14 November 2012

DIY: Bathroom counter skirt

Despite the long hours at work, I really am making progress on our apartment. Promise! It’s slow going, which is annoying. I just have to remind myself how it took me four years of living in my house to even start making changes to it, and another two years to get it just right. That’s six years, and we haven’t even been here six months.

Gosh, when I put it that way, I am downright ON FIRE.

Anyway! Remember this inspiration board for our bathroom, to help solve some of our storage woes?

Storage woes being, namely, a vast amount of bathroom stuff and only two-inch deep medicine cabinet to hold it all? And we’re in a rental so tearing out the laminate countertop in favor of a more storage-friendly vanity isn’t an option? And so the resulting piles of junk are under the sink on full display?


Well, six months of looking at that every time I was in the bathroom was six months too long. So I recently ordered this fabric online, after giving up on my local Hancock Fabrics to carry it:

Ticking stripe! Yes, please, and thank you.

It’s a Premier Prints fabric called Classic Antique Willow, and although it looks nearly black here, it’s actually green. I ordered it from Warehouse Fabrics Inc. If you’re looking for an online fabric source with discounted prices on basic prints, I like them – I’ve ordered from them several times and always been satisfied with the pricing, plus I think their website is easier to use than the giant fabric.com and others.

To keep it simple, I stuck to my tried-and-true method of hiding things under cabinets, first demonstrated here with Mr. P’s aquarium stand. Alls you gotta do is cut fabric panels to size, then finish the edges by ironing a pleat with hem tape.

So aside from an iron, all you really need is this:

Although I admit I busted out a fancier tool than my all-purpose measuring tape this time:

A L-square! Stripes are unforgiving, yo. Solid colors are easy, big repeating patterns are merciful, but stripes command nice right angles. I used the L-square to make sure I cut the panels perpendicular to the stripes.

Then it was just a simple matter of ironing a pleat, tucking the hem tape in there, and pressing it to seal. I took photos with the step-by-step directions here, if you need a refresher.

Then all that’s left is hanging ‘em up!

I took a shortcut this time hanging them up, which is why they’re sagging a bit in the middle. See, I intended to cut a long strip of cardboard, securely fasten the panels to it, and hang the cardboard up under the sink. But I lost steam, and instead the panels are hanging up with these:

Thumbtacks. Yes. Lazy bum or genius DIYer? Hmm. Maybe both?

Ah, who cares how they’re hanging up. The important part is that this is the only way to see the junk under our sink now:

I had to climb into the bathtub and smoosh my face against the tile to see the mess. That’s hidden to my satisfaction!

And you can’t deny the before and after from the most-viewed angle.

Before: Team P hoards toiletries and first aid supplies on their dusty bathroom floor:

After: What mess? All I see are some awesome ticking stripes!

It’s been awhile since I gave a breakdown, so here’s one for you today!

Time spent:
An hour, tops! It took me way longer than that to commit to ordering the fabric.

Fabric: $21 with shipping
Hem tape: already owned ($5 at the store)
Iron, measuring tape, thumbtacks: already owned
Total cost: $21

AND there’s fabric leftover for new projects! I ordered two yards to have room to spare while cutting out the panels – I needed three panels that were 24” wide and 21” tall, which meant I needed to order that second yard. But thanks to serendipity, it turns out I have the precise width necessary to make a functional roman shade for the window. And I may even have extra after that!

So that’s how this renter is dealing with a lack of storage space in the bathroom. But there’s more to come – I’m really looking forward to showing you how the rest!


Rachel C said...

I really like this make over. It is inspiring me to start to consider to think about making over my bathroom. :-)