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An Update...

Ask the Audience: Powder Room Vanity (and a sneak peek)

The powder room is 75% done and it’s ready for a mini-reveal. I don’t want to spoil the full reveal so this is just a tiny peak. When we bought the house the powder room was in the old servants hallway (sounds very fancy, but it wasn’t). It was small, as powder rooms are, and it needed some love. Here is the original floor plan, pre-renovation. 

We’ve added the graphic to show you where the original powder room was, but basically you couldn’t get to the powder room except through that utility hallway. And then when you finally got to it, it was in very vintage condition if you know what I mean.

emily_henderson_new_floor_plan_powder_room

The new floor plan opened up the bathroom to the entry, kitchen and den to make it more functional and usable, so it became a big opportunity to do something fun, but not crazy and it wasn’t where I wanted to spend a ton of money.

Here is what it looked like before:

before-pic_demo-plan_text-overlay_bathroom

The sink was actually charming but needed a facelift and everything else had to go. We shoved the whole thing down (taking up the space where the shower was) and made it smaller, but still super livable (and getting a bigger utility/laundry room has been key to my sanity).

before-pic_demo-plan_text-overlay_entry

Here is the mood board for the original design of the room. It’s the usual “playful modern english country” that you see/feel throughout the rest of the house.

emily_henderson_powder_room_moodboard

WallpaperTowel Ring | Toilet Paper Holder | Towel Bar | Floor Tile | Beadboard Paint | Toilet | Faucet | Sink

We installed beadboard to give it some architectural interest and to continue the casual country feel, but then we blew it up with that awesome hand-painted wallpaper. Now I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this paper is special because it’s stamped with paint – it’s not just printed. It’s SO, SO pretty. The taupe color-way of this paper might be my favorite paper of all time, but I wanted something more fun in here, although there are times when I wished it were the more neutral color. The rest of the pieces are classic – unlacquered brass throughout that has already patina’d perfectly. And the toilet and vanity are simple and classic, with a slightly more edgy light fixture (which was a theme throughout the house).

But, of course things changed. We realized that the space is crazy tight and there wasn’t room for a big vanity + they didn’t plumb for a pedestal and instead plumbed for a cabinet-style vanity. In other words the newly installed plumbing was too wide for the back of the small vertical pedestal to cover. That is obviously fixable but the inspections were in 2 days and we needed to pass in order to move in to the house. So we found this one at Ikea and installed it to get through inspections:

I was shocked by how well it worked. Sure, I knew it was cheap but nobody else would have said anything if I hadn’t profusely apologized for this vanity to everyone who toured the new house. there was a lot of ‘don’t worry, we are switching out the vanity, this is just temporary and of course we aren’t going to mix in that modern chrome faucet with the light or the vibe of the house….. ‘. But everyone just looked at me like I was nuts. And then I thought, well, am I?It really looked pretty good and the scale of it is perfect. Just not as amazing as I wanted: 

So we wallpapered and I even found the perfect mirror at an antique store for $60. That mirror is so old and shaky that you can barely apply lipstick, but we don’t care. It’s so pretty and the perfect size/shape and that old glass is gorgeous in there against the wallpaper.

Now that we are trying to finish everything for the house I want to really address this vanity situation. Everything is locked in and installed except the vanity. The sconce is awesome (modern to edge up the bead board and the wallpaper), the mirror is perfect, the tile is good to go…. it’s just this stupid vanity situation.

So we have three options – and while I’m leaning heavily towards one of them, there is a great debate around me and not everyone agrees. So, obviously its time to ask a few hundred thousand of my favorite friends in hopes that you agree with me and I can stop making my case about such an innocuous thing. 

Wallpaper | Light | Mirror (vintage ) | VanitySink  | Faucet

This first option is what already exists – an Ikea vanity, but replaced with a better faucet. It’s not bad, but as an interior designer I’m not inspired. But I also don’t want to obsess about every single detail in the house and I know that with the right faucet it would be FINE. At some point I have to stop bleeding money. It’s not amazing but it is definitely good enough. If this weren’t my job I would definitely just replace the faucet but it is my job so I have to/get to obsess about perfection. I’m both lucky and annoying.

But what about option #2:

Wallpaper | Light | Mirror (vintage ) | Vanity (vintage) | Sink | Faucet

This option is retrofitting an antique music cabinet that isn’t the right height, but could be great in every other way. I found it at an antique mall for $200 and I didn’t need it at the time but I loved it so much. Now as I realize I need a vanity I’m super tempted to use this. It’s too tall and it’s pretty petite size-wise but it’s so pretty. And I always think that being beautiful is more important than having the exact perfect proportions. I can retrofit this and it will be stunning. Possibly not perfect, but totally wonderful.

The cons – it will cost a lot in mental annoyance. We need to take it apart, buy an under-mount sink, carve out the back and top, get the marble fabricated and I’m sure problem-solve the entire time. This option will definitely cost me way more time and stress, but it will make me so much happier (and be much cheaper than #3). Speaking of … 

Wallpaper | Light | Mirror (vintage) | Vanity | Sink | Faucet | Knobs

This option is customizing a furniture style vanity. It would be fabricated by the cabinet makers that did our kitchen and they did impeccable work. It would be simple and a small scale, but to make it more interesting I would put a grate where the panels are and behind the grate I would put a cute little ruffled curtain. I know it’s terribly sweet, but I like that it feels special and shakes it up a bit.

I’m not dead set on the faucet, but I don’t think we have time to get the unlacquered brass finish – long story but we ordered two of these faucets when we thought that we were going to do a single sink/double wide vanity in the master bathroom. But we ended up getting a double vanity and stealing the faucet from this sink so we had two. Since we are shooting the house in 6-7 weeks, I may not be able to get that finish and mixing in a different brass isn’t ideal (the hand towel, toilet paper and the flush are all unlaquered brass). Thus the black faucet (there is both black and matte gold in the light). We have left-over marble from the kitchen for the top (my favorite marble ever) and lastly we would probably put a cute little colored stripe as the curtain – like a pinstripe, ticking, or the safest choice would be a pretty washed linen. It’s hard to render that out properly so you’d have to trust me that we’d make it look WONDERFUL. We rendered all three options side by side with pricing below to give you an idea of how they could all look. 

1: Leave Ikea vanity, change out faucet. Pros: It’s easy, inexpensive and works with the style of the house. Cons: It’s fairly uninteresting and isn’t a real portfolio piece. 

2. Retrofit a music cabinet – with marble top, under-mount sink, new faucet. Cons: A lot of managing of time with many sub-contractors and it will cost some (I realized that I didn’t really factor in the cost of the faucet in there, too). Retrofitting and install would be $300 (I got two quotes, one for $1200 and one for $250 – HA), marble fabrication would be $200 + sink and faucet costs. 

3. Have a custom vanity made via cabinet maker with cut out window for grill and fabric. Cons: $1000 in labor + marble (left over). Fabrication of the marble might cost $250.  Pro: Someone else manages, high end finishes, unique but still simple. Install would be $150 – $300. 

Obviously those costs are rough but after getting some quotes I think those are good ballpark numbers. Here are the costs of the rest of the powder room thus far: Wallpaper: $690 (gifted), Beadboard: $220 (needed 11 pieces. They are sold as 16′ at $1.25 per linear foot), Paint: $100, Floor Tile: $113.12, Toilet: $1219.24, Mirror: $60, Light: $420 (gifted).

After considering everything I am leaning towards #2. I think it’s special and interesting but it’s more affordable and more approachable. Getting a $1000 tiny cabinet made feels a tad insane, but at the same time I don’t want my retrofitted cabinet to be janky and rickety in the long run and regret it. Here’s what it looks like now, but let me know what you guys think.

What do you think guys? Option 1, 2 or 3???

***Sneak Peek photo by Tessa Neustadt

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  1. That Ikea vanity is an insult to the very special wallpaper and mirror.
    I say option #2. Or could the cabinet maker make something that took on the shape of option #2? With maybe one door with the wire and the little curve at the bottom with a special latch? I like the look of number 2 better. Number 3 still feels too bulky with the mirror. Special mirror and special wallpaper deserves a special vanity. Plus when the powder room is shot this is the only view (they aren’t going to shoot the toilet) so you want it as unique as it can be, right? oh, and I like the black faucet.

    1. Agree. If the #3 cabinet was a little narrower it would be a great option to a rickety cabinet. Also, the contrast/warmth provided by the wood is great. Visually, it’s #2 all the way, but if it was rickety it would drive me nuts.

    2. Agree on #2. My additional 2 cents is that a brass faucet would be better to compliment the other metal accents and warmth of the wood.

    3. I love the idea of combining options 2 and 3, making one door with wire and curve. The coloring of 2 feels off somehow, and I feel like it would be a headache to make it work, and I agree that 3 feels less elegant and a little bulky.

      1. Agree with everything already stated about #2. I think the black faucet is a little jarring to something so dainty. Just me, I guess.

    1. Totally agree! I like the proportions of and detail #3 the best. Love the texture of the layered grate and curtain. The music cabinet is sweet, but I think there is a better use elsewhere, plus turning antique cabinetry into sinks makes me cringe. Let it maintain its full glory elsewhere in the house

  2. I’d like to rule out #2 simply because too-tall sinks are not user-friendly for kids or shorter guests – both of which will be in there often.

    1. I’ll cut it down!! Which I am worried will look weird, but I agree – no too tall vanities (I don’t think we can with the plumbing anyway). x

      1. I was going to say #2 hands down since you have managed to find a vintage piece that works as a vanity (finding the right size is hard!!!) but since you need to cut it down…please don’t! #3 is beautiful and doesn’t ruin a lovely antique piece. Plus I agree the proportions will be off. The legs of this piece give it it’s charm and they allow a lightness from seeing the floor and bead-board continue beneath the vanity. If the legs are shorter it will lose it’s charm and it will look just as normal as #3.

        1. I don’t mind transforming an antique piece as I prefer people adjusting it to their interior rather than throwing it but I am convinced too that this vanity will loose all its charm and lightness if you cut the legs even a little bit. Plus, what would be the size of the sink ?? As far as I am concern, a good design should be BOTH visually stumming AND fonctionnal or it is missing the point … Nevertheless, follow your gut Emily … and excuse my english, I’m french !

      2. I’m sure that you could find a very cute step stool (that can be hidden away when need be) for the kids to use if the vanity is slightly too tall for them.

      3. #2 alllllll the way!!! I think taking off a couple inches won’t throw off the proportions. The warmth of the wood, its genuine vintage patina…ugh, i’m drooling. It just works so well with everything else in the larger scheme. Discreetly hidden braces can always be added if need be.

  3. This is going to be so annoying, but I like the music cabinet best. Sorrryyyyyy, I know it’s the toughest logistically.

  4. I love #2, but would be ok with #1 and put some legs on the IKEA cabinet (it looks like it’s floating?) or paint the IKEA cabinet!

    1. And what if you had your cabinet guy make new doors for the IKEA cabinet with cutouts and fabric inserts like #3? I feel like #3 seems wider, and a smaller unit in here works better.

      1. This is exactly what I was going to suggest, and I love the idea of doing that and adding some legs like Mara mentioned.

        I do, however, love the warm woods of #2 in there …

      2. That’s what I was going to say!

        I think the reason most people are liking option two in the picture is because its ‘not white’. The white cabinets are just blending into the white beadboard. What about having your carpenter make it look more like #3 AND paint it a dark colour? Maybe a brass faucet?

    2. Me three. Put some legs on that IKEA cabinet and change the knobs to something similar to 3 and you have a decent Option 3 impostor for 1/6th the price or so.

      1. I would like the IKEA cabinet with a fabric apron/new doors, if it did not distract from the wallpaper, but the mirror and lamp is not centered above the sink. I like 1 or 3 if you can move the light and mirror. I have a large cabinet in my powder room because my parents use it as their guest bathroom when visiting. It’s nice to have a large vanity for guests to put their toiletries, away from the kid’s bathroom.

      2. So funny, when I saw the price of the other options my first thought was to put legs on the Ikea piece and change out the hardware. The other 2 are very cool, but the cost of the other ones seem like a lot for a powder room.

        1. I agree! Make #1 look like 3 and center everything up. Making new doors and using new hardware and legs, no one will ever know its IKEA. Money saved!

          On another note, there is this exact music cabinet on Craigslist for 50 dollars in the Chicagoland area right now.

    3. I love the idea of an Ikea hack… add legs and add black hardware/hinges. Would be great for the audience to see a mix of high and low- stuff we could actually do in my opinion… I also love option #2

  5. Emily, the room is beautiful with that paper. I lean toward option two. I’m finding more and more that rooms without natural textures just lack something. And while I love white and white and all the white – the two white options just feel blah to me. And when I see the wood I go “oooo”. The contrast, the lines of the piece. Beautiful. Now if you weren’t a designer and had to opt for the IKEA it could be fine, can it be centered under the light? Can the doors be squared up? Hinges spray painted or changed to be not chrome? You could also install fake feet on the IKEA piece so it’s not floating and add some interest.

    1. Love, love, love the music cabinet! It’s still cheaper than option three, and like childbirth, it won’t seem like it was quite so hard a year later! Cut the legs to make it the height you want. It goes beautifully with your light and mirror.

  6. I personally like the third option the most (though for my own house bc I’m not a designer would probably do the IKEA), but it sounds like you like the second option the most! If you think that that design is best and want it for your portfolio, then it’s worth the time and effort of getting it done. Also, you’ll be happiest looking at it every single day…

    1. I was wondering the same thing. Restored vintage sinks are awesome. Otherwise, I strongly prefer number 2. The IKEA vanity looks cheap, and I think the room needs more grounding/contrast. Otherwise the mirror stands out as oddly dark.

    2. I totally agree, that little sink was interesting, unique and simple. If these options I vote #2- most unique and interesting but still simple. I also agree with the commenter above- the white feels more formal and generic while the wood and beautiful shape of the little music cabinet feels more alive and interesting.

    3. I like this idea as well though the hardware would be silver not black or brass and it might be cost and time prohibitive to switch out to different hardware. Plus the exposed pvc plumbing isn’t too attractive. It’s possible the original was too damaged and rusted to be usable but not sure.

      I have some neat little mid-century square sinks with silver trim that I’m going to look into repairing and reusing. The rust damage has me uneasy though.

      1. Stick with the funk! Please keep the old sink or the mid-century sinks. Maybe swap out the pvc pipes for brass. #3 too standard/basic designery. #2 cute but a little precious and will soon be trashed with all the kid traffic from the back yard.

        Emily, love you, long time reader. Keep some of the funk we love you for. Don’t go the way of successful bloggers whose sites all of a sudden become perfect, a little blander and much more upscale because of their success. It is ok that everything not be perfect for the shot. We all have to make compromises for time. I was thinking that as I was looking at the Ikea vanity and thought you should just paint it one of the colors from the wallpaper and deal with it later. (And your process for making the compromises would make great copy for the magazine article on the house.) Saying this with love.

    4. I agree! But I was afraid to suggest that given the angst of the whole situation. This is my first choice, with option #2 next.

