Converting an Upstairs Bedroom into a Bathroom in a 1920s Home

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Working with Less Space

Our previous home had four bedrooms and three generous sized bathrooms, so when we walked through our current home, a major point to consider was the fact that it had three small bedrooms–one lacking a door–and one tiny bathroom right off of the kitchen. In all honesty, we really didn’t need three bathrooms at our previous home. We got use out of them–we rented out a room to two college students our first year in the home, and this allowed them to have their own private bathroom while still reserving a bathroom for us and one for guests. We had planned on being in that house for years and years to come, but the Lord had very different plans for our family and moved us back to Kansas!

It really hasn’t been too big of an adjustment going to just one bathroom. It is definitely inconvenient having to stumble down the stairs at three in the morning to use the restroom, but it is a lot less convenient than an outhouse would have been nearly 100 years ago! We decided to only put a shower in the downstairs bathroom which has probably been the biggest adjustment of all because I LOVE baths.

We did, however, decide to focus the remainder of our renovation budget on converting one of the upstairs bedrooms into a bathroom. This will knock us down to two bedrooms, but we are also planning on converting our loft into a third bedroom. We honestly have more space than we need and as our family grows, we will get creative with storage solutions and making small rooms feel extra cozy. 

Conversion Plans

We are starting demolition on our future bathroom this next week, so I wanted to share the before. We have been using this room for Lincoln during his naps and the first part of the night, but our plan is to turn our other bedroom into his room with a daybed/trundle bed that can be used for guests. 

We got a quote for this bathroom that was outrageously high. We actually had to go through three plumbers to even get an estimate because nobody wanted the job. Adding plumbing when there is none upstairs–especially in a very old home–is quite the job, or so I am told! Our contractor helped us find a plumber who he trusts and who gave us a bid that we could afford. Our contractor double checked to make sure that the floors could support a tub and spent an extensive amount of time planning and prepping with our plumber. Y’all, if you live in South Central Kansas, hiring SB Home Improvements is the way to go!

Here’s some before photos of the bathroom. Isn’t that a gorgeous shade of blue?! I kind of want to match the paint color.

A Vintage-Inspired, Luxury Bath

Here’s what we–and by we I mean our contractor and plumber–are planning to do…

Add a double-slipper clawfoot tub/shower in front of the window that overlooks our land. I’ve been dreaming of taking a bubble bath in there for the last few months, and I know I’ll probably never want to leave! I ordered the tub a month ago and just found out it’s back-ordered until November/December, so this will be the last thing we add in the bathroom.

Photo from vintagetub.com

Turn this beautiful vanity that we found on FB Marketplace into a sink vanity, using the sink that we found in our shed left by the previous owners. 

Our sink was found secondhand, but it look very similar to this one. I need to figure out what to do for a faucet.

Add a toilet. The bath will be nice, but this will be nicer… especially in the middle of the night! Tile the floors. This is my top choice, but we are thinking through our budget to see if we will go with this choice or a less-expensive option–depending on the square footage needed.

Photo from flooranddecor.com

For the details… Add a vintage chandelier in place of the little tiny ceiling light. I’d also like to sew linen curtains for the shower and add a shelf or hooks or a cabinet to store towels. We have a short but generous-sized closet in this room, so we will use this for extra storage. We also plan to add beadboard, trim, and wallpaper to the walls to add vintage charm.

So How Are They Doing This? 

Ok, I’m definitely not a plumber or contractor, but from what I understand, they are dropping the ceiling by about a foot in the dining room, which is directly below the room, to make room for the plumbing. Then, they will connect the plumbing in the cellar. I think. I need to ask because I honestly am not sure!

Please excuse our messy dining room, but this is where they will be dropping the ceiling for the plumbing. I’m excited to then finish out this room with a chandelier, beadboard, and a gorgeous creamy wallpaper!

Here’s a few pictures of the work that has been done so far. We have at least 5 huge holes in our dining room ceiling, and it is so cool to see the process of adding plumbing! Also, I don’t think I could ever be a plumber. I’m scared to choose the wrong color of paint let alone cut holes in floors and knock down walls for pipes!

We know that having one bathroom, let alone two, is a luxury. We have saved and carefully calculated costs and are really looking forward to seeing this plan come to fruition. We think that this addition will be beneficial for our whole family–having a tub for kids and a toilet that is on the same level as our bedrooms. It will also add a significant amount of value to our house if we ever have to sell it–we have no plans of this, but do believe it is a wise investment. 

So, stay tuned over the next few months as we reveal the demo, reconstruction, and transformation of this little blue bedroom into a bathroom that will hopefully feel like a restful retreat!


Have you ever done any major renovations on your home? This is the most extensive thing we have ever done and it’s definitely a crazy experience living here in the midst of it!

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