Liberty House Master Bath: Inspiration

Demo on the master bath is, well, occurring at the very moment I’m writing this.


Goodbye black mirrors. Goodbye oddly designed vanity.


Goodbye upright coffin masquerading as a shower.


Goodbye to the thing that made me laugh the hardest the first time I walked into this house… the hallway toilet.


I expect this is going to be a six week project, minimum. (Everyone get out your secret DIY decoder rings, add in two unexpected project delays, multiply that by new project insomnia, divide by my desire to have a goddamn bath tub, and we’re probably looking at ten weeks, realistically.)

And then there’s the part where I have to pick everything out rightthisminute.

Here’s what I’m leaning towards (you can see the full pinterest board here)….

White walls, with a dark gray natural stone subway tile halfway up the wall. Undecided floor tile. Dark to match the walls? Lighter basket-weave? Not sure yet.

Bright yellow piece of furniture re-purposed as a vanity. New light fixture.

Wood stacked in the non-functioning fireplace to create some privacy between the bedroom and bathroom.

And, the other big decision…

Clawfoot? Modern?

I’m not sure which way I’ll go yet. What I know is that after the bigass bubble tub that was in the last master bath I built, I’m going a lot simpler this time.

It was a little too big for me to fit in comfortably. (Weird, but true.)

So that’s the inspiration. Here’s the list of things to do:

  • Demo, demo, demo.
  • Repair subfloor, probably
  • Frame in new shower/toilet wall
  • Install new bathroom door
  • Rough in new plumbing and electric
  • Install radiant floor heat
  • Tile, tile, tile, tile, tile
  • Patch old skylight hole + install wood ceiling
  • Install new light fixture
  • Build vanity
  • Build replacement window
  • Install sink and toilet
  • Tile shower
  • Have glass shower door installed

And thaaaaaats going to take fucking forever, but it will be awesome when it’s done.

34 Responses

  1. Go clawfoot! And I love to tile. We just replaced our hall bathroom’s toilet and I figured why not retile while it’s up?!

    As for the floor, there’s some amazing tile that looks like wood that could tie it all in!

    I kind of want to drive from VA to MI to help!

  2. Can’t wait to see the progress. We did our master bath last March-Juneish and love it. It was a lot smaller than yours but we did redesign the shower to be double the size it was by rearranging the closet and hallway linen closet. We did the “wood” look tile that MTay suggested too, rustic wood wall behind the sink, built the vanity ourselves and installed a copper sink.

  3. Claw tub for the win!
    Dude, you need to have one working fireplace in the house in case of Armageddon. Find one.

  4. Your pinterest board link doesn’t work. I say go clawfoot, but only because I really regret getting some crappy regular tub during my bathroom remodel instead of a clawfoot.

  5. Woo…weee! I love other peoples projects. Is that a portable electric heater in the pre demo photo? Do you have other heat in the room? Over to pinterest now to critic your selections.

  6. I will always love the charm of a clawfoot, but there are some really awesome tubs available! I don’t think you can go wrong either way. Your inspiration photos are beautiful!

  7. Clawfoot looks great, but is not insulated unless you build it in. That oval one looks great and is double walled, which will help to maintain the water temperature while you are soaking.

    1. Sherrill,
      This is so true. I had a boss who installed one in his home years ago. His wife used it once, and hated it because the water got cold too fast. So unless they make them insulated, I don’t know that I would install one.
      Food for thought.

    1. to continue… go to a salvage yard and try to find an old cast iron one, and just have it reglazed. Why deal with the extra weight? …. because the iron will hold the heat better than any fiberglass one any day of the week!

  8. Voting light floor and clawfoot tub. At the salvage yard here, you can get a clawfoot tub for $100, plus roughly $400 more to reglaze if it needs it–some of them really don’t. I think it will go perfectly with your house.

  9. I love a claw foot tub, but years ago my grandmother told me she hated them because they were such a pain to keep clean under… umm I had never thought about that! So I love a pedestal tub, looks just like a claw foot but sits on a base, no dust under that puppy! Good luck with the remodel, I’m sure it will be beautiful!

  10. I adore clawfoot tubs BUT they are a b*tch to clean. Read – laying on the floor srubbing both the underneath of the tub and the floor below. Just something to think about….

  11. Talk about heat, it looks like from the electric heater facing the shower that you need a fix for that? Gutting to the stud is a good time to re-insulate, old house, built drafty by design, is there insulation in the walls, drafty.? What’s the plan for that Kit?

    1. There is an electric heater in that picture because I took it before I owned the house when all of the pipes in the baseboard heaters were split from not being properly winterized. I broke in to paint over the water spots on a wall from a leaking skylight so that my loan would go through and needed the room to be above freezing so the paint would dry. (After buying the house I tore the skylight out and re-roofed, so that’s no longer an issue.)

      The bathroom has working heat now. It also is missing the bottom half of the window, which, other than the storm window over it, basically means it’s open to the elements.

      So here’s my big plan for dealing with the situation: 1.) Fix the window. 2.) Turn the heat on in that room.


      1. So that’s a little peak behind the Kit curtains. B & E for painting and loan approval. Thinking outside the box got you in !

  12. I vote modern!! but I agree, not too big. It makes it really difficult to get a tub full of really hot water. I live in a condo so I guess I have a small hot water heater, but I take a bath every night. In winter, I can’t get enough hot water to cover my knees and that’s sadly with the heat turned up on the heater.

    1. You might be able to replace it with a tankless water heater, but I do not know much about them. I lived in an apartment where the water heater was turned down, to save money, and I had no control of it, showers were fairly short there. And I had to boil water if I wanted a bath. I do not miss that place.

  13. CLAWFOOT?!?! Have had two in my adult homeowning life and hated each of them; hard to clean behind and under (never did btw); cold breezes from ALL sides if bathing; never ending shower curtain bottom doing its best imitation of a boa constrictor if showering; reglazing on tub stinks and starts to fail after a few years (not cool); and most importantly lack of choices in reasonably priced fixtures (we know how much you love your choices!) Besides all that, I think clawfoot is a GREAT idea.

  14. Clawfoot or modern, my thought it going with whatever is easy to maintain/clean around. I like pedestal tubs, personally, but clawfoots do allow you to sweep the floor easily. You can’t really go wrong- whatever you pick, it will be a step up!

  15. I love the look of a claw foot tub but I LOATHE cleaning under it. I love your modern inspiration tub.

  16. I have been spying that pedestal tub from menards as well. I think it is a nice mix of traditional and modern. I am a sucker for claw foots though so that has to be my final vote. I would go with the basketweave on the floor.

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