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#@(*! Glass tile is making me crazy - mini subways, other ideas?

16 years ago

Okay, I know I've posted like 10000000 threads on this forum with "help" in the title, so thank you all in advance for all of your expert advice! I am at my wits' end with this bathroom because I just don't know what to do with it. I'm currently stressing my tile choices (that's just today's topic - tomorrow I'll be stressing the fact that I haven't chosen a vanity yet). Here is a picture of the current bathroom, in all its greeeeeeeeeeeeeen glory (shot taken from the door):

Of course it is so narrow that you can't see the whole thing, so here's a shot from the window:

Here's the floorplan (note that the little nub of wall in the bottom right corner is actually a heat pipe):

Currently, the plan is to tile the floor with a wenge/ebony wood-look porcelain, then use white subways on the walls up to wainscott height (where the current tile ends), capped with a simple bullnose piece. I want to use a 3" glass tile accent strip in blues and greens one row below the top of the subways (and choose a paint color from the glass tile). The shower area will be tiled higher, but I'm not quite sure how high to go. The black strip you see in the pics indicates the current level of the tile, but I think it will have to go higher than that in the remodel. However, I don't want to go up to the ceiling, because then I'd have to decide where to stop on the window wall - the window is too high to allow for tile over the top, but I think it would look weird just to stop at the left edge of the moulding. Any brilliant suggestions on how to handle this would be very much appreciated.

Now, as to the glass tile - I am trying to do this is a somewhat budget friendly manner. Since the accent strip will only be 3" wide, I really only need about 8 square feet of mini-subways or mosaic to circle the room. I would like to add another, possibly wider accent strip to the shower, though, so I was kind of figuring 15 square feet total. I'm trying not to spend a fortune on this, so $40psf onyx mosaic I REALLY want is probably out, LOL!

Here is a tile sample pic (along with a cabinet sample that we may or may not use):

The subways I have pictured are $19psf, which is a good price, but I am really struggling with the color choices. I love blues and greens in the bath, but I want to keep the period look of the bath to a certain extent, and I feel like aqua/turquoise are a little too modern. I prefer the muted colors in the photo, but I don't like them all together and I can't figure out which ones to keep and which to remove to make the whole thing work. Grr. Pretty much all other mini-subways I've seen in stores are twice the price, so I feel a little stuck. I don't HAVE to use mini-subways, but I do like the look and since I'm using 3/4x3/4" mosaic in the kitchen, I thought I'd try to work the subways into the bath. Anyway, does anyone have any brilliant advice? Reasonably priced glass tile brands? Color blends that would work? I'll post more photos of the sample tiles I have when I get home from work. Thanks in advance for your help!!!!!!!!!!

Comments (45)

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    First of all I would tile all the way to the ceiling on the main shower wall and on the window wall. I'd go over the window, tile the jut out, and behind the heating pipe. I have the same bathroom and the verticals make it look narrower. I'd get rid of them.

    As for the horizontals -- If the mini subs are too expensive, why not use mosaic squares, which might save you as much as $6/foot?

    Let me show you a bathroom done like that which I feel is gorgeous. I love the way that looks. I'd also run the color around the as a border at the same height as the top of the window, to create a line there and make it look more integral. There are 3 or 4 different sizes of tile done in the same color and it looks very rich. If the subs on the walls had been white and the borders and floor were the same then that also would be nice.

    My friend only did wainscot tile because she doesn't have a regular shower in that bath, as you can see. But they put the rail at exactly the right height to tie in the window. I'm suggesting the reverse for yours, essentially.

    Also, I'm not loving the very dark floor with nothing to tie it into on top. If you did a wenge look floor and then some java colored glass mosaics in the border it would make more sense to me than 3 colors that don't relate. The floor will look like an afterthought otherwise IMO. Alternately, use tile in one of the border colors on the floor.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Rococo, thank you! You've posted that bath for me before and I LOVE it. Anyway, as to your comments, I considered tiling the whole window wall, and I still may, but I am planning to build some sort of surround for the heat pipe. I'm still not sure how it's going to work, but what I was considering was just extending that "jut wall" next to the window far enough to go around the heat pipe. They'll have to vent it somehow though, so I'm not sure what that will mean for tiling purposes. If they do it this way, I'll probably just tile the resulting "niche" around the window and tile the new "pipe hiding" wall to wainscott height, assuming that they can put a vent above the wainscott.