    5. Idk if that was ever really an option given the condition of the sink. Even if it was the plumbing was accidentally done for a sink with a cabinet and from the post re-doing it isn’t an option (mostly time issues it sounds like.

    6. I think Emily told us in the post that now she can’t use the original–or any pedestal sink–because of how the pipework got installed.

  7. Number 3 all the way. The Ikea doors look wonky and as a whole just seems cheap. Number 2 is better, but too small for the space. Number 3 will be charming and you’ll forget the $$$ after it’s done.

  8. TWO!! For the love of god, pick twoooo!!! That contrast of wood and white, vintage and modern, oh it’s so good! Definitely warms the space up and feels in keeping with the rest of the house (like the wood beams in the living room that you thought you wanted to paint but look so much better with its natural wood charm!). Ugh, I will be so sad if you don’t pick the beautiful antique cabinet and retrofit it.

    1. I feel just as strongly as Katy that you MUST do some version of #2–the wood/white contrast is fantastic. Maybe you can find a wood vanity that won’t require so much effort to achieve the same finished look? My second choice is option 3. I hate the floating design of option 1 very, very much.

      1. Definitely, DEFINITELY agree that option TWO is the way to go. There’s so much white already at the bottom and I think a vintage wood piece adds amazing contrast and warmth to the space, while complementing the vintage mirror. It’s worth the extra work IMO. Cheers!

    2. TWO!!!! I also feel strongly about it. The wood, the shape… 😍. But height is an issue especially with toddlers. Ours is normal height but with a vessel sink and it’s been an issue.

    3. Same feels as Katy here! Maybe there’s a better option if you’re worried about the proportions, but this is a must do! (Of course we know that time constraints are a concern, which makes this tough) Undoubtedly the third option would be very well made, but it doesn’t seem nearly as special as the rest of the room. I also agree that the Ikea cabinet is an insult to this space. And that’s not to knock Ikea specifically, but that particular piece looks cheap (the un-level doors are so distracting in this gorgeous room!)

    4. Yes this space is begging for the contrast of rich warm wood against the white. If not #2 it needs to be close to it in color. There has to be a ready made vanity in that color somewhere that would eliminate the hassle but carry the same visual weight!

  9. From these pics, it definitely looks like option #2 is the best. I agree with others that the white cabinets just don’t do the wallpaper and mirror justice. If you end up keeping the Ikea cabinet, please, I beg you, replace the knobs! They look like two crooked eyes! Creepy! (Yes, I have an over-active imagination…)

    1. I don’t mind the IKEA cabinet, and I think since its so much cheaper that’s what I would do. But the knobs aren’t great.

  10. Number 2 FOR SURE!!! So worth the extra effort. I think the wood in the lower half of the room will help ground it, bringing down the darker tones from the mirror and wallpaper.

  11. I’m torn. I really feel like you need the wood tone in option #2, but it is slightly too tall in proportion to where the mirror is. I’m sure I’d be fine using it (5’10”), but for some (and your children) it just isn’t practical.

    I’ve been watching too much Flea Market Flip lately, but is it possible to cut down the “box” part of it 2 inches from the top since you’re taking the top off anyway? It only looks about that much taller than the custom option. Obviously it would be easier to cut the legs, but I think it would look out of proportion if you did that. Now I’m making the already logistically challenging piece more challenging.

      1. I like this idea too. Whether you cut the legs or the top, I think you should go with number 2 (and use the leftover marble on tips, if you can). Like most people here if it was my house I would just keep the IKEA cabinet because it would be good enough, but in your home I would definitely do number two, for the warmth and age it brings to the room.

    1. That’s a great idea if it’s feasible.

      I agree 100% about the wood tone. The white on white on white with the tiles and the beadboard and the white vanities makes the bottom half of the bathroom feel completely disconnected from the top whereas the wood really grounds the whole design.

  12. #2, please! Or, you could paint the IKEA cabinet and add feet. Options #1 and #3 as they look now just make the lower half of the powder room so starkly white, but probably in slightly varying shades (floor tile, headboard, toilet, cabinet, sink…). I feel like there should be some more contrast. I absolutely ADORE the wallpaper–it’s so special and deserves something as equally stunning in the space to complement it!

  13. Swap out the faucet and knobs on the Ikea vanity and call it a day. Is the mirror/faucet/vanity combo properly centered? (Personally, I would have heartburn about the $1.2k a toilet.)

      1. Same! The toilet price and the crooked Ikea door made my eye twitch.

        I like the Ikea sink and the cabinet size. What a bout retrofitting a different door on the Ikea cabinet? A la Semihandmade? Maybe adding feet? I agree with other comments, the custom cab is too bulky/expensive and the music one isn’t quite the right color/expensive for what it is.

  14. Love the warmth of the wood from #2. I say absolutely go with this option (or something wood… I like it much better than the white)

  15. Option 2.

    I get that it’s time consuming and will require more effort than it’s probably worth in an objective sense, but it’s gorgeous and plays off the mirror so well in a way that Option 3 does not. Go with Option 2.

  16. Okay, so I love IKEA but don’t love that vanity. The doors look crooked, the unit is just an awkward box with no legs, and the door design is too matchy-matchy with the beadboard. I love the antique music cabinet option. The rich wood tone provides contrast with all the white and also ties the darker mirror. The size of #2’s vanity also goes really well with the mirror. #3 is beautiful, too, but I had a few greivances that I’d like to air–in the spirit of belated Festivus. The cloth part on the doors is a reaally great opportunity to layer in another pattern and texture but I do get a little grossed out by bathroom fabric that can’t easily be tossed in the washer. Another issue with #3 is the scale of the vanity to the mirror. I think you’d either need a larger mirror or something hung on either side to help it stand up to the vanity. Okay, time for feats of strength, which I will surely lose!

    1. Agree! I love IKEA and the idea of it is not bad here, but the doors do look slightly crooked and it’s cheapening the bathroom, unfortunately. #2 FTW!

  17. I like 3 best, #2 if want to save $. It’s easier to do now what you like than when your kids get older, just imo. You always make everything lovely! 🙂

  18. How about finding something old as n. 2 (for wood, contrast and interesting shape) but with a size that can accept Ikea’s sink?

    I’m sure there’s a lot of old cabinets out there in flea magkets that could be repurposed but with an height and width more useful than those of n. 2.

    Just my 2 cents 🙂

  19. Center the IKEA vanity, paint it black, add some legs. Then, in 6 months or so when you have the headspace, create the custom/retrofit vanity of your dreams!

    1. Yes! I love this idea. Black (or dark gray) painted vanity with feet added, and perhaps knobs swapped out. Will contrast nicely with the wallpaper and white sink.

      Or, #3 with natural wood stain instead of white paint. The #2 option looks too rickety to me, which reads more “quaint/precious” than “awesome vintage.” Plus, probably easily water damaged (even with a counter), which might be a drag.

      A word of warning on the vanity countertop – I’ve lived with white marble counters in the bathroom, and they absorbed every drop of soap/makeup remover/any liquid, which marked it up significantly (even if wiped up right away, which guests might not always know to do). In the kitchen that’s sort of fine, it gets a nice used/weathered look, but in the bathroom it’s less charming!

  20. Option 2. I like that the cabinet has a darker finish– pretty with the wallpaper. When given a chance to re-purpose something old, I would take that chance every time. Reduce, re-use, recycle– it’s good for everyone!! I also like that this option saves $$. Yeah, option 2.

  21. #3….as others have suggested, a wood finish would be lovely. Maybe a qtr sawn oak with a light stain. No to #1….please!

  22. Ok, I’m gonna mention the obvious thing that I think most of us DIYers would try first… IKEA hack that sucker! It seems like you could do something better with the doors of the IKEA vanity, perhaps even looking a bit like #3, as well as change out the faucet.

  23. #2
    If you stay with the IKEA vanity, I would at least put some glass knobs,or some that have a little vintage look to them but still look right with the vanity.

  24. Wow Emily, I am loving all the wallpaper in the new house!!
    I have to say, despite my love of all things white, I really love the natural wood of option 2, the contrast is beautiful. But if it is too tall and too narrow, I wouldn’t choose it – it is such a nightmare when you have to use a tiny sink, and it makes a huge mess (especially with kids). Don’t you have another beautiful natural wood “would be vanity” in your stash of finds? Anyway, don’t be too hard on yourself, I will love anything you do!

  25. I loved option 1 until I saw option 2! I think option 1 could work if you added a bit to up the “special”– for example, maybe special legs, maybe some more framing around the doors.

    I LOVE the shape, specialness, and dark wood tone that option 2 brings, and you seem excited about it too. If you’ll be happy putting in that extra work, GO FOR IT!

    I bet the people who like option 3 and hate option 1 would feel differently if they were told that option 3 was cheap and option 1 was expensive. Just sayin.

    1. By the way, it actually looks from the renderings like the proportions of option #2 are the best. It looks centered under the mirror instead of shoved over into the corner. The height issue for kids and short guests can be easily resolved by the addition of a stool (once photoshoots are done) 😉

  26. I’m all for highs and lows in design, but that Ikea vanity is just…no. I definitely vote option 3. But I’d prefer the unlacquered bras faucet to match. You sure you can’t get something in 6-8 weeks from Newport Brass? We just sold a Waterworks faucet on eBay, maybe you’ll have some luck there 🙂

  27. Option 2 or 3 for sure! I like 2 the best aesthetically, but it’s hard to tell from the pics if it’s big enough. You, I’m sure, can tell in person. If it works, I love that idea. So beautiful and unique.
    If it doesn’t, the 3rd option is beautiful with the chicken wire-esque cabinet detail.

    I have to admit though–I’m a little disappointed to see the original sink, redone in a mint or baby pink, isn’t an option! 🙂

  28. I like #3 the best, but I think staying with the ikea vanity would be better than a sink that is too tall like option #2.

    What if you kept the shape of the ikea vanity, but swapped out the doors with a semihomemade thing or got your cabinet maker to build the ruffle curtain doors for it?

  29. Have a new cabinet built that is similar to the Ikea one…simple box floating cabinet, possibly with a little thicker frame. Stain the wood, rather than paint. Hang curtains and skip the doors entirely. Center the cabinet under the mirror.

    Or keep the Ikea one, center it, remove doors for the curtains, and find a little stained wood step stool to slide under…to bring in the warmth of wood and help the kids.

    Both would be cheaper and quicker and still adorable. English/country it up more with vintage wastebasket and vase/soap/whatev. things.

    1. A curtain would bring in color and texture AND leave a place to hide that step stool you’ll be banging into for several more years. Practical. Easy. Washable. Provides storeage. I LOVE the wood tone of #2, but shudder to think of what kid handwashing will do to it over the years. Keep the sink, swap the faucet and hire a seamstress.

  30. LOVE option 2 – mainly because of the wood tones. It really warms the space up. If you don’t have the time/ mental capacity to manage #2, why not get option 3 made in wood?

  31. #2 is gorgeous, but I know from experience that your kids won’t care that it’s an antique, and since it’s tall, they’ll be slamming their step stool into that gorgeous wood door 10x per day when they wash their hands. My advice for your sanity is to choose something stylish and more durable. Someone else suggested #3 with a natural wood finish, and that’s my vote, too! 😉

  32. I’d say go with Option 1 for now if you can get the janky IKEA doors to sit evenly. The left door is sort of falling slightly down and towards the middle. Maybe later, you can upgrade to a different vanity – one that really sings – the perfect vanity. However, neither Option 2 nor Option 3 seems just right. And, realistically, how many people get everything right all at once in the beginning? Like no one. Relax, and live with the imperfect for a little while. Enjoy being done with the construction phase for a bit.

  33. I actually like he IKEA vanity but maybe would swap out the sorts with the beadboard so that it integrates better with the walls. It’s modern and clean aesthetic which plays nicely off the vintage wallpaper and mirror & sconce. The other two options are a bit one note with these items. Just a thought. Gorgeous wallpaper!

  34. Option 2 is my favorite, but only if you can cut the legs down to make it a more standard height. Otherwise, I’d go with option 3. Sorry, but the IKEA cabinet looks too blah in there.

  35. Have you ever heard the phrase the juice ain’t worth the squeeze? In this case your time and mental energy could be MUCH better spent on other areas of the house. Budget nonewithstanding (stick a pin in the budget point and lets circle back around to it). I like that you obsess over these details because it is your job and clearly your personal passion but this is a small room in a larger project. Therefore I pick option 1. But I’d do more with option 1. I’d add legs, change hinges, change knobs. Then I’d warm up the space by putting wood elements in similar to option 2. And by wood elements I mean perhaps a tray or a vase in wood on the vanity. Maybe a wood stoool to warm up and ground the space. And now circling back to budget. I’m assuming your house will not have a lot of mid range to low end price point items or rooms. Yes you’re a target brand ambassador and pillows or accessories will come from there well designed easy on the pocket stock. BUT the infrastructure of your house will most likely be more high end. Maybe the spin on this is look how I did happy go lucky English country trad home bathrooom on the cheaper end of things. Your readers and some publications may like that one room doesn’t have a high or difficult customized price tag. As far as which one I actually like the best…option 2 is charming. Option 3 is confusing and redundant given its visual similarity to option 1. Option 1 with more changes is the ticket!!

    1. Agree with this! Option 3 is overpriced for what it is in my opinion. And cutting into beautiful vintage furniture doesn’t sit right with me 🙁

  36. What about going super Plain English/Devol with your cabinet in there and paint in that saturated teal of the paper? The space is incredibly limited, so I like the idea of a custom cabinet the best…and I think ULTIMATELY retrofitting that music cabinet (which is super cool) will turn out to have major unforeseen costs. It would also be gorgeous to find/source/custom make a cabinet out of English pine.
    http://www.potterybarn.com/products/4685509/?catalogId=54&sku=4685509&bnrid=3380801&cm_ven=Google_PLA&cm_cat=Shopping&cm_pla=Feed&cm_ite=Google%20Base-4685509&kwid=productads-adid%5E154026493677-device%5Ec-plaid%5E106849266331-sku%5E4685509-adType%5EPLA&gclid=CKf-mbCX29ICFQx6fgodanIEDg

    http://www.plumbing-deals.com/index.php/fairmont-designs-napa-1507-fv36-36-quot-farmhouse-vanity-sonoma-sand.html?gclid=CJi12MOX29ICFUlNfgod8csHYA

    These two could be AMAHHHZING with the right hardware.
    Cheers to your English Cottage! Digging the whole thing!

  37. Definitely, definitely, two. The first one just isn’t bringing any joy or interest, and the third I know you would make special but just can’t compete with that second option.

  38. I’m planning to put a different Ikea vanity in my bathroom, so no judgments about cheap here. But it’s going to really annoying if you keep the Ikea one, and you’ll end up changing it anyway, so why not make it what you want now? I love the warmth of the second option, but I like the proportions of the third option. I’m not sure I’m helping you narrow it down, though:)

  39. Option 2! I like the contrast of the wood and the beadboard. And I think it goes really well with that wallpaper! Even though it will be the biggest pain in the butt, I think it will look the best and it has a story to tell which would fit so nicely in your home. 🙂

  40. I like option #3…. but could you do #3 in a color other than white? I think it is so charming with the black knobs, and the ruffle curtain with the grate. But I do tend to agree with the other commenters that it’d be nice to break up all that white.

