As with a lot of our initial calls, the customer contacted us because they started to work with a contractor who gave them a low bid on pricing. They soon found out after a couple days of working with him, that they really weren't qualified to be installing tile. They couldn't get the wall board straight, flat or even. They were messy, and before it even got to point of installing tile, they had excuses, and just gave customer an uneasy feeling.
So, before we could rescue the tile installation, we had to address the lumpy walls with a skim coat of mud and sanding the next day. Once we got wall preparation done flat we were ready to tile. The layout of the kitchen had 2 windows and an opening up over stove. This needed to be taken in consideration with where to referance a starting point and have grout lines meet up at end of cabinetry, with no super skinny cuts along wall or window edging.
We found out at initial meeting that the garden window on the right was more of a focal point in the room than over stove. With a beautiful backyard garden view, it is rightfully so. We adjusted the tile layout accordingly to have a full and half tile along both edges of window. And the Schluter strips bordering the window opening would have full tiles leading up to the trim transition.
Electric wall outlets were a little off-kiltered and needed adjustment during the installation to be level. That way there was a balance of the plugs in line with the tile.
Selective in which tiles go where, care was used in the placement of tiles in a pattern that flowed with the high variance in the inkjet design of the ceramic subway tile. From the onset of the project the customer wanted the "ugly tiles" in the box bunch to be set aside for return. As some of the design in the tile had some freckling and speckles that they wanted to disregard and not use in their installation.
The tiles had a rustic edge, rather than rectified. So a level was used throughout each course of installation to maintain grout lines that didn't rise or fall because of a wonky edge.
Customer's uncle is an architectural designer and instrumental in choosing the finish on the cabinetry in this kitchen remodel. Choice of wall tile complimented the existing floor. The really wide grout joints on floor tile are a stark contrast to the narrow, tight grout width that we used on the tile backsplash.
This was our first tile project in Milford, New Hampshire. And we enjoyed the neighboring area. Especially with the Fall foliage surrounding the long country road we took along Route 101 to get to jobsite. Out for breakfast at Union Street Grill along the river and across from a quaint park. We ended our work week with an extended lunch break, before grouting, at the Smoke Haus barbecue shack, enjoing some slow-cooked beef brisket and rack of ribs with the mac n' cheese and collard green fixings.
Customers were a pleasure to work for. Not minding much the paper over floor and plastic over countertops and cabinets while we were setup for work that week. We quoted another tile installation in an adjacent downstairs bath with a fiberglass shower that they want to convert to walk-in tile.Matt Cupan TileWorks