    I will be replacing the current window moulding with something a bit smaller, which will give me enough room to run at least one full row of subways over top of the window, if necessary. If I don't tile to the ceiling, my thinking was to tile just to the top of the window, but I think that may leave too small a strip at the top - it might just look like it was supposed to be tiled but I ran out of tile or something. I like your idea of tying the second shower accent strip into the window height. I may also add a row or two to the wainscott height tile so that my accent strip goes just under the window, the way your friend has hers. Thanks again for those pics!

    Regarding the mini-subways, I'm not married to them, but I'm using square mosaic in my kitchen so I thought the mini-subways would be different and fun. I'm also not married to the wenge wood-look floor, although I'm having a hard time coming up with any ideas I like better. I love your friend's floor but I do NOT want that much grout to keep clean, LOL! The current floor is 1x1 in a checkered pattern and I really want something different this time. I was hoping the faux-wood would be something that would go with anything (like the hardwood in the rest of the apartment) even though it's a dark color. I was planning to use a dark stained wood for the vanity and shelves to tie in the floor, but oddly enough, the dark real wood looks kind of strange with the dark faux wood. I am heading out to yet another tile store this weekend to see some other faux-wood tile options, so perhaps a different color will strike me. BF really likes a very light blonde wood-look tile, but I'm not wild about light wood.

    I think another part of my problem is that I'm scared to commit to a color scheme - for instance, I love brown and blue together but I fear that it will scream "Target circa 2007" in about 2 years. To that end, I have considered a plain black/white scheme, or even an all white scheme (iridescent white mosaic with the white subways). But then what to do on the floor? ARGH! Why is this so infuriating???

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  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Bio -- Wasn't suggesting mosiac floor, just for color purposes.

    We have those pipes too. Not sure how they get enclosed exactly but expect they can just build out around them.

    We have similar bathrooms but different shapes. When I do it over I will definitely tile to ceiling because the water gunk on painted wall surface is grotesque. And who needs to scrub up there? Tile takes care of that.

    Everyone has different ideas about usage. I personally don't like to repeat exact materials. But if the mosaics worked both in kitchen and bath and weren't the same tile in the exact same color, I wouldn't hesitate.

    I know wood-look tile is very new now but I'm just such a tile person it would never occur to me to try to have it look like something else.

    Do, however, feel that a color scheme is a must to put a bathroom over. Whatever it might be. Fear of a scheme is natural but you must get over it. Get what you like now and something that will enhance the value. But I don't see the scheme you posted tied together with a wood look floor. I think they are two completely different sensibilities.

    Hope I don't upset you by saying that but if you were going with, say the bamboo-texture tile from Ann Sacks, or something organic and modern, I could see the wood look. I don't see it with subways and glass.

    I would much rather see a white subway and white irridescent mix if you don't want to commit to a color. Then think about something different for the floor -- hex works, herringbone works, marble works. Even a neutral type porcelain tile -- one of the leather/limestone looks could work. I could be convinced about a cement look, f.ex. But not anything too rustic/Mediterranean or too organic.

    Yes, the brown & blue is all over. It already feels dated. The coral thing as well.

    May I suggest a trip to Wateroworks. Not to buy, mind. But their ocncept boards are super. Another place with a ton of those is Artistic on Fifth and 13th -- downstairs.

    Methinks you need an inspiration picture.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Methinks you're right - an inspiration photo would help immensely. Right now I'm trying to come up with a picture in my mind and all I can see is the greeeeeeeeeeeeeen that's already there. I've been to about a zillion tile stores, looking at their vignettes, etc, and nothing has REALLY grabbed me. I went into Artistic Tile but I was so distracted by all the onyx and gorgeous mosaics that I didn't notice anything that really looked period-appropriate, LOL. I agree that the wood-look tile is a more organic/modern look than the subways - that might be why I'm having such a hard time figuring this out.

    Perhaps this weekend would be better spent looking at bath magazines rather than tile...

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    rococogurl - I love that bathroom! Where is the subway tile from? Do you know how much it was a square foot?