  41. I hate to say this, but I’m leaning towards 2 or 3. In the initial photos, the vanity you had looked fine, but when compared to the other options, it doesn’t look nearly as nice. A big part of me wants to say “Save your money!” but I cannot unsee how it looks next to those truly lovely options.

    As for between 2 and 3, they are both beautiful. Number 2 adds some more visual interest with it being wood, but number 3 would be created to perfectly suit your needs!

  42. I’m going to have to go with Option 4 – not pictured, possibly because you’ve already considered and rejected it, but here goes anyway…

    Why not get your kitchen people to custom make a cabinet in a solid wood finish door rather than painted wood? I love the look of the wood of the antique cabinet, I think it breaks up all the white porcelain very well. But I’m pretty sure the too-high sink will drive you bonkers after a while. And you’ve just butchered a piece of furniture you love to turn it into something that will irritate you forever. You might even be able to source antique wood for your kitchen people to use.

    I love that Options 2 and 3 are slightly smaller sinks so you don’t have to push them right up against the wall, which I think makes Option 1 look squashed. Just a sliver of space between the sink and the wall makes all the difference. A custom-made cabinet would give you that space.

  43. #2 is AMAZING! Really breaks up all that white in the best way. No need to be super practical just in a powder room. In photos, #3 doesn’t look entirely that much better than just plain ol’ IKEA.

  44. #3 for sure, but in a beautiful lighter wood color. IKEA cabinet is a big no-no. It looks so cheap in the presence of everything else.

  45. While I really do like option #2, in the mock-up it just feels too dark to me. I like the lightness of both #1 and #3; my inner cheapness says just keep the IKEA vanity, but I completely understand the draw of the custom one. It’s beautiful!

  46. Option 2 all the way! As long as it doesn’t go above the beadboard, you’ll be fine. Your kids will be using a step stool regardless and I think a powder room is definitely the place to pick beauty over functionality (i.e. you are not going to have toothpaste and dental floss all over the place) …It is so beautiful with the mirror and the rest of the style of the house.

  47. Leave Ikea vanity.
    -not every room makes photo shoot anyway
    -okay if kids abuse it for next few years
    -you’re done! No more thinking, no more $.
    -guilt-free redo in 5 years

  48. Number 2 is true to your aesthetic for this house and this room, it’s distinctive, and truly portfolio-worthy. The others feel routine to me, and it bothers me that the light fixture and mirror don’t align properly with those vanities. It’s no contest, really.

  49. I like option #3 because it’s charming, but I’d like it so much better if the cabinet were a gorgeous wood, not painted.

  50. Could you do something in between? I think any way you go, it looks better to have some contrast with the beadboard. I would kind of love the IKEA vanity (with a new faucet) painted teal, maybe a shade or two darker than the wallpaper’s teal. I think option #2 might be something to hang onto & do later. I agree, it looks the best, but maybe not worth the time right now.

  51. Option 3 is my favorite shape and style, but I like the color of option 2 best. Could you just hack the IKEA cabinet? Add legs and paint it.

  52. Absolutely nix Option #1 – the Ikea cabinet seems so out of place against the gorgeous wallpaper and vintage mirror. I think Options 2 & 3 are both great. I would personally lean more towards #3 mainly because I think the small size of Option 2 is going to look out of proportion in the room. I do like the wood tone of Option 2 though and think it would be nice to break up all the white on the bottom half of the wall.

  53. Just saw Pitch Perfect 3 trailer. Looks like its going to be another year of fun ride. Incredibly excited to see the Bella ladies returning on screen. Wish there was something going on between Beca and Chloe in this one. Give something for use queer ladies too, will you Trish 😉
    To know about Pitch Perfect 3 Release Date just take a look and you get all the information you need.

  54. Its bugging the crap out of me that the IKEA vanity is off alignment from the mirror & light but it is cute with the bead board. Option 2 is by far my favorite and I don’t think it matters if it is a little tall unless your babies will destroy it in ten seconds by bumping a stool against it and dripping water down the finish as my kids would. I don’t see any upside to the custom cabinet, has the same feel as the IKEA cabinet to me.. Good luck, excited to see what you choose!

  55. I love the look of #2. The wood warms up the bottom half of the room and grounds it, the white vanities look washed out with the beadboard and floor. I’d go 2 or get a vanity in a warm wood finish to compliment the mirror and brass on the sconce. That wallpaper is gorgeous btw!

  56. Option 3 is beautiful. I couldn’t justify it over option 1 in my house though, which you understand. My house isn’t in magazines! The misaligned doors in option 1 drive me crazy. If you aren’t going to use the brass faucet, I think you should use a black towel rack. I know the light and the mirror have brass and black together, but even so, the brass towel rack looks out of place. Option 2 would be nicest if the cabinet was prettier…it’s just old plywood?? A prettier wood option would be very nice, and then I would keep the brass towel rack.

  57. Option 2 is stunning. Love it. And that wallpaper is divine. I love small bathrooms with bold wallpaper or paint!!!!

  58. My vote is for Option 2! The wood really warms up the space and adds so much character and depth. I think it’s worth the potential headache of having to micromanage!

  59. I like Option 2 best but Option 1 really isn’t bad. Just give Option 1 it some legs (do an IKEA hack) and it’ll look great!

  60. #2! I think the chicken wire/fabric on the 3rd cabinet is a little too cutesy-buttons when paired with the beautiful sophistication of the wallpaper. The warm texture of the music cabinet is so unexpected and beautiful…though I kind of love the old sink–I get that you need storage esp. in a bathroom of that size.

    Do #2 in like a year when you are ready for the headache.

  61. How about the original plan for the pedestal sink? You did say the plumbing issues are fixable…… Just how expensive and complicated would that be compared to the other options?

    1. Totally agree–what happened to that?? A pedestal sink would be timeless, and would fit better in the space IMO. Right now it feels choppy–one side is the block of toilet and one side is the block of vanity. The negative space of a pedestal would open the room up and bring the eye slightly higher-making the room feel bigger and have a better flow. If plumbing is able to be fixed to accommodate it I don’t see why you wouldn’t do a beautiful pedestal.

      1. Agree, how hard can it be to move sink plumbing? If I can do it, your tradespeople should be able to do it easily. The vintage sink is beautiful! If for some reason you can’t, like they’d need to take up the floor, then I like option 2 because of the warmth of the wood.

  62. If this were my house (in my dreams!) I would stick with the Ikea vanity and improve it with new knobs, adding legs and the new faucet. I think you could make it special BUT it’s obviously not what you want! It sounds like you’re talking yourself out of option two because of the logistics but adding the wood tone to the bathroom looks gorgeous in the renderings! Option 3 is too expensive to just add (another) white vanity – albeit a custom one. So if it were me – option 1 but I think you secretly want option 2! Good luck and it’ll look great whatever you go with!

  63. Of course I love option #2, that wood is the perfect color! But surprisingly, option #1 is my second choice. You just need to even out those doors so they aren’t lopsided… And maybe add legs. If you go with option #1, just think that you are doing a high/low mix in there and that in itself has merit.

  64. #2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We redid our guest bath last summer and I really wanted a natural wooden cabinet, but in the interest of time we put in a white stock cabinet from a big box store. I so regret not finding the time to search out and retrofit a wooden cabinet. I don’ think you would be able to regret the decision afterwards, even if it is the biggest PITA to execute.

  65. I vote #3 bc I feel like the antique mirror with the antique cabinet is too much. Due to a mistake by our builder, the vanity in our powder room is way too big, the wrong proportions and style and I see it every day and it bums me out. Definitely get what you really want! If you do go with option 2 and it’s too tall, can’t you trim the legs down a little bit? That cabinet is beautiful.

  66. Option 3!!!!! You know you’d never be satisfied with option 1… the doors don’t even line up correctly! Sounds like option 3 would give you exactly what you’d want and I’m a firm believer in doing it only once even if it requires more effort and money!

  67. #2!!! (I feel foolish shouting that about a powder room.) It’s gorgeous and special. The Ikea vanity is blah and the custom cabinet doesn’t feel special enough. That cabinet is gorgeous!!!!

  68. I can’t see any situation where it’s worth spending that much money on a vanity, esp a small one downstairs. I think if you switch out the hardware as well as the faucet, and add sine cute legs the ikea one is golden. I really like the sink it has, and with that wallpaper you can have something simple to balance it out. The difference in the look isn’t enough to warrant spending $2000.

  69. I like #2 as well!

    As another idea though, you could use the IKEA cabinet and get custom doors (and or legs) made, to give it the same feel as #3.

    My friend had this done for her vanity and I was shocked by how nice it came out. Didn’t feel like IKEA at all!

  70. We made similar choices in our 1930s Tudor. Finding an appropriately small and architecturally appropriate vanity was our biggest challenge. I *love* option 2 because it adds a uniqueness and warmth to the space that a new vanity won’t.

  71. #2 without question! I was actually starting to feel like all of the main fixtures in your new house were sort of without the unique character that I associate with you. Remember, “Perfection is boring. Let’s get weird.”

  72. Definitely 2 or 3. I’m leaning 2. I don’t love 3 enough to justify the added expense and I feel like the fabric panels might be too sweet. I LOVE IKEA but the rest of the finishes in that powder room are too nice to let that vanity roll. Did you really spend $1219.24 on a toilet?!?

  73. I like #2! Something about the doors on option #1 doesn’t look quite right to me, it would always irk me in photos…

  74. I know it’s just me, but I don’t see the desired value add from option 3 vs option 1. I would change the knobs, add legs and probably change the sinkn on option 1 and that would give me the same feel as option 3. Option 2 is really different and I really like it, may be go with 1 for now and add 2 later.

  75. 2!

    (Could you add a poll to these “Ask the Audience” posts? Even if it’s not super useful for you it would be interesting to see what the “winner” is without scrolling through all of the comments)

  76. #2! I love the look of the warm wood with all the white and that pretty, pretty wallpaper. Oh, and I like the black faucet even better than the brass for this particular room 🙂

  77. The wallpaper is divine, and I adore the mirror!

    I looooooove, and think the room needs, the grounding and contrast provided by the wood against all that white. However, I don’t think the music cabinet, ultimately, will be feasible, what with being too small and tall and not worth the effort it will take to make it usable in the way you want.

    But the white ones are too… white. There’s already a lot of white, and it just overwhelms if you put a white cabinet.

    I think you need an option 4: an entirely different cabinet, but in a natural wood instead of white.

  78. #2! #2! If anyone can make it work, you can. I love that it’s unique. And also that it brings a little more balance to the darker bits on top. DO IT!

  79. I think I like No. 2 best.

    What I know for certain is that IKEA cabinet with it’s crooked doors cannot stay. That would drive me absolutely bonkers and I’m not having my bathroom added to any portfolios. And the guest bathroom vanity is not where I’d start looking to stop the cash bleeding.

  80. 2! Before you even said which way you were leaning, I picked 2. I LOVE how special it is. And I love that you get to use the piece you’ve been hoarding. I know it will create some stress in your life to take on this project, but I think it will also cause you angst and stress to settle. I say if you’re gonna have stress either way, you might as well love your vanity! (Sorry, Brian.)

  81. Maybe I’m crazy, but I LOVE #1. I like that it visually sort of ‘disappears’ and lets that amazing wallpaper shine. Also seems like the best choice financially/logistically.

  82. I’m assuming #1 has already been ruled out since the mirror and wall light are not centered on the vanity? It would work if it was aligned with mirror and sconce. That would leave space on the right for a hand towel to hang in an ergonomic location. It would be fun to paint the IKEA vanity an interesting colour, possibly with “for looks” legs added.

    Black faucets are a good choice, but I’d like to see shapes that are a little more streamlined. I really prefer a single handle faucet in a powder room so I can quickly wash my hands with warm water and not engage in a lot of fiddling.

  83. Option 2 – 100%. I cannot look at it without thinking, “That is Emily Henderson!” Besides, the white vanity on white beadboard on white penny floor is too monochromatic. The lower half of the room is calling for some warmth.

  84. What about a floating vanity in wood? The wood would warm up the space and the floating vanity would keep it feeling open and airy.

  85. Definitely #2! The wood brings out the brass colors in the mirror frame and light.

    #3 is a little too “country-country” for me and the fabric will get gross over time. You have enough of that open cabinet look in your kitchen.

    #1 is just OK, and it’s off-center from the mirror and light, which is distracting.

  86. I had no idea I was so insane about this, but I can barely look at #1 because it seems to be offcenter. hhaha. If it WAS centered, and add some legs, this seems perfectly fine. But #2 is a beauty, if you want to expend the effort. 🙁

  87. #2 for sure. Because I think it might always bother you if you don’t! It’s so stylish and interesting. And so YOU. I gather this is going to be your home for a long time, so what would you rather have in 7 years?

    The insanely expensive cabinet? NO. Although it’s nice, it seems like a consideration mainly because of time and energy. But it’s not nearly as attainable, special, or interesting. And putting time and energy into making a space special is your thing!

    All that said, I’d be curious to see you make the ikea piece look better, because that’s the one that’s in my price range. And it IS a little crazy to apologize for an ikea vanity, except that this house also generates content for you, and it’s your career. I get it, I get it.

  88. Option 2! I love the character/charm the antique vanity gives to the small powder room and love that it’s a little unexpected.

  89. They all have merit.
    #1 gives you a chance to save money and concentrate your time and energy on the rest of the house – until the perfect option comes along.
    I think #2 is GORGEOUS, but I think it’ll eventually drive you buggy if the proportions are off. (Might be tough for the kiddos to wash their paws in there if it’s too tall – and it can be tough to squeeze a step stool into a powder room).
    #3 seems practical – you know it’ll fit the space well, etc, but I wonder if it’ll be special enough to make you happy in the long run.
    All things considered, I vote for #1. I’d take the safe option for now so there will be space in the budget for the PERFECT thing when it appears (and it will)!

  90. love #2! so warm and pretty…

    if you were stuck on #3, could you have someone “hack” the already existing Ikea piece?

  91. Number 2 is the very best, buy far! I like #3 the least, so if not two then one. But I want to scream #2 through the computer!

  92. Option 2, it’s beautiful. It adds such character to the room. For my personal preference, I find both of the white vanities to be a bit boring and blah feeling, even the custom made option. I assume when you say you will cut down the music cabinet you will shorten it from the top not the bottom, meaning the length of the legs will not change. If you were planning to just shorten the legs, I agree it may look a bit funky.

  93. I didn’t bother to read all of the comments, so i apologize if it’s a repeat. 🙂 I LOVE the 2nd one. Can you cut the bottom of the legs off to make it the right height? We did that in our bathroom. I was VERY sad that we had to do that to make it fit the current plumbing. The proportions of the cabinet were so good and i was afraid chopping the feet off would ruin everything. It did not. I don’t even notice anymore. The warmth of the wood in #2 is my favorite part – and very EHD.
    If not #2, then #3.

