Thursday, May 26, 2011

Restroom Tile

I am no expert when it comes to home remodeling but I I'm not afraid to venture out of my comfort zone and attempt to learn something new.This new braveness came upon me within the last year or so due to the long list of "to-do" projects we have for the house. Every time I try something new, it encourages me to push the envelope just a little more next time around. So far, I haven't caused too much damage and the results of all my efforts have been successful for the most part.

Since we started working on our restroom, I kept debating my choices for floor options. My first choice of course was ceramic tile but neither my hubby or myself had any experience in laying tile plus since there is just a small floor space, we didn't want to spend a lot of money of materials. We made a trip to Home Depot and I decided I'd just lay the laminate floor tiles as a temporary solution because we needed this project to be done ASAP. To my surprise, they had on display laminate floor tiles using grout in between, just like ceramic! They also had a simple step-by-step guide to show how to achieve this look under the display. It looked simple enough so I thought it was worth giving a try. I have to say, the floor looks really good and in our opinion, you cannot tell it's not ceramic. A good friend of ours who has experience in flooring couldn't believe it was laminate when he came to visit. Of course, that made me all sorts of happy knowing I could fool someone like him.

I thought I'd share with you all just how I did it in case you ever want to do this yourself. I had to get ghetto use a few 'unconventional methods' for a few steps but whatever gets the job done, right?

UPDATE (5/30/11):
I just found these before pictures and decided to add them on here. I think you can appreciate the "after" much more if you see how bad it was before. It was bad and it was sad.
 If you look closely at the bottom left you can see where paint stripper dripped on the floor when I stripped and repainted the cabinet a few months ago. Silly me, I didn't cover the floor before I started working that day. Oh well, that's in the past.

1. We had to level the floor first because there was cement tile underneath the old laminate flooring (there was no easy way to remove this) that had a few very slight uneven and cracked areas. We used something called 'floorboard' which runs about $8 or so per panel at any home improvement store.Since we couldn't drill screws into the cement, we used liquid nails to adhere the board to the cement floor.  We found a bunch of heavy stuff all around the house to use to as weight and left it to dry overnight.

This is the tile we chose. You can kind of see in this picture that the tile curves down around the edges which makes it look a little more like ceramic. Not all laminate square tiles are like this so I don't know how it would look with a flat option.

2. Once floorboard was ready, I was able to start laying the tile. I used spacers, just as you would for ceramic tile to leave a gap in between tiles, leaving space for the grout.

3. The tile around the tub was kinda tricky because the tub is not straight lined, it has some curves. Being the creative and crafty person that I am, I came up with an  easy solution. I got an unwanted 12x12 scrapbook sheet and cut it down to the same size as the tile-about 11 1/2 by 11 1/2. Next, I put it where the tile should go and used a pencil to draw a line where I'd need to cut. I have a heavy duty paper cutter and used it to cut down tile squares. Another unconventional method. Lol

4. Once I laid all the tile, I was ready to grout. I bought a small can of premixed grout which was $8.97 and probably only used a third of it. All I did was, I used a small spatula and worked it into the grooves in between the tiles. I let it dry for about four hours and then went back and cleaned up the excess grout with a sponge.

This is how it looked when I was done.

Here's the breakdown on cost:
*Floorboard: $16
*Liquid Nails: $6
*Tile: $25
*Grout: $9
*Sponge:$0--we had
*Spatula: $0--we had
Total Cost: $56!!!!

This option might not be for everyone but we're certainly happy with the result! The three main reasons we chose this option: easy to install, quick (once we applied the tile to the floor, we were ready to move forward to the next step), and easy clean-up (not very messy).
Almost done with the room, more details coming soon!

Oh, and I'm joining in on the blog party fun for the first time! I'm having so much fun blogging and meeting fellow bloggers. :)

The DIY Showoff
Addicted to Decorating
Homemaker On A Dime
Tutorial Tuesdays at Hope Studios
Show Me What Ya Got! at Not Just a Housewife
The Thrifty Home


  1. Lisa, the tile looks AMAZING! I cannot believe it is that simple to install. I can't wait to see the floor and everything else you've been doing in person. Love you bunches and miss you more.

  2. I think it looks amazing! Great job!

  3. Hi Lisa! Thanks for the follow! I had no idea you could grout laminate tiles now! Something to consider, except I still have an issue with grout....see my post "Tile Flooring - Yay or Nay?" I'm ready to go back to the rolls so there are NO seams! Thanks for joining Creative Bloggers Party - have a great week!

  4. thanks ladies for the comments and for visiting me, this really is a HUGE encouragement to me.

    Nan, I'm gonna hop on over to your blog and read your post. Thanks for sharing and thanks for following me too. :)

  5. 1st of all i want to say it looks great! 2nd, i was gonna do this in my kitchen but chickened out...LOL...i just laid it without the grout...awesome job

  6. I didn't know there was such a thing!! It looks great!! JUST what I need for my bathroom!! Thank you for posting this!!! You did a GREAT job!!

    And I'm your newest follower!!

    Hugs ~~ Suz


  7. I used the same stuff at my house. It's amazing and looks just like ceramic-but so much easier

  8. Is this the sticky-backed laminate squares? What a great job! I did my kitchen in the squares but I didn't grout. Your job looks so much better than mine.....

  9. Hi, Lisa! I love how this is turning out :) Thanks for sharing this at the Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop. Your participation made the party more special.

  10. Wow! That really does look like tile! I also never knew you could grout laminate. That little touch really makes a difference.

  11. that's awesome! It looks great. Thanks for sharing!

  12. That looks amazing. We have the laminate tiles in our bathroom, too, but never thought about grouting them. I really wish we did now. Thanks for sharing. :-)

  13. Wow! It turned out great! Isn't it awesome to be able to pull off a high end look for a cheap end budget? :)

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