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Here is the bathroom that sold me on wood-look tile:

    Also, I love Buffalotina's bath on this site:

    http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/bath/msg0822064830926.html

    Unfortunately, there are elements of each that I don't love, and I can't figure out a way to make those that I do love work together. Grrrrr...

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    We did something similar in our bathroom, except that we used 1" square glass tiles. They were the Dal-Tile ones, and they come in 12" square sheets. We just had them use a 3" strip of accents, and it ended up being an extremely economical choice, much less than the listellos the tile guy had originally priced out for us.

    You can see photos of this in our master bath at the link I'm posting below. We chose a green color to match our bathroom walls & the granite vanity countertops.

    Cheers!
    Heather W

    Here is a link that might be useful: Our Tile Photos

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Bio, you say you couldn't get past the gorgeous onyx and mosaic at artistic tile but couldn't see anything period appropriate. If that is what grabs you, why not go for it. The glass tile isn't period appropriate either.

    We had originally wanted to do the white subways with a border of onyx and I still love that look. I think the browns in your floor tile with the browns of the onyx would be sooooo stunning.

    Jejvtr gave me some advice when I was madly trying to marry finishes, etc. She said (and I'm paraphrasing here) that in a small bath you don't want to try to do too much. Keep the lines simple and the finishes to a minimum.

    To me the floor has a traditional solid look and the glass tile has a modern, light feel. I think a stone or ceramic tile would tie in better with the wood look floor than the glass (Just my opinion). But maybe not the look you're going for.

    Have you seen this bathroom with subways and ming green mosaics?

    Here is a link that might be useful: ming green

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Budge, thank you! I had sort of dismissed the onyx mosaic as being too expensive, but since I only need 15sf tops, I might be able to swing it, especially if I can find better pricing on it somewhere. Now that I think about it again, I've seen some beautiful green onyx mosaics with bits of brown in them that would tie to the faux-wood floor nicely. I'm not trying to be a slave to period (hence the glass), but I wanted something that wouldn't clash horrendously with the rest of the apartment and the exposed chrome fixtures (we have a flushometer that we're keeping and we're going to have an exposed shower feed as well). I will look at onyx again this weekend, maybe marble too. I love glass, but there's going to be a LOT of glass in the kitchen!

    BTW, love the Ming Green bath! Thanks for your suggestions!!!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    bio -- I was going to say the same thing about the pistachio onyx when I read budge's post. It's so beautiful!

    Here's a link to the Maestro Mosaics site in Chicago. Don't know their pricing but I've not seen the onyx mosaics many places and they have them.

    I'm not loving that wood-look tile, not in the bath in the photo and for sure not in a small space. Wish I could but I think the scale requires a very large, very space. My 2 cents. Not my house.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Onyx

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Rococo, we must be psychically connected - I called Maestro this morning before I left for work! They charge only $25 psf for 1x1 onyx mosaic - quite a bit cheaper than any other place I've seen around here. What type of flooring would you suggest if I were to do something similar to your friend's bath, but with white subways and pistachio onyx? BTW, I'm planning on a glass shower enclosure (see sketch below) and I know that shower glass can have a funny green/blue tint to it - do you think that will clash/look odd with the onyx? I don't HAVE to do a glass shower (it would save me MUCHO dinero if I didn't!), but I detest shower curtains. Lemme know what you think...

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    My bathrooms have the original 1921 tiles.

    In one bathroom, there's an aqua-fading-to-blue-green stripe of tile around the room. It's a highly glazed tile, so it *sort of* looks like glass, in that the color seems glossier, and buried a layer down under the sheet (if that makes any sense).

    In the other, there's a cobalt-blue-fading-to-dusty-navy stripe.

    I just wanted to say that your colors are not THAT far off from vintage.

    What I think *is* vintage is the single color. The stripe tiles have variation in the density of the color, unlike modern stripe tiles which are very solidly one color.

    My vote: pick two tiles in closely coordinating colors, and mix them a bit. The greens are too yellow to blend w/ the blues you have. And I will say that I really like the slight variation in the tile I've got--it keeps it from being boring. That's why I'm saying, "pick two blues" or "pick two aquas."

