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I Design, You Decide – The Master Bathroom

Today is the day, and oh my gosh am I ready. It’s like I’ve been playing bingo for months and I have B. I. N. G. and the host keeps pulling the ball out but just holds it and says nothing…for what feels like an eternity. I want to scream with joy that I can finally share this post with you. The master bath is down to two design plans that Brian and I are BOTH EQUALLY happy with. You read that right. We don’t care which one you choose, because we both really, really like them (although we KNOW what you will choose). But wait, before going into that, I have a BIG announcement…I’m happy to finally tell you that I’m working with Kohler as a spokesperson for 2018 – turns out that being a fan of their products and generally charming (plus the bonus that they like my work, too!) makes for a really great partnership. I’ll be using their product in both renovations (Portland and Mountain) showing a variety of styles, finishes and a lot of new product that you have NEVER SEEN BEFORE, including some ‘intelligent’ features that are going to blow you away. More on that below, but a big thank you to Kohler for partnering with me on these bathrooms…now I just need Kohler, Brian and all 5 million of you to like what I’ve put together. NO (water) PRESSURE.

I’m OBSESSED with this bathroom. As someone who has previously never had a ‘master’ bathroom, who doesn’t have time to go to the spa (super sad story, I know), has a demanding career and two little kids who are pretty much the best human beings on the planet but who drain me (have the bathroom puns started already?) I’m DYING for this spa bathroom. So when Kohler expressed a desire to show off a lot of their spa and intelligent features, I could have cried. Yes, I will do that for you, Kohler.

Let’s revisit the space.

As you may or may not remember, the ‘master bedroom’ was long and windowless, so that is becoming the kids/bunk room and we are stealing from it to create a proper master bathroom suite.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper Master Bath Floor Plans With New NotesEmily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper Master Bath Floor Plans With New Notes2

The new master is a combination of the old jacuzzi room, the old powder room and some of the old master (the new bunk room).

Emily Henderson Lake House Intro Before Plans Grid Master Bathroom New 04

The suite will be amazing, one day. But there are a lot of things that need to change first.

Emily Henderson Lake House Intro Before Plans Grid Powder Room New

It may be hard to visualize and honestly, it was such a confusing space to even be inside.

Since we are working with Kohler on this, we spent a lot of time at their showroom testing out all the product – literally sitting in the tubs. The new Kohler Experience Center in LA is legitimately BEAUTIFUL and lets you actually experience the pieces in every way, making bathroom design SO much easier. I didn’t personally take a bath, but I did put my hand under the ‘Real Rain’ shower head and immediately was convinced I needed it (it feels like warm rain on you and it’s magical). We chose to make the bathrooms as ‘intelligent’ as possible, which is a big leap for us. I’m secretly intimidated by tech in the home (What if it breaks? What if I lose the remote?) but the conveniences are just too good to deny (and there are no remotes to lose).

So first, let’s talk about the Kohler product that we chose as obviously the function of the bathrooms is pretty darn important. I’ve used Kohler for years – first drawn to the lines of the faucets, and then, of course, their function. But they have more than just faucets – their collections include vanities, sinks, mirrors and more. The quality is high and the customer service is GREAT. They are a lovely company, founded in the Midwest and still family owned – I like that sort of stuff, a lot.

They have both traditional, transitional and modern fixtures and finishes – and so many to choose from. For the Portland house, we chose product with more traditional lines, so for this room, I wanted to go more modern and streamlined.

First up: the vanity area.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper I Design You Decide Master Bath Final Kohler Product Vanity 03

  1. The Jute Vanity is very simple and modern – totally streamlined and functional. The main reason we chose this one over some of the other vanities for this bathroom is that it’s going to look built-in. It’s flanked by two walls and will actually look more customized for the space than one with legs that sits on the floor. I had this vanity in our old master bathroom and it’s great – with lots of fun bells and whistles inside like roll out appliance storage, electrical outlets and more. It comes in a few different finishes, but we kept with the linen white. We’ll customize the hardware based on what happens with the lighting.
  2. The Wall-mount Purist Faucet in polished brass is AMAZING. As part of my partnership with Kohler, I was really excited to preview their finish to order program. Here’s the deal: I’ll be able to personalize select faucets by choosing the style I love (Purist for the master) and then bringing it to life with the finish of my choice. The faucets are then made to order (you can visit your local Kohler Signature Store or Kohler Experience Center to learn more about the program). I’ve had the deck mount in the brushed brass before which is also lovely, but I’ve made a turn back toward the polished (if it’s in a modern shape). Polished in a more decorative/traditional shape just didn’t fit into my dream for this space. In a simple modern shape, it’s so beautiful.
  3. We are doing the wall-mount faucet with undermount sink and chose the simple Caxton Sink. (The vanity pictured shows their countertop but we will do stone with undermounts).

