I can go on and on about all the different ways to do tile. That may be one reason I enjoy laying tile so much. It lets me express my creative side. Even if a client has all the tile picked out, I get to create the layout and imagine the final product and all the steps to achieving the goal. For the guest bathroom at the Ardee project in Inglewood I got to pick things out and decided to ‘randomly’ mix two sizes of tile for the surround and floor.
I got the tile at Super Home Surplus in Madison. They carry a lot of tile ‘seconds’ or closeouts that would otherwise cost three times as much or more. This particular porcelain tile is called Matrix-Element. You can actually buy it on Amazon for around $3.62 per square foot (incl. shipping). I got it for around $1 a square foot. The only catch is that you have to sort out a few tiles with ‘imperfections’ or chips of some kind. Most of the tiles were not defective so this was a fabulous value.
They had both 12″ x 12″ tiles available as well as 12″ x 24″. Standing in the store I had the idea of mixing the two together in some sort of pattern that was made to look random. (It wasn’t totally random because that might look too hap-hazard and, well, random.. ) I guess that’s what happens when a tile guy gets to pick out the tile and design the layout. Only the budget kept me from going totally crazy.
I definitely have to include a before and after photo of this bathroom. It was the original bathroom in the home. It was completely gutted and built new except for the bathtub. Those old cast iron tubs can last a long time if you take care of them. The old bathroom had a closet in the corner that wouldn’t let you open the door very far. You had to squeeze by the sink to get into the room. The closet had to go as well as that hideous wallpaper.
One of the few things I found in the attic that was worth keeping was the new mirror frame. I stripped all the paint off and had it painted with a new mirror. It’s probably much older than the home, but it really gives the bathroom some character that only comes with age.