  94. #2! The beautiful warm wood with your mirror and light fixtures all speak to each other beautifully, and compliment the cool wallpaper. I think its stunning!

  95. First of all, the teaser pic you opened with is WOW. Now to the decision. I love how the wood is so pretty against the bead board and breaks up all the white. And, so very pretty against the stunning wallpaper and mirror. Have you thought about painting the Ikea cabinet??? I’m thinking that still might not be special enough, so if that is a no go, then I’m option 2 all the way. The Ikea cabinet is just not quite making it as is………It doesn’t have the “Emily pizzazz”. Love the wood!

  96. #1, but paint it and add legs! Maybe new knobs. Good for now, revisit later. Besides, if your kids are anything like my toddler (who is exceptionally well behaved, but still a 2yo), they will bang into that music cabinet 12 times a day, hang on the door, and destroy the finish with sticky hands and you will cringe every time they go near that bathroom. Not speaking from experience or anything. 🙂

  97. I love option #2 the best, as it adds more warmth (it would be sacrilegious to cut its legs?). But as another reader said, what about custom making doors and legs for the Ikea cabinet similar to option #3? (I do not dig the ruffled curtains though). Love to see how it turns out!

  98. I figure the Ikea vanity is there, works perfectly, is the right height…and if you jazzed it up with paint would look absolutely fine. Really — the only thing wrong with it in the photos is that it fades into the background. If you painted it, you’d like it a lot better. I like #2 because of the contrast in color, but it’s really narrow and cutting it down would ruin the lines. I don’t like #3 because the color fades into the background, and I sure don’t see where you’re getting over #1,000 worth of value from it.

    You are constantly switching stuff around anyway — I’d try painting the Ikea vanity and see how you like it for a while before I’d go to the expense and effort of replacing it.

  99. Anything BUT option 3. Only u and and max two other people will even notice it’s different than option 1.
    I like option 2, but your stress is not worth it.
    Mans btw- I retrofitted a cabinet for a sink at my last house and it was COMSTANT problems that don’t end with the install. (Pieces fell off, after an earthquake it was no longer level etc)

  100. #2 no question. I love #3 but in effort to save money and sanity…I’d be totally.happy with #2!

    That wallpaper is amazing!

  101. My vote would be option 1- but with some Ikea Hacks. I think it would look beautiful if you veneered the side/frame of the cabinet and stained it to relate to the mirror frame, and found/added brass feet to the bottom of the cabinet. I think those things would make it feel eclectic but pulled together and the wood/white mix would give it an ever to slight mid century nod. I think option 2 looks far too rustic and not tailored enough and I worry that option 3 isn’t practical with chicken wire and fabric… feels like it will be a constant battle to keep it looking clean nice and dust free. Maybe option 3 with antique wire-glass mirror?

  102. #3 is my favorite. #2 is a close second if you cut the top down not the legs.

    Another idea what about a vintage wall mounted sink with a skirt? It’s kinda like #3 and your original sink combined

    1. I don’t like the doors on the ikea cabinet but with the understanding that they’d photoshop them to look more even in any published photos then meh. It’s plain sure but not a terrible option

  103. If you adjusted the doors on the current cabinet, then changed the handles and faucet it could be great. You could even paint it. I think a lot of people are immediately turned off whenever you mention the word “IKEA”. I kind of think that if you didn’t say where you purchased it, the responses might be very different. There’s nothing wrong with being creative, budget savvy, and a designer. Why not?

  104. #1 would be fine with new hardware…even painted. But I LOVE #2 and the faucet!!! #3 just doesn’t have much impact, esp for the money. Number 2 (or even 1 with a few tweaks)

  105. How about something like this to replace the original wall-mounted sink?

    http://www.homedepot.com/p/KOHLER-Trailer-Wall-Mount-Cast-Iron-Bathroom-Sink-in-White-K-2753-EH-0/203099306

    The Ikea cabinet doors are wonky, and the beadboard competes with the real beadboard.

    Option 2 is pretty but I do think the kids will ruin that pretty legs and curved door in no time. Which would be sad after all that effort.

    Option 3 I find the fabric fussy and I just think of the dust that will collect on it.

  106. #1 has no business in a designer’s home. I love #2. I think the wood tones look great and bring some color to the white bottom half of the bathroom. A nice visual balance to the dark met top half.

  107. Could you change the fawcet and the pulls on option #1? Then, router out the panels on the doors to have the fabric inset that make option 3 so special. Voila, a hybrid of what’s good without too much obsession & cost!

  108. There is no question here. Option 2 for reals. Bringing the wood tone to the bottom half of the space provides so much balance AND completes the charm of the room – which is evident throughout the house. We did this in our powder room with an old desk I found at an antique store. It wasn’t the right height, so I added antique brass ball feet casters and a vessel sink. It definitely takes some problem solving/creativity but hello – that’s what you all do. If you want to see what I did – find me on IG @timewornoriginal or search #fortydollarvanity

  109. Option 3 goes really well with the rest of the ground floor. Guests are going to move around the kitchen/dining area and the living area and use the powder room rather than going upstairs, so if it’s option 3 it will be in keeping with the rest of the fittings. I actually like option 1 too, but I hate option 2! It’s not true to the vintage furniture to turn it into a vanity, it doesn’t look honest and I predict the varnish will hate being in a damp bathroom environment. I have two kids and a tiny cloakroom (as they’re called in my part of the world) and the boxing in under the sink gets covered in drips from small hands. If you’re saving money, 1; if you want it to sing AND fit in with your aesthetic AND last, 3. Option 2 looks amateurish, IMO.

  110. I love the look of the natural wood in #2, but I think it will lose it’s aesthetic appeal if you cut down the legs. It will look more like a wooden box than a beautiful cabinet. Obviously, you can’t use it as-is because a too-tall sink is a definite no go. Form over function is ok in some cases, but not in a bathroom.

  111. I like the slim shape of #2. Certainly cut down to the proper height (it won’t look weird!) I like a black faucet with maybe an interesting knob– brass or a combo? You already own it and love– so use it!! I would also consider painting it white. I think the shape makes it interesting and I prefer the white with the bead board– I think it makes the room appear bigger.
    Ps. That wallpaper. Swoon.

  112. If these are the only options, I’d say #2 for sure. However, I think #1 would look great with different doors (maybe Seminhandmade can do their magic for less than options #2 or #3 would be or your cabinet maker can replicate doors you wanted for #3), or with a different paint colour to complement the amazing wallpaper. and yes, put some interesting legs on #1 if you are keeping it. Love all the other choices in the room, including a black faucet.

  113. OMG OPTION 2. Do it. I am a rabid IKEA lover, but that special little antique cabinet with the mirror and the wallpaper is just too gorgeous to be true.

  114. You need to get rid of the IKEA sink. It’s cute, but not enough impact for the whole room, not nearly as perfect as the other elements. I vote for #3 – it will be perfectly functional, perfect size, and unique! It’s worth the money!!

  115. Option 2! It brings some lovely warmth into the room, works best with the wallpaper (gorgeous!) and the mirror (also gorgeous!), and is exactly the kind of touch that makes you the designer that you are. 1 and 3 are both terribly ordinary and not at all you.

  116. #2 please!! The wood is speaking to me with the amazing wallpaper. And it’s special. The IKEA option is, as you said, “fine,” but it looks like it’s from IKEA. Which is to say that it looks like fiberboard/cheapo pine that I could punch through, like so many things that IKEA makes. Because that’s clearly how to judge a furniture piece: Can I punch through this? 😉

  117. I didn’t think I minded the Ikea option until I say the full renderings at the bottom of the post where (I hate to say it) I am IN LOVE with option #3! Of course it would be the most expensive…

  118. Honestly, I don’t think you should spend $1,750 on that vanity. It’s a lot better than Ikea, but it’s not $1,750 better. Maybe change the faucet and wait for the perfect vintage piece to find you. 🙂

  119. I would ask this question: How often do you plan on using this bathroom? Do you think your babes will be using this often during the day? If so choose the option that will hold up best to splashing water. The wood vanity in my oft used PR is warped from splashing water.

  120. Option 2 hands down. However, I am currently doing a small powder room and using a wall mount sink to make the room feel bigger. If youvreally want a vanity and save money, paint the Ikea one a navy or similar color. There needs to be some contrast between the walls.

  121. The wood on #2 is so gorgeous. I would go with that unless you have your cut off too much of the legs. If so, I would fancy up #1 with some legs for looks (not function), change out the doors and paint the whole thing. Same effect as #3, but probably way less expensive.

  122. My favorite by far is #2, but I ‘m worried cutting it down will ruin it and mess up the proportions.

    My second choice is #1 – maybe customize it with pretty hardware and feet/legs or iron base. It may be the photo, but looks like the doors need to be rehung/straightened. #1 could always be a place holder until a suitable vintage piece is found

    #3 just doesn’t do much for me.

  123. I think option 1 is fine (it looks like the hinges on the door need to be tightened – they’re not quite aligned)

    BUT I looove the look of option 2. I worry for you about how that wood will last.. do you need to laquer or seal it?

  124. 2!!!!!!!!! If you have to do 1 or 3 please do something other than white. Something warm and darker is needed to make it feel more grounded.

  125. Hands down, #2. The wood really warms and “cozies up” the space. If you don’t do it now, you’re going to be second guessing for years to come. Best part…I have an almost identical musical cabinet with a very bad “shabby chic” paint job. You’ve inspired me to strip and refinish that sucker…whether I use it in a powder bath update or not!

  126. I like option 2 the best. I think the Ikea cabinet would look 10x better if the doors were on straight, but I feel like the it really doesn’t go with the other really nice well thought out aspects of the room.

  127. #2! Not even a close call. Just cut the legs down a bit to make it shorter.

    Thanks for sharing, it’s fun to participate in your home like this. 🙂

  128. Option 02, no question. I think the wood warms up the space and looks beautiful with the wallpaper. Something about 3 feels stuffy and already “old/dated.” Can’t wait to see the finish product!

  129. Option 2 and just trim the legs down a bit. I personally think that either of the lighter colored vanities would be too much white with the wainscoting, the wood adds a lovely texture and warmth to the room and plays so well with the wallpaper. Just based on the mock ups, option 2 is just all around more aesthetically pleasing.

  130. Hi Emily! Have you considered a console sink? I’m in a similar plumbing scenario (#oldhouseproblems) and had my heart set on the visual lightness that a pedestal would bring to the space, so I’m considering a console sink. I know I’ll be able to see the plumbing going straight down below it, but I honestly don’t think it’ll be that offensive with shiny new pipes. Thoughts?

  131. I have to say that I can’t stand the Ikea cabinet. It looks shoved up against the wall. For all the attention to detail you are putting into your house, I think it shows that this isn’t receiving that same consideration. Either option 2 or 3 look amazing to me!

  132. Option 2. Its such a special piece – and really completes the room. Though it may be a bit of a hassle to complete, I think you’ll soon forget about it once it’s installed. (Kind of like giving birth, you forget the pain afterwards- or so I’ve heard!)

  133. Option 2, hands down! Or, anything else in that same stain of wood. The wood is key. Ikea and fancier white vanity both seem the same to me.

  134. Emily, I love you and your taste and the way your mind works. To me, it is so clear, option 2 is THEE choice and rest are good options, but 2 leaves them in the dust. Do it and love it, you will and we will!! Who needs money?! Hehe 😜😘

  135. With just the 3 options as you asked them, I’d pick #2.

    But I’d also find it interesting if you:
    – customized option 1 with paint, mesh/curtains, hardware, etc.

    Option 3 is least favourite for me, because I think it would be too busy with the wallpaper plus a fabric front.

  136. #2!! Hands down. I don’t like option 1… I know it’s less expensive but nope. And #3 is expensive for what it is.

  137. I actually like option 1 and not just because it’s easy. Could you also swap the hardware for something more like on option and add legs ? Perhaps that and the faucet would get you there?

  138. My favorite is #2.

    Although, I think if you added legs to the ikea cabinet and switched out the pulls.. it would look so very similar to option number 3.

  139. 2!!!!!!!!!!!! I feel like this really pushes your boundaries. So much of the kitchen (which is nearby) is white on white on white and I think the wood tone and the special-ness of the piece makes it so much more interesting. The other bathrooms upstairs are also all whites with blue so I think this makes it not be so one-note throughout the house. Saw a few inches of the legs off if it’s too tall. This room would look much more English country than either of the white options (which are just not visually interesting).

  140. #2!!!! Especially since the ikea one is in place and your powder room is functional, go for it! I think #3 is nice, but i just really love #2. I use an old french lard chest in my powder room. It has daisies carved into it…it makes me smile every time i walk by. It was too low, so I had to use a vessel sink and a wall mount faucet, but it looks great. When we sold our house, i told the buyers how sentimental I was about it, as it was the first thing I bought when redoing the house, and they let me take it. We are reinstalling it in my new house tomorrow! Can’t wait 🙂

  141. #2 is visually pleasing the best option but also the most expensive. #3 is 2nd best, but lacking the warmth could you do more to that?. #1 is just eh.

  142. #2!

    If not #2, I would just keep #1 (but I would add, if possible, some faux front legs, because I don’t like the “floating” cabinet look on such a big cabinet; plus — and I have this issue with one my vanities, I would try to see if you can get the 2 doors on the front of the cabinet to line up more perfectly on #1 if you’re going with that. Hard with IKEA or Home Depot (like mine)).

    Of course, all that is solved with going with beautiful #2!

  143. #3. I want to love #2, but I think you’re working too hard to make it work and there will be another perfect place for that piece another day. I do like the suggestion that you do #3 but with a wooden cabinet instead of white. Though I like how the white fades into the beadboard if it really is a tiny space. Sorry. I am an IKEA fan, but that vanity in that bathroom is wrong.

  144. Option 1 – add legs and black knobs. If you’re already worried about option 2 becoming janky and rickety then it will probably feel that way quickly. That main floor bathroom will get used a lot once your toddler’s are no longer in diapers! Our main floor bathroom is our most used and water gets spilled and splashed a lot.

  145. option 3 – but honestly I would be fine with option 1 too. I know you like option 2, but to it me feels overdone and a little forced. I am afraid it is just a little too much with that amazing wallpaper and mirror, its competing. If everything is special – then nothing is special. To let the really fabulous things in this powder room shine – some pieces need to take a back seat – and to me that vanity is one of them.

  146. I agree with the person who suggested, adding legs and new custom doors to the IKEA cabinet, you will get a higher end look with a much smaller investment. The music cabinet while beautiful is not the right scale and I think shortening it will make the proportions less appealing.

  147. Initially I was like all option 2, then someone mentioned using the original sink (cleaned up) and I’m kind of liking that idea too. I love those vintage mounted sinks! Get a pretty brass p-trap http://www.signaturehardware.com/bathroom/drains-and-water-supplies/p-traps-and-s-traps/1-1-2-x-1-1-2-p-trap.html and shut off valves. Find a vintage stool for the littles and warm brown basket to hold the TP (man, I hate looking through people’s bathrooms to find more toilet paper – so awkward) and you might have option 4! Not that another option helps you at. all.

