Sledgehammer this! More pink bathroom love from the newspaper world

Tee hee and yeehaw, here’s another story about Save the Pink Bathrooms, featuring three other readers — Meghan, Fiona and Carri — in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. It is so fun to help make these stories happen! I guess I know lots of folks with pink bathrooms, so it’s pretty easy to connect them when reporters come a-callin’. And, this story is really really good! Home and garden writer Kim Palmer captured the spirit of our little quest — which is emblematic of our bigger quest (to love midcentury homes) — just beautifully. I’m kind of proud of this quote, which explained how/why STPB got started: 

“My readers and I got into a conversation, a mini-rant,” she [Pam] recalled. “It was the ‘Flip This House’ era, with all these TV home decorating shows, and every day we’d see somebody going in with a sledgehammer. Not just ripping out a pink bathroom but doing it with evil glee. I said, ‘C’mon, these pink bathrooms aren’t horrible.'”

There are actually three parts to the Star-Tribune tribute to check out, the main story and two sidebars:

  1. Amy says:

    The same day I found this site, I saw a House Hunters show on HGTV where they looked at a mid-modern ranch house with one pink bathroom, one blue bathroom and a blue metal cabinet kitchen. Of course they said they’d have to blow it all out. It didn’t help that the house was very run down and had some odd Asian themed living room. Very sad. They did choose this house and gutted it. I think the real turn off is that things are dirty and run down rather than just looking dated. They should have a show about restoring and cleaning up these vintage houses. Kind of like the Pawn Stars spin off show about the guy who restores old stuff like Coke machines only for home interiors.

  2. Nina462 says:

    Hi all- I lived in Mpls too and there are a ton of mid mod homes, especially in all of the suburbs. I lived in Hopkins for 14 years….wanted to buy a ranch home but decided to move back to MI to find my dream home. Well, I almost bought one in Brooklyn Park.
    My original apt in St. Louis Pk had a pink bathroom.
    I am so glad to see some peeps from old place checking in! I did pick up a Ranch home redo catalogue from the 90’s that describes the ranches in the suburbs. I should scan a copy to Pam –
    We could be Midwest Mid Mod!

  3. Becky says:

    Love this story, love pink bathrooms (we had one in our Queens apartment when I was tiny). Wanted to share this link – this house was listed on the website LovelyListings.com (being made fun of). Thankfully a few people piped up in the comments saying they loved it and one mentioned Retro Renovation! I don’t know if I could handle the wallpaper in the kitchen long-term, but other than that it’s totally fabulous! http://www.somdexpert.com/idx/mls-pg7513919-2701_felter_ln_bowie_md_20715

  4. Loved the Pink Bath Article in the Star Tribune!!
    Although we mainly offer turn of the century lighting and hardware, we happen to have a fantastic original 5-piece pink ceramic bath set for sale right now:
    – All original
    – Excellent condition
    – Includes matching soap dish, cup holder, toothbrush/toothpaste holder, robe hook, and glass shelf (shelf brackets shown but not the glass shelf, which is included)
    – Circa 1930s-1950s
    Price: $195.00 for the set
    See http://www.ResidentialRelics.com / Bath Accessories / Cup and Toothbrush Holders for photos.

  5. This has been so much fun Pam and it’s all because of you. I’ve received 2 calls from people wanting to save their pink bathrooms and one of them wants to work on the kitchen and rest of her mid century house. I hope I can work with them. My 19 year old son thinks this is so cool. He wants your kitchen Pam. I’ll be touch. Keep up the good work.


  6. Linda says:

    Please help! My significant other & I are struggling with what to do about his pink bathroom, also a sprawling rambler in Golden Valley. The Star Tribune article answered that question but where do we get the matching tiles, etc to repair the bathroom and make it a selling point? Heck, you think that’s something, you should see the floor in the tiny master 1/2 bath

    1. pam kueber says:

      Get familiar with the blog’s navigation, Linda. I am all about uncovering and sharing RESOURCES to help you get the job done. Go to the blue navigation bar above, or the long column/index to the side — Bathrooms/Tile is where you want. Go thru the the stories to review resources. Lots of folks find success with B&W. Good luck.

