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Ensuite makeover for under $1200

Making a Splash
Making a Splash

This budget-priced update brings a bright, modern look to a dated bathroom. 





The project


After nine years and three kids in our home, our ensuite was definitely looking a little worse for wear. The colours were dated, the room looked tired and overall it lacked warmth and life and just felt plain boring.




The tiles, fixtures and vanity were all still in quite good condition so it was mostly aesthetic changes that needed to happen to give my ensuite a new lease on life. I had to do something about the dull grey tiles, dark brown vanity, stained grout and beige walls.






Step-by-step guide


Here’s how I made it happen:


Step 1

I started off by simply removing everything from the ensuite that wasn’t fixed down or staying. Artwork, towel rails, the mirror, the blind, baby latches and any random screws in walls were the first to go.


Step 2

I gave everything a big clean with Selleys sugar soap, including walls, tiles, vanity and glass shower screens. I used a scrubbing brush with the sugar soap to give the floor tiles and grout a good clean.


Step 3

Once everything was dry I started to prep the walls for their first coat of paint. I filled all holes with Selleys Spakfilla and gave them a light sand once dry. I wiped over all the walls again to remove any residue from the sanding and taped up the edges of the walls ready to paint.


Step 4

I applied three coats of Dulux Lexicon Half to all the walls except the one I was leaving as our feature wall, allowing each coat adequate drying time in between. I also prepped the window frame, door and door frame ready to paint. I painted the door frame, door and window frame in the same colour as the walls, using Dulux Aquanamel Gloss.


Step 5

Once the walls, door and frames were dry, I started prepping the tiles and vanity for their makeover. I opted to use the Dulux Renovation Range for the tiles and vanity area. When using this range, the most important part is making sure everything is completely clean and free from any residue, silicone or product build up. I therefore gave the vanity and tiled area another good clean with sugar soap and removed any silicone visible around the shower frame and tiled area. I also removed the vanity doors and pulled out the drawers to make these easier for painting.


Step 6

Once dry I started off by giving the tiles and vanity one coat of the Dulux Renovation Range primer. 


Step 7

When the primer was completely dry I proceeded with painting the vanity in three coats of Dulux Renovation Range Cabinet Doors Satin in Light Rice. I chose to go with the satin rather than the gloss version for the vanity as I felt it gave a more modern and luxe look.


For the tiled area, I applied three coats of Dulux Renovation Range Tile & Benchtops Gloss in Lexicon Half (same colour as the walls for a seamless finish). I chose to go with the gloss finish for the tiled area as I didn’t want the tiles to look dry and rough, but feel after using the satin finish for the vanity I think either option would have looked beautiful on the tiles.


Note: The most important thing to remember when applying the Dulux Renovation Range is that each coat of paint needs a minimum of eight hours' drying time before the next coat can be applied. This did drag things out but I'm glad I followed the recommendations because the results were worth it.


Step 8

By this time I had finally settled on a paint colour selection for the feature wall. I went with two coats of Dulux Surprise. It's really a beautiful clay colour in person, but it tends to photograph as more of an orange or peachy colour.


Step 9

By the time everything was dry, I was ready to start adding some decorative pieces to the room. I reinstalled the vanity doors and used the Lane 100mm Matte Brass handles from Bunnings to replace the cabinet and drawer handles. I replaced the old square mirror with a Silas Antique gold arch mirror  from Adairs, which is one of my favourite features in the room. I added a beautiful piece of art titled Luxe Resort ll from Boho Art & Styling to the feature wall in an Ikea Lomviken frame, and a hanging fern near the window in a gold hanging ring pot.


Step 10

Our original silver tapware on the vanity was damaged so this was a great opportunity to update the tap and I opted for the beautiful Brushed Brass Basin Mixer from Yabby.


Step 11

One of the very last things I did for the room was freshen up the grout on the floor tiles. I gave the tiled area another really good clean and once dry I applied two coats of the Dulux Renovation Range grout pen to the grout in the entire floor area. The results were incredible and I highly recommend this pen!


Step 12

I finished off the room with a few last decorative accessories, including the beautiful brass Monstera hook from Kokonuts Living, towels from Adairs, bamboo bath mat and Sabina soap dispenser from Target and two more indoor plants from Bunnings. I also positioned two brass hooks behind the door for hanging towels and included a cheeky Get Naked sign from Sweet Hummingbird Designs for a bit of fun!


Tools and materials budget


All in all I was thrilled with the transformation and being able to achieve such incredible results for under $1200. The most expensive part of the process was definitely the paint, but you do get what you pay for with paint and I knew that spending the money and time to apply the paint correctly was going to give us great long-lasting results.


All paint, brushes, rollers and tape: $463

Brass vanity mixer tap: $225

Arch mirror: $156 (purchased on sale)

Artwork: $93 (on sale)

Frame: $60

Brass hooks: $50

Grout pen: $20

Brass vanity handles x3: $18

Plants: $34

Towels: $37.50 (on sale)

Decorative accessories (bamboo mat, soap dispenser, candle): $40

Total:  $1196.50














Before and after







How to plan a bathroom renovation


No matter what type of bathroom you have, it all starts with planning and research to discover how you can make best use of what is often the smallest room in the house. Check out How to plan a bathroom renovation by experienced Bunnings Workshop member Adam Woodhams for advice on how to redesign your space.




More bathroom renovation ideas


For more inspiration check out our Top 10 most popular bathroom projects, and let us know if you need a hand with your project. We're here to help.


Amassing an Audience

This is an awesome ensuite makeover @Alyce_Pham ! Your step by step process is easy to follow and love that you included budget saving measures in your post. You have a great eye for bringing a room together, well done :smile: 



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