Help Me Makeover My Bathroom in a Frugal Fashion!


This is our bathroom and it just got a new tub!  I have not done anything in here and need your help!  I want to make it over in a WESTERN/COWBOY/COWGIRL theme and in a frugal manner since I am trying to be more frugal in 2009!

As you can see, it needs tons of TLC so please help me make it over!  All suggestions are welcome from paint to curtains to accents!  Let us just see how frugal & creative you are.

I like old stuff…and NOT southwestern.  And just ’cause I say western, doesn’t mean it has to be full blown cowboy’d up….I like all sorts of old junk.  If you know of something that might look good, find a link on ebay or wherever to show me.

I’m open and can’t wait to see what you come up with!  I might even have a special prize and randomly draw a winner from all the commenters who made a suggestion.

It’s a pretty big bathroom and what you don’t see is a small separate room to the right that is the shower and potty.  To the left is another room which is the closet.

Ready, set, go!

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  1. says

    How fun! The first thing you should do is paint the cabinets and find some Cute door pulls, like this: Although those aren’t exactly frugal, they are cute! Maybe you could find similar ones at an antique or thrift shop.

    I would go with light turquoise and brown for colors, possibly.

    Sarah (Real Life)s last blog post..Ringing in the New Year: Ah, the Memories

  2. says

    First, your bathroom looks big (and I thought mine was good size!) Second, I’m jealous of the double sinks/vanity :)

    OK I would say go bright with the paint or the paper (I’m not a fan of wallpaper in the bathroom though cause unless you have a fan it peels when it gets really warm and steamy in there). I would also look at some antique stores or flea markets if you want “old junk” there are so many things you can find. Or… check to see if you can find local crafters or artisan stores & even online (like even etsy)for some handmade items.

    Nikki @ The Guilty Parents last blog post..2008: The Parenting Year in Review

  3. says

    We recently stayed in a cabin in the Smoky Mountains which happened to be decorated in a Western / Horse motif and we loved it since we have horses.

    The cutest “accent” they did was using western style belts with rustic looking buckles (but they weren’t the expensive ones – they were more like the ones we would take off of jeans and probably discard). They were using these as curtain tiebacks on all the draperies and shower curtains and also cinching decorative pillows with them.

    To use as tiebacks, they had split the belt and shortened it, the affixed both ends to the wall with a screw or nail. It was a really cute accent and the belts can probably be found at the Thrift Store.

    Tonyas last blog post..Merry Christmas – our 2008 cards

  4. Chanel Laney says

    What a great idea to get input from others on here. Okay, first of all, you need to have one main focal point to build on. That focal point could be the walls (wall art, border, pictures, paint), the shower curtain (horses, cowboys, cowgirls, ranch scenery, rodeo scenery), the flooring (maybe an area rug with a western design on it) or even the window decor (curtains with a western design). After you decide what you want your focal point to be, you then can “build” your bathroom around that focal point.

    Here are a few ideas I have.
    For the wall, you could make a picture frame with an old twine rope. Just make a circle with the rope and keep going around that circle until the rope is used. Maybe you could make some kind of lasso loop at the end of the rope to have it hang on one side of the “frame”. You could even add a horse shoe or two to the “frame” to give more of a western look.

    If you are hunters and have any deer antlers you could use a set of antlers in your bathroom to hang on the wall as towel racks.

    Also, how about some thick sticks to use as curtain rods.

    I know I once found some cheap bookends with horses on them at a thrift store. You could check around for bookends with a western theme and use them as decor in your bathroom.

    Maybe you could find a small old wagon wheel to add to the bathroom for an extra touch.

    Look for a ceramic cowboy boot (maybe flower pot) to use as a toilet brush holder. Even if the color doesn’t match the decor you decide on, you can always paint it the color you choose.

    If you decide to have the walls be the focal point, you could paint your largest wall area to look like old wooden planks. This would really give that feeling of being in an old western home and then of course your decor would add to it.

    Whatever you decide, good luck and I can’t wait to see the end results.

  5. says

    Lori –

    You’re bathroom is HUGE! I am very envious.

    What about going with a warm color on the wall? Some browns?

    I love the theme you want to go with. Do you have a Homegoods near you? They usually have some interesting and fun items.

    Anything with horses would be cool. Maybe some old photographs in sepia or black/white?

    Old signs from ebay? My uncle did a 50s bathroom and bought on eay some old signs and framed them himself… looks so cool.

    I’ll keep thinking!

    LOVE this idea!!

  6. Kimberly says

    I would brighten it up – the brown towels and the brown cabinets darken it up some, and it’s good that it all matches but the overall might be more monochromatic (dichromatic, I guess, since it’s two colors, brown and white)than you wanted? I think new mirrors and some lighter/brighter accessories, with some new cabinet pulls, would help a lot. And maybe a plant in the corner by the tub (not so practical) or at least some sort of decorative feature (look at Home Goods and Marshalls).

