before and after

before & after: elegant bathroom renovation

by Kate Pruitt

I’ve seen walls of artfully arranged mirrors before, but they’re usually in public spaces as a form of pure display. Seeing such a dramatic presentation of mirrors in a home bathroom is unexpected, but stunning. I love it! California-based designer Faith Blakeney also had the brilliant idea to attach some of the mirrors with velcro so they could be mixed, matched and pulled down for quick use any time, making this display both elegant and practical. The addition of these mirrors, modern light fixtures and a cleaner, brighter neutral palette has completely transformed this bathroom on a low budget. I love the varied shapes of those old hand mirrors; I’m tempted to start seeking some out right now! — Kate

Have a Before & After you’d like to share? Shoot me an email with your images right here! (Low res, under 500k per image, please.)

Read the full post after the jump!

Time: The hunt for just the right mirrors took about 3 trips to the flea market, plus about an hour to mount the mirrors on the wall and countless hours admiring the mirror wall.

Cost: $10 velcro, around $15 a piece for the hand-held mirrors, $100 for the big ones. Grand Total: $295

Basic Steps: I created a wall of mirrors in the bathroom using an old collection of inherited hand-held mirrors and some thrift store finds. I figured out where I wanted to place each mirror, marked it and put a 2″ velcro strip, vertically, on the wall at each mark. I then put a piece of the other side of the velcro on the back side of each hand-held mirror, again vertically. Lastly, I mounted the mirrors on the wall so they can be taken off and rearranged.

Make sure the surface you are mounting on is very clean and that you use high-quality industrial-strength velcro tape — a broken mirror is a lot of bad luck! I am happy to report that these mirrors have been up for many months without a single problem. — Faith

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  • Wow, I dod not at all expect all those mirrors, but I like really like them. The bathroom looks so much better after the redo!

  • I hate to be the Debbie downer, but I really don’t like it. I think the something is off with the spacing of the smaller mirrors, or something. It feels really cluttered and, well, uninviting.

  • What a lovely job – I think it looks fantastic. The light fixtures are wonderful as well, and I love the painted cabinets – way to totally transform a room, simply and effectively.

  • The before reminds me of a model home, staged and cold. The after is warm, fun and very inventive. Great job. ;)

  • Too cluttered for me too. Maybe one long frameless mirror would work? I like the other changes. Did they replace the cabinet faces or just paint? Looks good. I’d like to see the other side of the bathroom. Did they paint the door and is the tile still there? This must have been a pretty bathroom in the Deco period. They still have the lovely original tub.

  • i agree with limes. weird -creativity for creativity’s sake and weirdly contrived. plus that cool gray paint cant look good next to the icky brown slate tile. i’d have gone with a warm gray or taupe and kept the the old mirrors which were far more functional. this post is not up to design sponge’s values.

    • Karen

      I don’t think anyone here is being “creative for creativity’s sake”. This is their personal home- not a school or work project. No one is judging them and until they agreed to share their home here and open themselves up to criticism, I’m pretty sure they weren’t thinking about doing anything for a reason other than their own interest.


  • I’d like to see an ‘after’ shot from the same angle as the ‘before’. I have a sneaking suspicion that the combination of the mirror menagerie wall and the mottled tile floor & surround ends up looking cluttered, but I’d have to see it to be sure.

  • I love it. The mish mash of mirrors is nice. Did you pick the velcro heights at random or are they deliberate for your family’s heights? Curious to see how it looks with the original tiles too!

  • Beautiful! I love that they can also be rearranged! (Or taken off the wall in case you need to look at the back of your hair!) Perfect!

  • Uplifting transformation–love the gray paint used–would the paint color name be available or is it a custom mix?

  • I LOVE it! I have several of those inherited hand mirrors. I may just have to “mirror” your project in my own home. Thanks for the beautiful idea – and for sharing your home with us.

  • Syndee and Sarah- the fixtures are from Empiric studio here in LA and they really are awesome.
    Nell- the gray paint is Bison Beige by Dunn Edwards- no custom paint mixing needed!
    Taron- I found that mirror at the Rose Bowl.
    Mopar- we painted the cabinets, for more pics of the house you can check out http://www.callmefaith.com – the house is Mediterranean Style, from the 20’s.

  • Very cool. There are some gorgeous old bevelled mirrors out there. I also really like the light fittings!

  • I think this is absolutely lovely. Clean, unique, and modern with a clever touch of the past. What a great collection!

  • I love the way the hand mirrors are hung, but I don’t really like the look in the bathroom. I am short, and all I can think is that I would have to use a step stool to put on makeup! I am glad that they love the look–that is why we have our own houses to decorate! Thanks for sharing and giving us all ideas!

  • Fantastic cool white walls! I love the asymmetrical assortment of mirrors, though I think there is an optical illusion making the 2 black sconces/lights look asymmetrical, which leaves me feeling a little off balance. This is such a creative and much improved bathroom. Yes, where are those black lights from?

  • this is AMAZING!!!!!!!!, I love everything about it!!!!!!! I am sure it is even better in person, totally unique, I have been wanting to do this for awhile now and have collected some small mirrors, but I feel that you really need a long space like this one to not feel cluttered. can I send you a pic of my space so you can tell me if it will work?, love the painted cabinets and also the lights!!!!!!!!! brilliant!!!!!!!!!

  • While it is ok, the before was actually an elegant bath, rich wood tones. Not too into this redo. charisse

  • After is far nicer… I wouldn’t have wanted to spend any time in the ‘before’ while the after is cheery and quirky. Wonderful job, and very original! I love the bottom picture, more dynamic with some of the mirror’s handles pointing down as well as up. Thanks!

  • I much prefer this to the before – all that dingy brown! And I love the asymmetry of the vintage mirrors with the painted cabinets – it’s a clever way to revamp without major expenditure. However, I do think that 1) the mirror on the end wall detracts from the main wall of mirrors, & 2) with so much deliberate asymmetry/ irregularity going on with the mirrors, the lighting fixtures above should be identically positioned.

    Thanks for the link to your site Faith – lots of lovely work!

  • Really had an adverse reaction to my initial viewing of the space. The discongruent mixture of the mirrors and lighting is not agreeing with my personal taste but its not my space so thats ok.