I found THE tile!

Posted on Tue, 21 Jul 2015 by KiM

On Saturday the husband and I went tile shopping YET AGAIN, to a store called Saltillo Tile that sells the most beautiful selection of tile I have ever seen. I was particularly interested in their cement encaustic tiles (thanks Jo for the reminder).

Now, I thought I was pretty much sold on the black and white tile in this post, until I spotted this. 

BEAUUUUUUUUTIFUL!!! It is an 8″ cement encaustic tile with a matte finish, and this will go in the kitchen and vestibule. I do have one concern – these tiles are VERY thick. I don’t know if removing the subfloor is an option….anyway, we will figure something out because I HAVE to use these. 

After reading and re-reading the comments in my last post on this subject, I have decided to keep my oak flooring in the foyer, dining and living rooms and have it sanded and re-stained. ๐Ÿ™‚ While we were looking around at Saltillo I spotted a section of long wood-grain-patterned tiles

I really love that grey tile on the left. If I can find a stain like that (maybe a bit lighter) I think that would be perfect. 

I spotted this vestibule on Design*Sponge – they are cement tiles and look phenomenal. OMG I am so excited!!!

P.S. I probably would have gone with the tumbling block pattern tile because that has always been my favourite but my wimpy husband says looking at the pattern would make him pukey. Yeah, I know. JERK! ๐Ÿ˜‰

In Poland we've got http://purpura.eu/en – you really should check it out ๐Ÿ™‚ I wrote about them (and 4 other polish companies) here: http://blog.mikmok.com/2015/07/5-polskich-producentow-kafelkow-o-ktorych-byc-moze-nie-mieliscie-pojecia/ ๐Ÿ™‚

Meredith says:

Check out Rubio Monocoat for your wood floors! It's a vegetable-oil based color and sealer in one. Very pretty grays. We use it for clients all the time and I just used it in my own house. Result? Swoon. It's zero VOC, it's a non-poly finish that dries sort of matte, and you can buff and treat scratches as they happen instead of waiting to redo the whole floor at once. You have to condition it once a year, but it's basically just mopping with special oil that's like furniture polish. It even smells nice. Your contractor is probably going to be confused by it (we always get four phone calls before its applied saying "…seriously? Only one coat, total? Is this actually what you think it is?") but I'm thrilled with mine. Also I swear they are not paying me, I just really dig the stuff and no one seems to know it exists. I'm about to try it on bookshelves too.

Axie says:

Meredith! Thank you! I have been looking for exactly this- the Rubio product. But I have been looking for something I could use on both floors and wood furniture- huge freestanding bookcases that I'd like to blend in and look almost built in. But I'm picky on color, fumes, and ease of use. I think I'll try it.

Love the tile, Kim- it pays to wait till something just right bites you when you see it! Also, listen to your husband re puking- you know you'll jus be cleaning constantly..

KiM says:

A friend of mine ordered some samples of Rubio Monocoat and while he raves about it, he says it's MONDO expensive (is that true?) I will look into it – sounds easy. ๐Ÿ™‚
And thanks to 8 cats, I have enough barf to clean up without having to deal with husband who can't look at the floor!

Margaret says:

Excellent choice!

Denise says:

Greetings from Germany. I have used cement tiles from the company "VIA" (http://www.viaplatten.de/en/cement-tiles.html) in my kitchen and bathroom. They are really unique and beautiful. Keep in mind, though, that these tiles are porous and even after you have impregnated them they are susceptible to staining. Be careful if you are cleaning the sink or counters in your kitchen with a product containing bleach–or a product formulated to remove water stains–because if these drip onto the floor, they may damage it. Acidic substances can damage the tiles, as well. For example, I once discovered a slice of lime that had been on my kitchen floor for several hours (after a party) and "burned" an image of itself into a tile. Cement tiles are best used, I think, in areas that don't need heavy cleaning. The kitchen is not ideal. Still, I'm very happy with my choice and have learned to live with the imperfect, evolving "patina" of the tiles. Best of luck!

Meredith says:

Hmm, I don't know about MONDO expensive – I guess it depends on the area you want to cover? I just paid about $65 for a small can of it for my bookshelves (they're just a few units of the Ikea Ivar, and it's not a huge amount of wood), but I think the larger can was about $130.

It's not a $30 can of Minwax, for sure, but it's also only one coat for color and protection all in one, so you have to factor in the labor and the fact that you're buying enough for only one coat. For a normal wood floor, you'd need to do at least one coat of color, usually two to make up for uneven absorption, and then you need 3 coats of poly on top. That's at least 4 extra coats in material cost, plus the fact that you have to account for a full day of drying time and a re-sanding in between every layer. I was pretty psyched that my contractor only had to pause other work for a single day, instead of an entire week! Probably saved me $in the end for labor, since I had hired professionals.

It's probably not for everyone, but I'm super happy with the results. I've been scooting furniture around on it like a bad designer all week, and despite my husband's grimaces, it hasn't scratched or screwed up the finish yet.

Tammi says:

Tile looks fantastic. I have to ask about the light fixture though…brand? I'm looking for something similar for my foyer. Thank you.

KiM says:

I have no idea Tammi. Sorry.

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