Bath remodel - which mirror and lighting?

juddgirl2March 23, 2012

Help! I'm over thinking my bathroom remodel. This was supposed to be a simple gut and replace but I'm now having trouble with figuring out vanity mirrors and lighting.

This is my UGLY back bathroom. We're taking it down to the studs and replacing with new tub, 70" wide built-in stained Shaker maple vanity w/2 sinks (not sure yet whether oval or rectangular), granite countertop, ivory travertine floors and subway tiled shower.

We already replaced the window, which will have Craftsman-style trim. The recessed lighting will be replaced and updated but I'd also like to have task lighting if possible.

I bought 2 Pottery Barn oval pivot mirrors (linked below) and 3 PB Mercer sconces to use over the vanity. Now I'm having second thoughts and considering using another large wall-mounted mirror but framed in wood to match the vanity.

With the oddly placed window, I wonder if 2 oval mirrors and 3 sconces (1 in the middle and 1 on each side) will just look too crowded. I'm also concerned that it won't offer enough mirror space to be functional. On the other hand, would a wall mounted mirror look too dated even if framed?

So - 2 single mirrors or one large framed or unframed mirror? If a wall mounted mirror, should it be wall to wall and down to the back splash or leave some wall space on all sides?

Also, any suggestions on the sconces? I've seen them mounted on the mirror itself which might be an option given the limited wall space on either side of the sinks.


Here is a link that might be useful: Pottery Barn Mirror

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I love pivot mirrors, and with the small rectangular window above, I just can't see a framed rectangular mirror below.

Do you have a link to a picture of your vanity?

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 8:19PM
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I like your original plan, with the 3 sconces (such great lighting!) and the mirrors. But I might want to swap the oval mirrors out for square or rectangular ones. That would echo the shape of the window, and the round shape of the sconces would be echoed in the sink.

But either way would be attractive.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 8:52PM
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I agree - if you can return the oval mirrors, I just saw rectangular pivoting ones on RH website (link on EngineerChic's thread about sconces). But still no on a single rectangular wood framed mirror under the woodframed window.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 9:21PM
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Thanks ajsmama and engineerchic! I actually prefer the pivot rectangular mirrors but went with ovals because of issues with space for the sconces on the outer side of each mirror.

With the sinks in the position they're in now, there's only 6 inches of counter space between the edge of the sink and the wall. The smaller Mercer sconces are 5 1/2" wide. Ideally, I'd like the mirror to be wider than the sinks and the oval shape may allow a little more room for a sconce at the top half of the mirror.

The vanity will have (2) 27" outside 2-door cabinets with a 15" middle bank of drawers, similar to the one below. I might be able to place the sinks a few more inches towards the center to make more room for side sconces but it's not an ideal configuration for both task lighting and adequate mirror space.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 2:41AM
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Are you having the vanity custom-made? I didn't think 27" was a standard (and I am considering replacing the builder-grade 60" vanity in our master, I have 73" and really want to keep the vanity 70" or under).

Are the drawer faces 15" or are the drawer boxes 15"? Depending on the sinks, you might be able to squeeze them a little closer together without losing the top drawer.

What sinks are you considering? Drop-in or undermount?

How high is the lower trim (since you said you were doing Craftsman trim I assume it's wide) of the window going to be from the (finished) top of the vanity?

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 8:15AM
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Imagine splitting the vanity space in half. If your vanity is 70", divide that space in half for two 35" spaces for two mirrors. The oval mirrors are 23" wide. When you place the mirror in the 35" space, it leaves you a total of 12" per each half. That's a total of 24" of available space. You can have 8" of available space on each side and in the middle. The sconces are 5-1/2" which to me is crowding it.

I used the widest space of the mirrors. Now, you are going to be moving the sconces up higher than the middle of the mirrors, which is going to give you more room. I really think it can work!

Gosh, that sounds like an elementary word math problem for a 3rd grader.

Make a cardboard template of the mirrors and sconces and tape them to the wall.

Second scenario: Did you see my3dog's basement bathroom. She used nice little lights on the side walls which look good. I see your Mercer sconces are 6" deep. If you put them on the side walls, I don't think they will look too intrusive over the vanity area.


    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 10:56AM
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I want to remodle my bathrooms everything's like glass,tab,mirror.please give me a estimation.

Here is a link that might be useful: dremodeling site

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 11:35AM
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I am in the midst of a bathroom reno and I am putting my lighting on the side walls to leave the back wall for one large or 2 mirrors over the sinks. Might be an idea for you with the window on that wall. Here are some pics.............

contemporary bathroom design by dc metro architect Lori Shaffer

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 11:55AM
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That's the same setup I have in my 3-ft wide powder room.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 12:09PM
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tuesday - lol, I've been trying to do the math and I think I need help from my second grader! I have the 70" but there is a 15" middle bank of drawers so that reduces the available space for the sinks. I also want to leave enough room between the 2 sinks to be functional (girls in this house so we need room for our makeup and hair irons :-)) I'll definitely check out my3dogs bathroom.