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper I Design You Decide Master Bath Final Kohler Product Four Bathtub Options

The bathtub was hard to choose, mostly due to a form versus function thing. I essentially had four different tubs to choose from:

  1. A drop-in tub (the Underscore). It’s no secret that these can provide the most back support and can potentially have the most ‘features’ – like a bubble massage air bath (seriously, imagine swimming in champagne). But the space ached for a free-standing tub and a drop in, housed in a large rectangular home, would really cut off the flow of the room.
  2. The more ergonomic freestanding Veil. This is really beautiful and the shape of it fits the bay window, but as the ‘chalet’ moved more towards ‘cabin,’ I was afraid that it would be too much of a departure from everything else that is more minimal and classic.
  3. The unbelievably beautiful free-standing Ceric. This is what I had settled on. Its shape is stunning and it is so classic that I KNEW we couldn’t possibly regret it.


I realized that I was basically turning down the opportunity to have thousands of bubbles massage my body every second. I was choosing form over function – as a stylist typically would. I projected myself into the future, after a long day playing with the kids in the snow, super cold outside, a glass of red wine in my hand…would I rather have a heated tub with bubbles and back support or a beautiful classic tub in which to soak?

So I went back to Kohler’s site and found the Sunstruck – a freestanding tub that has the heated surface and the bubbles. I emailed Kohler faster than anyone has ever typed and said ‘HOLD THAT BATHTUB ORDER BECAUSE I JUST FOUND MY PERFECT TUB’. They made the switch and honestly, I’m so happy.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper I Design You Decide Master Bath Final Kohler Product Bath Sunstruck

Sunstruck was the perfect mix of ‘modern freestanding’ with ‘intelligent spa.’ In the bath area, we have a floor-mount tub filler for my (much anticipated) long and luxurious soaking sessions. It was a very stressful decision…I need a bath with bubbles just thinking about it.

Of course, we have the Purist in polished brass as the roman tub filler – it’s stunning and in front of those windows this tub and faucet moment will be HOT.

Onto the shower room, which is 4’x5′ with a luxurious bench.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper I Design You Decide Master Bath Final Kohler Product Shower Final

The shower is the real ‘spa moment.’ It’s a steam room, body hydrotherapy and shower all in one. I’m never going to leave and all future posts will be written from the shower.

  1. Here’s how we are going to accomplish my spa shower. We went SMART and thanks to Kohler’s water-saving faucets, our water bill won’t be insane.
  2. A DTV+ Digital Interface. 2015 Emily would have been terrified by this, but 2018 Emily is EXTREMELY excited to set my water temperature and with the press of a button it will magically be that perfect 97 degrees. I tried it at the Kohler Experience Center and found it super intuitive and easy. There will be no manual controls inside – just the DTV inside and outside. I can set my temp and Brian can set his – multiple users, folks. You can switch from Real Rain to body spray to handshower with a push of the button. And if you don’t live in California, you can even have three showerheads that perform all these different spa-like therapies on your body at the same time. I was SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS. I know that I can’t have all three showerheads on at the same time since we live in a water-regulated state, but Kohler offers a DTV+ Eco system so even us Californians can enjoy a luxury shower while being mindful of our water use. 2018 Emily likes a little pampering now and again. You can choose the spa settings and they will automatically spray you in a symphony of cold and hot water from toes to head.
  3. Real Rain Panel. Do you like standing in warm rain whilst naked? ME TOO. It’s soft and relaxing and just magical. It varies in the water pressure, giving you the real feeling of soft, summer rain. It’s AMAZING. I’m putting it near the bench area because it may be the kind of thing you want to sit down for while shaving legs, etc.
  4. Body Sprays. At first, I didn’t understand what this would really do, but they sold me on hydrotherapy. Hell, if you put the word ‘therapy’ after anything I’ll sign up for it.
  5. Steam Shower. It’s the pot filler of bathrooms in that it’s not necessary but you get STRANGELY excited at the thought of it. And at a mountain house with cold snowy temps in the winter, you bet I’ll be sitting in (and letting off) a lot of steam this winter (and summer). It’s good for your body, brain and soul. I’ll call it ‘Steam Therapy’ and 2018 Emily is so excited to sign up and sit down.
  6. Handshower Kit. A handshower was something we didn’t put in either of our bathrooms in LA to save money (we thought ‘why and when do you use these?’) Well, I really wished we had. The kids’ hair (for one) and my legs (for two) both wish that we had the convenience of a handshower.
  7. Obviously, we will be mindful of water waste (the drought is over, but we live in SoCal so it will likely come back). The Purist Showerhead has the air induction technology which delivers an ‘invigorating spray’ while reducing water by 20%.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper I Design You Decide Master Bath Final Kohler Product Water Closet1