    I tend to check out HGTV and Real Simple for ideas. HGTV is a great resource for me.

  7. JDawg says

    Hhmm, Like some of the others have been saying brighten it up. I would get rid of the curtains, and frost the windows. If that is Carpet, I would pull it up and lay down some vinyl tile squares (not sure if that’s the right terminalogy). It’s cheap and easy and looks good. Tile the wood around the Bathtub I would use the cheaper 1 foot tiles in a diamond pattern. I can’t see the handles or knobs on your vanity, but maybe try some new ones that pop a little. I think i would paint the white an light earthy tone also.

  8. says

    I saw that you have two windows,right? My recommendation would be to put up light-colored curtains – linen is good – simple, classy and not expensive. It will brighten up the room but provide enough privacy at the same time.
    Good luck. Can’t wait to see “After” pictures.

  9. Jamaise says

    Ok I would do a fresh paint job(very frugal)to brighten everything up. I would think authentic. Find real & actual cowboy/western items to use, vs. cowboy decor type of stuff.
    Plants are good, for one they add life, for another they brighten, & they clean the air. Ferns love bathroom humidity.
    I would keep everything simple but rustic. Make shelves and mirror frames from barn wood.
    Also, I love wall decals. Some places do custom decals – you just find the picture you want.
    I hope inspiration comes to you. Looks like everyone is chipping in with good ideas. Let us know how it’s coming along.

    Link for nice wall decal ideas –

  10. Rocky says

    I would do one side for you with a cowgirl chic decor and I would do a side for him with the vintage old west cowpoke’s. If you are crafty you can use and old sheet to make curtains. get some rustic tin;s to hold toothbrushes, q-tips, roll you wash clothes and put then in a westerny tin. Hay hooks for towel holders. If you can’t affor to paint, just get some black or brown paint in the craft section at wal-mart and paint the brands of all the ranches that you worked for, personal family brands, etc.. on those walls.. I think the brown cabniets have to go. You can get those kits from a super walmart to make your cabinets look like leather, crackle, and decoupage (?) some prints of your family working cattle, horses, etc. in the center of the doors. There is just so much you can do with stuff that you might already have and just can’t put it together right now. Once you get going I bet great ideas will just start flowing. Good Luck. Can’t wait to see the finished product…

  11. says

    I think of lots of rock columns or the stacked rock as a western feature, like in many National Park Lodges. There are many pictures of them on the web. Use it as a step up to your tub and maybe just in the corners and fade into a medium brown paint on the walls (different than the cabinets).
    I like the rustic lodge look.
    Maybe check some of the ideas at HGTV (

    Alyzabeth’s Mommy of 15 Weeks!

    Alysons last blog post..Ruby is coming! Ruby is coming!!

  12. says

    I love your new huge tub!! That will be great!!

    I think I have sent you pictures of my boys’ bathroom before. I have tin up on the walls and I used a metal feed scope for a towel holder. You can also take horse shoes and bend them to make a single hook to hang up towels or ropes. And it would be cute to find some tin and put some rustic type tumble weeds type stuff in them. OH, and you could get some barbwire and make a wreath with it. or small candle holders for around the tub. Or take some candles and put just one or two wraps of barb wire around them. Oh, I love to decorate!!!

    Andreas last blog post..Belle at 15 Weeks

  13. chrystal says

    I have a couple of suggestions for you. I would paint the walls a taupe color. It’s a great color and goes with all things western and old, I have it all through out my house so I’m speaking from experience. I bought my paint at Walmart and did the painting myself to save money. Another thing I wanted was all the really cool western towels that I’m sure you have seen different places. Those towels are WAY TOO EXPENSIVE! I told my mom about them and we went and bought some plain tan colored towels and then used her sewing machine to create some embroidery work that looked like brands and some western scenes. We spent about $20 on the embroidery designs but I have put these on bath towels, hand towels, kitchen towels, etc. Great money saving ideas.

  14. Sharon says

    Hi, I don’t know why everyone is saying you have two windows. Are those windows or towel racks? If they are towel racks I would lower them and hang some rustic artwork above them. I would re-frame your mirrors with some old re-claimed barn wood. I would definately paint the room using a color that you find appealing I wouldn’t use brown since your sink bases are brown. I would replace those light fixtures since they don’t even come close to matching the theme you want to go with. As for the floor if your going to replace whats there I would go with laminate flooring that looks like wood. Its easy to put down, very durable and will go with your room well. I would try to stay away from cluttering up the room too much but a few items that you really love from flee markets or yard sales can make the room look and feel special. Good luck I would love to see a picture of your finished room!!