Love the inspiration pictures! I will consider putting just 2 sconces on each side wall. The sconce between the mirrors poses a problem anyway because of the handle for the mirror being right above it.

ajsmomma - the cabinets are in stock at Builder's Surplus. The one on display is a solid 66" vanity but they also have separate cabinets available, and one of them is a 27" 2-door. The drawer cabinet is 15" wide, but they also have an 18" drawer cabinet available. I'm limited to 70" or I would have used that one instead.

The trim is about 3 1/2" and the space between the top of the backsplash and the trim is only about 34".

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 12:14PM
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Well, by code center of the sink should be 15" from the wall, so you'd have to scootch each sink over toward the middle. Let's say you go with a 17" long oval sink (pretty standard), that means the inner rim of each sink is 24" from the wall. Center a 23" wide mirror on the 15", the inner edge of the mirror is 26.5" from the wall, so 2x26.5 = 53 from 70 = 17 inches between the edges of the mirrors. Plenty of room for a center sconce, which I think you will need. Do you mean handle of the window? Will it still be in the way if you mount the sconce light down?

Outer edges of mirrors (hanging hardware, not glass) is 15 - 23/2 = 3.5" from corners, which is too tight for sconces BUT if you put the sconces on the side walls, it could work. I'd try for about half the depth of the counter (app 1 ft) from the corner, esp. since the mirrors project out (how far?) and the sconces will be in front of the mirrors - you'll have to account for the curve, and figure the height you're mounting the mirrors vs the height of the sconces (ideally "eye level" for both the middle of the mirror and the sconce, but I think sconces if downward-facing can be mounted higher to get them out of the way).

Alas, no Builder's Surplus around here.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 5:05PM
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Thanks for doing the math, aj! I posted in Home Decorating that, based on all of the great feedback, we did just decide to use 2 rectangular mirrors with sconces on the side walls and one in the back wall between the mirrors.

Medicine cabinets won't work on this exterior wall so I'm going to exchange the PB oval tilt mirrors for the rectangular ones. I hope they have them in stock b/c I've already paid a fortune in shipping :-(

Our current sinks are the standard size and the drain is just over 15 inches from the wall. I think we're going to bring them in to the center just another inch to allow more room for the side sconces without encroaching into the mirror.

Still deciding between oval or rectangular sinks. The floor will be rectangular tiles in a brick pattern so the ovals may be a nice contrast, but I may just embrace the whole rectangle theme altogether and use rectangular sinks too!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 6:14PM
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Just watch the projection of the sconces - with rectangular mirrors, it won't help to position the sconces higher, and a lot of sconces project more than 3.5". If it's too tight, you could use framed rectangular mirrors (but I think I'd go with chrome frames like the pivoting mirrors so wood isn't competing with window frame) so they lie flat against the back wall.

I think I found the perfect mirror for my PR today (and I didn't buy it! So I hope it's still there when I go back - just had to think about spending $45 for a curvy oak framed beveled mirror, frame needs refinishing).

I have an antique mirror from my mom, but it's 36" wide and the room is 36.5" so wasn't going to work, but even with the smaller (18") mirror I think I want to go with low-profile sconces just b/c if they project out 7-9" I'd feel they were closing in on me. I have the perfect glass shades too, just looking for the sconces to put them in! My light receptacles are roughly 12" from the back wall (one's an inch off from the other so I have to try to find sconces with backplates I can wiggle 1/2" in each direction to try to get them directly across from each other).

Have you decided on countertop yet? I vote for oval undermount sinks, I know they're not Craftsman but you've got a lot going on there, might be best to de-emphasize the sinks, let the mirrors, lights, and faucets take the focus. My second choice (if you want to go all out and make a statement!) is rectangular drop-in or semi-mount sinks with a high rim, kind of like the one mongoct used (actually a pedestal sink basin partially recessed into the counter).

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 9:34PM
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That's good advice - with moving the drain over an inch the mirror should clear the sconces but I'll make sure before DH does the wiring.

Definitely using undermount sinks and will probably go with oval. I think they'll maximize the counter space and will probably complement the round sconces.

What type of vanity do you have? The oak mirror sounds pretty and is a good price. My PR is also 36.5" wide and I considered using lights on the side walls but went with an overhead fixture instead. My mirror is 23" wide and we don't need task lighting in this room so it works out.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 1:07AM
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If you go with the rectangular pivoting mirrors you definitely want to check that they don't hit the sconces when they pivot! Though if you place the sconces 1 ft in front of the back wall they shouldn't, but even so you don't want the sconces projecting out far into the mirror, just for looks.

I replied to you on the other thread, pix of my washstand are there. I guess I'm going to have to go back for that mirror. It's 18" wide x 22" high, hard to describe shape but very curvy and feminine, if I buy it I'll post pix.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 10:11AM
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