I'm seeing spots...

Dad decided to be a Christmas elf, and come over today and help me with the bathroom floor.  I've had the tiles for a while - after a NIGHTMARE trying to find them.  I called almost every tile place in the phone book, and the conversation went the same way at almost every place:

Me:  I'm looking for black and white hexagonal tiles.  Do you carry them?

Store:  Oh, yes, of course.  

Me: They are NOT the octagonal white tiles with the square black tiles, are they?  

Store:  No, they are...  oh, wait....

Basically, EVERY store knew what I wanted, and yet none of them actually carried it.  This is what they have:
NOT hexagonal tiles.  

As an aside, there are an amazing number of people out there who do not know the difference between a hexagon and an octagon.  Schools these days :)

I made it all the way to the Ps before I finally found a store that could actually order the tile in for me.  Since it was a special order, I had to order it by the case, which means I have a lot left over.  Anyone want any?  Anyone know of uses for extra tiles??

But finally, I got it all laid out and cut, and we started laying it today.  I found out while doing the dry fit and cutting that the tiles are not symmetrical, so each tile needed to be laid one way, and one way only, to keep the pattern consistent.  I laid everything out, triple checked, and picked them up in order, making sure they all faced the same way in the stacks... so it would be next to impossible to make an error.  Ahem.  Yep.

 All cut and labelled, waiting to be installed.
 Dad put down the mortar, I laid the tiles.  Gotta love team work!
 First two rows!  Everything lines up perfectly!
Third row!
 Half way there... and no mistakes!
 And done!  Woohoo!
Oh bloody @%**@&!!!  

Neither Dad nor I noticed this, until we looked at these pictures.  Fortunately, I decided to do that right after we were done, and it was a quick fix.  Yes, that is actually a manufacturing flaw, not a mislaid tile!

The one problem area, and the last to be laid.  When we got to the last two rows to be laid, I did the tiles next to the right-hand wall and around the toilet first, then matched up the rest of the rows to them.  As you can see, it's not a perfect match, but as this is behind the toilet, I don't think anyone will notice!

The tile is manufactured by American Olean, and, while not really hard to install, I really wouldn't recommend it to anyone who hasn't done tile before.

Oh, did I mention neither Dad nor I have every tiled before?  No?  Yeah.

I found it hard to match up the tiles perfectly, for a number of reasons.  The biggest?  Even though the manufacturer recommends a grout spacing, when you attempt to use spacers that size, you quickly realize the "internal" grout lines are MUCH smaller than the recommendation.  So, I did all the spacing by eye.  (That also helps to explain the bad area behind the toilet!)

The corner tiles of each sheet are VERY loose, which also makes lining the sheets up hard.  In fact, MANY of the ties were loose, leading to almost every sheet loosing 2-3 tiles, if not more, which then had to be placed by hand.  I did find some boxes seemed to have a thicker layer of glue holding the tiles onto the mesh - and those sheets were, by far, MUCH easier to work with. 

Added to the manufacturing flaws (we did catch one other before laying that sheet), I don't know if I could recommend this tile or not.  Over all, I'm happy with it, since it is exactly the look I wanted, but I am a bit disappointed by the lack of consistent quality in the product. 

However, I still think I'd buy it again, just for the look!!

And tomorrow, the deluge grout!!


  1. Looks good! I'll admit, though, I had to see the picture before I knew quite what you were after. ;-)

  2. @ Liz - that's okay - no one else did either, it seems!

    @SH - thanks!!



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