Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Wood look tile flooring

I've been avoiding blogging for a while because of one reason. I thought waiting for a little while to retell my war story about laying tile would somehow have made it less miserable. You know, like child birth. Well, it's been a couple of weeks since I gave birth to this flooring baby and I still don't want more kids. Ever.

If you have the attention span of a squirrel like my bestie and can't handle long posts, you'll get the moral of my story with this sentence.

If you're considering doing tile yourself, heed my words... Installing tile S-U-C-K-S.

My husband and I have done a lot of DIY projects and this is one we would sub out if we did it in the future. Our house was a disaster and my knees were bruised for 2 weeks. Here are a couple of pictures of our progress.

Day 1. Removal.

This was actually fun. For the first hour. The next 8 hours were a little aggravating. Thanks to all who came to help with this nasty, dusty, frustrating at times, part of the job.

Day 2 and 3 were spent in Camp Verde for our anniversary. We played soccer in my annual alumni game and killed the current high school team. Sorry you were beat by a bunch of old ladies. But not really.

Day 4 we ripped out the old baseboards and cleaned and prepped the floor for the tile.

Day 5 I went to pick up the tile in Tempe. Funny story. You remember the tile I picked out from Floor and Decor that they said they were getting 5,000 sq feet of at the beginning of August? Well, it didn't ever happen. Anywhere. The warehouse was back ordered until October. That would have been really useful information BEFORE I RIPPED OUT MY OLD FLOORING!

So with a knife in my back, I headed out to 8 other stores to see what they had that was comparable. I was not about to live the next 2 months with my oven in the middle of my living room.

The 8th store was Lowe's. I knew that they had some because it was where I first found it locally. To my surprise, they had a tile with the same coloring but a little less wood grain than I wanted. But it also had a hand scraped look that the other tile didn't. So I found a great tile AND it was on sale making it less than the one I wanted.

HERE is what I ended up going with...

I bought our 1,300 sq feet and went on my merry way. I started installing while my hubby was at work that afternoon and finished the front room walk way with his help that night.

Day 6 I finished the hallway and into the kitchen before my husband got home and he helped me finish half of the living room.

Day 7 I refused to touch a SINGLE TILE. I just wanted the stupid project to be done. Except my appliances were still in my living room. So after that tantrum came...

Day 8 We finished laying the tile in the rest of the living room, kitchen, and hallway to the kids room. And I felt like a ton of bricks had been lifted off my shoulders. Or tile anyways.

Day 9 I went on my merry way to pick out grout. I was on cloud 9 thinking I was almost finished. Ha. I was such a young naive girl back then. No one had dark, dark brown grout. And after all the advice from pretty much everyone that had laid wood look tile before, I was going darker than I wanted. I finally located a company that could get the darkest brown grout in overnight.

Day 10 I started installing the grout.

Day 11 I called all my friends to help, panicking because I wanted to stab myself. 37 times. In the chest.

You are so welcome for this picture Jen. This is what we looked like for 3 days. I didn't want to take a picture of myself because that would have been embarrassing...

Day 12 I installed baseboards and finished the grout and was so excited to FINALLY HAVE THE PROJECT DONE!!!

Wrong again. I still had to clean the tile.

Day 13 I installed the baseboards and had to get grout haze remover and scrubbed my floors for the next 3 days.

That's right. SIXTEEN DAYS. My house was a wreck for half a month. I was probably the meanest person in the world to anyone I came in contact with. Sorry about the stink eye neighbors.

You guys. If you learn anything from this blog... I mean ANYTHING... just hire out tile jobs. Tile guys are WAY under paid. It would have been fine... fun even, if I had just done it on a 5' x 8' bathroom or something. But 1,300 square feet almost killed me. And then who would be there to tell you to RUN LIKE HELL if you get the crazy idea to lay tile, huh?

So run.

On a happier note. I don't regret it. No. Now I know how to lay tile! Are my new floors beautiful? Boy howdy! I love them. I'm no longer screaming at my kids to not eat or drink on the carpet and I'm not worried about scratches. It DOES look just like wood but with the durability of tile. I absolutely recommend this product to anyone with children. But save yourself some heart ache and hire out.

The end. Sorry it was so long winded. Here's a pretty after picture of the floor and table my husband and I just built. I'll post more about that later too!

As you can see, I still have to clean the baseboards. No rest for the wicked.


  1. It looks wonderful! I had no idea long woodgrain existed. Last year I redone my bathroom floor with wood-look tile, but it's a parque design and it's lovely!

  2. Carl- I fell asleep, twice, while reading this novel. You should submit this saga for a class paper or sumshing... Also, way to bounce back after a vacation. Paint a wall. Build a table. What's next? Also, my back is blistered from the sunburn. Also, come back? Also, longest comment ever from me? Also, long comments kill people.

  3. Wow, totally looks like wood. So fun that you spilled the beans about your ordeal. While it sounded like it truly was a nightmare, thanks for sharing, because I won't do the same now.

  4. Aw, sorry it was such a bear if a job! They sure look super yummy and pretty though!! Oh and that new table is 2.die.4! Want to know all about it!

  5. Most likely you will NEVER want to move now? Your floor is beautiful & what an awesome husband you have! {I just might be a little biased...E. Grandy we will love you forever!!!}

  6. I'm sorry, it's hard to hear you over the sound of melting city.

    It does look freaking amazing, though. Seriously. I should see it in person. Sometime after Halloween. I boycott the Valley from April to November.

  7. What was the tile name and color ect.

  8. Just found your blog...your style is amazing and you are inspiring. Can't wait to work on my newly purchased house and copy some of your beautiful ideas. Thanks for sharing.