guest post: rena tom.
by my illustrious guest blogger comment


Hi, my name is Rena Tom and I’m so honored that Victoria asked me to guest post for her while she is on her European vacation (I know, I know – working vacation – but still!). I am a former owner of Rare Device and am now keeping busy by consulting to store owners and product designers and running after my very active toddler.

While I am pretty good at choosing products, I’m not great at putting it all together in a room (like Victoria is) so I have to be meticulous in my research. I thought I’d show you what I’ve come up with for my bathroom remodel, which hopefully will happen before the end of the year.

I live in a 1920’s apartment building in San Francisco with some period details, though my aesthetic skews more modern. You can see some pictures of my unit here and here taken just after we moved in. With these older buildings, there’s always the question of what historic details to should keep, and which ones can go!

Dana Velden.

Our bathroom does not really have any details I want to keep, and it’s quite small, so we are thinking of tearing everything out, making it black and white and then adding pops of color with linens and accessories. The reference point for materials is our kitchen; you can get a glimpse of it above.

To start, I want to get rid of our nasty pink-beige 12″ tile. The first thought was to cover the floor with marble hex tiles (inspired by Door Sixteen’s awesome bathroom redo, which would tie in nicely with the marble countertops in the kitchen.

Anna Dorfman.

For the walls, we’d probably do inexpensive white 3”x6” subway tile, which is also in the kitchen. However, the Heath Ceramics factory is a short drive away and their overstock tile room calls, so maybe if we can collect enough seconds, we’ll install extra-long field tiles instead.

Zubin Shroff via heath ceramics.

Further research got me to Grove Brickworks, a new division of Waterworks that makes glazed tiles that look like bricks with incredible tactile imperfections. I am in love with these tiles. This might be too rustic for us, but maybe for the next apartment!

We want to get rid of our small MDF medicine cabinet, bust open the wall, and inset a big grid of shelving so that we can actually store bath towels and such in our bathroom. My husband wants to make it out of darkened steel, which will hopefully turn out something like this:

oswalds mill.

We have doorknobs in an oiled bronze color throughout the apartment so I don’ t think the dark metal will be too jarring. To finish things off, I’d like to get a new light fixture to match. Here’s one from Barn Light Electric:

All that’s missing is the color – I think any of these Turkish bath towels would look great!

You can see more of my research on my Pinterest board if you are curious. Thanks again, Victoria!

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