  148. option 2 for sure! the contrast of the wood against the beadboard and tile flooring is perfect, and better than the expensive custom version in my opinion. ties in the mirror better too

  149. Option #2 or #3! I love #2 best but EITHER one is so so so much better than the Ikea cabinet. YOU are better than that Ikea cabinet and I mean that with as MUCH flattery on this entire planet.

    The Ikea piece is not just uninspiring, it’s almost a little disappointing in that space. The bathroom is soooooooooooooooooo pretty. Do the vanity justice!

  150. The width and the natural wood of Option #2 is the winner for sure.. not having the cabinet shoved against the wall helps make the space feel larger! Unfortunately, the height really isn’t practical (unless you’re a family of very tall people)… maybe the search continues?

  151. Hack the Ikea! With your designer’s eye and access to a clearly talented cabinet/door maker, I think you could come up with something more stylish and less expensive than #3 and ultimately less stress than #2.

  152. I like option 3!

    (I think, in the past, you’ve actually had a poll that people can use to vote. I think you’d get more participation if you used one of those. It can be intimidating – and more time consuming – to comment vs. just clicking to vote.)

  153. no ikea!!! i know you have decision fatigue/problem solving fatigue/money spending fatigue but power through until the finish line! you will forget about how stressful the problem solving was and you will only end up spending more money down the road when you decide you hate the ikea cabinet and have to replace it! i renovated 6 years ago and redoing things post-renovation is even more annoying/stressful costly!

    that said, i agree with the idea of cleaning up the original (can you reglaze it??) and maybe putting a beautiful basket under it or something to add in that wood color/texture that everyone is responding to in #2. i do like both #2 and #3 too. good luck!

  154. Easily #2. Come on.

    Is it possible to reduce the height in the body rather than the legs? Those long legs are great.

  155. I think this is a no brained – #2!!! It’s cheaper and you will love it more. If you choose one of the other two, every time you look at it, you may wonder about the option that you clearly want!

  156. I love how the color of the antique cabinet looks with that wallpaper and the brass fixtures. I think it’s really brings something special to the room. It also adds some warmth that the room lacks with the white cabinets. So #2 is my vote!

  157. I agree with everyone who said #2 only because I think the mahogany wood color looks much better with the antique mirror and the dark wallpaper. The bathroom needs some darkness on the bottom half of the room since the top is all dark and the bottom is all white. The wood gives weight to the bottom. I think the white vanities make it seem like two different people designed the top half and bottom half of the bathroom!

  158. All in for option 2. I think the wood really warms up the look of the space, and both one and three are a bit too white to balance the wallpaper. It’s also a “no one else will ever have one just like it” vanity, which is an excellent bonus. Option 1 really isn’t enough, and option 3 just isn’t thrilling me. Option 2, ftw!

  159. “…at some point I have to stop bleeding money…” HA. I hear you, sister. And therefore, I agree with the commenter who said to leave #1 in there and worry about it 5 years from now. #2 and #3 are beautiful, but folks who said that fancy vanity cabinets and kiddo step stools and jelly-hands don’t mix well seem to have a good point. Maybe let this one go and put the money toward something else instead, especially if no one is noticing the Ikea one unless you point it out to them? It’s too bad the pedestal didn’t work out, though.

    Also, going to go buy that black faucet for #2 and #3, thank you bunches for that!

  160. I think the mirror is too small for 1 and 3. Number 2 has the best proportions. So, either Number 3 with a different mirror (wider) and move the sconce over a tad. No to #1.

  161. Obsessed with #2. Something about the white on white with options #1 and #3 is bugging me. I just don’t think they’re right with everything else you have going on. Go with your gut and pick #2! Trim the legs and maybe it will be the right height?

  162. The first thing I thought when I saw the bathroom was why didn’t ’em shiplap the whole thing out. You could have made the mirror the central focus for the small room, think old English manor, and popped in a floating vanity to keep the room feeling spacious.

    With the wall paper I probably wouldn’t use a white vanity, as it gives the feeling of the vanity being “left over” or an “after thought.” #2 is the best option if the wall paper is a must have.

  163. – Paint the current vanity with one of the colors (preferably the darkest) of the wallpaper.
    – Put brass hardware on the vanity doors.
    – Use a brass faucet.

  164. Please please #2! Option 1 looks cheap against the other finishes, and Option 3 looks cookie cutter to me (and it’s expensive!) Don’t miss the chance to repurpose that beautiful antique piece and create something no one else can. I know it is a silly small bathroom, but it is the small details that make the difference. My only hesitation is I strongly dislike the black faucet with the warm wood cabinet, with that beautiful marble on top, which begs for the unlacquered brass finish. The black in light fixture ties in with the black in antique mirror – but the black faucet looks out of place with option 2. Hopefully you can order the unlaquered brass faucet and cross your fingers it arrives in time.

  165. The comment to hack the Ikea cabinet is the best option!! You can film it and Orlando can help you!!
    I do like Option 3 the best so I can see this being done!

  166. #2 for sure. The warmth of the wood is beautiful.
    A question about the wood though…when you’ve done this in the past have you sealed the piece? I retrofitted a mid century dresser for my kids’ bathroom and in just a few months it is covered in water spots. I think I need to sand it back and seal it with something clear (and not shiny!) to protect it from their crazy splashing.

  167. I think the third option looks the best, but I don’t think it looks $2700 better (!!!) than the Ikea option and if it were me I’d much prefer to spend that $$ elsewhere in the house…or, like, on vacation 😉 What about keeping it Ikea and adding a different front to it? Like SemiHandmade?

  168. LEAVE the ikea!! the kids will ruin it in the next 4-5 years. then replace it. Paint, soap, goo, slime… get a sturdy step stool. and I swear if I had it to do over again- when my kids were little- get the tiny toilets that they have installed in nursery schools!

  169. Option #4: Hack the IKEA cabinet! The most basic fix would just be to add legs and new knobs to match the faucet. Also, fix the bent hinge on the left door.

    If you don’t think the hack will look good enough, and I admit the sink is not ideal on the IKEA cabinet, then my next vote is for Option #2 with the legs shaved down. I think short legs on the music cabinet would look completely fine.

    I also think you should get a brass faucet and brass knobs. That would take things up a level. I know you said the timeframe wasn’t looking good for shooting, but the black will never look as good as matching brass.

    Lastly, why aren’t the contractors at fault for putting the wrong plumbing in? And is it just crazy expensive and time consuming to fix it? I don’t understand why you aren’t asking them to redo it. I understand you wanted to pass inspections to move forward, but why does that make it too late to change now? I’d be so annoyed at not getting the pedestal sink.

    1. I just read through some if the other comments. I don’t understand people’s aversion to the white furniture on a white wall look. I think it looks great and it reminds me of the kid’s bathroom upstairs.

      1. I think it looks top heavy in this situation. The reason I like it in the kid’s bathroom is because the wallpaper in the kid’s bathroom is considerably lighter. The darker wallpaper on the top half of the wall requires something to ground it on the bottom (to my eyes).

  170. I would say #2. I also quite like #3, but I’m most drawn to the warmth and character of the antique piece. I would eliminate #1 for sure. I know it’s the most affordable, but that cabinet does not stand up to the rest of the finishes in the room. The doors are already wonky and it will only get worse with time. 3 is a gorgeous look, but I would be reluctant to spend the money to do that too. So, #2 it is! I’m looking forward to hearing what you decide.

    P.S. Why are toilets so strangely expensive?!?

  171. I love option two. Also, I think if you keep option one, you will change it down the road. Why not now when you still have the people around to get the job done? Then you will love every inch of that beautiful space.

  172. I like the original little wall-mount sink but I’m assuming that is now out because it would require re-plumbing the whole sink area. So in place of that, I would say #2 for sure.

  173. I would go with #1 as much as I like #2. The star of the powder room is the wallpaper. I would definitely change the tap, the handles and maybe the hinges for nicer, brass ones.

  174. Hey Emily
    Love the wallpaper. While I prefer the aesthetics of #2 for practical purposes why not keep #1 and paint it out in a navy blue to match the wallpaper. Or how about that cute Wayfair vanity that you used in their bathroom?

  175. I love option two, but if it was me I would probably modify what I already had.

    I would have someone (my husband) make something similar to this (only shaped like the Devol legs)
    http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/80349001/

    I would then have someone (my husband) make cabinet doors with the cutout for the fabric.

    Finally, I would paint the entire thing a super pale blue. This is so you wouldn’t be able to tell that you added to it, and also, from the pictures the sink looks almost blueish white which I think makes it look cheaper. Painting the vanity would make it less obvious.

  176. In the mockups, 1 and 3 bug my eyes because they look off-center, disproportionately sized/placed with the light and mirror. So for that reason alone, 2 wins for me.

  177. Option 3 wins, hands down. The price seems insane, but DID YOU SEE how awesome your mockup of it looks? Unfortunately, option 2 is distracting to the eye, adding the wood-grain texture and darkness down in the area that is all white and light. Love the music cabinet, but in another scenario.

  178. I have one concerne about the vanity position in Option 1. It doesn’t touch the wall making difficult, maybe impossible to clean the right side of the vanity.

  179. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say what if you added cute legs to the Ikea vanity, and then donated some of the funds you save to some sort of organization that ties in with the bathroom theme–such as donating a bunch of bathroom supplies/toiletries to California homeless shelters or organizations that help people get back on their feet and get groomed for job interviews, etc, something like that.

    I have LOVED the projects you have done for charity in the past (you are a good woman Emily, thank you for all you do) and it would be really neat to use some of these house projects in a similar way–showing options, and then if you decide to do the lower-priced version, turning it into a charity project/post. Just food for thought! You may not feel the ‘wow’ factor from the vanity every time you’re in your powder room (although the Ikea vanity is cool and would look great with legs) but you will probably feel a warmth in your heart that’s irreplaceable. Not AT ALL trying to guilt you here, just an idea that came to mind! Love your work and blog. #2 is gorgeous too.

  180. I’d do #3 in stained oak with a similar, or slightly darker, finish to the beams in the dining room. The powder room needs the warmth of wood.

  181. I vote for number 4. (2-amended)

    1. The Ikea sink and cabinet style are far too modern for the remainder of the room. That huge sink on the small cabinet just doesn’t work.
    2. I love the contrast of the wooden cabinet but think that this particular cabinet looks spindly and the grain pattern is too strong. I would search for a different cabinet although it may be hard to find something that matches the mirror (which I love). Perhaps you can find a small traditional ready-built from houzz, wayfair, or other source and have the cabinet base painted to match one of the colors from (or complimentary to) the wallpaper. It could even be painted black which would pickup from the mirror.
    3. Meh. I don’t care for the white cabinet with the white bead board.

    Your wallpaper and mirror are stunning and I love the two together! Oh, I just had a thought. Maybe you could find something like an art deco nightstand that would work with the marble top. Here are a few ideas from google. https://www.google.com/search?safe=active&hl=en&site=imghp&tbm=isch&source=hp&biw=1524&bih=723&q=art+deco+small+bathroom+vanity&oq=art+deco+small+bathroom+vanity&gs_l=img.3…1454.9847.0.10263.31.16.0.15.15.0.267.1719.9j4j2.15.0….0…1ac.1.64.img..1.23.1730.0..0j35i39k1j0i8i30k1j0i24k1.AgSpNH2dn3E#safe=active&hl=en&tbm=isch&q=art+deco+nightstand&*

  182. I say head back to the antique store and find something not rickety and the right height. You have time since you have the IKEA filler…worth the wait for something just right.

  183. Love how 2 looks! I really wouldn’t mind 1 either, but I don’t like the beadboard front and I feel like it kind of competes with the beadboard on the wall. Can you get a wooden front or something for it to look more like #2?

  184. Twosies for sursies! Without a doubt, the most beautiful and I’m worried that with the vintage “inspired” feel of the house you need to add some more pieces that are actually vintage with some soul to balance out all that newly installed painted woodwork.

  185. Option 2! It’s a piece you already have and love, the dimensions will be fine the wood is stunning and it’s just more interesting. You’ll forget about the anguish when it’s all done and can hopefully enjoy it for years to come!

  186. Option #4. I don’t know what it is, but not any of these.

    Option #1: Lets the room down. That wallpaper and mirror and lighting are worthy of much better. Although, if it were me, I would paint the Ikea a darker color and add some cute curvy legs and different handles until I figured out Option #4. You could hack the cabinet in some charming way, and make a Thing of it. Surely you have an intern who would love to be given that as a project.

    Option #2: I don’t like the vintage cabinet. Too rickety, wrong size. I do like the natural wood (and I’m usually Team Paint) but it just isn’t quite right. it will cost too much time and effort to make it into something that is still not right.

    Option #3: Is just ordinary. Why spend so much on something that is just ordinary looking in the end?

    Option #4 – maybe a different vintage cabinet that is the right size etc.? Something kind of Biedermeyer-ish to relate better to the mirror. Spend the time finding the right vintage cabinet rather than overworking the existing one. Or, maybe there’s a pedestal somewhere that would work with the existing plumbing? Anyway – something else.

  187. Got to go with option #4–reuse the original sink. I think it would be worth fixing the plumbing since that sink ticks more boxes than any of the others. It’s beautiful. It’s uncommon. It fits the house. It’s kid-proof. You could bring in the wood element–which I agree the room needs–with the right stepstool pushed under the sink when the kids aren’t standing on it.
    I like #2, but I don’t think it would survive unless it’s used only by well-mannered adults.

  188. I vote for option #2, AND since you need to cut down the height, have the top cut down instead of the legs. Since you’re already paying for “retrofitting” it the woodworker can cut the height off the cabinet and the door and move the top hinge down. the latch can stay in the same place and still look fine (and be easier to use.

    I like the natural wood and I think $1000 for a bath vanity is high when you have other good and cheaper options.

  189. #3 is the best one visually and functionally. It is also the one that will hold up best. I would rethink the dark faucet. So trendy and just not as luxe, IMO, as brass or stainless. (Though stainless prob isn’t right for the decor.) A tall, skinny sink will just be weird, beautiful as the antique cabinet is.

    1. I hate the dark color of the faucet, but that is a separate issue from voting for Choice 1, 2 or 3. On that issue, I’m a broken record player with a vote for #2 for several reasons
      1) the gorgeous dark color of the wood – you need a darker base to balance the dark mirror (which I love) and ground the other elements in the room.
      2) I also like that cabinet because it has only the one door. That size of vanity is too small for the 2 doors used in #1 and #3 – they look chopped up
      3) how gross that fabric in # 3 will be after a few flushes and accompanying toilet overspray (travels an avg of 6 feet each and every flush and some toilets spray 2x that much)!

  190. Could you add cool legs and different doors and hardware to the IKEA one? A portfolio piece, to me, is one where you make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear without the crazy pricetag. Just a thought.

