Before and After: A Light Kitchen & Bathroom Renovation

Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Bathroom Renovation | La Dolce Vita Blog

A few months ago, we decided to finally remodel our master bathroom. We’ve been in this house for a good while, but we never got around to doing anything with our master bathroom because until recently, we had focused on getting together all of the other parts of the house that people actually see. We hadn’t planned on updating our kitchen, but we worked with Cosentino and Kohler who generously offered to provide countertops and fixtures for our kitchen as well, so we did a light refresh in there, too. It was a thoughtful renovation which instead of focusing on drastic changes, was more about incorporating elevated materials and increasing functionality.


Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Kitchen Renovation | La Dolce Vita Blog

We painted the kitchen cabinets (Martha Stewart’s Sharkey Grey) and added the subway tile backsplash several years ago. Above, you’ll see the kitchen the way it looked a few years ago.

Cosentino Eco Moss Countertop

I paid a visit to the Cosentino Design Center in Houston and loved the clean, timeless look of their Grey Moss color which is part of the Eco line. Eco is a revolutionary product made from 75% recycled materials including glass, mirror, porcelain, earthenware, and vitrified ash. 94% of the water used in the manufacturing process is recycled as well. I loved the idea of introducing such an eco-friendly product into my home. Hopefully, it will help to offset some of my less eco-friendly choices! It comes in a variety of colors, but I liked the idea of a darker color to work with my warm gray cabinets and the fact that my floor plan is pretty open.


Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Kitchen| La Dolce Vita Blog

{We love the look of the new countertops and they have been a breeze to clean!}

Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Kitchen | La Dolce Vita Blog

{We also added a new Parq Bridge Faucet in Polished Nickel and Strive Under-Mount Kitchen Sink in Stainless Steel from Kohler. I love the beautiful bridge faucet! This style is such a timeless classic. The sink has been fantastic, too. It is nice and deep which makes it super functional. I also prefer having two basins, though most of my clients like single basin sinks for the look. The walls are painted in Behr’s Aging Barrel.}



{Our master bath remodel happened pretty quickly, though at the time, it felt like an eternity! As an interior decorator, I think it was good for me to go through a renovation of my own again to remind me of what my clients go through when we remodel their homes! We originally thought about ripping out the tub and installing a huge show in its place since Fabian and I both prefer showers over baths. As we started talking more seriously about moving, we decided to leave the layout as is in order to minimize our expense and to make the bathroom more appealing to potential buyers in the future.}


{Aside from painting the maple cabinets black, the bathroom still had all of the basic fixtures and finishes the builder had originally put in. The shower had square, white porcelain tiles, which weren’t at all offensive, but weren’t my cup of tea either. The shower had a chrome frame and you can see our lovely, old tile floor, countertops, and faucets above.}


Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Master Bathroom | La Dolce Vita Blog

{I wanted the bathroom to feel classic, clean, and pretty, so I opted for timeless materials that would look great without costing a fortune. I selected simple, white subway tile for the shower walls and tub surround. I don’t think I will ever tire of the look and few things are as inexpensive as subway tile. We splurged a bit on the Carrara marble tile for the floor and the frameless shower. I had a roman shade made in white linen with gray Greek key trim, and added some blue and white for a touch of color. The walls are painted in Benjamin Moore’s Plymouth Rock.}

Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Master Bathroom | La Dolce Vita Blog

{I selected Kohler’s Pinstripe Pure plumbing fixtures in my favorite finish, polished nickel. I love brass, but I think brass plumbing fixtures can read a bit too trendy for my taste. Polished nickel is elegant and completely timeless. It has a much warmer quality than chrome, too, so it is a perfect neutral in my eyes. We have Kohler’s Pinstripe lavatory faucet in our guest bathroom, so I thought it would make sense to use the same collection in our master bathroom, so things feel cohesive throughout the house. I did opt for the “Pure” version of the design in my master, though. The difference is that the lever handles don’t have the pinstripe grooves on them.}

Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Master Bathroom | La Dolce Vita Blog

{The framless shower has made a HUGE difference. It looks so much nicer and the glass is taller, making the room look so much better overall. We chose a small, marble hexagonal mosaic tile for the shower pan. Kohler also makes this fantastic, square drain in polished nickel.}

Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Master Bathroom | La Dolce Vita Blog

{A Vast Improvement}

Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Master Bathroom | La Dolce Vita Blog

{I was super excited to try out Dekton by Cosentino’s gorgeous new Aura product after seeing it in the company’s ads with tennis player, Rafa Nadal. I frequently use Carrara and Calcatta Gold marble in clients’ kitchens and baths. Until now, I had not found a marble alternative that I felt could hold a candle to the original. Aura definitely changed my mind! It is available in polished or honed– we went with the honed finish. I would say the Aura colorway is more similar to Calcatta Gold marble and the Kairos colorway is closer to Carrara. The veining is absolutely beautiful! Dekton is a very cutting edge, ultra-compact surface with high UV-resistance, resistance to fire and heat, ice and cold. It is also highly-resistant to scratches, abrasions, and stains, unlike super delicate marble. You can read all of the details and specs here. It also comes in XL slabs, so you can even use it for a seamless look on floors as well. I would give it a ringing endorsement because it is so beautiful and it is a dream to live with. I don’t have to worry about stains or etching like I would with marble and it is super easy to clean. Also pictured, Kohler’s beautiful Pinstripe Octagonal Towel Ring in polished nickel.}


