Dirty Little Secrets

I have a window IN my shower and you can imagine what years of water and rental neglect have done to the frame and sill. It was the most pressing home improvement I needed to tackle before I turn my apartment over to my visiting Home Exchangers and it’s been the most satisfying DIY I’ve tackled in a few years.

I was careless with my photos and accidentally deleted some of the pics that would have better illustrated the repair. The before shot, below, was after the initial sanding and prep work — believe me I would never have rented the apartment if it looked that bad to begin with. But the photo clearly shows the cracks and gouges that needed to be remedied before I could repaint.

My solution was boat-grade epoxy resin and polyurethane paint. I patched the worst of the holes with hardware store epoxy, then built up two layers of resin, which leveled itself onto perfection. A light sanding and I was ready for the noxious, ultra-high gloss yacht paint that has me singing in the shower for the first time since I moved in!

I bought my supplies at Toronto’s Tender Craft Boat Shop and let me tell you they were not cheap; the resin, hardner and paint set me back about $150 but I’m too happy with the result to begrudge the cost. And like so many home repairs, the shower sill motivated me to spruce up the rest of the little bathroom. Before I knew it was repainting the walls and taking steel wool and chrome polish to the rusted, pitted legs supporting my sink.

There were other cleaning jobs I was willfully overlooking, like the dirty fridge and stove and all the nooks and crannies of the louvered kitchen doors.

Suffice it to say that all of these dirty little secrets have now been spit and polished and I’m walking around on a cleaning high that has nothing to do with the cleanser fumes. Home Exchange is the best thing that has ever happened to my home.


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Sunday, August 4, 2013 by Chris
This post was written by - who has written 865 posts on styleNorth.

6 Comments For This Post

  1. Lin Says:

    When I started hosting on airbnb, I tackled some (read: a few) of these kinds of jobs but willfully ignored many others. Guess I should heed the admirable example you’ve set and tackle a few more.

    Damn you, Chris.

  2. Carol Says:

    Oh that sounds as good as having a mother-in-law come to visit to get stuff done!
    I had a window in a shower once, and I took a clear shower curtain liner from Ikea and just hung it so the entire window was covered. Not exactly beautiful, but it worked.

  3. gayle Says:

    good afternoon looking good CHRIS, I don’t understand a window in the
    bathroom…Gayle of hmmmm, maybe I don’t want to :)

  4. Lin Says:


    My window isn’t actually in the shower, but the bathroom is so tiny, it might as well be; It’s on the same wall as the shower head, and even closer than yours appears to be. If you crack open the window even just an inch or two while you’re showering, I think you’ll find it will significantly reduce the condensation and humidity. I also have one of those itty-bitty fans (the kind that clueless people like me can stick their hand in without losing fingers) and tilt it towards the ceiling. The combination of the fan and the ever-so-slightly open window works like a charm.

  5. Jennifer Says:

    Looking good, Chris!
    I did something similar to my garage last year, but with an exterior wood filler resin solvent and outdoor latex paint. It was the original wooden door from the ’20s with loads of splits, gouges, and water damage on the bottom, and it looked so good my neighbours ended up doing the same and salvaging theirs too.
    Hooray for elbow grease, and bet your HomeExchange guests are in for a nice stay!

  6. Magda Says:

    You have lots of patience. Great job.

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