  191. Option #2. For sure. The ikea cabinet looks too out of place there and I think the texture on the doors is the wrong scale next to the beadboard. So yeah. Option #2.

  192. I think of you when I see option # 2!! I also love # 3 but it’s a lot of money. I LOVE that wallpaper, I was considering the Thibaut turtle bay design for our powder room but I might have to reconsider!

  193. Love it so far! My first instinct is to go with #2 – so pretty. Could you shorten the legs to make it shorter? Also, it would seem like any carpenter worth his weight would be able to reinforce it from the inside to make it more sturdy.
    Having said that, I’m empathetic about bleeding money and getting tired of that. So I just wonder if there were some way to make #1 more appealing. Paint the cabinet a dark color and change knobs to long black (iron?) vertical handles? It seems like this might be cheap enough that you could give it a try and if you don’t like it, go with #2. Another option for modifying the vanity would be to wrap it with a nice wood veneer and some stylish black knobs/handles.
    #3 does nothing for me, because it pushes the traditional vibe over my line of tolerance. Personal preference.
    Interested to see what you do – I’d place my bet on #2.

  194. I think option 2 is amazing. I love the oraganic feel of the wood cabinet with the wallpaper. I think it also complements the mirror well. As far as it being a little high, if it was your master bath I’d probably leans towards no, but it is for a powder room. The look is more important than function. Love your work!!

  195. How much would it cost to fix the plumbing and put in a pedestal sink? I’m not digging any of these choices…and for the cost of the third maybe you can just redo the plumbing?! Or is it the time to fix and shoot the house the issue? If so, #2, I guess.

  196. It’s so funny, you ask these questions and I always have the STRONGEST reactions! Like this time, two! Definitely two! Powder rooms are for playing with, and #two is the most English of all without a trace of twee.

  197. #2 without cutting it down. Have a cute step stool in there for the kiddos so they can reach. That’s a lovely piece. You should use it!

  198. #2 is so much cooler and prettier and more interesting than the other two options that I am kind of wondering if you’re messing with us, Henderson. I mean, really – a super boring and cheap ikea vanity with its doors askew, a similarly boring but better constructed yet super expensive vanity, or an awesome and uniquely beautiful vanity that isn’t even the most expensive option??? No contest. You’ll still be thrilled you used the music cabinet in 10 years, I bet you’ll be like, “meh” about the custom cabinet, and the ikea one, while fine, looks noticeably cheap next to that gorgeous wallpaper.

    p.s. ignore my judgmental tone, I heart your blog and all of this is great. xoxo

  199. Dearest, this feels like SO.MUCH.PRESSURE. for one decision right now when I bet decision fatigue has set in and you have about a zillion more decisions to go.

    My vote: jazz up option 1 with legs, paint (warmth would go a loooong way with this cabinet), and a truly gorgeous faucet – again I think warmth i.e. Brass would kill it there.

    I think that vintage cabinet will find a better use and be super beautiful elsewhere in your house.

    By retrofitting the IKEA, you buy yourself sanity and the time to come across the *perfect* option – maybe just in a few more years.

    All that being said, if the IKEA hacked cabinet is going to bother you every time you see it, it’s worth your sanity to go another route. Good luck! It will be beautiful no matter what!

  200. I’m with you Em…… #2!
    Special & different, adds another dimension to space.
    Mid range pricing! Whats not too like 😀

  201. Oh wow. I really don’t like option 2. Wayyyyy to dark and tall! Weird that people hate the IKEA one. It may be cheap but it’s clean and white!

  202. Seems a no-brainer (although it’s your brain that’s going to be taxed!) – in this house and for this girl (you!) #2 is the best. The wood against the beadboard is wonderful and speaks to the mirror and the brass much better than the light colored vanities.

  203. I love your blog and have never commented but I absolutely hate 1 so I am commenting now. I really like the wood color of option 1 but hate that it would be petite. Hmm. Not really an answer other than no to 1. Love you!

  204. 2 for sure!! it looks amazing with that gorgeous mirror and makes the room feels special, unique, and vintage while still looking modern.

  205. oh man, that little music cabinet is lovely! I would pick that one even if were the most expensive. The wood is so warm against the white and looks great with that wallpaper.
    Second would be to leave the ikea cabinet.

  206. #2 all the way! Please don’t cut it down! It is so pretty and special for this special little space. So it is a little tall… a powder room is a space to be quirky and special. The lines are perfect!

  207. Arriving with 406 comments that I don’t have time to read 🙁 here’s my thoughts. You are rushing to solve a problem but don’t yet have the solution you want and are trying to make something work.

    The Ikea cabinet’s biggest offenses are the doors are uneven, the dark visible hinges and knobs are ugly, the doors are bleh because they are too similar to the beadboard wall, and it’s out of place because it’s too modern being wall mounted.

    So why not change out the doors to something that actually fits/hangs properly and has some other color/details to make it more interesting like option 3, buy some feet to make it fit stylistically and then patiently wait for the right solution that will eventually come along?

  208. I actually think the too tall proportions of #2 work perfectly with the undersized proportions of the mirror. The other options make the mirror look too small. Plus, since you are not bringing in warmth to the bottom half of the room with a brass faucet, you need to warmth of the wood cabinet. My vote is for #2 all the way and I know you know it will be worth the extra stress.

  209. #2 or #3. I like 2 the best because it puts something dark on the lower plane. And seems to balance out the dark (awesome) wallpaper. If you had done the gray grout, then I think 3 would look great, too. I also really like the black faucet. It looks like effortless mixing of metals. Thanks for sharing. Love the wallpaper.

  210. Not #1 – it doesn’t say Emily to me. You’re my favorite designer because you’re so unique. There’s nothing unique about that vanity (but that wallpaper is so cool).

  211. 22222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222222!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  212. The dark vanity is so much better. You could actually tile with same floor tile a small pedestal to raise it to the right height. The penny tile would flow right around it and look great. Anyway as I said befor #2!

  213. 2, 2, 2, 2, 2!
    Go with option 2. The wood is beautiful. I think the IKEA cabinet will continue to drive you nuts, and the custom made piece just fades out and doesn’t offer much. The richness (of both color and design) in option 2 is amazing.

  214. Definitely option 3… perhaps with unlacquered brass tapware and fixture (if you can wait that long). To me the black details on the mirror and the sconce do enough to edge things up a bit. I love the music cabinet, however option 2 is way too busy. To my eyes the cabinet competes with that gorgeous mirror and stunning wallpaper. Enjoying this process! I do miss your old home though, I’m definitely more of a mid century fan. Love your work!!

  215. Question: how long did you live w a truly godawful bathroom in your old house?
    Answer: a long long time!!
    I’d change the faucet on the IKEA sink and wait until you find a better piece of furniture to retrofit. If the music cabinet has issues, just wait for a better fund to come along.
    (That’s what I’d do…but judging from the mock ups, I find #3 most appealing).

  216. I”m sorry to say but NUMERO 3! It is perfect in every way and a real showstopper (which is what you want for a powder room that will be used by all your guests). It does seem like a splurge but think of it as part of the advertising budget for your interior design firm (which I’m sure is how you’ve justified every splurge thus far 😊).

  217. How about change the doors on the IKEA vanity with the doors from #3.
    It’s just a thought. Give the look you like with a lower cost.

  218. Number 2 is sooo pretty but I’d be worried about its longevity. Option 3 is by far the best but waaaay too expensive and think you could get a very similar look by adapting what you currently have in Option 1. Even just adding legs to the Ikea cabinet would make a huge difference and I bet no-one would have known it was from Ikea had you not put that info out there! So basically my vote is for a “tweaked” Option 1 but whatever you choose it will be perfect as always.

  219. 2!! It’s gorgeous and compliments the sconce and mirror wonderfully! Also compliments the home’s overall style & gives the warmth needed against all the white.

  220. I think #2 fits the house (what we’ve seen of it so far) best. I’m usually not a fan of dark woods but that cabinet is lovely and wallpaper is great!

  221. Many people love the wood for coloring and I think it’s too busy visually for me. I like three, it’s gorgeous, I think it needs the white to balance the wallpaper and mirror.

  222. I would definetly go with option number three. It still has the same country chick vibe as the one from Ikea, although it is a lot higher quality and has a more unique flair. Having the pieces in your home call to you is an important part of interior design, so if the Ikea vanity isn’t it. Don’t stick with it. Excited to see the reveal!

  223. Number 2 for sure. No 1 looks too pedestrian and suitable for a rental property. You would walk past it every day and hate it. No 2 brings warmth with the timber I think.

  224. Im not feeling the ikea cab as is. Maybe if you painted it navy and put some cute brass legs and hardware on it?

    If you cant make the ikea cab pop I would go option 2. I love that idea! I almost always lean toward the extra mental work. LOL

  225. The cheapskate mom in me says just go with the easier option- #1. But I have to say that #2 is absolutely amazing and would look phenomenal.

  226. I like the size of option #2, and I like the warmth of the wood. Not a bad choice, but I’m a sucker for custom because you’ll always get what you want. Don’t like the white color on option #3. I’d do that pretty green color (like your island) if that color compliments the wallpaper. I think white fades in too much and if you’re doing custom you want it to stand out!

  227. Definately option #2. Original, unique, a curated / collected look and it will go with the house.
    Love the wall paper, the light fixture so the cute Cabinet will finish it off nicely.

  228. Number 2 any day of the week if you can cut from the top and not the bottom. 3 is not to my taste at all,but that’s beside the point. I think the problem with 3 is there is nothing special enough about it to justify the cost over the Ikea one.
    The wallpaper is devine!

  229. Tough choices! I almost like the modern style of #1 but want a diff, more interesting color, like the taupe. I love the music stand..#2.I have used the 24″ inch marble Pegasus tops w. Under mount sink on furniture pieces. May be to big but might be cheaper to cut it if doesn’t fit than to fabricate. If marble too thin you can build up edge for custom look. If too tall just cut a little off the legs w. jigsaw!

  230. Though I pride myself on practicality, seeing the three together, it’s clear #1 has to go. The other two options are very pretty and do justice to the wallpaper.

  231. Sorry to say, I would strongly advise against #2! I did something similar to an antique piece of furniture in my bathroom, and I HATE how tiny the sink is.

  232. Will this be the bathroom where children are cleaned up after mud pie making and climbing trees? Then maybe a spiffed up Ikea vanity and sink are fine for now. When they grow up a bit you can get the custom wood vanity of your dreams.

  233. If you were a ‘regular’ person and not a designer….#1 all the way. But you ARE a designer! #2 is so special. Love.

  234. I like the look of #2 best but it does seem extra small on top and you’ll need a sink and also a place to put soap. Can you find that look but in something bigger? Ikea has to go, already looks like it’s falling apart (crooked door). BUT, all I can think when I look at every photo is how pretty your mirror is but it’s way too small! I see why you picked it, but the scale seems very off. I’m so sorry!

  235. I liked #2 first, but the hassle factor made me like #3….but that is waaaay too spendy. I lean toward keeping #1 and revisiting this later if there is too much spending/planning/executing going on right now. If you find yourself still endlessly apologizing, retrofit #2. I would do it myself if I were you, but I am never in the position to hire anything out so what do I know.

    RubberChickenGirl

  236. Option 2. It’s the most stylish and whimsical. You won’t ever be disappointed in it and you will always love it.

  237. No contest: number 2 (vintage retro-fit vanity). The warmth from the wood with the mirror and the gold tone on the fixture all form one cohesive vertical line, visually speaking. The other two feel choppy and a bit out of balance.

  238. Option 2! This is just an educated guess based on the rendering, but wouldn’t it be easy to just cut the legs down a bit, making the music cabinet the proper height?

  239. Option 1! If you do a cost benefit analysis you’ll see that the amount of time you spend in your bathroom does not balance th cost of the other two options.

  240. #3. No contest. The antique cabinet is cute and all, but you won’t be able to store much of anything in it and it looks like it has the potential to be really awkwardly small. Also, you can’t have an Ikea vanity in your house. Don’t get me wrong…I love me some Ikea (hell, I have TWO Ikea vanities in my house). But keeping an Ikea vanity in a house that has so many high-end custom finishes would just be a travesty. 😉

  241. Number 2!! Love the contrast, and shape, while also being simple. Why bother with thinking of number 3? It’s just option 1 with some legs added to the bottom. Very pretty faucet – but does it look to stark against all that white? But since it’s a flat finish I guess it wouldn’t look as harsh.

  242. Love the warmth of the wood in option 2..but leaning to option 3 since it seems more functional with a fuller size sink?

    Thought – would it be possible to “customize” the IKEA vanity by adding black faucet and changing the doors to something more interesting/along the lines of option 3?..maybe even add some legs?

  243. I like the way option 2 adds a more layered look. I’d replace the mirror as well. It’s reading as a little small.
    If you went with option 3 swap the white out for a black or brown cabinet and you can still play off the kitchen cabinets. Then replace the mirror with a while one and swap the black faucets for gold ones.

    Happy designing

  244. Although I’m immediately drawn to #2 I think there are a few more things you could do to make #1 work. You could add some kind of foot to the floating vanity to make it look more like a piece of furniture and less pre-fab. Changing the nobs to something vintage would make a big difference as well.

  245. Definitely not #1. I like how the other two feel like the vanity is a piece of furniture (with the legs) rather than a square box. I tend to lean towards #3, but #2 is gorgeous too!

  246. While option 2 has the most interesting visuals, practically it is a lot of work for a tiny little vanity. Option 3 is nice, but awfully expensive for a small bathroom and visually it is a white vanity…like the ikea one.
    I agree with some of the others regarding the ikea vanity. If the Ikea vanity was moved off of the right side of the wall a bit and you changed the doors a bit (which are not hung properly anyway) ….consider a diy where you put in the type of door like in option 3 and new faucet, you might have a win – win.

  247. Honestly for the cost and effort alone I would keep the IKEA cabinet and switch out the doors and knobs to match #3. I also lean towards this option since you seem indecisive about it- by doing a cheaper practical option now, you still have time and money to change down the line when it really is clear what you want and what will work…

  248. Option #2 is my favorite! I like the contrast of the beautiful wood with the white. Plus it seems like your style!

    The IKEA vanity is ok, but I really don’t like the doors – they look cheap and don’t match the vibe of the room. Maybe if you choose Option #1 you could upgrade the doors as well as the faucet?

    Looking forward to seeing what you decide!

  249. I agree with you on option two. I actually prefer that to number 3 (3 seems to look too similar to what you have to be worth $3000). I think the vintage piece is much more interesting and looks fantastic with the wallpaper and mirror!

  250. Couldn’t a fourth option be a nicer prefab vanity with small dimensions? Spending thousands on a custom-made number seems a little whacky… That said, I love the music cabinet choice. The color is a needed contrast with the bead board; the other options get washed out.