For the toilet room (which no longer has a door on it since we had to reduce the size of the wall as it made the room so much smaller), we went with one of their intelligent toilets because our bums deserve it. That’s right. This toilet basically sings to you. It opens when you walk toward it and closes when you leave (no more touching the seat, ladies or gents). A remote control (that is mounted to the wall) will determine your (ahem) personal hygiene cleaning level – and even dry it! It has dual flush capability and there is even a nightlight. Before we even thought of buying this house, my best friend bought this toilet, and I was convinced I wanted it one day in the future. Using her water closet was an absolute pleasure. You don’t even need toilet paper! It’s heated. It greets you by lifting up and does all (fine, most) of the work for you. I never thought that I would be a person who owned this toilet, and frankly unless this is easily within your budget, then I’d say of course you don’t need this intelligent of a toilet. I never regretted having a normal toilet and want to emphasize that this is not something you NEED. But if you have a budget for a smart toilet, I can recommend this one highly. If you want the experience at a lower price tag, Kohler has a great line of toilet seats with cleansing features that you can just add to your regular toilet.

The Kohler products are pretty amazing – both in look and function. So the challenge is, how do you make those sleek and modern pieces work in a cabin?

That was probably my biggest challenge and why this took so long.

Dear ladies and gentlemen of the blog world, without further ado, I’d love to introduce you to the two design plans that we have finally, FINALLY, narrowed it down to. It’s like Miss America for bathrooms, with less bikinis and more faucets, yet full of intelligent statements.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper I Design You Decide Master Bath Final Option One For Blog Final

It’s Modern Mountain, with a Contemporary Cabin bent. Both of these plans have elements of nature (wood and stone) but in finishes that feel more updated and less ‘rustic ’90s mountain house’ (no offense to those, because I’m sure that can be great, just not what we were going for here) and more airy, simple and Scandinavian. That first plan was easy to design and I didn’t really change it much. Some things might slightly change (I may put a 6″ marble backsplash behind the wall-mount faucet) and I might just do one wall of the toilet room instead of all four up to 50″ high. But the materials and general vibe won’t.

The whole space will be warmed up with wood on all three HUGE windows and a vaulted wood ceiling.

We have also intentionally left off the sconces, mirror and hardware as I really want to tell a whole story with those throughout the house and not just choose them per room. I had some on there and then took them off realizing that an overall plan was needed first, but this post couldn’t wait.

Let’s go through each element.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper Master Bath I Design You Decide Material Board Option One 1

  1. The ceiling wood tone is TBD as we haven’t locked that down yet, but will likely be a medium tone. We exposed the ceiling and vaulted it and I’m very excited – but we have to put in insulation and there is ducting, so we will re-clad over that in new wood. The vaulting did create some awkward ceiling height issues in the shower, which we are troubleshooting but it’s worth the height we gained.
  2. The vanity backsplash is this new tile from Cle that is handmade and SO PRETTY. It has so much movement and that color of blue is one that I will NEVER get sick of.
  3. We wanted a contrasting shape/scale for the shower surround so I chose this beautiful (also handmade) tile from Ann Sacks. It’s STUNNING in person.
  4. The floor is a white pebble tile and yes I’m still nervous about it, but also excited. Brian has been pro-pebble since second one, so I love how much he will love it.
  5. The countertop, shower floor and WC floor will all be a natural stone that we source at a stone yard. I will likely go with a leather finish as opposed to honed or polished because it’s the most visually warm option.
  6. The faucets are all so beautiful in a polished brass and that bit of shine takes it to another level and gives it the EH stamp. I seriously debated the black finish, but when they confirmed I could get the Purist in polished brass with the new finish to order program, we committed.