    (I will also say, that aqua-sometimes-blue stripe is hard to match perfectly in terms of paint and towels. But it sure is a pretty color)

    The glass tile isn't "period," but the stripe definitely is, so let that (and the color) carry the day.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hi Talley Sue! I know the glass isn't "period" but I love it, which is why I was hoping to work it in. However, I just can't seem to figure out a color combination that will work. Nor can I think of a floor tile that I will like with the glass that I do like. Nor can I figure out what sort of vanity will go with the floor tile that I do like. LOL!

    I have samples of about 60 colors in mini-subways and probably 200 colors in 3/4" squares, and none of them are exactly what I want. I'm going to go out tile shopping again this weekend, with an eye to glass, onyx or marble that really catches my eye, and then hopefully I can find a floor that will work. Any thoughts re: the shower glass?

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Bio -- I'm really laughing now. I put a very similar shower guard (which I copied from a hotel in Cannes) in our guest bath. Photos below. It's a world apart from a shower curtain. As I still have a shower curtain in our apartment I do have a good point of comparison. (Send me an email at yahoo and I'll send you a source for an estimate from Duschqueen -- perhaps you can get a better price).

    Re the tile.

    No one can tell you what your color scheme should be. And it doesn't sound to me like you want a period bath. It sounds like you want the feeling of one, but a bit more updated. And you know what, I think that's right.

    For me, if you have a period bath already or can restore it great. If not, time to move on because there's so much lovely tile and stone in the market right now. My reno was a few years back and I had a difficult time finding stuff that was affordable! I wanted a glass tile floor and they didn't even make glass tile for the floor at the time (I went with pennyrounds).

    Have you been to Ann Sacks? Between there and WW I'm sure you can get a look. Also, I'd drop by Stone Source, which for me has the most innovative looks right now.

    I think the onyx would go very well with porcelain tiles on the floor provided the colors worked. If you go with pistachio onyx and subways, my first choice would be a 4 x 4 onyx floor to match.

    Acknowledging that that might be a budget buster, first pick the mosiac. Then why not try to find porclain tile -- there is an absolute ton of it in every shape and size. I can have any type of surface and some is very matte look, almost like stone. I suggest that because it comes in so many colors and you could pull a color from the onyx and you'd have a scheme. You could do narrow smaller subways in a pattern in the porcelain if you wanted to.

    It sounds to me like you have over-reasearched. The idea is to find a look you are going for -- or at least decide on a color scheme more or less. Fortunately, everything goes with subways.

    I'd take the camera when I went to the tile stores. Once you pick the tile we can talk about tub style and coordinating a sink. The sinks are easiest because there are many styles and they can take the bathroom one way or another.

    You keeping the old style toilet I assume? Is it like ours with no tank? Just the wall connex?

    and in the other direction

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    How do I get onto the page with the finished kitchen and bathroom slides?
    Thanks.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    LOL, Rococo, we truly ARE psychically connected! You're right, I don't want a period bath, I just want the feel, but updated. I love the look of your shower guard - I just DO NOT want a curtain - but will the aqua tint of the glass look weird with pistachio onyx? I am keeping the tankless flushometer toilet (BF loves the strong flush!) and as you can see from the shower sketch, I'll have an exposed shower feed. I really like the way you kept your tub filler on the long wall and put your showerhead on the short wall - were they both on the long wall originally (like mine)? I may leave the tub filler on the short wall now that I see your setup.

    As for the floor tile, I considered onyx but I thought it might be overkill. It's a very small floor, though, so maybe not. Might be slippery, though? Porcelain would be great, and of course I could find any color under the sun, but I'm having a hard time envisioning a texture/pattern that would look right with the onyx/subway blend. I will make that my mission this weekend. I need to put a slab of something down on top of that knee wall, though, and I think onyx would be perfect for that.

    As for the tub, I've pretty much already decided on the Kohler Devonshire. I don't have room for anything other than a 60x32, and I really want it to be DEEP (the Devonshire is 20"). I considered the Toto 1525, but it's only 16" deep and only 13" to the overflow, which is a LOT shallower than the porcelain monstrosity that I have now. There are a couple other Kohler models that would work (Portrait, Hourglass) but BF likes the arm rests in the Devonshire, so we'll probably go that way.

