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Modernize Your 90s Bathroom With A Boho Chic & Pastel Makeover

Have you wanted a fresh look in your bathroom but have not wanted to do a complete gut remodel? We were in that situation! Get inspired with these 11 DIY bathroom project tips to help modernize your small full bathroom on a budget!

bathroom vanity with gold faucet and light blue walls.

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What We Love About This Bathroom


  • BOARD AND BATTEN – This DIY project gave us a great and stylish place to put hooks for easy towel hanging.
  • BOHO VIBE – Mixing whitewashed oak, gold fixtures, and pastel colors created a fun look.
  • WORKED WITH MOST EXISTING FIXTURES – Replacing the countertop was the biggest new item brought into the space.

The Before Bathroom

As with most rooms in our home, this bathroom has undergone a few mini-makeovers. Some of those projects included adding gel stain to the oak cabinets, painting a fun accent wall, and installing DIY bathroom shelves.

bathroom with text before.
You can see what this bathroom looked like before this here (it had carpet in it).

The Plan & Mood Board

  • Repair drywall and textures
  • Add new fixtures with a gold finish
  • Replace countertop with sink
  • Paint or change metal decor to gold for decor that was not getting replaced
  • Repair small fiberglass cracks in the tub kit
  • Add new decor, rug, and shower curtain
  • Remove the gel stain from the oak cabinets and attempt to lighten the wood vanity
collage of bathroom images used bathroom makeover.
  • NIEBLA AZUL (Satin) – for the board and batten wall
  • REPOSE GRAY (at 75%) – for the walls
  • MARBLE COUNTERTOPS – we used this engineered stone one-piece countertop.
  • GOLD FIXTURES – get the links and shop all the gold fixtures we used in this makeover.
  • PASTEL ACCESSORIES – in the towels and shower curtain

11 Ways To Modernize A Bathroom On A Budget

We completed this bathroom makeover for under $1000 by doing the work ourselves. Most of this budget went to purchasing a new countertop, sink, and faucet. We are happy we replaced out counters, but there are also other ways you can update your counters without spending as much as we did.

#1 Repair Walls

First, we had to sand and repair the walls. Something to note is that when you create painted accent wall designs with tape, you will have texture to deal with if you decide to repaint them.

man repair walls with drywall mud.

#2 Keep Some Fixtures

The only items replaced in this space were the countertop, sink, and faucet. The cabinets, shower tub, toilet (we just put it in the tub to easily add the walls), and flooring remained the same. Working with what was already there saved us a ton of money.

bathroom under construction.
Even though our tub was almond-colored, we thought we could work with it.

#3 Repair Small Cracks or Issues

For us we had a small chip in the fiberglass tub. We used an epoxy kit to repair the small dent.

Collage of almond color bath tub and epoxy mix.

#4 Add Board and Batten

We created a board-and-batten wall without covering the existing wall. Our walls were smooth enough that we felt that would work well.

man adding wood wall in bathroom.

READ MOREWhat We Learned Putting Board and Batten In A Bathroom

#5 Clean Your Vents

Okay, so while this is not the most glamorous task, it must be done. If you haven’t checked your vent for a while, it may need to be cleaned. Seriously, our fan and vent work so much better after a quick clean.

#6 Paint, Paint and Paint

Before we painted the walls and board and batten, we gave the ceiling a fresh white coat of Eminence ceiling paint. Using a long pole attachment made this easier, and it helped brighten the small space.

woman painting ceiling in bathroom.

#7 Whitewash The Construction-Grade Oak

We have painted and repainted bathroom cabinets, but we wanted a lighter wood look for this space. We thought we could make this work since we had previously gel-stained the vanity. After removing the gel stain, we used a transparent white layer for a coastal and boho look.

stained wood cabinets with arrow pointed to whitewashed oak cabinets.
You can see the full whitewashing tutorial here.

#8 Hang Your Shower Curtain Higher

One of the best things we did in this bathroom makeover was purchasing extra long shower curtains. We displayed them in sets of two to help elevate the overall appearance of the room. We did not hang them all the way to the top so the steam could still escape.

pastel shower curtain hanging near blue wall.

#9 Repurpose What You Can

For this bathroom that meant using gold Rubb and Buff on the mirror. Our full tutorial explains how we easily changed the metal finish in minutes.

bathroom vanity with gold light fixture and faucet.

#10 Add Modern Fixtures

This included a new towel ring, cabinet hardware, gold wall hooks, light fixture and shower curtain rod.

collage of gold bathroom fixtures in a bathroom.

We are happy with all the fixtures we purchased, especially the modern vanity light.

#11 Keep Your Vanity Cabinet But Replace The Top

The marble stone top added to our space. We love how clean the under-mount sink looks. Compared to other DIYs, this is a pretty easy project as long as you can lift the weight of the countertop.

bathroom engineered marble countertop.
We also love this rug we added to complete the look.

Before and After

before and after bathroom makeover.

Follow us on Pinterest, YouTube or Facebook for more DIY inspiration!

bathroom with oak cabinets, blue wall and gold fixtures.

When doing room makeovers in your home, keeping and working with existing fixtures will save you money and time. This boho bathroom turned out better than we could have imagined.

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