On to the second option.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper I Design You Decide Master Bath Final Option Two For Blog Final 01

This second design is lighter, airier and plays more with texture than the first. It has less color, but a little more drama and warmth. You think on first glance that you like the first one more, right? Well, look at these textures…

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upper Master Bath I Design You Decide Material Board Option Two

For this one we have:

  1. The same wood ceiling – again TBD.
  2. The shower surround tile is this insane tiny Thassos mosaic from Artistic Tile that bounces the light around in a stunning way. It’s slightly more glam than I thought we’d go but in person, it’s just beautiful.
  3. The flooring is a dark gray pebble that I’m kinda more excited for than the white. With dark grout, I think it’s going to be really dramatic. If we don’t do it here we’ll likely do it in a guest bath because I really love it.
  4. The vanity backsplash is a STUNNING handmade white tile. It is not super rustic or farmhouse-y. It’s more refined, creamy and soft.
  5. The marble for the countertop and the shower bench are both TBD but they will likely be a stone that we source at a stone yard with warmer tones. Think Calacatta Gold versus Carrara (which has a lot more gray in it).

Am I tempted to mix both designs and have the tile surround from option #1 with the white tile of option #2(???) YES but I have to stop the decision-making at some point. I’m also super interested in using the dark pebble with the darker tile, but I MUST JUST STOP.

Once you choose between these then I’ll give you the hardware, lighting and mirror combo options (and by then we might know the wood on the ceiling).

I love them BOTH so much. And so does Brian. In neither of them do I have any MAJOR concerns, although both of them might be tweaked – I have to reserve the right to change things once in the field. But tile must be ordered. Stone must be sourced. It’s your turn to be the decider.

After all of that, it’s time for you vote: WHICH ONE DO YOU CHOOSE???????

[SBEH_POLLS poll_id=”144154″][SBEH_GIVEAWAY_ENTRY id=”144154″]

I’m dying to know, although we both think there is a FOR SURE winner. In case you are wondering what this whole ‘I Design, You Decide’ thing is (and want to know what you can win by voting) go HERE.

If you need more information or want to watch the whole process, please enjoy this non-sponsored video. It was the first time that Brian and I did a video together just for fun, and not going to lie – it WAS.

***Thanks to Kohler for partnering with me on this post and these bathrooms. Obviously, we have a few more designs to do, but knowing what you choose here will definitely affect the direction of the rest of the bathrooms.

Update: Check out all of The Mountain House REVEALS here: The Kids’ Bedroom | The Kitchen The Kitchen Organization | The Kitchen Appliances | The Powder Bath | The Living Room | The Downstairs Guest Suite | The Loft | The Hall Bath | The Upstairs Guest Bath | The Dining Room | The Family Room

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6 years ago

Number 1 is more bold

6 years ago
Reply to  Alice

I think option 2 is bolder mostly due to the marble. It has more movement and color which can make it more challenging to work with, but ultimately provides more payoff.

6 years ago

Vote: Option 2!!!!

Tech problem: I’m on a cell and I have the Twitter and Pinterest apps and even though I shared on those platforms, I didn’t get more contest entries.

6 years ago

Lovely options as always! I really really liked the number 1, I felt it was a bit more of that light and airy Scandinavian design, especially the marble. But my functional side simply couldn’t push the button on a white floor. It would be an agony to clean. So number 2 it was for me.
Also as a Finnish (almost, kind of partly Scandinavian I think) designer it’s really fun to see how you interpret Scandinavian design style. A design which is an everyday and mundane thing in my life and a style I necessarily don’t even see clearly anymore. Of course your design is with an American (Californian?) flare, but still, so lovely.
I’ve learned a lot so thank you :).

