Bathroom style

Grand Haven project - a lodge refresh part 2

For those of you that have been following along (thank you ;) a few weeks ago I shared photos and our process for updating bedrooms and the main common spaces for The Khardomah – a lodge my friends hired me to help refresh and redecorate in Grand Haven, Michigan. If you haven't yet, check out part 1 of the Grand Haven design project. We kept all of the neat old stuff, took out some of the more dingy things (pinecone wreaths & fire hazard lamps). We then freshened it up with new bedding, pillows, throws and window treatments... among a lot of other cool old and new things. For those of you who like vintage charm that doesn't make you sneeze, I think you'll really love the updates to the suites and bathrooms... keep reading!

SUITES: This is where the really big changes took place. Here are a few before photos of the two larger suites so you get a full understanding of where we began.


Gabagouache Suite (aka Gabby) and Dune were both a priority for redesign since the majority of the owners' friends and family would stay there. This part of the lodge was also an add-on. The goal was to make it look more cohesive with the rest of the lodge while also providing the comforts of home for guests – functional kitchenettes, comfy places to sit and sleep and a nice place to freshen up. 

To make that happen, carpets were torn out and new wood floors were installed to match the existing hardwood. This was not easy might I add. My partner in crime, Gayle, told me the guys spent a lot of time getting the stain color just right. I loved these guys for this and many other parts of this project. They are all true craftsmen and you can tell they love what they do. If you've ever done any sort of renovation you know that isn't always the case but these guys were the real deal.

In addition to the floors, the 80's kitchens were demo'd and replaced and bedrooms were treated with the same decor as the rest of the lodge. Easy, right? ;)

For the common area decor we wanted it to look like this...  

Sleeper sofas would be essential for extra guests and kiddos. We chose one with fairly forgiving performance fabric (La-Z-Boy), and new comfy chairs and pillows and decor in the same vein as the main common space. For the windows, we had custom flat roman shades installed in a natural linen. I might be mistaken but I'm pretty sure the previous ones were bed sheets so anything was an improvement. But I do really love how these cozy up the room -- nice and bright to help offset the darkness of the wood paneling and that darned forest ;) Dune had a giant bookshelf similar to the one in the main common area so I painstakingly styled that and left strict instructions DO NOT TOUCH for the cleaning crew. They sort of took it seriously. 


The kitchenettes that were demo'd were replaced with white shaker cabinets and black leathered granite countertops. They are a major improvement to which I can only credit to their architect. I did select the subway tile backsplash although I think if you asked anyone walking by they would have recommended that; it wasn't rocket science. Scroll up for a second to see the before again. Ok, come back.


These were a nice, fresh improvement and also helped to lighten the space. There was a LOT of discussion over the countertops. Black? White? Marble? Granite? If you've read this post you know how I feel about marble. In the end, black granite won and really helps to tie the kitchens and living areas together. 


BATHROOMS: Though not all of the bathrooms got a shiny new facelift, three of them did and did they ever. Well, actually two of the bathrooms didn't even exist before. A portion of the lodge that was previously four bedrooms was turned into a separate suite (The Yerkes Suite) – three rooms and an ADA accessible full and half bath. This suite does not have a kitchenette but is really perfect for a family that would rather not cook on vacation. The rest of the bathrooms got makeunders. We took out a lot of accessories and replaced bright plastic shower curtains with white seersucker and changed out the window treatments. 


The goal was to have the bathrooms look classic and original to the era of the lodge. For the new baths, I chose black and white hex tile for the floors and vintage looking sinks, mirrors, toilets, lighting and hardware. Subway tile was, again, a no-brainer that we had installed as a chair rail with black pencil trim. We also used the subway tile up the walls of one of the showers. 

Custom plantation shutters in a soft white were added as a finishing touch and in the Dune bathroom the old registers were fitted with custom made wood registers that are just straight up art. So pretty. Oh and that clawfoot tub was reglazed and painted black which works so well with the other black accents in the space.  



All in all, the bathrooms feel bright and inviting all while staying true to that early 1900's feel. And the best part is that the hot water is free with your stay! 

So there you have it – The Khardomah with a period appropriate facelift. Still quaint, still creaky old floors, still a peaceful oasis (truly) but breathing much easier now. I can't wait to see how my friends fill it in with their own vintage finds and make it their own. I think every year it will just get better and better because now there's room for new memories and a new era of families and friends to share in the wonder that is The Khardomah. So happy to have been a part of it's rebirth. 

Bathrooms on the brain

Don't you love when you go to replace a window in your bathroom and realize you'll have to redo all of the tile surrounding it. And while you're at it you may as well address the lack of storage with a new vanity and medicine cabinet. Oh and that lighting won't work anymore either. One seemingly small house project inevitably opens a can of worms. Like when you get those new shoes that require you to buy new pants because yours aren't the right length and then what top will you wear? You get it. (That may or may not have happened to me this week...but these shoes.)

I'm (not so) secretly loving the idea of replacing all of the bathroom tile. This is one of those rooms that you can clean and clean but it still looks the same...kinda yucky. So then I think, why clean it at all? Because I'm not in college anymore and have not been in a VERY long time. Man, life was simpler (and grosser) then. 

So, I've been living and breathing bathrooms this week. I'm helping a new client select bathroom tile for her and her fiance's 1920's home and also tile hunting for us on the sly.

Here's the current state of our bathroom. 

I did my best.

I won't even show the grody window that's been painted shut one hundred times over. What I will show you is what I've been pinning this week for ideas...


Simple, clean, bright. Maybe a little something funky for the floor. I definitely want to incorporate some wood (maybe in the vanity?) and a fun vintage rug to soften the look. I've been seeing that white, square ceramic tile all over lately and I love how it can be modern and classic when laid in the subway pattern. I think it would work well in our mid-century home. And I guess I'm on trend because I opened my email today to a subject line from MyDomain "Could this be the next subway tile?" So it seems it is. This makes me think twice only a little. Will it still be cool in ten years? I think it's simple enough that it will be. Anyway, I'm not immune to trends. Heck, I bought these Target beauties, didn't I?