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Modern Cabin Bunkie Bathroom Renovation | Before + After

I’m so excited that I can finally share my modern cabin bunkie bathroom renovation, which is sponsored by Lowe’s Canada!  I’ll talk a little bit about the renovation process and my design choices, but first let me show you the transformation:

My modern cabin bunkie bathroom renovation came together so beautifully, with just the right amount of cozy and quirky!  You might remember this little sneak peek I shared (you can click here to get the look, if you don’t have access to a Lowe’s where you live):

The Before

Although we kept the original pine paneling, the rest of the room has been completely renovated!  When I shared my plans for this space, I mentioned that the leaking shower had caused so much damage that the sub floor was dangerously squishy underfoot.  Although this damage definitely bumped the bunkie bathroom up on the long list of rooms we need to renovate, the annoying layout might have pushed us to renovate anyway!  The door to the room swung in and hit the shower (and therefore couldn’t open all the way).  Then, when you emerged from the shower, the shower door hit the vanity (and therefore couldn’t open all the way), which made exiting from the shower really difficult.  All in all, this bathroom was really irritating to use and it was starting to show its age.  I wanted it to be a fun – not frustrating! – place for guests. 

The Progress:

This project is really all about the before/after, but I did snap a few photos of the progress.  I opted to keep the natural pine walls because they create a cozy cabin vibe.  At first I thought about replacing the corner shower with a brand new version (but with a round door that slides – like this one).  I even bought one, dragged it home, then changed my mind and returned it!  They’re actually surprisingly expensive (I paid around $600-700 on sale) and I just wanted to do something more fun.  So I decided to carry the hex floor tile up the walls where the old shower had been, and then use a stock tank as a mini tub/shower, with a ceiling mounted shower curtain rod and rainfall shower head.  But first we had to remove everything and then replace the subfloor and soaked drywall.  We installed CertainTeed Mold Resistant Drywall where the shower had been.

Neither Hubby nor I like tiling, and this was a LOT of tiling!  We installed the hex tile on the floor over the Schluter Systems Ditra Membrane, which helps eliminate cracks in tiles surfaces, and then we installed the tile up the walls where the shower had been. 

It’s a great way to disguise the fact that there was no paneling there, plus it protects against future water damage.  I would ordinarily use some kind of Schluter metal edging for tile, but the ends of the pine were cut too roughly to be hidden by metal edging.  To hide the seam, I used a 3-inch window casing trim, which I affixed with construction adhesive to hide the seam and an air nailer (into the wood, only).  I patched and painted the trim with Valspar’s Exterior Paint and Primer in the colour Cracked Pepper.  I used exterior paint so it holds up to water and humidity better.

With the tiling and trim done, we installed a super narrow vanity, brand new skirted toilet (which is easier to clean around!), and matte black rainfall shower.  We also made little storage cubbies above the toilet, which I also painted black.  Finally, we installed the stock tank shower (which you can read all about here).   We did that almost last because, in such tight quarters, it was easier to complete the other parts of the room without it in the way.

I used a Galvanized Round Ultra 105 stock tank from Tartar USA (it’s 3 feet by 2 feet) for my stock tank shower.  I visited a lot of farm supply stores to pick the perfect stock tank because some are too rough or sharp for this application.  If you decide to try this idea, I recommend tracking down this particular stock tank because there are no sharp edges.  I liked this idea because it keeps the water in and, in a pinch, it could act as a tub (for kiddos or for handwashing/soaking some laundry or swim suits).  Living on the lake, guests get a little sandy that’s for sure! 

I also hacked the old swinging door into a sliding barn door with modern barn door hardware.  I trimmed out the door and added pocket door hardware to hide where the hole for the door knob was.  I also patched the indents for the old latch and hinges, and then painted the inside of the door frame black to hide my patch job.  Converting the swinging door to a barn door saved SO much space – now there are NO swinging doors in the bathroom. 

