This is the way I like to be “Green”. . . Recently I had my bathroom renovated. First, I did my measuring and research. My design was finalized using Kohler products and a black and cream check tile pattern. I knew I would be paying a small fortune for the contractor, so I thought, How can I save money in other ways? Craigslist!. . . .purchasing “used”, but really new items for a fraction of the cost!
Everyday for about two weeks I searched “Kohler” on Craigslist. . . .My Kohler Stately Pedestal Sink (regularly $500+) was purchased for $200 from a couple in Springfield who decided not to add an additional bath in their basement. I was open to any faucet with a brushed nickel finish. I purchased a Kohler Forte faucet from a lady in Vienna, whose husband had purchased it on-line and could not use it because it was a “widespread” and did not want to pay the return shipping charge. Exactly what I was looking for . . . as the sink was “widespread”, which in my opinion, is much more elegant. A “widespread” faucet, generally 8” wide, has three separate holes for a spout, and the hot and cold water handles. A “centerspread”, generally 4” wide, is one piece containing all three elements.
I really wanted an elongated rectangle or oval medicine cabinet above the sink to create a nice focal point. Kohler had a great rectangular mirror on-line for $400+. . .that was way out of my price range. I saw a less expensive oval design at Lowes for $109, I ended up purchasing the oval mirror for $40 from a couple in Reston who lost the receipt and box and could not return it. I splurged with my wall mount, three light vanity fixture from Restoration Hardware on-line (at least it was on sale) and topped it off with black chandelier shades.
For the floor of this small bathroom, I designed a smaller-scale diamond pattern. I started searching for granite and marble on Craigslist. I found a stone showroom that was selling off older stock. I was able to pick up Galaxy Black Granite one foot tiles for $3/sq. ft. I really wanted Absolute Black Granite, but when it is on the floor, contrasting against the Crema Marfil Marble tiles ($6/sq. ft., Home Depot), you can’t tell the difference.
I finished the bathroom with a mosaic I made from discontinued glass tile and marble samples ($free) from Ann Sacks Tile in Georgetown and beach stones from a past vacation to Jamaica (also free!).
While wandering around on Craigslist, I also came across two black Bourdonnais Bookcases that I had my eye on from the Ballard Design catalog ($699/each, plus shipping). They were spec’ed for a restaurant that went out of business. I had to borrow a Jeep and a man and drive to Annapolis, but I purchased them both for $350!