It’s pretty safe to say that we are light years away making decorating choices for our parlor floor – and yet sometimes you just have to give in and imagine the light at the end of the restoration tunnel.

A while back I read about a Brooklyn-themed wallpaper pattern designed by Beastie Boy Mike D. Ever since then I kept imagining what this crazy toile style paper would look in our yet to be built period power room. I’m not a wallpaper person – quite on the contrary – but I loved the idea of using a very traditional style (in this case toile) with an unexpected twist.

So I googled my way over to Flavor Paper and spent some time day dreaming about what out teeny tiny powder room may look like with this, this, this or this. I ordered  samples and I realized I’m not any closer to a decision. But it was a lovely distraction from the less fun aspects of bringing an old house back to life. It may be a while, but Flavor Paper, I’m coming for you!.

The Micro-Bathroom

Bathrooms in brownstones are notoriously tiny, and our micro-bathroom is no exception. Coming in at a spacious 52 inches by 64 inches, it features a full size tub, a pedestal sink, a toilet and no standing room to speak of. The space is so small there is no room for a toilet paper holder, and any  miscalculation while approaching the toilet will land you in the tub or out in the hallway. Yes, it’s that tiny.

(can someone explain to me why people insist in having bathtubs? This bathroom would feel much bigger if it had a stand up shower instead, but I digress)

There are some features I really like: the tin ceiling and the air shaft window.

Currently everything is caked up in gobs of beige paint. We’re working on freeing up the window, which will add much needed ventilation, and perhaps stop the tin ceiling from rusting. Eventually we plan on turning this space into our master closet – sometime in the distant future. In the mean time, this is where we shower.

There is a room exactly the same size directly below our micro bathroom. The previous owners had turned it into a closet, keeping the tile and soapdish intact. We tore it out and will be turning it into a powder room in the not so distant future.

The Shower of Sadness

Wednesday was our first night at the house with most of our stuff. Some last minute things are still not finished and the shower in our micro-bathroom (more on this amazing architectural marvel in a later post) had not yet been dealt with.

The next morning, I scrambled around for a towel (settling for a retired bath towel now used for cleaning) and went on to use the shower. I turned on the hot water and waited. And  waited. And then realized it was as hot as it was going to get. I turned on the shower and figured the trickle of warm water was going to have to do.

This morning, back to the shower of sadness I went; the location of the box of towels still unknown. The new shower head was a reprieve from the trickle of the old one, but I guess it doesn’t much matter when there really isn’t enough hot water to wash off the soap.

I’ve been working crazy long hours on a project and been coming home feeling like a drunk zombie. Two more weeks and the project will be over and I will have all the time in the world to hunt down some towels and give the boiler a good stern talking to.

Making a powder room

The previous owners had turned the parlor floor bathroom into a closet. For some reason, they never removed the tiles or the porcelain soap dish.

Our plan is to turn it back into a bathroom: a pretty bathroom that respects the period of the house. Step 1 into turning a bathroom-turned-closed back into a bathroom? Rip out the 1980s tile! With the help of a friend and some punk rock we were taupe tile free in an hour or so.

As an added bonus of grossness, when we lifted the rug you see above we discovered that the plumbing for the toilet was still intact – capped only with a bunch of balled up newspapers. I will spare you the visual reference because it’s super disgusting. Instead, here is a more pleasant photo of the painted over air-shaft window (check out the cool tin ceiling).

As the space is very small (less than 5 feet deep), we’re making it into a powder room which will serve the parlor floor (our main living area). Once the work in the garden level apartment is complete, this will be Big Project #2