6 years ago

Love them both, option 1 seems a bit more cabin fitting, what is the consensus on how the white stone will wear? Will it look dingy?

6 years ago
Reply to  Leigh

I agree–it will get dull if use light grout. I have a white floor with white grout and I have found it is major upkeep to keep it looking clean!!

6 years ago

I’m liking the dark floor on, I’ll be the first to say it, #2. (tee hee, i said number two!!!)

6 years ago

I would normally go for dark floor, white tile, but I totally agree: #1 is the bolder choice. Go bold!!

6 years ago

Option 1 all the way!

6 years ago

My vote was for number 1, but I’d sub the dark pebble floor for the white. The white flour is going to be a bear to keep clean, unless you are doing white pebbles with dark grout. I think the darker tile on the wall will be more fitting for a cabin.

6 years ago

Love elements of both, but the darker stone on the floor is just right. It won’t stain or show as much mountain dirt, sand. Totally go dark stone even if you end up marrying different elements together from both designs.

Kayla aka Kilo Bravo
6 years ago

I voted for #2…but my favorite elements are the Ann Sacks triangle tile from #1 and the warmer creamy marble countertop in #2! The herringbone is beautiful for sure, but it feels a little too glam in a spa shower that is supposed to calm you, if that makes sense? What are you doing on the rest of the walls – just sheetrock painted white or another color? Any other texture like shiplap/board and batten/wainscoting? I also say you gotta keep the stone flooring the darker color.

I was loving all the inspiration when we thought we were buying a B&B in the catskills, but now we’ve pivoted and are buying an 80’s contemporary as just a regular house and keeping our day jobs (bummer) but it is still seriously and gloriously 80’s fixtures throughout and once again, I’m feeling like I can steal half of the ideas from the mountain house for the contemporary! (There is zero inspiration out there for update contemporaries other than the Lauren Leiss home, so thank you).

6 years ago

“I voted for #2…but my favorite elements are the Ann Sacks triangle tile from #1 and the warmer creamy marble countertop in #2!” I feel the same and voted the same. I would ultimately like to see a little mix of both versions.

6 years ago
Reply to  Addie

I agree too, #2 but love the Ann sacks tile.

Melinda Hall
6 years ago

Agreed on this too! The darker flooring is an absolute must, but the triangles in #1 feel more fitting. I also love the warmer marble! In a world full or beautiful marble (which I’m a sucker for), it would be so fun to see something other than Carrara used.

6 years ago
Reply to  Melinda Hall

GAH. if #2 gets chosen then I’m DEFINITELY going to use that white ann sacks tile somewhere in the house. I LOVE IT. heck, maybe I will use it in the shower. I can mix the two right? Or will people be so mad????!!!

6 years ago
Reply to  Emily

I totally think you could do the Ann sacks tile in 2 because it is GORG, but I’m hoping 1 wins because I’m dying over that navy backsplash.

6 years ago
Reply to  Emily

Not mad.

6 years ago
Reply to  Emily

I would love if you’d mix. 🙂 The first option is great, but the white pebbles will be a pain.
And I wonder – isn’t it impractical to use a faucet with two handles?? I live in Europe and I don’t remember seeing one installed in my adult life. As beautiful as your faucet is, I can’t get over of the simplicity of a single handle – and there are many pretty ones too.
I also wondered what is the deal with built-in kitchen devices in USA, loved reading your post about possible changes in your house!

6 years ago
Reply to  Nataša

Also in Europe, but don’t dig the single-handle tap. I find two way easier to use! And prettier. Different strokes, I suppose. 🙂

Definitely down for mixing the two bathroom designs.

Anna from France
6 years ago

Emily, I don’t think you are giving as real two choices. For me both bathrooms look identical. From a distance the minor details such as shape of a tile or pattern in a marble are indistinguishable. It is more of a question: black wall vs black floor. Don’t you think? I predict 49% vs 51% for one or the other.

Olive from Greece
6 years ago

Totally agree! Right now it’s 48% to 52%, so your prediction isn’t far off at all!

6 years ago

Cracking up here; when I voted it was exactly 49/51. They are super-similar. Option 2 takes it for me because of the dark floor. Both for practicality and somehow it’s more aesthetically pleasing and feels more ‘cabin’, somehow. I think it’s the combo of dark floor/vaulted ceiling, which reminds me of a forest – all shade at ground level, then you look up, up, up to the treetops. But maybe that’s just fanciful!

