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DIY Home Improvement: Budget Bathroom Makeover for $265

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This budget bathroom makeover project started when I thought we were going to move. Those plans changed and then I saw an inexpensive brown damask shower curtain while browsing at HomeGoods.

I loved it and that was all the incentive I needed to get started to give a bathroom in my house a before and after room makeover.

Budget Bathroom Makeover

This bathroom has come a long way from the builder beige and stock cabinets that came with the house when we first moved in.

My girls were little then, now they are 34 and 31. They grew up using this bathroom.  My youngest is coming home tonight for a few days. I can’t wait to see her reaction to the way the bathroom looks now.


Since my daughters are no longer living at home this bathroom is basically unused. I could make a mess and leave all my tools out. I never cleaned it all up until  last week.

It was very nice working this way, plus I was in no rush.  I truly took my time as I did everything myself, except for putting in the new light fixture. I don’t do electrical or plumbing – that is hubby’s contribution.

I have recapped everything I did for this bathroom makeover in this post and have included links to the actual tutorials if you would like all the specifics for each project.

Bathroom BEFORE Makeover


Here is the AFTER


Bathroom Update:

Spa like bathroom makeover for under $300

It has been a few years since I made over and posted about this bathroom.

Check out how I tweaked it with nothing more than new fabric for the window valance,  a shower curtain, and towels.  Notice my photography skills have improved also. :-)

Read about it in this post:  Why I Like Decorating with White and Neutral Colors

Now back to how I did everything to make this bathroom over for $265.

How To Add a Decorative Front to a Bathtub with Beadboard and Molding

There is one of those modular shower enclosures in this bath that I had to keep as this was truly a budget project.

I wanted to make it blend into the background as much a possible so I made a bead board frame to hide the front. The other way I made it less noticeable was to paint the room’s walls the same color as the enclosure.


My initial plan was to make the decorative front in front of the tub – level with it, but I would have had to move the shower curtain rod out and it would have landed right smack in the middle of the window.


I went to Plan B which was to wrap the decorative front over the front edge of the tub so the shower curtain rod could stay where it was.


You will find the full step-by-step tutorial:

How to Add Wood and Molding to Frame a Mirror

Next I moved on to give the existing mirrors a bit of style. We bought them at Home Depot when we moved into the house.

We installed them with mirror clips as a temp fix that lasted till well… this past month.  It turned into a long term fix, time to get it right.  I think the new mirrors are my favorite part of the makeover.






Here you will find the step-by-step tutorial for adding molding around a bathroom vanity mirrors:

How To Install a Board and Batten Treatment to Walls

The part of the makeover that took the most thought was installing the board and batten. Lots of things to think about – how far apart I wanted the boards, thick or thin boards, how many obstacles I had to work around, how high etc.

I had some of the boards cut to the exact size I needed at Lowes, not only to make the job easier, but so the boards would fit into my Jeep.

The mitered corner cuts I had to do on my own. The miter saw was set up in my garage, this bathroom is upstairs – I got  a lot of exercise. I just pretended I was at the gym and was on a Stairclimber. I used all pre-primed Mdf boards.

I like using the Mdf because there are no wood knots and every piece is uniformly smooth. I used Liquid Nails to attach all the boards so I didn’t need a nail gun, but a level is a must to make sure your boards are vertically as well as horizontally straight when you attach them to the wall.

I spaced the boards 12” apart which made it easy as I just placed a wood 12” ruler between the boards to get perfect spacing.


2 coats of paint and lots of caulking- it was done.


How to Make a Small Window Look Bigger

The window in the bathroom is not very big, it actually always looked squashed to me. I fixed that by adding a piece of plywood and crown molding above it.  It now has much more impact.


I chose the wall color to match the molded tub – I wanted the tub to blend more seamlessly in the room – not stick out.

Painting the wall above the board and batten the same color creates a nice flow around the room.


Here is the full tutorial for installing board and batten to a wall:

How to Make an Easy No-Sew Window Valance using Foam Insulation

When I added the molding above the window I knew I would be adding this type of valance –it works with the line of the window.

It is a very simple project that anyone who knows how to wrap a gift box and use a glue gun can do.  I found the fun fabric for $6 a yard.


Here is the full step by step tutorial for making a no sew window cornice valance:

How To Transform a Vinyl Floor for $10

This was the part of the project that kept me up at night thinking of ways to redo the floor without spending much.


I ended up using a trick that I used when I worked in display. It turned out better than I expected.


Here is the full step-by-step tutorial on how I transformed the vinyl flooring:

I am thrilled with how the bathroom before and after makeover turned out, I spent under $300 on everything.

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  1. Thank you so much…you have solved a major problem for me. I will be redoing my bathroom on a budget and had it all planned out including the board and batten. Problem is I have a blue bathtub and was not willing to tear it out. Using your idea and adjusting it a bit, I’ll be able to hide that tired old eyesore. ♥

    1. You could have that blue bath tub sprayed by a professional. I’ve seen it done and it came out beautifully! Get at least 3 estimates and ask for references from the companies that have had it done and if the homeowner will allow you to see the results, by all means go. That blue bath tub will not go away any other way unless you wanted to tear that out completely.