DIY Herringbone Painted Bathroom Vanity

Our bathroom downstairs is REALLY bright and actually quite spacious for a half bath, but definitely not without its flaws. First, the HUGE window looks out onto the deck. Even with the blinds closed, I’m sure our guests are a bit uneasy when they’re in the loo and we have people in the backyard. Second, it has a sliding door that isn’t a pocket door and has no. lock. Yes, this makes TWO OF THE TWO BATHROOMS IN OUR HOUSE totally unlockable. Again, not optimal for guests. But other than those two (uh, pretty major) things, this is a great little space with a ton of potential.

So, let me introduce you to my little project: give the guest bathroom a small facelift with less than $80. The toilet is fine and the sink is… fine… (although we really could spend the $150 and change it and that would be smart). So I’m trying to paint, decorate, organize and also change the light fixture for less than $80. Most of this is using materials I already have. Anyway, there’s a smaller project here. I wanted to spray paint the vanity doors to make them a bright, glossy white. It didn’t turn out how I had hoped… in any way… they actually didn’t even look remotely better. So here they were:


Drab particle board. I bet this vanity was $6 like, 5 owners ago. So, since we figured that if I screwed it up, we’d be happy to replace it, I thought of tackling it with a chevron pattern. I attempted to tape that off and even do the measurements but none of that was successful – that’s putting it mildly. Then I was going to switch to a diamond pattern and nearly threw the entire vanity out the above-mentioned window. Then I figured I could do somewhat of a herringbone without losing my mind. So I went out and bought *more tape* and went to work. Here is my work station. Yes that’s Harrison’s baby-sized Adirondack chair. It worked great.

The doors are 11″ each and the tape is an inch wide. Part of my frustration with the previous taping plans was that I wasn’t accounting for the width of the tape. So the tape is 1″ wide and I marked one edge at 5″ and one edge at 6″, then marked the bottom and taped straight down.

Then I marked at 3″ intervals all the way down the edges of the doors and the middle along the vertical tape. Use a pencil, obviously. I wish I had done 4″ intervals but, again, I wasn’t accounting for the width of the tape roar!!

Pro (haha) Tip: You are probably better to take the doors off but I had already done that once (see above, re: failed spray painting) and didn’t want to do it again. I also wanted a crisp “meet in the middle” based on how the doors naturally hang on the vanity, not based on them lying side by side on the floor. I guess my advice here is to tape (make sure to wrap the tape around the edges to the back) and THEN take the doors off to paint.

How to transform your drab vanity with a herringbone pattern from @ispeakcanadian.

So then I ran over the tape with a ruler (you can use a credit card too) and then painted with a *foam* trim roller over the doors and used a tiny artist brush to do the edges of the doors. I learned AFTERWARDS that it’s a good idea to paint over everything with the colour that’s already there (so in this case it would be white) to seal the tape. I should have done that.

I made this colour from a combination of the wall colour and the black paint that we have in the office and the navy paint in Harrison’s room. Start light and gradually go darker. Don’t overdo it! Also make sure you mix an AMPLE amount to do two coats because it’s very hard to duplicate a mixed colour unless you’re very meticulous when you initially mix it. I mixed *too* much with this in mind, which is fine because if I want to paint anything else in the room to match, I can do so.

How to transform your drab vanity with a herringbone pattern from @ispeakcanadian.

I painted two coats in the same evening then peeled the tape off only about 10 minutes after the second. I had some bleeding under the tape which I cleaned up with an exacto knife.

How to transform your drab vanity with a painted herringbone pattern from @ispeakcanadian.

What do you think? I like it, but without anything else in the room it looks SUPER BUSY to me. I’m sure I’ll get used to it though. I haven’t put the hardware back on because I haven’t decided if I want to put the old knobs on or if I want to upgrade it.

And a before/after:

How to transform your drab vanity with a painted herringbone pattern from @ispeakcanadian.


The total cost of this part of the project *would* have been $0 because I already had the paint and the tape but I screwed it up so much that I ended up forking over $10 for the spray paint and the new roll of tape. Amount remaining: $70.

How to transform your drab vanity with a painted herringbone pattern from @ispeakcanadian.


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