The After:

I hope guests love the quirky, cozy, and fun modern cabin bunkie bathroom renovation.   The new, much more narrow vanity and the stock tank shower with a curtain (good bye swinging doors!) makes it so much easier to move around in this tiny bathroom.   Plus the sliding barn door frees up a lot of floor space too.  The pine walls keep the cozy cabin vibes, which are complemented by the natural feel of the charcoal tile (which looks like slate) and contrasted by the modern details. 

The charcoal grey hex tile was the driving force behind this design because I loved the different textures and color.  It defined my other choices and my penchant for choosing matte black fixtures and decor for the space.  I think the black is a great way to modernize the pine walls. 

I wanted to keep the color palette very restrained: black, white, soft watery blue, and the natural pine wood.   I did, however, mix and match metals, using silvers, copper, brass – which are tied together in the mod storage cubby we built for above the toilet.

I tried to keep clutter to a minimum and keep it practical: hooks for towels and robes, a storage cubby for little toiletries, a little stool to lay toiletries kits or a pile of folded clothes. 

In the otherwise neutral space, the watery blue is a welcome addition and is the color of the lake – just outside this bunkie.

The toilet from Pfister is beautiful and I loved the skirted design – so much easier to clean, a bonus in a small space like this!

Check out my post on the Lowe’s Canada website to read more about the progress of this modern cabin bunkie bath renovation.

I used mostly products from Lowe’s Canada to create a space that has a Scandinavian cottage vibe (I share all of the sources below) but if you can’t find the items online or in your local Lowe’s, I also created an Amazon Storefront with a list of cute finds with the bunkie bathroom vibeclick here to take a look around. 

DIY Projects:

Shower Curtain | Stock Tank Shower | Retro Folding Stool Makeover (DIY Vintage) | DIY Wood Wall Cubbies

Products & Sources:

Vanity (c/o Lowe’s) | Mid-century Inspired Sconce (c/o Lowe’s) | Curtain Fabric (c/o Online Fabric Store) | Stock Tank (c/o Tarter USA) | Hex Tile (c/o Lowe’s) | Ball Shower Curtain Rings | Ceiling Mounted Shower Curtain Rod (similar) | Skirted Toilet (c/o Pfister) | Turkish Towels (similar) | Sliding Barn Door Hardware (c/o Renin) | Square Rainfall Shower Head (Amazon)  | Matte Black Toilet Paper Holder

Modern Cabin Bunkie Bathroom Renovation with Stock Tank Shower and Pine Walls

This makeover was sponsored by Lowe’s Canada but all thoughts and opinions are my own.   



  1. November 29, 2018 / 7:20 am

    what a difference, tanya! it looks so so good!

    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      November 29, 2018 / 12:26 pm

      Thank you! I was thinking about you when I decided to keep the pine and I’m so glad I had your voice in my ear, haha. It’s so cozy now – but with some aqua so I’m happy 🙂

  2. Brigitte
    November 29, 2018 / 2:33 pm

    Your new bathroom looks wonderful and the style is just perfect for a bunkie! I used to have that same shower stall in my basement bathroom and wasn’t sorry to see it replaced with a much nicer round shower stall.

    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      November 29, 2018 / 11:21 pm

      Thank you! I was also not sad to see the shower go, haha – plus it had caused the leaking which rotted the subfloor. I was extra angry with it 🙂 So happy to hear you upgraded yours too! That must have been a very happy day!

  3. Katy
    November 30, 2018 / 3:20 pm

    Do you have a shelf for shampoos/soaps somewhere in or near the shower? I’m intrigued by the stock tank idea and wish there were more photos of that area!

    Love the updated look, such a huge improvement!