  251. Emily, I love, love, love your blog, and the thoroughness and transparency you share with your readers. It is such a treat, and you seem utterly delightful. But as someone who will never have the money to pull off “perfect”…I don’t know…hearing all this “needs to be perfect” talk lately I start having a minor anxiety attack after reading the blog – like, my rented, budget-accommodating space must look like a total hack, and there’s nothing I can do about that! Kind of like when a beautiful woman talks about how problematic this or that part of her body is, and the rest of us are like, “if she thinks that about herself, what must she think about me?” I do realize it’s your job to present something that wealthier clients will want to pay for, and that magazines will want to feature, and I’m so inspired by your work, but I also love and miss your freer-spirited roots. I don’t think perfect is all it’s cracked up to be, honestly, and I wonder – b/c of some comments you’ve made here and there – if you’re not convinced of that either. Go for what makes your heart sing – it’s your home before it’s anyone else’s (magazine or client) – so whether that means your heart’s glad b/c you went with simpler and good enough and attainable, or because you went for totally impractical and delightful, it’s a good choice.

    1. This comments sums up my feelings very eloquently. You are so talented, and you seem like such a down to earth and open person. So it actually made me sad to read this post because it had an undercurrent of shame in it, an anxiety about being perfect above all else. You are wonderful and talented and much of your charm and uniqueness comes from you being willing to accommodate the high with the low, the new with the old, the mod with the vintage. And not only that, but to find joy and creativity in the process and not just the end results. Don’t let a vanity or any other small sliver of perfection lead you astray from that. You are such a breath of fresh air and joy in the design world!

  252. Definitely option 2! It adds so much character and can easily be made not to be rickety! Love the mirror. I have an antique mirror just like it. What would a matte brass faucet look like with this cabinet? Can’t wait to see the full reveal!

  253. Well, I am not a designer & while I love seeing all the ways you design, not all of it is to my taste (life would be soooo boring if we were all the same). The second I scrolled to #2 my reaction was “WOW that is gorgeous”. Only you can decide if it will be right for you & your family in this home. The height will make it difficult for your littles to was their hands for years & how durable will it be? But….. #3 is soooo expensive & in the photos doesn’t look all that much better than number 1. I know you have time constraints, good luck.

  254. My absolute favorite is #2… I like how it pops against the wainscoting, and I think it’d be so special and it also looks amazing with that mirror!

  255. What about using the ikea cabinet but putting new doors on it to match those in #3? A slight DIY? Cheaper but achieves close to the same look.

  256. you could just change the doors and knobs on the ikea one and then add some little feet to make it feel more special for a cheap but better option than just cheap. But I think the wooden antique is the best for sure. I like the wood in there. You could possible trim the legs a little to make it shorter??

  257. option two! that room needs the contrast ( and elegant simplicity) of the lovely natural wood- there’s enough white and enough gorgeous pattern

  258. Option 1 but paint the vanity one of the shades in the wallpaper and replace the knobs with cool antique brass ones. Call it a day

  259. #2 is definitely the best and most your style. If you cut down the legs a few inches wouldn’t it be the perfect height??

  260. I loveeeeeeee option 2, I think the dark wood looks super awesome with all the other design elements in the room and really even’s out the darker tones with the wallpaper but I find the unit looks too narrow for the space. I like the size of option three more I think the overall fit is much better but the dark wood in option 2 is great…

    Would be great if you could find something a similar size to 3 but in a dark wood or something vintage in style like 2. Not a fan of the Ikea cabinet either.

  261. I was just thinking that maybe a wooden vanity with some more modern lines might be nice. There is a lot of traditional in there. Even the light is a bit traditional. Maybe something with a modern feel like your Cherner armchair in the dining room.

  262. i like 3 but i don’t like the white. so then i lean more 2. the natural wood just pops against the beadboard and that wallpaper! and i like it better with the mirror.

    so 2. 🙂 (or 3 in a natural wood like 2. is that an option?!?!!?)

  263. I think that the Ikea would look cute with the new faucet and the knobs from #3. If money is an issue, do that and love it. It works because there are so many other fabulous details like the wallpaper and lights, etc.

    But, you are a designer and your blog is your livelihood. Because of that, you can always justify spending more. If money was no option and not something we were factoring, I would choose option #2 hands down. That is the most beautiful, unique, and inspiring.

    #3 is more money and isn’t really that much cooler. #2 is infinitely better in my humble opinion.

    Good luck! Don’t you just love “luxury” problems?!!!!! Isn’t it fun to have this decision to make?!!!!

  264. #2 FTW! I think it looks fabulous with that wallpaper (and that wallpaper may be the most beautiful I’ve ever seen). I like the warmth of the wood tone against the white, with that lovely curve on the bottom–it feels true to the house and also complements the vintage mirror.

  265. First, I would try option one with the faucet and change it up a little by swapping out the doors to how you’d like it in option 3.

    If it doesn’t bother you after, then call it done. But if it’s still nagging you, then go for option 3.

  266. Keep looking. #2 is the best solely because of the warmth of the wood. Just chill out and keep it as is until you serendipitously find the perfect solution. Meanwhile, move on and enjoy your house and your kids.

  267. Hi em I would stick with the IKEA
    Cab. But change out the faucet & hardware it’s very dull. Maybe even brass to go along with room accents like the jack & Jill bathroom boom ❤

  268. Please do #2! It’s beautiful and amazing. The IKEA cabinet is a nice idea, but the doors hang unevenly and it was driving me nuts to look at it. And I actually don’t like the look of the curtains in the other vanity and think it would be a waste of money. So, go with your gut. Pick #2 😉

  269. I agree option 2 is the direction to go. But the details you shared about the piece seem like a deal-breaker to me. Wait for the right size, height and sturdy (or reinforcable) vintage or antique wood cabinet that can do that wallpaper justice. My vote for now is to paint that IKEA vanity the same color as the wainscoting to help it disappear, add new knobs to distract, and maybe even add feet to look like furniture. The rush to publication is real. But this is your home and it is one (maybe the littlest) room. I think you already have more than one good photo there to accomplish that publication goal.

  270. I love option #2. It feels so special and beautiful. And really, since it’s not your main bathroom it it doesn’t have to withstand as much wear and tear. 🙂

  271. As someone who has a tiny sink, I have to say it’s pretty annoying. BUT, it’s our main sink, so we have to try brush our teeth etc in it without covering the entire bathroom in wetness! In a powder room, it wouldn’t be so bad. So I say go for #2. I love that cabinet! The timber is so lovely in that space. And the shape is incredible.

  272. #2!!!!!
    Adds warmth, charm in a way that the other options can’t.
    A skilled cabinetmaker or carpenter should be able to make the adjustments. Think of it like labor…painful now in terms of cost, deliberation and effort…but you’ll have a baby uh uh…I mean powder room to love forever! Photos will sing! Dark faucet brings it down for me — maybe just the rendering??
    Too tall? Perhaps remove legs and “float” / wall mount it?? Proportion / style wise – could that work? I wouldn’t get hung on this particular item being an antique. It’s living a purposeful life w/ gorgeous companions (mirror & wallpaper) in a closet with a toilet for goodness sake!! 🙂

  273. Option 1: Good but not amazing
    Option 2: AMAZING!!!! I love a good vintage piece, adds history and interest to such a tiny space.
    Option 3: Although I don’t love the vanity, the lighter color makes the space feel more airy and less tiny.
    From what I have seen from Emily’s work I think she might be leaning towards this option but I would definitely chose OPTION 2!

  274. Hello! I think option #2 is the most appropriate to the space and style! Love the colour of the furniture under the sink!❤

  275. My favourite is option 2 because it reminds me of a vanity we had in our summer cottage in Roscommon, Ireland. I also say that if you go with option 1 easy Ikea then you should also change the door knobs to something like those on option 3. Xx ps. I LOVE your blog and your style x

  276. My vote:
    1st choice: New option 4: Get a less expensive custom vanity that works with the IKEA sink. Solid wood is nicer than IKEA. Use either stained wood or painted wood that coordinates with the wallpaper. Forget the expensive grills unless you have leftover grills from the kitchen. Forget the marble vanity top & sink.

    2nd choice: Option 3. Go for it. The vanity top also provides a little more surface area than the other options.

    3rd choice: Center the IKEA vanity & sink under the light & mirror, fix the uneven IKEA door, & paint the vanity a color that coordinates with the wallpaper. The painted beadboard will echo your kitchen island. Add legs if necessary. Add a pretty vase with flowers.

    Save the antique for use as furniture.

    Good luck!

  277. You have such a stunning mirror and incredibly pleasing playful paper. I think the, everso slightly, wonderfully masculine music cupboard makes them both sing.

    I’ve trawled a fair few National Trust houses here in the UK, option 2 just smacks of the spectacular gothic revival at Tyntesfield. Damn that’s one beautiful house.

  278. #3ish. Can you use the same mesh as in the kitchen, and paint the cabinets in the same green. Would look fresh with the cream/white curtains. The wooden cabinet is lovely, but perhaps a little small, and you can never have too much storage in a bathroom.

  279. Option 2 all the way. Repurposing/refinishing a piece of furniture is so YOU! Do it! Brings you back to your roots.

  280. Honestly not loving any of the three options- sorry 😐 . The vintage vanity is a sweet idea but even with the custom fit marble sink I believe it’s a waste of a vintage piece and it will not stand the test of time with the sink size and water spills!! Go free standing white ceramic pedestal sink with vintage faucet! As in image #7( from the top of this piece) It will be easier to maintain, clean and in keeping with the style you are projecting. The vintage piece also creates a dark imbalance against the white and looks less inviting. I’m all for an upcycle but you need the guest powder room to be light bright inviting and easy to maintain. Looking forward to seeing your final decision.

  281. #2 for sure – like the introduction of the wood cabinet – it compliments the wallpaper perfectly; the white vanities just don’t pop, and it is a special little space.

  282. Have you given any thought to hacking Option 1? Cladding it in a really high end veneer and switching out the knobs and hinges might be enough to give you the best of both worlds. Not to mention, it would be a great content generator. I’d be so there for a high end IKEA hacking tutorial.

  283. I probably like the look of number two the best, I think the wood tone really warms that room up. However I am also in the middle of retrofitting a piece of furniture to become of that bathroom vanity and know what a headache it is. I also really love the look of number three, it has a formal feel that seems at home in that bathroom, playing off the wallpaper.
    The IKEA is FINE and I agree, if you had a normal person job, just leave it!!

  284. Option 2! This piece looks like the perfect size and style to compliment the other decor in the the bath. The wood finish warms up the room. The white options attracts your eye only to vanity, but the wood piece melts into the room and allows the gorgeous wallpaper to shine through!

  285. I like option 3 best. Have you considered painting it another color besides white? Maybe a color from the wallpaper or one that matches it?

  286. Absolutely in love with option 2 – sooooooo pretty & the perfect fit!!! Can’t wait to see the final result 🙂 Happy weekend from Germany!!

  287. I can’t UNSEE what I saw: the adorable rust stained sink in the BEFORE picture. I like the simplicity in old English houses of the tiny sink, wall hung, with exposed plumbing beneath.

    Go all out on the unlaquered brass faucet, find the heavy duty exposed pipe plumbing that will work and get a cute porcelain wall hung sink. The parts that matter in a house are where your hands touch: faucet gets number one priority, not the cabinet.

  288. Option 2 for sure. Option 3 is insane. Option 1 could be tweaked to make it work, change the faucet, change the knobs, maybe paint it?

  289. I think Option #2 is a good compromise between the two, I really feel like the space needs the wood to warm it up and it picks up the beautiful mirror. There is just something so dynamic about the contrast of the wood against all the white. Option 3 is just beautiful but almost 3K? For a cabinet? In a powder room? Obviously it is a viable option for you, but could that money be better spent elsewhere?

  290. Number 2, or go with IKEA and … remove doors, install new doors with curtain or install curtain without doors and put legs on bottom. Maybe something cool and unusual for legs. And paint it? And then replace it later. I’m going through the same thing with renovating a kitchen and two baths. At some point I must spend money where it is important and cut back elsewhere (or at least manage the cost explosion) so as to stop bleeding money … as you said.
    Trying to decide between Rohl Inca Gold and unlaquered brass for kitchen faucet. I love unlaquered brass and only now found out that the Inca Gold also is unlaquered. Any suggestions on unlaquered? Loving your house!

  291. I like option 1. Changing the facet yes. But pulling the cabinet slightly off the right wall to center mirror, paint the dark blue to match your background wall paper and adding some dummy legs to the front for character.

  292. No need to apologize – everyone who reads your blog understands why the IKEA vanity must go! Ha ha, we all obsess over things like that – it’s why we read your blog! To support and indulge other people’s design craziness so that we can feel supported and indulged in our own. I vote for #2 – I like the look of the wood and while it is perhaps not the perfect solution, it is the best of the options (without bleeding money)…

  293. I don’t like the IKEA cabinet at all…it cheapens the bead board element. I love #2, i think it’s fabulous and i love the contrast with the floor and bead board! Oh and i LOVE the wall paper!

  294. #2 is stunning! However, it would drive me bonkers if it wobbled or was unstable. If that is the case, I say #3 with a wood finish and a single door.
    If you can’t get the brass faucet in time, use the black, but the brass would be heavenly!
    Can you get the grill in a brass finish?

  295. #2 is beautiful! But, I have a small sink in my bathroom and water constantly splashes over onto the floor and occasionally all over me >:(
    If you could find a similar cabinet that could accommodate a slightly larger sink I think you’d have a winner! The warm wood against the cooler tones is gorgeous!

  296. I really like Option 2! I have a traditional style so that’s my favorite. I think it also looks a little mid-century, which I know is your jam too. Can’t wait to see what you pick!

  297. Option 3! If cost is really an issue I would say keep the ikea vanity. Option 3 is the most in line with the home and you will never side-eye it with regret.

  298. Can you put prettier/special hardware on number 1? Not just the faucet update?

    For cleaning, a floating cabinet is much nicer than one with legs. The music cabinet is gorgeous – but aren’t you already strapped for storage space?

    If you think you’re going to regret not having a different cabinet option in the future – might as well do it now – and in that case go with number 3 – so you aren’t needing to rip things out in just a few years.

  299. Why not just get the plumbing fixed and get the pedestal sink? I think it would be cheaper than all the options… and what you originally wanted.

  300. I would look for a better proportioned vintage piece OR have the cabinet made but with unpainted wood. I think the wood provides a link between the wall paper and bead board. I also think the legs on the vintage piece and the bespoke piece could be a bit more substantial/interesting.

  301. I’d keep the Ikea vanity – replace the faucet AND the knobs. Maybe even some wooden knobs to bring in teh warmth. Also think new doors on it would be relatively inexpensive to look more like 3.

  302. Option 2!!! It’s so you, but apart from that – I feel option 2 suits the scale of your mirror in there. If you went for either of the other two vanities I feel you would need a larger mirror.

    1. Saw you on Instastories and I think 2 is too small. Water everywhere. Find or make a larger version because the wood with marble is GORGEOUS! Use that particular piece somewhere else.

  303. This is a day late but please please please do option 2. While IKEA can look really great and even chic in the right context, this powder room needs something on legs / more furniture-y / more unique. Option 2 has some breathing room and feels appropriately scaled to the room and to the mirror, it adds a nice curve that relates to the curved mirror; whereas the IKEA piece is crammed against the wall, boxy, and doesn’t seem to have anything to say to the mirror or light.

