Before & After: Mario and Joe’s Clinton Hill Bathroom – Sweetened!

We’re back in the Clinton Hill Co-ops to admire another apartment that shed its walls to reveal a spacious layout, oversize windows, and light-filled open plan. Word is definitely getting out: if you can see beyond the cramped and divided interiors of so many of the units in these 1940s-era Brooklyn towers and get in there with a major renovation, you can end up with more square feet (and style) than you can find almost anywhere else in NYC.

Mario, who works in media, and Joe, who works in healthcare, bought their 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom co-op in 2013, and spent a year hashing out a game plan for the bathroom. It felt old and small and cramped; out of sync with the style they had going elsewhere in the apartment.

Mario posted a project on Sweeten to gut renovate the bathroom and kitchen, and we introduced the pair to Sweeten Expert Jon, head of a veteran design-build team based in Park Slope. While the bathroom was the main motivation for renovating, Joe had big plans for the apartment’s dark stained parquet floors, and the couple started to envision a kitchen renovation that would get rid of all of the little compartmentalized spaces and doors separating the kitchen, dining, and living rooms. Let’s focus first on the bathroom upgrade — we’ll be back soon with a full photo spread of the rest of this gorgeous place.


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Mario and Joe headed to Ann Sacks for sleek, large tiles that wouldn’t require lots of cleaning or have tricky little crevices. They found a gorgeous striated, gray porcelain tile that almost suggests the feel of coarse denim – it glitters just a little bit behind its tough exterior. They covered the floor in these tiles and continued up the bathroom’s vanity wall, splitting the bathroom with a racing stripe between white walls. In the shower, they went with the same gray tile but in a small cube version (to reduce slickness on the shower floor), and they chose a modern narrow, white porcelain tile for the shower walls. Sweeten Expert Jon accented the shower storage niches with extra slices of gray floor tile and replaced the old tub with a sleek walk-in shower.



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Mario and Joe picked a streamlined IKEA vanity with a stained oak-effect finish and worked with Jon to top that storage set with a squared Kraus sink and a Caesarstone countertop that extends across the wall. They also found a contemporary wall-mount faucet to keep the counter clear – the combination of the gray tile and built-in vanity features makes this all look custom! Mario and Joe upgraded from the previously teeny medicine cabinet with a recessed, mirrored cabinet that aligns perfectly with the silhouette of the vanity and found a very cool and current lighting fixture from Lighting Direct that completes the ensemble. With brushed nickel shower fixtures from Danze (via Faucet Direct) and a slim Toto toilet, this new bathroom is equal parts minimal and decorative.


We are so excited to see this first peek into another Clinton Hill Co-op renovation. Thank you, Mario and Joe, for welcoming us in. Looking forward to seeing all the fun that came after this updo!

Selects >> floor tile: gray porcelain Ann Sacks / accent wall tile: gray porcelain Ann Sacks / shower wall tile: white porcelain Ann Sacks / sink vanity: stained oak-effect finish IKEA / sink: Kraus / vanity countertop: Caesarstone / lighting fixture: Lighting Direct / shower fixtures: brushed nickel Danze via Faucet Direct / toilet: Toto

Sweeten handpicks the best design and construction experts for major renovations. Follow the blog for fun stories from real homeowners about creating spaces they love and when you’re ready to renovate, start your project.

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