    I'll post again after my weekend expedition. Thanks to everyone for all your help!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Bio -- Will wait to see report after your expedition.

    I don't notice the color of the glass. It might be possible to get clear glass; not sure. It will blend IMO. Glass just does.

    Also had thought of doing the 2 shower walls and deck in onyx mosaic.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    There's glass called "starphire" (don't like the cutesy spelling, but star sapphire is how I imagine they came up with the combination, or maybe it's just because "starfire" was taken :)) that's truly clear, free of the greenish haze. Costs more, but if you really don't want that green, it's possible.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I like the last green on the right. I've seen that color in many older homes, but it has a modern feel now. Everything old is often new again. If you put the wooden mirror frames with the wood look floor, I think it could tie together.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Okay, here are pics from today's tile shopping expedition:

    Ming Green Marble (left) and Jade Onyx (right) Mosaic boards:

    We decided we liked the Jade Onyx best, so we tried matching it up with a few floor tiles - here's a porcelain:

    And here's a blonde wood-look porcelain:

    We also REALLY liked the pistachio onyx but after looking at it in a zillion combinations, we decided that's it's too formal a look for our space. We also determined that it looked best with off-white rather than white subways, and we want to stick with white. Here are a few pics, though:

    With a porcelain floor and biscuit subways (ignore the red onyx cap - concentrate on the green!):

    And with a wood-look porcelain:

    Anyway, we're obviously leaning toward the Jade onyx but I would prefer to find it in a 1x1 size, and for less than $45 a square foot. We've also reconsidered the glass tile, but instead of trying to blend colors, we'd just use one (probably an apple green) and then maybe do something more interesting with the paint job. Still not sure what color floor we'd use in that case, though. Anyway, if anyone has any inspired ideas with the new pics, let me know! Thanks!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hi Bio:

    I don't have any new ideas to add. I think either the mosaic or the glass subways would look really neat with the subway tile. In fact, when you think about it, in old subway stations you will see glass mosaic used with ceramic subways all the time!I think it's possible, and fun, to use modern pieces and colors to update a vintage look.

    I do like the jade green above as well! For glass, have you checked Susan Jablon Mosaics yet? You could play on your computer and custom blend something, or choose one of her ready made blends. She does some really neat work, and you might see something there. Good luck!

    Emmie

    Here is a link that might be useful: Susan Jablon mosaics

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I think the combo of jade onyx, subways and green porcelain would be very successful.

    If you wanted a wood look floor the light one would also work.

    How are you feeling about things?

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Before I read which you prefer, I thought "wow, I love that jade onyx". I also like the green porcelin, but might not do the mosaic inset with it. Just seems a bit busy to me. Also like the wood look. Either would be fine. You're definately heading in a more traditional direction though. Are you okay with this? I think the wood look might be a bit more interesting than the porcelin now that I think about it.

    $45 seems high to me, but it may depend on where you are. The onyx I was
    looking at was between $22 and $30 sq ft.

    Another nice stone that is in the range of the jade onyx and ming green is calcutta - sort of a lighter version of the jade onyx.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Still a little frustrated! I think my favorite combo is the light wood-look floor with the jade onyx, but if we do that I'm not sure what I'd do for a vanity/medicine cabinet/shelves because I'm not a fan of blonde wood in general - but I'm not sure I want white. Also, BF is now worried that the wood-look will look weird in such a small space (irritating because he was the one who picked the wood-look in the first place!!!! Men!).

    I like the green porcelain as well, and I know that would give me more flexibility as far as choosing a wood color for the vanity and such. However, I was sort of hoping for a more neutral floor. In any case, the onyx isn't happening at all if I can't get the jade color somewhere for less than $45 a square foot. Hopefully Maestro will have it. I saw a GORGEOUS tumbled onyx hex floor at another tile store and would have bought it right then and there if it hadn't been $70psf! We'll see if Maestro has anything like that as well.