    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      November 30, 2018 / 6:23 pm

      So happy you like the makeover! Thank you 🙂

      I wanted to use the stock tank a bit more to figure out the best solution for shampoo. For now, I built the little shelves above the toilet that are within easy reach but I also bought a little shelf with hooks that hooks on to the side of the stock tank and hangs inside, but you just need to scoot the shower liner over a bit to access it. Another option for people interested in this stock tank idea is one of those tension rod shower caddies that goes from floor to ceiling (people often have them in the corner of a tub/shower). As well, behind the shower in this bathroom is a tiled wall and in a normal structure we would have had the depth to do a tiled shower cubby, but here we didn’t because it’s not typical construction so we lacked the depth. It was a head scratcher at first, but there’s lots of options for storing toiletries, depending on someone’s particular bathroom design/size/preference. I’m planning to to a DIY post about this stock tank tub and talk more in detail about it – and then review it after we’ve used it for a year. Because I had to share everything in one shot for my Lowe’s post, so it’s a more truncated version of what I’d normally do, sharing each step/progress/projects – but I’ll be fleshing those out here a bit later. I’m thrilled folks are interested!

  4. cathie
    November 30, 2018 / 10:58 pm

    Congrats, it looks really great. The black accents, not my thing normally but here it really works and is such a nice contrast with the pine panelling. The metal tub thing is perfect for this type of guest house where one spends maybe only a night or two (I wouldn’t want this as my every day tub), because it really makes the place unique. People will remember this place, “oh yeah, the big metal bathtub!”. However, I do not like the fabric shower curtain beside the toilet – too much potential for pee contamination (sorry). A solid shower door or tiled wall would have made for easier and more thorough cleaning – taking down a curtain to wash is a pain.

    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      December 2, 2018 / 12:09 pm

      Thanks! I love the black with the pine too. The white-everything made the pine seem washed out. Now it glows – and I am not even a pine lover to be honest.

      And you’re very right about the stock tank – it’s so, so fun to use out here, but not sure I’d want this every day (and really not sure how people sit in them as bath tubs, lol).

      To be honest, if urine is going to be an issue (it is not in the main house, so I hadn’t thought of that), I’d rather toss the shower curtain in the wash than get on my hands and knees scrubbing urine from more grout, blech. This bathroom has quite enough grout as-is, lol. I specifically did not want more. In addition to the glass shower that used to be out here in the bunkie, we had a solid glass shower door in our main bath before we renovated and I HATED it. Cleaning the water spots was a nightmare and our well water seemed to produce extra water spots. It always looked filthy, even after one shower. I’d NEVER EVER get glass again. Ever. But washing a shower curtain is no big deal to me – I wash our main bath one with no problems. I think we each have our own definitions of easier 🙂 Grout and glass are things I use in moderation, neither are fun to clean for me.

  5. Morgan
    December 2, 2018 / 4:55 am

    It’s lovely! I especially like the tile.

    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      December 2, 2018 / 12:00 pm

      So happy you like the space!!

  6. Oona
    December 3, 2018 / 3:18 pm

    So gorgeous! I’ve been longing for a stock tank tub ever since it dawned on me that you could get total immersion like a Japanese bath but without the huge cost of a custom tub. I’m excited to follow your reviews as you live with this solution. One thought: the bottom of the tank may not be comfy to sit on, but a low teak or bamboo bath stool could be an option for someone who wanted a bath rather than just a shower. Love your finish choices for this space, which give polish and style to an ordinary, rustic piece.

    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      December 3, 2018 / 11:45 pm

      I’m so excited that you’re into this idea, Oona! If you go this route, I’ll tell you that Tarter Farms makes an amazing stock stank. I looked around at so many and lots of them were a little too rough around the edges, but the Tarter ones had a rolled edge and much less farm-y shape (lol). They were kind enough to send me this one when I reached out to them and in the process I got to know the people over there, and they’re so kind and really help DIYers who want to use there stock tanks so there’s lots of support from them. I’ll share more in an upcoming post but I wanted to already chime in and suggest them! Thank you so much for the idea for a low stool inside – that’s a really clever idea!! I am definitely going to keep my eyes peeled for a deal on one. That is so smart, thank you!!

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