The Learner Observer

It’s finally here. The day of the big reveal of the smallest room in my house! Can you believe it? I managed to paint and decorate a 70 square foot space in 5 weeks! Crazy, no?


Yes, this is what you get first. A picture of toilet paper in a basket! Because there really isn’t much to “reveal” here, you guys. Let’s be honest!

To make this a little more fun, let’s go back to where we started, shall we? And if you’re really curious about all of the progress, you can see all of it here:

Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 5 (that’s right, I skipped week 4!)


This was my inspiration/mood board for the room. You can let me know if you think I came close!


And this is the room when we had just gotten the house. The mix of finishes in here was really just to die for. And I mean just on the walls alone! And that scalloped detailing on really gets me, I probably should have kept that sink, huh? (ha!)

One room challenge - powder room by The Learner Observer

Remember that little beauty? And you can’t even see the horrendous tile that used to live in here. Consider yourself lucky! Well, here’s what our little powder room looks like today:


A bit of an improvement right? We said goodbye to stucco walls and covered them up with shiplap. We also got rid of the outdated tile and put in my favourite tile of all time (you’ll remember it from our last bathroom and you may see it in our upstairs bath also!).



Because the room is so small, I opted to go without any cabinets and went for a wall-mounted sink. It makes a huge difference! Plus, we don’t need a ton of storage in here anyway. As long as there’s a basket full of TP, I think we’re good, right?



Up top we took out the crazy dated light fixture and went for something a little more timeless. It may not have a pretty Edison bulb in it (because who even uses those in a washroom? Hello! We need to SEE!), but I still think it looks mighty fiiiiiine!


And did you notice the black ceiling? Please tell me you did. Because you guys… black ceiling! I originally wanted the whole room to be black, but it’s pretty dark in here (and SMALL!) so it may have made people slightly claustrophobic. Better that we stuck just to the top panel of shiplap and the ceiling.


I’d be lying if I said I’m not obsessed with it, because I SO am! It may sound crazy to do something like this in the tiniest room ever, but I think it really works in here. People love to call powder rooms their little jewelry boxes (though I don’t know why. That seems super weird to me), but this little room is a bit of one. It has texture and depth and lots and lots of metallic finishes!


Yep. That’s my toilet paper holder. How much toilet paper can ONE blog post have, you may ask? Don’t worry. There’s probably more. But really, can we talk about this perfect little golden nugget right here? SO. CUTE. Even for something that holds an unmentionable!

Seriously, though, I opted for lots of finishes because I love mixing metals and I hope that trend never ever dies.


The framed maps in here are pieces I had from our last house. I know… it’s not the buffalo print from my inspiration, but that wouldn’t have worked here anyway because as it turns out, the perfect place for artwork in here was on top of the toilet, not across from it like I had originally intended! So this time, my lack of planning and ordering things worked in my favour!


I did also have a gold towel bar that matched the tissue holder, but it just didn’t work in here. I wanted to somehow super-hot-glue gun it to the bottom of the sink to make a towel bar underneath it, but it wouldn’t have worked. I happened to have this hook that I found at a small shop a few years back, and wouldn’t you know it, it worked out so well!



I love that the room feels modern but somehow classic and timeless also. I really mixed a lot of finishes and styles here, but stayed true to my black, white and gold (plus a hint of woodsy tones in the trash bin).


This completely neutral room isn’t for everyone, especially those who like their jewelry boxes full of colour, but I say neutrals don’t have to be boring. And if you looked in my jewelry box you’d see a lot of the same things you see here: black, white, mixed metals and a hint of natural elements!


In case you’re curious about where I bought anything, I linked as many as I could below. If you have any other questions, though, please ask!

To help with selecting lighting for a room like this, check out this post for lighting options under $80!

Beautiful shiplap and tile work: Grain Works Collective
Sink- Lowe’s. Only available in store. Similar here.
Faucet – Lowe’s 
Mirror – IKEA
Light fixture – Amazon
Toilet – Lowe’s
Window blind: IKEA
Paint – Walls: Sherwin Williams, ‘Alabaster’ SW 7008. Ceiling: Para Paints ‘Tuxedo’ P5249-85
Tile – Home Depot
Tissue paper holder – CB2
Black & White basket – Target (it’s old, sorry!)
Hand towel – Homesense (HomeGoods for you American friends) and it’s actually a kitchen towel. Shhh… no one has to know!
Faux succulent: Loblaws Superstore (it was on clearance so I’m not sure they have more!)
Brass mist sprayer – Value Village (yes, seriously. And it was $4. Be jealous.)
Milk glass vase – one of many thrifted finds of mine!
Picture frames – Target (again, old – like when they used to be in Canada, old)
Jamaica map – Etsy
Brazil map – Etsy


It’s been a pleasure being a part of another One Room Challenge, and I’m so glad I managed to finish this one, even if it was the tiniest room of all! Don’t forget to check out all the other participants!




  1. Reply

    Christine Vandormolen

    November 9, 2016

    Super gorgeous!!! Love the towel hook!

  2. Reply

    Laurie @ Vin'yet Etc.

    November 10, 2016

    Well we are the opposite of you… our powder room still sits looking uggo after 3 years and that’s one of the first impressions guests have of our home… this space may be little but it’s mighty in inspiration (sorry, I’m just naturally hokey) love it all!

  3. Reply


    November 10, 2016

    It looks amazing. Such a small space with beautiful and bold decor. Looove that tini tiny jewelry box. Perfection !!!!