Meg Lec
6 years ago

Love option two, but that shower surround in option one has me heart!

6 years ago

I vote 1

6 years ago

The link to the “Underscore” tub takes you to the wrong tub. Do you mind fixing this – I would love to look at the Underscore you were talking about and there are A LOT of tubs called underscore on their site. Thanks!

6 years ago
Reply to  katy

Sorry about that! It’s been updated to the correct link in the post.

6 years ago

Will you link to the vanity backsplash tile for option 2 please? I love it!

patricia blaettler
6 years ago

In regard to cleaning, it’s not necessarily the white pebbles which need to be kept clean, but the grout…
Get down on your hands and knees with a brush… argghhhh
Otherwise, both designs are beautiful. Good luck.

Vicki S Williams
6 years ago

There is a more expensive grout that I always use, (renovating 3 bathrooms and the whole house actually) that doesn’t stain . A little more wore evidently and expense but totally worth it . Obviously they have other colors. I am putting a Marine penny tile on a counter top so am using this particular color. If you don’t go with Custom Building Products brand I am sure other brands have a similar epoxy product.

6 years ago

So fancy! Enjoy

6 years ago

Option 2, because it ventures away from your normal style a bit more.

6 years ago

I voted for option #1, but I think the dark flooring in option #2 may be a better choice?!?

Julie S
6 years ago

Ooh, great choices. And I LOVED the fun video you guys did, very reality flavored LOL. I picked choice 1 for two reasons – first, it seems like every bathroom reno lately out there is doing dark slatey floors and white everything else, so it doesn’t feel new, it feels farmhouse trend. The dark tile on the walls seems more mountainy and modern to me. I remember one of your bathroom inspo pics from way back had a dark gray tile on the vanity wall and I was so struck. Second, I really like the shapes of the tiles in choice one – may be a pictures vs real life effect but they do seem more interesting than the white oblongs of choice 2. As usual, either will be great in the end, I’m sure! Just put lots of protective clear coat on that wood ceiling, mkay?

6 years ago

Both are very nice and both seem like they would be difficult to clean. ridges in the first one, the sacks tiles, seem impossible.
The white pebbles a nightmare.
I also don’t understand the obsession today with putting a wall next to the toilet. Are people having parties in their bathrooms? doesn’t the bathroom already have a door for ‘privacy? tiny little spaces for toilets seem weird to me.

Alexandra Rose
6 years ago
Reply to  Terri

Hi Terry, I think when you are sharing a bathroom with your partner and you are both tryinh to get ready in the morning, it’s nice to have a little bit of privacy on the toilet. It keeps the mystery alive 😉

6 years ago
Reply to  Alexandra Rose

uh, not really.

6 years ago
Reply to  Terri

Terri, totally! I can just about understand if it’s a small city space where you both might use the bathroom at the same time, but in a holiday home with an abundance of bathrooms and toilets, I’d prefer to avoid the claustrophobic feeling too. Gives it an almost cubicle feel, like a public loo.

6 years ago

Is it just me or are they virtually the same? Still not a fan of the pebble tile. Bummed that it’s in both options.

6 years ago
Reply to  Mary

I sort of agree…we aren’t really deciding…which is fine as it’s not my house but…why the build up?

Liz Gornall
6 years ago
Reply to  Ann

I agree – they are both lovely but very similar, so of course either way everyone wins. However, once again – I would love, love, love to have either, maybe number 2 slightly more.

6 years ago

I’m just loving how educational this blog is! So many design blogs post endless pretty pictures but when I read this one, I almost always learn something. I would never have dreamed about the smart technology available for today’s bathroom reno! I can’t wait to see how it all looks and love picturing your family enjoying all the spa-like benefits at your mountain retreat.

6 years ago

I am so into geometric shapes right now, so I LOVE the tile in option 1! Swoon city

Cate Nicholaisen
6 years ago

The white backsplash & white vanity feel very contemporary, not sure I see that for this mountain home. And as much as I love the idea of the grey pebble floor, for some reason it feels very 90’s to me. I can understand everyone’s hesitation to do a white-ish pebble floor for cleaning reasons, but I feel you’d have a go around for that ;). Big votes for dark vanity backsplash from me!

