It’s been a chaotic month in the Domino household thanks to a new bathroom being fitted. It had been almost 20 years since the bathroom was last modernised. The shower unit needed replacing, walls half paint/half panel needed a complete make-over and the corner bath unit a complete waste of space. Dave had never used it. I had twice, both times putting my back out as I got out of it. It had to go. As for the carpet… well, we won’t talk about the carpet.
Eight months in planning. We knew what kind of shower cubicle we wanted but it took me a long time to convince Dave what we really needed was cupboards, lots of them. The old bathroom didn’t even have a medicine cabinet, everything kept either on the floor or in wicker baskets on the windowsill. I hated it. So began a constant round of searching the internet for images, countless showrooms visited, catalogues and magazines scanned, endless discussions until he was finally persuaded. Yay! I’d also managed to talk him into having it all installed professionally rather than he do it. It would be too expensive, he kept saying. He’d done the last bathroom, but he still works fulltime despite being past retirement age – we would still be living in a muddle 12 months down the line.
The hardest decision of all was what sort of tiles. There were so many to choose from, so many patterns, colour combinations – our heads were spinning. As we wanted the room tiled floor to ceiling and as this was hopefully the last time we would be doing up this room, we took our time: weeks and weeks of looking, more showroom trawling, changing minds, umming and arrring; we needed to be sure we picked the right ones.
Decisions made, bathroom on order, fitter contacted. That’s when another problem arose – the fitter advised us not to tile the floor as all pipework for the house (water, gas, central heating) runs under the bathroom and if ever there were any problem, it would mean ripping up the tiles. Far better to have linoleum. Oh dear, more shopping, more decisions, more choices. Eeek – we just couldn’t decide.
But finally we did, and the great day arrived when the complete bathroom was delivered. The delivery chaps wouldn’t take any of it upstairs, saying they couldn’t under Health & Safety rules, so it was stacked up in my hallway and dining room for well over a week. Oh joy! We found one item was missing so rang the shop who arranged immediate delivery of awol part. When I mentioned about it all left in the hall, the helpful lady on the phone explained the fitter would take each item upstairs as and when he needed it because of space constrictions when working in bathrooms, which are normally small and space tight. It made sense.
The day came when it was all to start so I beat a hasty retreat and made myself scarce whilst it was going on. I mean, what is a lady to do when the bathroom is out of action for a week and there is only one loo in the house? (Note black bucket for use of!)
Now finished, what an excellent job the fitter has done. Perfect! He’s done all the finishing off, bits my husband wouldn’t have thought of. The best bit for me is the shower. Instead of tiles on the wall in the cubicle, we came across shower boards – similar to Formica worktops. These single laminate sheets fit the whole wall: no grout to get grubby, easy to keep clean – no scouring or scrubbing. It looks fabulous. And as a surprise, Dave even arranged to have a lovely chrome towel warmer installed after telling me it would be too expensive to run.
We’re well pleased. It took a little over 7 days to install, and yes, it was expensive but worth every single penny. We still have to put the finishing touches to it, buy the homely bits, but as we have 5 boxes of tiles left over which we can return to the store and get a refund, that pays for the fripperies needed.
Next we attack our bedroom, but first I’m nipping upstairs to look at the bathroom again. I can’t believe it’s really mine.