    Option 3 would also be beautiful but not so much more beautiful than option 2 to merit the drastic price increase.

  304. I know it’s not one of the options, but I really feel your original plan of having a pedestal sink looks best. It feels like that’s what belongs in that bathroom. I don’t know how much it would be to change the plumbing to make it work, but it already seems like you’ll spend a lot on a vanity anyway. There’s so many pretty pedestal sinks at reasonable prices out there.

  305. I don’t like any of these options. So my suggestion and vote are to purchase another ‘out of the box’ piece that better suits the room and doesn’t break the bank. A nice, old-timey pedestal I think.

  306. I like the modify the Ikea cabinet or use #2 ideas, but what if you refurbished the original sink and used it, then did the water lines and p-trap in unlacquered brass? You could buy or plate/powder coat the ones you currently have or purchase–there would be lead time on that, but you could fake it with gold spray paint for a photo shoot if not done in time.

  307. #2! That cabinet is gorgeous and plays well with the mirror. #3 is too bulky, too fussy. and Ikea in that bathroom is sad.

  308. 100% Number 2 if the legs don’t end up squatty/weird. Number 3 second choice, but maybe w/fabric with some color–too much whiteness down below (which is also a good description of my wintertime body). Number 1 is a just, no.

    So into that circa lighting sconce and the paper.

  309. I say #2 for sure! And don’t cut it down! That’s the perfect excuse for an adult only bathroom! As a Mom of two, I encourage this! 😉 ikea does have a little stool you could hide in there but also maybe this could be the nice guest bathroom that kids don’t pee all over?! (Ha!)

  310. Form over function in a bathroom is never ideal. It should be functional first. Then prioritize design second. I too love the look of #2, but you said in your Instagram video the sink will be tiny and may be uncomfortable and impractical for washing hands. Which is the whole point of a sink in the bathroom. If I had to choose between giving people (especially kids) a place to safely and easily get any dirt/bathroom germs off their hands, vs. having something that looked perfect, I would pick function every time. Poop germs are more offensive than a generic vanity. Pick #1 and then you can upgrade to #3 someday if you really feel it’s important.

  311. That music cabinet is so pretty! And it will fit the space the best. Even the fact that it is extra tall is good because the mirror is on the smaller side.

    As soon as I saw it, I didn’t even need to see Option 3.

    Please do Option 2! Music cabinet + marble top + black faucet. It will be special and GORGEOUS!

  312. Option 2 is far more elegant and fitting. I’m happy to see the beautiful piece you bought from me being used and getting so much attention.

  313. This is a powder room. I believe very strongly that powder rooms, especially front of house, should be special “jewel boxes” this is the one quests will use. You have beautiful hand crafted wallpaper, you need to have a special piece for your sink. This is the first and last thing people will see in this space. So what if its a headache or a little extra work. Give your guest what they deserve #2 is beautiful and memorable.
    #1…. its rickety and cheap looking.
    #3 is common and better suited for a bathroom in the bedroom area.

  314. #2 looks so great with that mirror. Just the right width. The wider options both look awkward. Complicated but that is what you do!

  315. I think you are going to hate that Ikea vanity every time you go into the bathroom. #2 ‘feels’ right and looks great with the black faucet. Anyway to make the cabinet less rickety?

  316. Em, I think you should consider Option 4 — yes, I know, there’s no Option 4. But hear me out! I just re-did my bathroom and bought a prefab vanity from Lowe’s (by way of Craigslist) but had a custom marble vanity top with simple undermount sink made for it. The place is here in Oregon, and the price was surprisingly low — $250! Then we just picked out a cute faucet to go with it. It has the “furniture look,” but was cheaper than going entirely custom. Sidetone: I wish I could share a picture here to give you an idea of what I’m talking about! That Ikea vanity or another pre-made option could achieve a custom look without the custom price. Yes, the tiny wood one is absolutely adorable, but it is *tiny.* For me, the small sink, lack of storage and lack of places to set things on the top would all be frustrating factors. However, this is just a powder room we’re talking about, so maybe none of those things really matter too much. But if anyone ever plans to get ready in there, I think trying to balance makeup on either the Ikea porcelain top or a top for the antique wood piece would be an exercise in futility. I know whatever you come up with will be gorgeous as always though!

    1. I agree that there should be an option #4. I think you could paint the ikea cabinet and then add a marble top and under mount sink and you would get the custom look you are going for without as much of a custom price. Plus it would provide some contrast popping the vanity out from the white headboard and white floor which I think is part of the appeal of option #2 and #3. And it would allow you to customize the color to coordinate with your beautiful wallpaper.

  317. I LOVE option #2, but it might be because I am designing my own tiny wall papered + bead board, penny tiled, powder room and had imagined something very similar for mine. I think you’ll regret sticking with the ikea one, cause you already seem to, and I personally think the idea of fabric on the vanity is a little gross/ will be hard to keep clean…esp white, and with kids.

  318. I prefer 2 or 3. The Ikea looks blah…. not enough contrast with wall. Could you paint it?? wallpaper the front? Is there no ready made that can do the job?

  319. I’m digging #2 in a big way. Also, I like the black faucet because it makes sense with the light fixture and the mirror.😍

  320. Definitely 2 or 3. I don’t know if anyone else has suggested this but would it be sacrilege to trim a few inches off the legs of the old music cabinet if it is too high?

  321. Agree with some of the earlier comments about hacking #1 and maybe painting it.

    have you thought about changing the doors on option #1 and adding metal legs/hardware to match the faucet? I’m sure you’re familiar with Semi Handmade– they make custom cabinet doors for IKEA cabinets. Perhaps get doors custom designed to bring in wood tones, somewhat like this example?: http://www.decorotation.com/customizing-our-ikea-vanity/

    Number 2 is beautiful but seems so involved given everything else going on with the whole house design. I’m not a designer though so perhaps it just seems overwhelming to me!

  322. Beautiful wallpaper!
    A) For me it would feel insane to spend >2000$ on a vanity.
    B) Still feels crazy expensive to spend > 1500$ on a vanity, and a petite sink might be annoying over time. Also, it is a bit sad to destroy a vintage piece of furniture like that. But option number 2 is definitely the most pretty solution to me; the wood tone is perfection next to that wallpaper!
    C) I can’t believe you will install a two- grip faucet. But I already mentioned that when you installed it in the kitchen. Not funtional. And function always trumps looks in my life. But I believe you see it the other way around 😉

  323. It looks like #2 is a clear winner, it breaks up the vertical lines of the beadboard with that gorgeous organic grain, which #1 or #3 fail to do. If you want the vanity to be the showstopper of your powder room, then you should go with 2. If you do customize it to more suitable proportions, the you should just keep the golden ratio in mind and avoid cutting the legs down too much. Letting the sightlines be visible will make the tight space feel larger, which #1 does not achieve. That is my humble opinion. you will finally do something gorgeously functional in the end, like you always do.

  324. I like the idea of keeping the IKEA vanity and hacking it a little, but maybe I’m being to practical. There are so many other ways to spend the money and down the road if you really don’t like it, then change it. I love your redesign but I do hope you don’t regret losing the shower. When I study your blueprint, it looks like the den/playroom would be a perfect place to have a sofa bed for overnight guests, especially with the powder room adjoining. Having the shower would have been so useful. But since we’ve always needed a space for people to stay (usually family) that has always been a priority. And, with grandparents, or anyone who may have difficulty with stairs, it’s so nice to have a downstairs bathroom.

  325. What happened to the window?
    Your kiddos are going to beat that bathroom up. The wallpaper is beautiful, but sounds like it might not hold up to splashing maniacs. Spruce up the IKEA vanity so they can’t ruin everything in there. Or, if the plumbing is workable, the old vintage sink with a cute step stool slid under would photograph well and be kid friendly.

  326. It is a little weird to see ‘english country style’ when you live in the English countryside…. I was all for #1 BUT THEN! ##2 is super cute – ignoring costs (as it’s not my money and is get to live vicariously) I find that on the most aesthetically pleasing and cute/quirky

  327. To be totally honest, even though it’s going to be the biggest headache, I love Option 2. The antique cabinet is such a perfect contrast to the mirror and balances everything perfectly. Second choice is Option 3 – I do like that look of the curtain behind the mesh. The Ikea vanity looks fine, but I think it would always bug you. Hope that helps!

  328. #2 without a doubt. Even if it were more expensive I would choose that, the wood is perfection and with the wallpaper beadboard it’s amazing.

  329. Option 2! I usually vote for what works over $$$$, but the wood vanity looks so pretty and seems to fit the vibe in your home.

  330. Definitely option 2! I think this room needs the grounding injection of wood, and the grain on that piece is so pretty (not to mention the shape and scale!). Ditto to the black faucet, which anchors the mirror beautifully.

  331. This bathroom already looks SO gorgeous from what you’ve shared in the sneak peak.
    My vote would be #2! Love the warmth of the wood.
    (And may I add that if you’ve already bought vanity #2 and end up not using it, I’d buy it from you in a heartbeat!)

  332. Don’t cut the legs off #2 – it will lose all of its charm. Maybe keep #1 until you are ready to invest in 3? Also agree that 3 in woodtone could be nice.

  333. I like 2 and 3. There’s too much white with the lower walls, floors, toilet, and IKEA vanity. The wooden option is my favorite as it breaks up all the white. Option 3 I think would work as the fabric would be interesting and possibly break up the whiteness. The IKEA cabinet is a nice for now fix. Something looks off on the left door on it too. I say keep it for now until you can afford/have time to do the other option. Love the wall paper!

  334. Honestly, the custom option does not look $2900 cuter than the IKEA solution. Can’t you just put legs on the IKEA vanity and call it a day?

  335. #2!!! Or,#3 with a wood stain rather than white. The space seems so much warmer and tied together with the natural wood against the white beadboard.

  336. Option 2. Is it possible to trim down the legs an inch or two so its a little lower? Is the height our how narrow it is that bothers you proportionally?

  337. I vote for #3. If you’re going to replace the Ikea cabinet, which looks so out of place with all the lovely items in your house, better to get the cabinet you really want and is in the style of your kitchen rather than rip apart a cool little cabinet that actually could be used in a manner it was designed for…maybe sell it to help recoup a bit of the cost?

  338. If you’re still counting, OPTION 2, definitely, absolutely., no question! Simple but unique, and I think the warmth of the wood is so, so lovely with the wallpaper.

  339. Option 2#! I can’t ever resist wood like that. More than the other two I would see that in there and say to myself “Ooo, she thought about that! How special.”

  340. OPTION 2!
    Does anyone else have a hard time getting past the visual heaviness of the light over that tiny mirror? Love both pieces individually but together…

  341. It makes me a little sad to hear you talk about how you feel like you have to obsess over things like this because it’s your own house and you feel all this pressure since you’re a professional stylist… Whatever happened to “Perfection is boring; Let’s get weird”? 🙁

  342. I feel like I have so many thoughts on this! IKEA piece is not special enough to hang out with that fabulous wallpaper and mirror. Sorry, IKEA. I love love the second for the shape and wood tone but second your concerns for the longevity of retrofitting. The third kind of falls flat for me but I appreciate the quality. Maybe get a quote for a new #2 lookalike?! Good luck!

  343. With this set of options, I’m with the folks that pick #1, possibly with swapped out hardware/potentially added grate/curtain. I kind of like that it blends in as is though. The wallpaper and mirror have enough of an impact for me, but that’s maybe more a reflection of my preferences. It just doesn’t seem like the overall structure of #3 is that far what you already have.

    #2 and #3 just seem over the top and silly logistics-wise. For a real life person definitely not worth it for an actual design decision. But I get why they would be appealing for someone with an upcoming photo shoot, so no judgment here. Seems like a good compromise would be a nicer vanity that doesn’t require customization, but if that existed y’all probably would have found it already…

  344. Option number one could be a very good option if you changed it up a bit. I hate that cabinet in white, could be really pretty painted or remove the doors and do something similar as the curtains in number 3 with just replacing the door and adding some legs perhaps. This is the practical option that is a good option and the one that I would do (but I’m not having my house shot for hundreds of thousands to see!). Between #2 and #3 I would absolutely go with #2 or a version of that. The warmth of the wood and the authentic-ness of the antique piece just set off the space.

  345. I actually have that ikea cabinet in my laundry/powder room and if you change out the knobs it makes a world of difference! I got some pretty painted ceramic drop knobs from World Market, similar to the style of look #3’s knobs, and the cabinet is really cute now. That plus a new faucet may just do the trick. I put the Nana saffron wallpaper in the room as well and that helps heighten the look of the cabinet, like your stunning wallpaper will. Options 2 and 3 are really gorgeous though.

  346. Option 3 for me. I like the contrast between the white below and the wallpaper above but the ikea one is very ikea.

  347. #2, no question. It’s the most beautiful and interesting, and it’s also not the most expensive. It’s also the one you want to do, and the one that will make you the most happy every time you walk by and into it. If you can afford it without having to make major sacrifices elsewhere, do it.

  348. I really hope you went for the antique rug! I hope you will keep lots of these wonderful pieces to hand down to your kiddos one day! How cool would it be for Elliot to use that rug in her first apartment? They are just getting to the ages where they will start to remember their home. My mom is an (organized) hoarder and its been really fun for her to unearth my entire childhood as my daughter has grown over the last 3 years. My brother and I both have some furniture from our childhood home and even a few relics of our parents groovy 1970s existence before we came along. I know you are constantly redecorating, but I think that some of your most classic pieces can be reimagined over the years. I think it will mean a lot to your kids 🙂

  349. I’m a cheapskate, so I’d stick with the Ikea cabinet, paint it the wallpaper’s deep teal and change the knobs. I might even try some inverted vintage brass candlesticks as fake legs, but I’d probably end up spray painting them black to match the faucet.

    Lots of fabulous ideas here – and that mirror is lovely.

  350. Feeling compelled to weigh in (as requested!). If I Had to pick from these 3 options I would go with #2 all the way….no contest. MUCH prettier & more unique than 3. Love that cabinet. And the wallpaper is lovely. If I had a 4th option though it would be to Keep the Ikea cabinet frame, get yourself some of those hinged swing arm rods (brass? black?) for under the sink and have double panel fabric ‘doors’ without the expense of the 3rd option. Or even just a straightforward skirt? More texture. More colour! A 3rd (or 4th) Punch if you will. Like say, Chartruese? or Persimmon? or Raspberry? How bout a ‘nother pattern? A trad gingham or stripe perhaps? Just thinkin’ outloud. But definitely #2 if I have to choose. Love that cabinet.

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  352. i’d say customize the hell out of that ikea vanity: it is crying out for some fancy legs, and fancier hardware. I’d be VERY happy with that (but i am usually prety happy with ikea anyway).
    The music cabinet is beautiful but just reading about what needs doing was stessing me out, especially as it’s going in a bathroom next to plumbing! (god I sound boring)
    The rest is super pretty, i love seeing your house renovation!
    alice x