May 30, 2021

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How are we halfway through the Spring One Room Challenge?

While Weeks Three and Four don’t seem to show much of a difference but look a little closer. Notice anything? The room was repainted, beams were installed, and I’ve secretly been building the vanity. Yup! I’ve been working a lot behind the scenes because I wasn’t sure if I’d have it complete for this week or not. I still need to stain the vanity, but the good news is that I’ve finished the build and am excited to report that we officially have storage in our half bath!

Let’s just say this week was all about the woods and the whites…

To say I’m proud of myself would be an understatement!
I can’t believe a week ago this vanity was a stack of lumber.


Sometimes a design plan has to change.

When I first painted the bathroom SW White Cotton, it accomplished our task list of brightening the space, but it felt cold. Our house has always been referred to as warm and inviting by friends and family. Walking into the bathroom coated in White Cotton, I did not get that vibe so what do you do?

You PIVOT…..Anyone catch that reference?

I reevaluated the whites on my list and polled my friends over on Instagram. We looked between BM White Dove and SW Swiss Coffee. Both are excellent candidates for light and bright with White Dove having an LRV of 85.38 and Swiss Coffee having an LRV of 83.93.

Benjamin Moore’s White Dove is a warm white that has a hint of brown undertone. It’s more of a soft white and isn’t striking to the eye. It gives a lived-in feel when it’s in a room which is what we were striving for.

Sherwin William’s Swiss Coffee is an off-white that can lean a bit green at times. It’s a good neutral and has a white appearance as opposed to a beige. The name can be deceiving, but it is very close to White Dove and many friends said they couldn’t tell the difference from a picture, only from the way the light hit in when I was moving around.

Ultimately White Dove had the majority vote, and that is what we repainted the room with. Painting the walls and the ceiling in the same color gave the perfect blank slate for the “woods” we were about to install.


To bring natural elements into the room my husband, Mike, helped me install faux beams on the ceiling. We only added two beams perpendicular to the shiplap because any more would have crowded the space. They were a simple afternoon project that was easy to cut and assemble with only a few tools.

I started by cutting my wood to fit the width of my room. I knew that I wanted the width to be larger than the height so I chose a 1×8 Common Pine Board for the bottom, and a 1×5 Common Pine Board for the sides. To hang the three-sided box, we used the extra 1×8 as the cleat, cutting it to be the inside width so the sides would attach snuggly to the outside only showing the three finished sides of the box.

To make the faux beam seamless, I angled the long edges of my boards to fit together at a 90 degree angle. Sure, you can brad nail a box together with raw edges any day of the week, but if you want your beam to look like a solid beam, you’ll need to miter the edges.

To miter the edges, I used my circular saw. Did you know that you can cut angled cuts with a regular circular saw? You can! See the knobs on the picture? When you loosen these the blade can be angled using the miter guide embossed on the saw! Tighten the knobs back down and now you can cut at your desired angle.

Once the edges were mitered, it was time to hang. We installed a cleat above the commode which the beam would nicely hide the ceiling vent behind it. Now instead of seeing the inset ceiling vent cover, you will only see a beautiful beam. Then, we installed the second cleat over the sink, the same distance from the wall as the first beam to ensure unity. We used 2.5″ wood screws to attach to the ceiling joists.

Using a nail gun with 16 gauge 2-inch nails, we attached the two sides first making sure to tack along the top edges where the cleat was. Then, using clamps we aligned the bottom board and brad nailed along the bottom edge and side edge. Using the wood clamps helped tremendously to ensure the board didn’t slip from shoulder fatigue or the pressure of the nail gun.

I just love how the room is coming together and so many of you have mentioned you want to try adding beams to a room in your own homes! I say do it! It really was a simple afternoon project that only took a few hours, but added so much character to the room.


This past week I’ve watched Shara’s Woodshop Diaries no less than twenty times! If you haven’t checked out her blog or her Youtube channel, you must! She gives the best tutorials and breaks everything down into layman’s terms.

I loosely followed Shara’s plans for her 3 Drawer Vanity, but scaled it to fit our bathroom. I knew I wanted a higher vanity to make it look custom compared to a store-bought vanity and I needed it to be a bit shallow so the vanity didn’t block the walking path.

We are having a quartz top cut from a local granite shop for the top and then mounting a vessel sink. Local granite shops keep remnants which are usually marked down because they can’t fill a large job. Check with your local stone shops for discounted remnants for your next project!

To add a bit of “jewelry” to our vanity I’ve ordered a few antique-looking pulls. I’ll be sharing them this week and taking a vote with my friends over on Instagram! If you want to join the fun and help create this bathroom with me, be sure to visit over at @the.handwrittehome on IG.


With only four weeks left in our Spring 2021 One Room Challenge, I’ve kept the checklist for our room renovation close at hand and am truly happy with the direction and progress this project has taken.

Let’s recap…

  1. Storage ✔️
  2. A place to rest your things
  3. Vanity secured to the wall
  4. Accessible towel rack ✔️
  5. Privacy
  6. Brightened Walls ✔️
  7. Eye-catching accessories

The vanity is made, but until it is stained and sealed it cannot be mounted to the wall. Simple step that can easily be accomplished, so I have full faith this will be checked off in the coming week.

The walls have been repainted with paint having a higher LRV rating which naturally lifts the light in the space.

The natural woven shades have been ordered and are an easy install for this coming week.

The eye-catching accessories are here in the home just waiting to be installed, but we cannot mount the mirror or the hardware until the vanity is complete.

As for a tabletop, I have plans to make two small mortise and tenon joint stools similar to the ones that have sold out completely from Target. I’m excited to share this tutorial in the coming weeks!



I have absolutely loved following along with the designers and guest participants on this spring’s One Room Challenge. If you have time, please stop by the One Room Challenge Blog. Each week Designers and Guest Participants link their latest updates in their renovations! I love this community for its support and cheers.

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