    Anyway, we also reconsidered glass after we finished our shopping yesterday. We both like a combination of apple green with the white subways and dark wood vanity/shelving, so the challenge would then be to find a floor that worked with that combination. Unfortunately, we didn't see anything that jumped out as the floor for that combo. I'm liking the idea of 2" hex or something like that, but I am still worried about the grout-cleaning issues. So, I think my plan is now to find out what kind of pricing/colors/sizes I can get from Maestro, and if they don't have what I want, go back to glass and keep hunting for the floor. At this rate, I should be ready to go on the bathroom in 2009 sometime!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Bio, we did the 2" hex and used light grey grout so as to avoid the grout cleaning issues. It's only been in for a couple of weeks, but so far so good.

    If you do the hex, make sure it is glazed. You can do matte, but make sure it is glazed.

    I'm not positive, but I think the cheaper stone mosaics we looked at were from Olympia Tile.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I LOVE this forum...even if I lose sleep reading into the wee hours... I especially like the small bathroom threads because I'm utterly consumed with the same challenge where every element is so crucial.

    Bianda, it was good to read someone else is thinking of stepping out of the box into a wood look tile. FYI - Porcelanosa Tile has a very nice new line. I am considering the white wood plank tile to coordinate with the painted white wood floors in my bedroom. I think it might look more streamlined and simplify the bathroom.

    Rococgurl, your bathroom is beautifully designed!!! A few questions... Does your shower door keep the floors dry? What is the name and where did you get your tiles? I LOVE, LOVE the bath faucet with the handle bar! What a great idea! Where did you get it? Could you please post a picture of the opposite side of your bathroom and your floors? I'd love to see what you chose.

    The Expo Center has a bathroom model that hijacked me for a while. It was love at first sight even if it is not a small room. I am not going with it but thought I'd share for others inspiration. They used tumbled 4"x4" floor tiles, grey subway tiles, and painted stripes on the wall. I appreciate Rococogurl's comment about the vertical lines narrowing a room. I think I'll eliminate the beadboard I'd planned.

    Here is a link that might be useful: {{gwi:1460891}}

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I LOVE this forum...even if it keeps me up into the wee hours... I especially appreciate the small bathroom threads. I'm utterly consumed with my 5'x8' complete redo and constantly on the lookout for pictures of this size room.

    biandanonima, hang in there...your choices are really beautiful! Like you, I'm considering stepping out of the box into a wood look tile! FYI - Porcelanosa Tile has a very nice new line. I am considering the white wood plank tile to coordinate with the painted white wood floors in my bedroom. I think it might look more streamlined and simplify the bathroom.

    rococogurl, your bathroom is beautifully designed!!! A few questions... What is the name and where did you get your tiles? I LOVE, LOVE the bath faucet with the handle bar! What a great idea! Where did you get it? Does your shower door keep the floors dry? Could you please post a picture of the opposite side of your bathroom and your floors? I'd love to see what you chose.

    The Expo Center has a bathroom model that hijacked me for a while. Even though it's not a small room I thought I'd share. They used tumbled 4"x4" floor tiles, grey subway tiles, and painted stripes on the wall.

    Here is a link that might be useful: {{gwi:1460891}}

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    dontcallmeshirley and anyone doing a small bath, one thing we found was that doing a chair rail really helps to make the bath look bigger. Your eye is drawn by the line. We had gone back and forth about whether to do the chair rail or not but once it was in, we were amazed by how it seemed to push the walls out. We did ours in the same colour as the field tile so this may account for the effect. Not sure whether doing it in a darker/lighter colour than the field tile would accomplish the same thing.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I completely agree with budge on the chair rail. The tub posted above is in a 7 x 9 bath that looked very small until we put in the subway tile wainscot. It's all white but made a huge visual difference. The bathroom feels quite spacious now and the new tub is actually a foot longer than the old one.

    doncallme -- Thanks for your kind words about the bathroom. It's our guest bath and has been posted here many times and also copied -- and in one case replicated. I say that because I'm sure some of the longtime posters here are groaning right now.

    The white subways are red-body Adex from Expo. They are Portuguese made. The floor is Ann Sacks pennyrounds. Tub filler and sink faucets both are Dornbracht Madison in chrome.

    There isn't actually a shower door. It's a bubble tub with shower and it's a swing-away shower guard. It works fine but I had them come back to put a gasket on the edge of the glass closest to the wall. Water was working through there before the gasket -- now no dripping at all.

