Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Metro Tiles for the Bathroom

Did you know I'm renovating a house with my husband? Given half a chance I will merrily wang on about it to anyone who will listen so I'm betting I've mentioned it here before. In fact I know I have. So, now we're all on the same page, renovating blah blah, also on that page is an ever diminishing budget. So when it came to tiling the bathroom, I would have loved nothing more than to employ a highly skilled and knowledgeable tiler (or my Dad, same thing). However, once I'd totted up how much the tiles, adhesive, grout etc would cost, there wasn't much left for the actual tile application. Dad was busy doing other things (like putting the rest of the house together) and I thought, well, I'll have a go. Why not! Why not tile a bathroom when you've never done it before? To prepare for this tiling extravaganza I watched about 25 videos on YouTube of other people tiling, and read a few online guides. Let me share what I learnt with you.

Firstly, tiling is very time-consuming. Anyone who says you can do it in half a day is either lying or an expert tiler. Secondly, it's fiddly, really fiddly, especially behind the taps (try and tile before you put taps in). Thirdly, quick drying adhesive dries really really fast so you need to work quickly which isn't always possible when you're a complete novice and spend huge chunks of time standing in the bath staring blankly at the wall.

In spite of all this, it turned out pretty well. I originally wanted to use the Fired Earth metro tiles because I fell in love with them at the Fired Earth & Aga showroom at Vale Farm last Christmas.


Sadly the Fired Earth tiles were way out of our budget, who saw that coming? I found some really lovely alternatives though at Topps Tiles in Bedford. I didn't have a clue what I was doing and the staff were super helpful, I'd really recommend them especially Tony who gave me a few last minute tips before I started.

I went for the Metro Tile in Blue - after consulting my husband obviously - he was totally involved too :). I did umm and ahhh about going for the cream or white ones because they were so much cheaper, but in the end I thought I'd be brave and go for it. And I'm really so so pleased with the results.


This is before I had properly finished doing the final rub to get the smeary grout bits off. But overall, I'm thrilled all except if you look closely in the corner you can see it goes thicker and then thinner again? That is going to bug me every time I'm in there I think! Corners are really tough.

I'd love to hear from any other DIY tilers out there? I do actually have one last tip I just thought of... I wrapped the taps in cling film so they were protected from the adhesive and grout flying around but I could also work around them. Am I a super genius or does everyone do this? I'll go with genius until I hear otherwise, it's good for my tiler self-esteem.

Anyway, do you want to see what the bathroom was like before? Here you go...


Snazzy shower doors + curtain combo, right?! I'm so happy to have a bath in there now.

Right, I'm off now to my cardboard castle to pack up some west egg orders, will be back tomorrow. Bye!

12 comments:

  1. It looks so great Louisa. And you are a genius with putting cling wrap on the taps, I wish we had thought of that for our bath reno. It hasn't been fun scraping off the grout and adhesive residue :(

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    1. YAY I'm a genius!! Not really, it was more desperation at the thought of picking adhesive and grout off - I know how messy I am! x

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  2. SUPER GENUIS. Cracking choice of blue too!

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    1. Thanks Gem, happy you approve of the colour!

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  3. GENIUS! I am so impressed with you for the tiling work! Looks pretty darn good missus. (I would never notice the corners) Hope the rest of it is going just as well, baby steps isn't it? Can't wait to see the finished product!
    lots of love x

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    1. Thanks Rincy!! You're v sweet. It's definitely baby steps but I have learnt a huge amount. I can't wait to move in finally! x

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  4. It's FAB!!!!!

    Love before and after pics but in your case it's DIY. You superwoman.
    In my case it was me, an architect and 5 polish builders:-) *hangsheadinshame*

    xx

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    1. Thank you Tina, that is very kind of you! Don't hang your head in shame, if we had the money I would have hired people to do it for me and they would have done a much better job than me :) x

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  5. Great work Louisa.

    And not only is tiling a challenge but you went with dark tiles and a light grout so every 'flaw' shows but yours is an amazing job!

    We had white metro tiles with grey grout in the kitchen and the builder tried to put me off, realised after it was because everything had to be perfect and sadly it wasn't! And he was a builder! You should be proud!

    Love the colour too.
    x

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    1. Hi Laura,

      Thank you so much - I did wonder about why it was such hard work - I had no idea!

      Louisa xx

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  6. Hello,

    Great job, looks lovely, I don't think I'd have the courage to attempt it myself. These are the tiles we currently are looking into, they look very grey in the flesh when you only have a sample, is it only until you put them all together they start to look blue? Or does the photo alter the colour? Thnaks!

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