    2. Linda, I am Carri from the article. I also work at a handmade tile showroom in NE Minneapolis. We carry B & W tile and I can help you save your bathroom. Let me know if you would like some help.


  7. Jady says:

    I have a 50’s style bathroom and love the tile but the grout is cracked and falling out in the shower area – any advice on how to fix the grout so we can keep the tile. I’d love any DIY suggestions or vendors we could hire to do it for us.

    1. pam kueber says:

      Jady, it’s hard to recommend individual vendors because the country is so large! Start asking all your friends and family for references — you need to find someone who is very conscientious about restoration… who “gets it.” Good luck.

      1. Jady says:

        Whoops, good point! I initally saw this article on my local newspaper’s website (Mpls)so I made the mistake of assuming you were local.

        1. pam kueber says:

          oh! hmmmm…. i think you should call/ask Carri, who is a reader who is quoted. also a bathroom designer and homeowner — she might be able to make a reco!

    2. Jady: while the photo makes our bathroom look pristine, some of our grout is in need of refreshing. I’ll let you know if I’m able to find someone good! I’ve just begun my research quest and am checking with friends and maybe Angie’s List.

      1. pam kueber says:

        Woah, Meghan: You and your DH and weebits are SO CUTE, stashed away in your pink bathtub. Thanks for being pink poster family for this newspaper story!

    3. Puzzy says:

      Fortunately, regrouting is easy. The problem is that you can’t use the shower for 48 hours after you do it. I have done some regrouting myself but I have also hired a local company to do it. It was very inexpensive which is why I went with the professionals last time and will again moving forward. They used a steaming process to get any discoloration out of the existing grout, ground out the loose grout and regrouted those areas in two bathrooms and recaulked where the tub meets the tile in the main bath. All of it was under $200. I am in the Pittsburgh area where prices in general remain very reasonable. It is a flooring place here that offers this service so I would recommend starting with small flooring places in your area. Good luck!

    4. Depending on where you are located, there are trades people that specialize in removing the grout and replacing it. In Minneapolis it’s the “Grout Dr.” Alan is sooo busy. Check the yellow pages. You want someone who knows what they are doing. They check to make sure the wall is still structurally fit. If it isn’t they can tell you what needs to be done. If you really love the tile (who doesn’t) contact a professional


  8. Janice says:

    Great article and more publicity for preserving what we have rather than destroying 50’s unique and installing what everyone else has. I saw a show on the DIY network for a bathroom reno and they were destorying a pink bathroom. It physically hurt to watch the show.

    1. Lori says:

      Was that the bathroom I just saw this past weekend with pink and gray tiles? It was really neat – the floor had a beautiful pattern, too. I don’t remember if that was DIY or HGTV, but I know what you mean about it hurting to watch! I turned the channel. I would feel better if they would even just try to recycle parts of it! The show I saw was one where the house was up for sale — they should have left it as it was, someone may have been interested in the original state. I know I would have been!

    1. Jeff says:


      Gotta love it. I think if I see one more HGTV show lauding the merits of granite ghoulishness and anything “Tuscan” I think I’ll hurl my Mirro Bakery Press cookies all over the TV screen!

  9. dcgrl says:

    Pam, I think you need to host a show on HGTV and showcase these homeowners who resist the granite temptress and stay true to their homes. Please tell us you’re in talks…

    1. Martha says:

      Yes, why isn’t there a show on HGTV on preserving our MCM houses? Pam, you would be the perfect host and can feature all our homes and projects to keep them intact!

      1. frank says:

        I’ve been saying this for a couple years now. A while back, I even sent an email to HGTV with a copy of Pam’s video from one of the home shows. Pam, I think you’d do a much better job than the starry-eyed blond at Diynetwork!

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