Tiling a LARGE area

Hi,
I'm planning on tiling a relatively large area over adjoining rooms which will include a kitchen, utility room, hallway and cloakroom.
At the moment the old tiles run from room to room without any door strips. The old tiles have been down for many years and have some varying gaps between them! The new tiles will have perfect straight edges and thus it will be very important to keep everything parallel and straight from room to room.
I would be interested to know the best way to plan out the laying of the tiles i.e. the best place to start. Its quite an old property so I cant guarantee any parallel walls or that adjoining walls are 90 degs to one another.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Andy
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===================I would suggest that you lay (loose) a line of tiles along a sight line from the first room to the last and draw a guide line when you're satisfied with the look. Tile each room separately using the guide line as starting point. At the thresholds adjust the position of the tiles so that you don't have any unsightly small slivers along the adjacent skirtings. The visual aspect from room to room is more important than strict symmetry within each room.
Cic.
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For the sake of sanity, I'd be tempted to just give in a have joiners at the thresholds.
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Skipweasel
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First thing is the entire floor needs to be perfectly flat.
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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

It doesn't, if you are prepared to use variable depth tile cement beds and a spirit level or three...
The time taken to try and get the floor level is probably exceeded by the time taken to adjust each tile and check it with a level.
Use rapid set adhesive to avoid slumping.
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Fine if the highest part coincides with a decent place to start. Not so good if it's at say a wall.

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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

Thats what your careful stringing up is for.
hen I did mine, I set up some bits of wood in the middle of the room, and kept adding to them until I could swing a spirit level around and clear the highest point by 10mm or so.
Then I built those up and rechecked to see if I had missed any bits. Once I was fairly sure I had a 'finished floor level correct I set the string up to be dead level and brush the top of the bits of wood.
Then a long run of string was checked to be parallel to the bit I decided on - an Aga cooker actually and a corridor - thankfully they both matched, and then off I went.
Then a final check, and I laid my first line very very carefully. If at any time a slate was low, I pulled it up added more muck, and tamped it down to the line again.
I did allow the floor to rise a little where I knew there were units going later. Otherwise my biggest depth of cement would have been a couple of inches...as it was I was up to 30mm in places, and down to less than 5 in others.
Other similar floors I tried leveling, but I still couldn't get better than about 5-10mm
Self leveling compounds are like dishwashers. A contradiction in terms :_)
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Andy wrote:

Get a string down, and use a long level to make sure its level, on the largest single dimension you can fined, and lay a line of tiles to that first.
That becomes your datum. Lay rows alongside that using a level to get things flat.
What you align the datum too first of all is a personal choice.
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Andy wrote:

If you have the new tiles or the sizes then create a tile rule with a long piece of wood and mark the tile lengths including spaces down it. This will be handy to quickly work out tile coverage and gaps.
Basically, you have to try and avoid small cuts, at least where they are obvious and considering the large space you're going to cover it's not going to be easy. Your old tiles should also give you some idea about alignment of the walls, which are rarely square.
I'd start at the hall doing a dry run down the centre and see where you get to. If you fall just short near a wall with a full tile but otherwise everything is fine then you can increase the tile spacing very slightly. You can also leave a gap between the kitchen unit legs if it helps and then just pack out the plinth when installing.
If it becomes a nightmare then you might be better off just using joining strips between each room.
Good Luck!
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

I think I would consider tiling the rooms with (say) pale in the centre - square to each room - and a dark border of slightly less than one tile wide round the walls. The dark border to accommodate wavy walls.
Where the borders run into each othet at doorways use *big* dark tiles to bridge from the pale tiles in 1st room to the pale tiles in the 2nd and take up any waveyness i.e. there is no tile joint at the doorway, it's a big tile (but not an absolutely square one). This means that one room's grout lines never meet another room's grout lines - you have about 1' of plain tile between rooms.
Because the pale rectangle of tiles in the middle of each room is visually dominant the fact that the grout lines don't line up room to room will be less apparent. This will be especially the case of the skirtings are also dark.
Do not under any circumstances use dark tiles with pale grout for the majority of the tiling as the lines will stand out and waveyness will be very apparent.
Owain
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Or measure it
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Thanks for all the advice - some very helpful hints.
I have also thought of laying the tiles with a 45deg offset such that wont be any "flat" sides or slivers against any walls. Of course I would still need to lay it out dry, but doing it that way might reduce any visable problems with uneven walls?
Andy
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