Part 2 of what to do when you can’t afford a new bathroom

I’ll spare you a detailed description of my search for a cabinet. In brief, I tried the nicer cabinet vendors and they were aloof and expensive. I considered building my own vanity since I’d seen some pretty talented women doing just that on the Retro Renovation website simply because they couldn’t find the mid-century style they wanted. In the end I went to the nearest big building supply store and ordered everything from the nice man at the desk there in the kitchen and bathroom planning department.

Once everything, vanity from one manufacturer, countertop from another, was ordered and — gulp — paid for, I had to wait.

Then, the vanity was delivered on a fine October day in a big box and a few little boxes. I’d been told the counter makers would come to the house to measure their template only when the vanity was firmly installed. Um, what does that leave out of the picture? Perhaps what a gal’s to do without a sink in the meantime?

Anyway, I started tearing out Old Ugly that very day.

2018-10-17 11.36.36
Here’s the new vanity in its box.
2018-10-17 11.12.27
Here’s Old Ugly and my tools.
2018-10-17 11.13.15
Simple enough (yucky in there, isn’t it?)
2018-10-17 11.12.51
The problem would be that the pipes all come up through the floor and I didn’t have the proper tools to remove the vanity from around them!
2018-10-17 12.06.31
Yet, I did tear the sink-top off and carry it down to the porch to put out with the trash later than week.

I had to call someone to help me remove the vanity, though, and luckily found a very skilled handyman who did the job. He also promised to come back and install my sink once the countertop was installed.

He also helped me actually unbox the new vanity, but wasn’t able to help me install it since he had another job to rush off to. He said he could come back a few days later, but I really didn’t want to spend any more money and instead spent days trying to figure out how I would do it myself.

Sure, I could put a hole in the vanity floor for the pipes to fit through with my drill attachment, but how to then LIFT the vanity up and over those pipes, two of which stuck up about two feet in the air, all by myself?

2018-10-19 12.37.26
Here is a view from above. Wall, the pipes coming up (the blue rag to catch drips) and my holes in the floor of the vanity.
2018-10-19 12.44.51
Here from the side.

I really did spend days trying to think inside the box, outside the box: how does a weak(ish) woman lift such a bulky object straight up TWO FEET into the air and then back down carefully? HOW?

2018-10-20 11.44.46
Then I remembered I had these!
2018-10-20 10.35.25
I WAS strong enough to lift one side at a time onto those two crates (the rugs are to prevent scratches)
2018-10-20 10.36.22
Then gently budge the vanity towards the wall, up and over the pipes one side at a time….
2018-10-20 10.36.27
I’m over them! It looks like my holes will fit, too!
2018-10-20 10.38.11
Peeking underneath.
2018-10-20 10.41.45
And then, slowly and gently, first one side then the other, pulling the crates out from under and lowering the vanity down to the floor without breaking anything.
2018-10-20 10.42.19
Really, really, you can’t imagine how happy and proud I was!

The countertop template people came out and measured. I had been told it would take about ten working days for it to be made and delivered once the design was approved by the store I’d ordered it at.

I figured that would be two or three weeks if I got lucky.

A week later I got a call and was told the laminate I’d chosen had a SIX WEEK LEAD TIME. My alternative choices, too, since — I’ll surmise — they are all retro style laminates that no one but crazies like me want, hence are not kept in stock.

ARG! My first visitor was supposed to arrive Monday! She said it’d be no problem to use the kitchen sink, but I thought it was a problem.

I looked around me and thought up another mad scheme.

I called the handyman and proposed he help me carry it through.

He agreed and it was done.

2018-11-01 14.58.14
Here I am putting in the faucet myself. Here, from below.
2018-11-01 14.59.04
Here, from above.
2018-11-02 11.54.54
Bought the drain pipes.
2018-11-02 13.43.43
And the handyman put them in.

But WAIT, you’ll say, if you haven’t fallen asleep.

What about the countertop?

Wait for it!


2018-11-02 13.43.29
WE USED A PIECE OF PLYWOOD and made a temporary countertop for my sink! And I painted it white. Here it’s still got painter’s tape around it. But it worked. The visit was a pleasant one without having to use the kitchen sink.
2018-11-03 16.29.35
The cabinet doors are totally crooked, but that’s something I’ll just have to figure out. I haven’t understood which little thing under the drawers has to be pushed which way and which screw moved that or this way in the hinges to make it all look right and am actually pretty irked that it’s not easier, but in time, I will figure it out. In the meantime, check out those vintage pulls!

Of course, one of my next posts will have all problems solved and you’ll see my new countertop!

The beautiful old blue tub will have to wait in the garage a year, maybe two or three until I have the $$$ saved up for the complete renovation. In the meantime, I have lots more work to do around here. Tomorrow a builder is coming to save my porch (that thing again!).


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s