6 years ago

I would be surprised if there were a “FOR SURE winner.” These two options are nearly identical in terms of overall vibe.

6 years ago

I love the continuity of option 2. The dark tile on the wall behind the sink and the light on others bothers me and feels less cohesive. Love both, but definitely option 2. Plus, dark floors feel more grounded and natural.

6 years ago

This was soooo hard to choose. I love them both. Seriously, Brian Henderson, that video is sooo amazing! You guys have really upped the game. What pros ?❤️?

6 years ago

I get why youre having the door from the master swing in and to the right (so it doesn’t bang up against the shower is my guess?) but thats going to be so awkward in real life. It’s begging for a pocket door or to swing out into the bedroom.

6 years ago
Reply to  Mari

Agreed. It looks like the windows would prevent a pocket door. As much I dislike barn doors, maybe this is a solution on the side of the bedroom. It would serve a good function.

6 years ago
Reply to  Josh

Right you are about the windows, Josh – I guess I’d just as rather swap the toilet and shower and swing the door inwards right to left. That way the toilet is tucked behind the door for privacy and that beautiful shower (instead of the toilet) is in your line of vision when you walk in.

Also, my vote is for option two!

6 years ago

Again so hard to choose! I thought I loved the shower tile in option #1, but then option #2 came along and charmed me away from #1. With the wood vaulted ceilings, this is going to be a bathroom I’ll want to live in! Except if the power goes out. What does happen then w/ the toilet and shower???

6 years ago

For option #2 (my personal fave), can you share this tile?: “The vanity backsplash is a STUNNING handmade white tile. It is not super rustic or farmhouse-y. It’s more refined, creamy and soft.”
Thank you! I’ve been looking for a handmade white subway/square tile, not quite as extreme as the cle zelig, somewhere halfway between that and a generic.
Also, the Kohler sink faucet is the exact one I’ve picked, but I never knew that polished brass was a finish option.
So that complicates things! 🙂

emily jane
6 years ago

number 1 buuuut with the dark stone floor -partly for ease of use/keeping clean but also to bring balance to the ah-may-zing blue vanity backsplash tile : )

Vicki S Williams
6 years ago
Reply to  emily jane

ME too! Exactly!

6 years ago

I am not feeling the Ann Sacks shower/WC surround in option one for some reason (I think the shape feels too trendy) and am loving the dark pebbles and warmer marble of option 2. So I vote option 2!

6 years ago

Number 1 is my fave! Except for the white floor. I have one in my kitchen and noooo thank you.

When will you post the bathroom rules? I NEED it in my life!!

6 years ago

I have to go with option 1! Feels warm and woodsy, while still being sophisticated

6 years ago

Option 2. Love the warmer marble countertops and the dark floor.

6 years ago

for aesthetics? option 1. HANDS DOWN. that’s what i voted for. BUT. if i was actually going to live in that bathroom, there is no way i’d do a white floor. LOL. even if they are pebbles, sounds like a huge pain in the ass to spend that much time cleaning in a vacation house. BUT, i’m hopeful for you that you have the budget to just have a cleaner take care of that nonsense 😉 SO, option 1 FTW

6 years ago

Option 1 hands down…the airiness of option 2 is beautiful, but I think people crave more colors and moodiness these days than airiness (especially in a mountain house).

6 years ago
Reply to  abby

Can always add color throw accessories and keep the versatility of the bathroom. 2 feels more timeless.

6 years ago

Both of these are nice, but neither one is thrilling me. They also read as basically interchangeable if the dark floor is flipped with the vanity backsplash. The one element that strikes me as a bit unusual and exciting is the Ann Sacks tile, but I wonder if it will show up well in photographs when so much of the room is white. That tile in grey throughout the bathroom could be striking.

6 years ago

I voted Option 2 but only because the white pebbles just seem like such a bad idea! Otherwise I like Option 1 better because I think that dark wall will look so lovely with all those windows.

6 years ago

Option 1 all. the. way!

I ALMOST pulled the trigger on a black tile bathroom backsplash and picked the safer option of white and still have regrets to this day. My next bathroom tile backsplash will definitely be black. It’s just SO GOOD. The white pebbles feel so modern-mountain spa and I’m obsessed. Do it, girl!