    Here's a photo of the opposite side. Difficult to get the whoel bath since it's so narrow.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Rococo, love the pennyrounds. Is it a nightmare to keep clean, though? I saw some nice Daltile pennyrounds while I was out shopping yesterday and thought it might be a nice alternative to hex tiles.

    Dontcallme, thanks for the tip on Porcelanosa. We were going to stop in there yesterday but BF had had about as much tile as he could take, so we skipped it. I've promised him that we'll only have to take one more tile shopping trip, so I'll stop by there next weekend before I make my final decision on floor tiles.

    Budge, I googled Olympia Tile and it looks like they're a Canadian company with lots of affiliated stores in the US? Is that right? I was thinking about calling one of their NJ locations to see what their onyx pricing was like. Let me know if you have contact info for them. I'm also going to head back to Marino Tile in Astoria, as I have notes on some nice onyx from there that I saw on one of my first shopping trips (months ago!).

    Thanks again to everyone for all of your ideas and advice! I'll post final choices soon!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    The grout is pale gray and sealed on the pennyrounds. They are glazed. I don't find them difficult but then I have a white mosaic bathroom floor so compared to that everything is easy.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    biond - While you're at Porcelanosa you might want to check out how the wood tile feels underfoot. I'm tempted by the feel of the natrual stone tiles, especially since I'm getting radiant heat.

    rococo - Thank you for the pictures! I'll be there in half hour to use your guest bathroom. WOW! I'm ever so glad I asked! I have a houseful of Portugese tiles and ceramics purchased on visits to that wonderful country. I can't get enough and would LOVE to include them in my bathroom. Hope it doesn't break the bank though.

    After seeing your mosaic floor tiles I'd like to find a pattern that would coordinate with a Portugese needlepoint rug in my adjoining bedroom. All the patterns I've seen seem to clash. A 4"x4" tile would probably work but if someone might have a suggestion I'd appreciate it. Thx.

    Here is a link that might be useful: {{gwi:1460892}}

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    "I don't find them difficult but then I have a white mosaic bathroom floor so compared to that everything is easy."

    Rococogurl, this comment relates to a concern that I'm having about a kitchen project that I'm working on. I'm going to post a question on that forum about it (1-in. mosaic w/ white grout). Will you please weigh in? Thanks in advance.

    biandanonima, the current issue of This Old House has a bathroom that made me think of your bathroom photo. White subways w/ green mini-subways. You might want to take a look.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Thanks Eliz! I looked for the magazine in question this weekend but I didn't find it - I'll be hitting another bookstore on the way to work tomorrow!

    This weekend's excursion to Porcelanosa was great! We looked at their wood-look tiles, which are very nice, but nearly indistinguishable from the Azuvi line we found elsewhere and twice the price. However, I'm glad we went to look because we saw an absolutely beautiful vignette that is providing some inspiration. They used the wenge wood-look floor with a matching vanity and medicine cabinet, with cream/beige square field tiles and an apple green accent strip. The accent tile is what we want to use - it's fantastic. It's a stacked 4"x1" ceramic tile - looks like mosaic but actually it's an 8x12 tile with ridges on the front that make it look like individual 4x1s. VERY cool and extremely affordable at only $7 psf!!!! Anyway, I forgot my camera but here is a downloaded photo:

    However, I'm a little worried that it's too modern a look with our white subway plan. I would probably use a stack of 3 just under the top of the wainscot and then maybe a wider strip in the shower. I love the color and size of the tiles, but it's the stacked aspect that I think might look wrong with the subways. Anyway, anyone have any thoughts?

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    They'd be fine with subways used staggered in a 2-inch high (2-tile) band. Great color and you could continue it all the way around. I would do the band staggered (more trad) to blend with the subways better. Stacked like that is much more modern.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    rococogurl,
    What is your guest bath tub ? I've searched and searched ..........can't find the brand or model.....love it !
    salbwil

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Rococo, that's exactly what I was thinking. The problem is, that would mean cutting each 8x12 tile into 12-"1 tile by 2 tiles" strips so they could be staggered - I assume this would be a LOT of work for the installer. Any experience with this? I fear that it would end up costing us a fortune in labor.