  4. Reply


    November 10, 2016

    everything is so well coordinated and styled! That light is perfect! the black ceiling? Heck ya! The knobs and fixtures?! score!

  5. Reply

    Cassie Bustamante

    November 10, 2016

    such a gorgeous space, thalita! i love the black, white, organic vibe. the lighting might be my favorite element!

  6. Reply


    November 10, 2016

    So gorgeous!!

  7. Reply


    November 10, 2016

    Beautiful!! I love everything you did with this space. Especially the floor…and that light fixture! Love it!

  8. Reply

    Kyla @HouseOfHipsters

    November 10, 2016

    Ahhhhh! Penny tile heaven! I love your new bathroom. Gorgeous as always.

  9. Reply


    November 10, 2016

    I love the changes you made! The black ceiling and shiplap are amazing together! I really love that toilet paper holder! I never thought to look at CB2

  10. Reply

    Tash @ thedreamhouseproject

    November 10, 2016

    So pretty!! I love the shiplap! Your white, black, mixed metals & a hint of natural is perfection. And an I just say those tiles….ALLL the heart eye emojis!!!!

  11. Reply

    Megan Smith

    November 10, 2016

    LOVE IT! All of it! The black ceiling is fab, and that light fixture, too. OH! And the faucet! I totally agree with you that it is classic and modern all at once. The floor is a great choice, I think; versatile; pretty much anything will go with that very pretty floor. Great job, you guys!

  12. Reply


    November 10, 2016

    Thalita, wow!!!! What a transformation, seriously! The before and after, crazy! Love the flooring!!! The black ceiling, the planking, and your pretty styling. It gives me hope for our sad little bathroom. And believe it or not, the thing I am going to check out immediately from here is your TP holder. Love that little bed that looks like it could actually keep the roll from coming off. And maybe my kids could even replace the roll with this design :) Thanks for sharing your pretty new bathroom and congrats on doing this all in 6 weeks!

  13. Reply

    Kim Young

    November 10, 2016

    What a difference! I love the neutrals with the shiny metallics – absolutely breathtaking!

  14. Reply

    Sabrina (@pinklilnotebook)

    November 10, 2016

    What a beautiful transformation! I love the wall mounted sink, it totally opens the space.

  15. Reply

    Jordana @WhiteCabana

    November 11, 2016

    Awesome makeover, Thalita! gosh, you’ve been busy!

  16. Reply

    Jen @ Noting Grace

    November 11, 2016

    Whoa! Wow! This is so gorgeous!! What an amazing transformation. The walls, the tile – it is all expertly done and is just beautiful. Congrats!!

  17. Reply

    Crystal Fox @ The Weathered Fox

    November 11, 2016

    LOVE the black ceiling! Well, I love the whole thing! Great job! Absolutely classic and beautiful!

  18. Reply

    Jessica | Petal + Ply

    November 11, 2016

    Beautiful space! I for one love the neutral palette. The black ceiling is amazing.

  19. Reply

    April R - Uncookie Cutter

    November 12, 2016

    Wow!! What a difference! It looks so good!

  20. Reply

    November 13, 2016

    Such a gorgeous transformation! Enjoy!

  21. Reply

    Nicole @ The Inspired Hive

    November 13, 2016

    Beautiful!!!! I love that lighting and tile! SO pretty!

  22. Reply

    Sarah @ Making Joy and Pretty Things

    November 13, 2016

    It’s absolutely beautiful!!! I love the shiplap walls and the tiny floor tile. You did such a good job of decorating, too! All the little details make such a difference.

  23. Reply

    Erin @ Lemons, Lavender, & Laundry

    November 13, 2016

    I love this room!!! That black ceiling it awesome with the white shiplap. Gorgeous!

  24. Reply


    November 13, 2016

    Thalita, your powder room is beautiful! I love that you did a black ceiling – it adds a nice bit of drama. Plus, what better space to take chances than in a bathroom!? Beautiful makeover, my friend!

  25. Reply

    Colette @ restyle it wright

    November 16, 2016

    ohhhh its like farmhouse meets glam! LOVE the ceiling!

  26. Reply


    March 5, 2017

    I love this! I remember that flooring from years ago when everyone was pulling it up because it was hard to keep clean. I think you nailed it with the gray grout – it will always look good!

    Although I love everything, I think the artwork choices make a huge diffference. My mom has a rather ordinary bathroom but when she framed a picture she took of Monarchs in Monterey, CA, the whole room changed for the better. The maps are tasteful and give the eye a good place to rest.

    You gave me some great ideas. I have the same bathroom except the wall by the toilet is a smaller bathtub horizontally with head by toilet). Literally 3 inches from the toilet! At least it makes for a smaller footprint so can splurge on the flooring, but the biggest issue is what to use on the wet walls to blend with the boards. (I love vintage but the 1950’s chocolate brown tiles gotta go!!) I’m thinking plain old white subway tile might keep the vintage feel without competing too much with the boards – which i love in your room. I thought a black ceiling would lower the ceiling but clearly it works! I just wish I didn’t need the storage space and could ditch the vanity – your room is so much more spacious looking with that bit of free space.

    Now I need to check out your other rooms – you definitely have a flair for good design.

    • Reply


      March 6, 2017

      Before I read on to see that you mentioned subway tile as a solution for the walls around the tub, I thought: “Subway tile!” As for the vanity, you can still get storage, but try something a bit leggy, maybe? It still let’s you see more floor and you can get that much needed storage!

      Thanks so much for your sweet comment, and best of luck with your makeover!! :)

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