Rachel Alexander
6 years ago

It is a toss-up for me. I love both designs. I ended up voting for option 2 solely because of the darker floor with dark grout. White pebble floor tile looks lovely, but scares me from a daily functional perspective. Love what you are doing with the mountain house. Thanks as always for sharing your process.

6 years ago

Because I’m insufferable, I feel the need to point out that a 97 degree shower would be COLD. Water needs to be hotter than body temp to feel warm. I think the average shower temp is like 105.

Also, my $0.02, a marble shower bench (if you actually plan to sit on it, as opposed to just prop your foot for shaving purposes) will be cold AF. If you intent to plop your (naked) butt on it, plz get a wood bench (teak or something water friendly).

Love both, but I’m super into black (or dark) floors and lighter walls in bathrooms right now, so option 2 is my fave!

Vicki S Williams
6 years ago
Reply to  Rachel

Definitely agree about a teak butt friendly shower bench, much more comfortable in every way plus the teak would relate to the ceiling and other wood elements, more Mountain home.

Michaela Cornelius
6 years ago

One! So dramatic and pretty! It’s a win win decision for sure though

6 years ago

Both options are gorgeous. I have a preference for option 1, as I think that deep blue (?) vanity backsplash really pulls you in, but I seriously love the black pebble tile in option 2. You can’t do pebble tile everywhere, but I’m so glad you’re doing it here!

6 years ago

Emily, I am so bummed that I cannot tell you. We are getting ready to trigger a master bath remodel, and I LOVE the Purist faucets. But…NOW THEY HAVE DISCONTINUED THE POLISHED GOLD??? Why, if you can get them, nobody else can get them? It is a serious bummer when you show product that’s gorgeous and inspiring, but then….gone.

6 years ago
Reply to  Karyn

I believe Emily said she was able to get the Purist line in polished gold through Kohler’s new “finish to order” program, where the products are made to her specifications… So it sounds like that particular combo isn’t available on the shelf (at least not anymore), but made-to-order through that program.

6 years ago
Reply to  Karyn

The faucets I chose are in Vibrant Polished Brass, but Kohler just started a new finish program that can help you find the Polished Gold options – they recommend that you call your local Kohler Signature Store or Kohler Experience Center for more information on the program. They also have a fantastic Customer Service team if you need help finding a local store! 1-800-4-KOHLER

Sarah C.
6 years ago

In #1, I don’t like the pebble flooring with the texture/shapes of the shower surround/WC walls. Also, I’m tortured (TORTURED) by some white bathroom floor tile and my big black dogs (and their hair) in a current rental bathroom, so maybe I’m also biased because of that. I’m a solid #2…

Lindsey F
6 years ago

I like both options equally! Voted for #1 because I love the moody vanity tile and the white pebble floors feel fresher.

One question I have is the marble bench in the shower. Stunning, yes! I’ve never had marble in my home, but I hear so much about how fragile it is to stains. Would a shower that’s not used every day have problems with staining on a horizontal surface subject to water and soaps every day? Especially in an enclosed steam shower? In a home where the HVAC is turned way back while away? I’m just imagining nasty brown stains in the corners of the bench.. Hope you’ve considered all this and my worries aren’t valid!

6 years ago
Reply to  Lindsey F

I would worry about the same thing if it were my house! I’d want to set shampoo bottles and such on the bench, but be afraid they would leave a stain if I left them there too long. Maybe the marble in option 2 would be more forgiving since it has the warmer tones in it to start with?

6 years ago
Reply to  Lindsey F

Plus one. If you want to stick to natural stone for the bench, I’d strongly recommend quartzite over marble. It’s pricier but not porous with a similar look.

6 years ago

Also one more thing – option 1 has all of the tiles linked but option two doesn’t. Can you like to sources? I am loving the handmade tiles in option 2 but have no idea where you found them. FYI, option 2 is my fave…I am all about texture. Option one seems slightly more fussy to me. Thanks!!

Vicki S Williams
6 years ago

I love #2 but please please please use that bluish tile for the vanity splash along with the dark stone floor. It’s so gorgeous! And it seems like it would balance the room more. Love all the other elements so much. Can hardly wait!