Hey guys! Somehow the One Room Challenge™ goes faster with every passing week. It’s like aging. Only instead of wrinkles and cellulite, we gain a prettier and more functional room.


One Room Challenge ORC guest participant logo


Here’s where we’re at in the second to last week:

  • Remove upper and lower cabinets opposite W/D wall, countertops, sink, faucet and dog wash basin
  • Lay new flooring
  • Prime/paint walls
  • Frame out new coat and shoe cubby area and install custom storage
  • Create message/organization hub to corral keys, wallets, phones, mail, etc.
  • Raise upper cabinets above W/D and bridge to ceiling with crown molding
  • Caulk/prime/paint upper and lower cabinets on W/D wall
  • Replace cabinet hardware
  • Install new butcher block counter, sink and faucet
  • Makeover mirror and hang to invite more light into the windowless space
  • Upgrade overhead lighting and place on dimmer switch
  • Patch/paint ceiling
  • Install backsplash
  • Install undercabinet lighting
  • Paint service door
  • Install hooks to hang drying clothing, backpacks, etc.
  • Art/wall décor
  • Install trim
  • Accessorize

This past weekend we tiled our mudroom backsplash. It took nearly an entire day thanks to the hexagonal shape of our tile and, consequently, all of the necessary cuts. We bought this tile saw to help us get the job done. We’d highly recommend it. Thankfully Wisconsin had mercy on our souls and provided warm weather while we worked the wet saw. The first step was laying the tile out using shims to simulate the cabinet, upper counter and lower counter. This helped us gain a better visual of where we wanted our full versus partial tiles.


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Layout


We decided to make our tile’s focal center in line with the faucet (which we removed for the tile installation). Our laser level propped up on our tripod helped us keep this line even after the wall got a coat of Mastic. Mastic is the adhesive that adheres the tile to the wall. It comes ready to use in a plastic tub. We love Mastic. Don’t tell my mom, but it’s one of those chemicals you like to smell. Like gasoline. And Magic Markers. Am I oversharing here?


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Installation Start


This suction cup tool was the MVP of this project. It allowed us to place the tile exactly where we wanted it without getting Mastic all over our hands and the tile. Precision is key with placing tile and this tool made it relatively easy and saved Marco’s fingertips. We went with 1/16″ spacers as I wanted a super clean, barely there grout look.


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Installation Progress


From the first tile, I knew it was the one. I can’t pick just one thing I love about it. The subtle, varied pattern. The chameleon of a color that straddles the line between charcoal and deep, moody green. The classic yet unexpected hexagonal shape. The substantial yet not overwhelming size for this small area. Everything about it is delish. I’m so happy I just went for it. Subway schmubway. I debated a very dark (almost black) green for the grout but put it to a vote on IG stories and the clear winner was charcoal. Good choice, guys.


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Undercabinet Lighting Off


Check out the subtle veining. All the heart eyes.


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Installed Grouted


Another game-changer in this room was partially installed a couple of weeks ago: undercabinet lighting. We knew we wanted to add this from the onset but weren’t sure how we wanted to fully integrate it. Up until this week, we’ve been plugging the lights into an extension cord.


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Installed


We wanted to avoid installing a channel in the corners to hide the cord as I worried this would detract from the backsplash tile. I asked Marco how difficult it would be to tap into the wiring in our bedroom which is adjacent to the mudroom and install an outlet in the back of the upper cabinets. We could then drill a small hole in the bottom of the upper cabinet and feed the lighting wire through it to the outlet. He loved the idea, called me a genius and gave me a foot massage. Well, the first part is true anyway. On Tuesday, we finally got around to installing the outlet in the cabinet.


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Undercabinet Lights Wired


Now our cordless vacuum has an inconspicuous place to charge as well!


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Undercabinet Lighting Outlet Hidden Cabinet


Want to know the best part? The lighting is motion activated. With a wave of a hand, we can turn it on and off. I feel like royalty when I use this thing. Just go with it-I’m easily entertained. This is one of my favorite features in our space (I know I say that about everything but I mean it this time, guys!). I can make out every little stain our garments try to hide from me. It’s pure magic.


