I'm tiling the hearth and fireplace surround at my parent's home with marble
tile. The question is whether I should just butt join the tiles, or whether
I should plan on grout lines. Which is more common? I don't remember
seeing an example of either.
Thanks in advance,
It is really a personal preference. Marble is usually installed with
minimal grout lines as you want to create the illusion that your Marble
is all one piece. If you go with grout lines, I use 16 penny nails
(toothpics also work) and match the grout color to the color of the
grain in the tile. I sometimes use 2 grout colors that match colors in
the tile, apply one first and then use the other to just blend the
grout lines, almost like a faux finishing technique. It usually turns
out very nice.
Kyle Boatright wrote:
If you decide to go with no or very narrow grout lines be aware that natural
stone tiles may not all be the same thickness. They will have even
thickness throughout one piece but in on box of 10 pieces I had from 280mils
to 450mils thick. This makes it much more critical when laying the stone to
prevent lippage. You will need to pull up a piece to add/remove mortar
As you move to wider grout lines, any small errors in lippage and alignment
will be less noticible.
For a fireplace a more rustic look may be appropriate. Look at tumbled
stone which has an irregular edge, this makes it easier to lay if not more
expensive as a material. In any case, The hearth might look better with
wide grout lines while the face would be nice with them hiddenor blended.
File any cut edges, you can make them look as good as a factory edge in no
time and a belt sander can do wonders when shaping the edges and corners.
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