think to swap out your old plumbing fixtures like a sink faucet. Doing so can instantly make your bathroom look refreshed and new! Simply ensure your new faucet is the right size for the holes in your sink. You can also find affordable new shower kits for showers, new faucets for the tub, and even updated handles for toilets. These little updated details make a big difference! We used this stunning brushed gold faucet to add some vintage charm to this bathroom with a modern twist.
Approximate Cost: $125 CAD
A quality mirror is an important part of any bathroom. Mirrors not only reflect light and give the illusion of more space, but they also add personality to the room. Instead of a plain builder-grade mirror, consider adding something with a beautiful frame into your small bathroom. The gorgeous mirror we used in this powder room is from Structube, and it completely elevates this space.
Approximate Cost: $70 CAD
Bathroom accessories such as towels, towel rings, shower curtains, baskets and soap dispensers can also transform the space without spending a fortune. You can match your faucet colour, or you can choose accessories in a contrasting metallic colour. For example, I love mixing chrome and black metallic or brushed gold and black!
For my sister-in-law’s vintage inspired powder room, we chose to keep all of the fixtures and accessories in a brushed gold metallic tone with accents of blue and seagrass. The toilet paper holder & towel ring, soap dispenser, and seagrass storage basket are from Amazon. We also used some wooden boxes from the dollar store for the shelf and painted them to match the blue vanity. This IKEA glass & cork storage set is also a small-scale storage solution that works beautifully to store toiletries and other supplies in small bathroom spaces.
My mom & dad lovingly made the shelf over the toilet with scrap wood they had on hand. It was white washed with leftover latex paint to match the aesthetic of the bathroom, and I love how it looks styled with matching accessories. Wall shelves are always a good addition to a DIY bathroom remodel to add much-needed extra storage.
Approximate Cost: $250 CAD
It’s important to have a lot of storage in a small bathroom for things like toilet paper and towel, and this small-scale cabinet is perfect. I placed it in the corner opposite the toilet so that it’s easy to access toilet paper and supplies.
Approximate Cost: $130 CAD
Small Bathroom Remodel Cost
For this small bathroom makeover, we spent around $1200 Canadian dollars. I think the bathroom looks incredible for that cost, and it just goes to show how much of a difference trim, paint, wallpaper, and updated accessories can make. It also proves how much you can save on labor costs if you DIY considering the average cost of a full bathroom renovation can be $5000 or more!
Even though Home Depot gifted us the Thomasville Cabinetry vanity to inspire this entire makeover, you could achieve a similar effect by simply painting your current vanity with cabinet paint.
This cost also doesn’t include the replacement of the flooring, which my brother did with leftover luxury vinyl plank he had on hand. If you need to replace your small bathroom floor with vinyl plank, expect the cost to be around $150 CAD. Vinyl floor tiles can be another budget friendly option – you can even find peel & stick varieties!
Watch my video to see this entire bathroom transformation from start to finish:
Bathroom Source List:
- vanity by Thomasville Cabinetry from Home Depot Canada (gifted custom order)
- floral peel & stick wallpaper
- beadboard wall panels
- vanity light fixture
- brushed gold faucet
- brushed gold mirror
- small storage cabinet
A small bathroom renovation on a budget is possible with some creativity, patience, and DIY inspiration. By using these ideas, you can create a beautiful, inviting space without spending a lot of money! A fresh coat of paint, peel & stick wallpaper, updated lighting, new accessories, affordable plumbing fixtures, and a new mirror can all make a world of difference. I hope you’re inspired to start your small bathroom remodel soon. Let me know in the comments below what you think of my brother & sister-in-law’s new bathroom; I’d love to know. Happy DIYing!