One Room Challenge Week 5 Tile Undercabinet Lighting GIF Animation


And now for a purely aesthetic feature: my beloved oversized prints. I sent two of our favorite photos to Staples to be blown up…you know what I mean. The Ikea Ribba frames in black are perfect. The clean and simple frame composition draws attention to-without competing with-the subjects. I love that my family’s happy faces are the last things I see when I leave for work and the first things I see when I return home. I’m not crying-you’re crying!


One Room Challenge Week 5 Engineer Prints


One Room Challenge Week 5 Engineer Prints


We still have to pick up and install all of the trim before next week as well as accessorize, style and photograph the space. I’m suddenly feeling faint. Well, that’s it for today-gotta go breathe into a paper bag. I know-all of your jaws are on the floor that I have so little to say this week. Even I get tired of talking…sometimes. If you need more talking in your life (and who doesn’t?!) please head over and check out my fellow ORC participants! Have I mentioned they’re freakin’ killing it?! (That’s a good thing in this context, Grandma). Come walk with me down memory lane, won’t you?


One Room Challenge Week 5 Sink Before Progress


One Room Challenge Week 5 Wall Before Progress GIF Animation


Next week is the final reveal and we can’t wait to share our finished space with you guys. Thank you everyone for checking in with us and rooting us on week after week. We would not have made it to this point without your support. Seriously. Thank you.

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  1. ORC™ WEEK 6: Mudroom/Laundry Room Reveal - Meghan and Marco | 10th May 18

    […] you want to read more about our process, you can check out Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Week 4 and Week 5 here. All sources are listed at the end of this […]

  2. Amy | 7th May 18

    I love the back splash! I think subway tiles have their place but I’m glad you didn’t use them here. I love your giant photos, never would have thought to get them printed at Staples. I just love the transformation so far and can’t wait to see it completely done! You are so talented (Marco too of course!)

    • Meghan | 7th May 18

      Aww thank you so much Amy! Agree! Subway tiles would have been so blah in this space! It needed a little something special;) We’re putting the finishing touches on tonight (haven’t started painting the trim yet-eek!) and then it will be styling and photography time!!! Thank you for your support week after week! Muah!

  3. Jude | 6th May 18

    Great post, as always 🙂 Can’t believe how much you guys have achieved in such a short time! Hope the trim installation is going well xo

    • Meghan | 6th May 18

      Thanks so much Jude! We may be kicking the mudroom’s backside, but we’ve lived on frozen food and takeout for the past five weeks=) We just installed the very last piece and will be up late, caulking and painting. Such a relief to be nearing the end!!! Can’t wait to see your bedroom!! That painted trim is so beautiful and you’ve inspired me to do the tone-on-tone thing somewhere in our home.

  4. Andi | 3rd May 18

    I can’t get over how great this is looking! That tile turned out so well! I’m opposite of you, not a fan of smells, but I love getting thinset, glue, basically anything sticky on me hands hahaha. My husband thinks I’m weird…

    I can’t wait for next week!!

    • Meghan | 3rd May 18

      Thank you Andi! Hahaha! I like that too…I’m just strange on a global scale:)

  5. Samantha | 3rd May 18

    Looking awesome! We really should be getting foot massages for all our great ideas though. The injustice I tell you! 🙂

    • Meghan | 3rd May 18

      Thanks so much Sammy! I know! I don’t get it 😉


  6. Trisha | 3rd May 18

    Meghan, I am LOVING everything about this room! The back-splash looks incredible and I am so jealous that you have lights that can be turned on by waving your hand! So fancy! 🙂 I also think it’s genius that you were able to get an outlet into the cabinet to hide cords and chargers! I can’t wait to see your final reveal next week!

    • Meghan | 3rd May 18


      Thank you so much!!! Those lights were actually really reasonable and simple to install. Someday soon, I’m hoping to break all of the 101 little projects down and give real tutorials about specs, installation, etc. You could easily install these, you table-buildin’ goddess! Thanks so much for tuning in! Can’t wait to come see what you’re up to!!!


  7. Em | 2nd May 18

    Amazing progress, guys! I love the backsplash, and your big prints, and everything else. So close! Looking forward to the coming week!

    • Meghan | 3rd May 18

      Thank you so much Em! The finish line is right ahead of us and I can practically feel the ribbon on my waist:)


      P.S. This fellow type-A grammar girl will always have your back 😉

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