{Gorgeous, Bookmatched Aura Slabs at the Cosentino Design Center}

Paloma Contreras Design | Houston | Master Bathroom | La Dolce Vita Blog

{You can see the pretty veining on the Dekton Aura here along with one of the Kohler Pinstripe faucets and one of the simple, Caxton undermount sinks by Kohler. We also added a custom frame to make the mirror look more finished and swapped our old Anthropologie cabinet knobs for Rejuvenation’s Bristol Cabinet Knobs. I really love the way everything turned out, but I am tempted to paint the cabinets a warm gray. I think I am over the black at this point. I couldn’t be happier with all of the other finishes, materials, and fixtures we selected, though. The room finally feels complete and is so much more reflective of our taste. We only wish we would have done it sooner!}

Paloma Signature

{This post is generously sponsored by Cosentino and Kohler who graciously supplied the aforementioned materials. All opinions are genuinely my own. | Before Kitchen Photo by Kate LeSueur | After Photography by Max Burlhalter}

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Tell Me What You Think! leave a comment...

  1. This looks really great Paloma! Love that you used classic elements instead of more trendy choices. Subway, marble, nickel – are like Mercedes and BMWs! haha. I love the countertop – wow!!!!!!!!!!! Love that!! Enjoy and use it in good health.

    1. Thank you so much, Joni! I was so pleasantly surprised by how beautiful the Dekton Aura is. Most marble alternatives don’t look anything at all like marble and lack the movement and beauty of the real deal. I still love marble, of course, but love the ease of having the Dekton.

      I hope you’re well! XO

  2. Gentle beauty… Thank you for sharing. May we see your lighting over the mirror? And if you were to paint the cabinets grey as mentioned, what color would you select?

  3. Your renovation looks beautiful! Thank you for posting. Funny enough we have the EXACTLY same mater bathroom, maybe we have houses from the same builder. This is a great inspiration for me especially with all the detail listed materials and sources. Enjoy your new bath and thanks again!

  4. I really enjoy your posts and look forward to what you’ll share.
    Love your bathroom!I have a question…the face or apron of the tub looks like a slab of some sort. Is it a drop in tub with Glassos (alternative to natural Thassos) on the face?
    I like subway always but this is such a clean alternative (no grout lines).

    1. Hi Christine– thanks for the kind words. It is a drop in tub, but the face and surround are the same from when we bought the house. i’m not quite sure exactly what the material is. It looks like a high-gloss fiberglass or something. I’m sorry I couldn’t be more help.

      I’m glad you like the tile. My husband wanted to do dark grout, but I convinced him that we should stick with bright white for a clean, classic effect!

  5. your renovation looks beautiful and timeless. as a new homeowner, I too, am ready for new kitchen and bathroom. classic elements are key in my plans, so these ideas really hit home for me. thanks for posting important design intentions and beautiful carrying out of a lovely design. Suzanne

  6. Wonderful post. My bath looks very similar and is need of a remodel so loved seeing how well yours turned out. Who makes the lovely octagonal towel hanger? Kitchen is lovely as well.

  7. Didn’t you have the Hicks pendants in your kitchen at one point? Did you keep those or do something else? I want to do something new in my kitchen and have been looking at lights to introduce a different feel. Right now I have an old crystal chandelier and looked at the Hicks pendants but can’t decide whether or not I’m tired of seeing them everywhere. I would love to see what you went with this time. Thank you!

  8. Hi I just found your blog via another site and what a GREAT stylish page you have here 🙂 I Will come back for sure and I wish you a lovely new 2016 dear.

    Check out my Swedish decor blog with lots of cute inspiration:)

    LOVE Maria Inredning – it’s Swedish for decor

  9. While doing the remodeling work, cost is normally the deciding factor. One simple way to save on your budget is make a list of things to be done in advance. Having the priority list before determining the plan of attack for your home remodeling, makes you decide which things to get fixed first. So, when you are done with top priorities and you still have space to get more things done, you can move ahead without worries.

  10. I love your bathroom! I’ve been trying to find the light blue ginger jar on your tub ledge. Is it from ebay? I’d love the source! Thanks!! (longtime follower, first time commentor!)

  11. I really love the way the shower and bath tub come together in the finished bathroom. Although you may be tired of the black cabinets, I think the contrast between them and the countertop really adds to the room. The new bridge faucet for the kitchen really draws your attention with how large and and interesting it looks. Definitely a great choice. Thanks for sharing!

  12. I love the white marble tiles you used here! It’s one of my favorite options that I have seen time and time again while looking at ideas to remodel my kitchen and bathroom. This one is my favorite of the lot so far, though!