    BF (who is in love with this tile) thinks we should just scratch the idea of trying for a period feel and go with modern, but then I'd have to pick a different field tile and start over on researching more modern fixtures. Do NOT want to do that! I'm already overwhelmed, over-researched and on the verge of being OVER IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Personally I think it would look horrible if you tried to cut that tile into little tiny pieces. You'd have 2-3 cut edges and 1-2 finished edges, you'd have to be ABSOLUTELY precise and get it right in the middle of the fake grout line and then you'd have half a fake grout line on some sides and not on others. IMO that tile is meant to be used as is, not all chopped up into little pieces. Forget the labor of doing all that - a tile setter might walk off the job if they are expected to set a bunch of 1x4 tile individually that is not mesh backed, forget trying to actually cut it down for you and then install it. That's a TON of work and anything you save on the cost of the tile over more expensive options will be more than eaten up by labor costs, especially in NYC!

    BTW I think subways can go either modern or traditional and even if you switch to a modern aesthetic. You can turn the subways the long way and run them that way with either a staggered joint or not and then use an 8" stripe of the stuff you like as an accent. MAYBE You can cut them in half so that you have 4" tall pieces and use that as an accent but I'd still be concerned about how the cut edge looks.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Bionda, Our tile setters took handmade tiles and recut every single one so I'm a bit spoiled in that regard. He is a perfectionist, slow and meticulous. Nearly drove the contractor off the reservation. But, he did amazing work.

    The concept board made it look like you were working with 1/8s.

    So, the answer is, it depends on the tile setter. Bill V is away right now and he could give the best answer. I know they have an electric saw but it's tedious.

    To me, it seem like asking for trouble to slice up big tiles when there are so many choices out there. Surely there's something similar in the proper size -- the manufacturer may even make it in other sizes.

    Also, why not go modern in the bath? It depends on the apartment, of course, but my neighbors next door here are rehabbing. Our building is from 1910 and they stripped out all the moldings and everything, including their bath, is modern. I could see your bathroom going modern.

    Alternately, if you both love the green, does it work budget-wise to use it as field tile and then trim out with white?

    It is overwhelming I know. But you're making progress and you'll get it and work it out.

    Modern fixtures are actually very easy to find these days -- they're pretty much on street corners. Hey, you live in one of the best cities for this kind of stuff.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    salbwil -- the tub is an Ultra Bain air jet Meridian 60. The link's below. It's great to have and I enjoy it a lot.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Bain Ultra

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    kgwlisa, that's exactly what I was worried about - all those cut edges. If Bill V were my tile guy, I wouldn't hesitate, but...

    Anyway, I think we could afford to use that tile as a field tile, but that's a LOT of green - not sure I want to use that much of such a vibrant color.

    As for the idea of going modern in the bath, I've thought about it, but the rest of the apartment is definitely pre-war looking and I have no plans to renovate it anytime soon, if ever. There's something I love about period-feeling baths anyway, so I think we're going to stick with that (even if BF doesn't like the English-telephone-looking tub filler/handheld, LOL!). BTW, does anyone know anything about Elements of Design fixtures? They have a ton of really beautiful period fixtures but I'm concerned about buying crap...

    Here's a snapshot of some tile that I taped to the bathroom wall to try to get an idea of what my original wood-look floor/white subways/glass accent might look like:

    I know it's a terrible picture, and unfortunately the colors aren't really true, but I really like the blue-green tiles on the right with the faux wood and white (they're much bluer in real life). They look great with chrome fixtures, too. I think I'm going to go ahead with this color combo - I just need to decide whether to use the glass tiles in mini-subway size or 1x1s. I'm also going to browse a bit more this weekend to see if I can find something similar in a ceramic tile. Wish me luck!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Break a leg Bionda! And show us the result. I'm sure it will be beautiful.

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Okay, you're all going to laugh, but after all that hemming and hawing, I finally chose an accent tile - and it's totally different than ANY of the options I was considering before. I went to buy grout today and happened to spot this tile. It's the same color family I was considering in the glass mini-subways, but much richer looking with gorgeous depth and variation.

    Now I just need to decide on the width and placement of my accent strips - ideas welcome!

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Beautiful! What is it?

  • 16 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    It's Aegean Mosaic in Mykonos by OriginalStyle. I found it at Old Country Tile in Westbury, NY. It's even more beautiful up close!!!