May the roof above us never fall in
And may we good companions beneath it never fall out.

~Irish blessing

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

DIY Shower Niche

The renovation scene on the weekend was fairly lazy. Once the dog had been taken to the park, the wet and woolly weather ushered us inside and our to-do list was quickly surrendered to the lure of the open fire, the crossword, chunky homemade soup and some of Smitten Kitchen's rosemary flatbreads. Heaven.

Tom did get around to fixing one of the new taps we noticed was dripping - a bit of loose metal from manufacturing was stuck beneath the washer. Exciting stuff, I know. And after some deliberations over the merits of caulk vs grout for the final inner seams of the shower niche, and deciding on grout (easier to clean), we finished it off and I must say it looks pretty darn good.

When I initially suggested a shower niche I was a bit unsure it was within our DIY skill set, but pictures of uncluttered beautiful showers like the one below spurred me on.

Marie Claire Maison

Tom, always up for a challenge, took it on like a champ but I have to admit it was a little tricky. If you're not up for cutting, joining and waterproofing pieces of wall lining, then you can buy premade niches that you tile over like this EasyNiche by Atlantis.

Otherwise, what we did was make a timber frame for the niche between the wall studs, line it with the same water resistant plasterboard (Lafarge WaterShield) we were using to line the rest of the walls, and waterproof it thoroughly with fabric bond breaker then two coats of Crommelin Wetite.

Since we were unable to find bullnose subway tiles, we used white tile strip to cover the tile edges at the front which was fiddly but worked well. 

It's important to chock up the tiles at the back of the base slightly, so that there's a slight slope to prevent water from pooling on the shelf. Don't worry, it won't make the toiletries slide off!

So that's where we are with the ensuite. Can't do much more until the shower screen has been installed and at this stage I doubt it will happen this week as promised, but hey, it's a nice excuse to take some time off over the weekend :)

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