SWMBO has asked me to tile the kitchen. No problem there but the tiles she
wants are oblong (approx 6" x 3") and she wants it to look like a brick wall
effect, i.e. each row moved over half a tile. Has anybody any tips or
advice on how best to acheive this? Can you get " T " shaped spacers or do
I have to cut one leg off of the normal " + " ones? Presumably this would
take longer than 'normal' tiling as each row would have to be laid out
individually instead of tiling normally with standard spacers.
I hope that makes sense, it does to me.
Have done exactly that in a kitchen recently. I just cut one leg off the + &
tiled away starting at the worktop & working along & up to meet the
underside of the cupboards.
As you say you can only do one row at a time which isn`t a huge problem. The
biggest hurdle I faced was positioning the tiles quickly before they set in
place (the backs of the tiles were not sealed hence had a lot of suction!).
When I got to the underside of the cupboard I just cut the tiles to fit -
you can`t see that anyway. It looks great & the brick effect pattern does it
When grouting I used normal grout for all but the bottom row gap between
first row of tiles & worktop - this I filled with a flexible sealant (mould
P.S Buy or hire an electric tile cutter - they save loads of hassle & broken
I did that with white/grey streaked 8 x 6's topped off with dark blue candy
twist edges. The end result looked really good. I did however only tile from
the top of the upstand up three rows and round the kitchen worktops 27 feet,
missing out the windows on the way. I turned 4 on their ends to tile up into
the cooker hood recess.
I would suggest you decide what you are going to do with your switches and
sockets before you start. Either flush mount them or top mount them in
plastic boxes. I didn't I went for the tile around them option and wish I
hadn't which means they are a permanent fixture in the tiles. Doh!
Find out, using a straight edge, if there are any high/low spots on the wall
and dress these up/down as required. It doesnt have to be perfect. There is
only one join that is slightly stepped by les than 1 mm, but out of 140+
tiles, I consider that to be acceptable, I can live with it!
Spacers? My tiles were made with small lugs on two edges so spacers are not
necessary (makes the job a whole lot easier)
Instead of cutting 1 leg off, why not use the spacers sticking out from the
wall. You will need more spacers ie 3 for every joint but it will be quicker
than cuting a leg off flush. You can then pull the spacers out once the
adhesive has dried which supposedly makes grouting easier
Remove BRAIN before replying
You could use matchsticks or best judgement. One important thing with tiling
is to put enough cement on the wall to cover the space. If you do this your
tiling will beat many "professionals" who just put a dab under each tile -
enough to hold everything in place for a year or two!
I've recently replaced a window in a kitchen which was fully tiled. The
new window - a stock size - was slightly smaller which meant altering the
reveal and therefore the tiles round it. Luckily the tiles were of the
large mosaic type which are much stronger than normal wall tiles so I'd a
good chance of removing them intact (I had some spares, but not enough to
simply discard all the displaced ones)
The majority of the tiles were fixed using the 'notched' adhesive on the
wall method, but edge ones by the dab on the back way. Both methods
removed the skim off the plaster beneath, which was completely renewed
If tiles are falling off after a year or two, it's not the fixing *method*
that's at fault.
*Someday, we'll look back on this, laugh nervously and change the subject
Dave Plowman firstname.lastname@example.org London SW 12
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