The Most Beautiful Kitchen Backsplashes

One of the easiest ways to make a bold statement in any kitchen is with tiled backsplash. The perfect way to inject color, pattern, and texture into your culinary space, a beautiful backsplash gives a kitchen personality. Keep scrolling to see some of our favorite examples of stunning tile done right, and get inspired to add this unexpected component to your own kitchen.

Kitchen Backsplashes

In a Manhattan Beach show house, patterned tile feels modern thanks to the kitchen’s sleek cabinetry and moody color palette. Chic counter stools and an oversized pendant introduce lighter hues into the otherwise dark-toned space.

A densely patterned, tiled backsplash stands out in this stylish, country-inspired space. We love how the undulating shape in the tile’s pattern is carried over to the floor tile, creating a cohesive look.

We love the combination of colors created with this kitchen’s stunning tile backsplash, bold drapery, and deep-green cabinetry. The fun ikat print on the luxurious drapes soften the bold, geometric backsplash, making the space feel cozy rather than jarring.

How To Paint Wood Floors

Make sure your floor hasn’t been waxed before painting, and remove the wax if it has. Follow these tips when painting a floor:

Rough Surface: Using a square pad sander (or by hand), rough up the finish on the floor with 150-grit sandpaper. You don’t need to completely sand them, just remove the gloss from the old finish.

Clean Floor: Thoroughly vacuum and damp-mop the floors, to remove all the dust. Allow them to dry completely. Applying paint to floor with paintbrush

Apply First Coat: Using a brush or roller, apply the first thin coat of floor paint. A brush will give a smoother finish, but a roller is faster. Resist the urge to glop on the paint – it won’t dry! Start by cutting in the edges with a brush, then use a brush or roller to work your way towards the door so you aren’t painted into a corner. Allow the paint to dry for 24-48 hours, until it’s dry enough to walk on.

Smooth Paint: Lightly go over the floor with 220-grit sandpaper, to smooth out the grain and give a sleek surface, then clean the floor to remove all the dust.

Apply Second Coat: Apply a second thin coat in the same manner. Paint your way towards the door, then get yourself out of those fumes! Some paints may require up to three coats.

Decorative Touch: After your base coat is good and dry, you can add stripes, motifs, or other designs. Use safe release painter’s tape so it won’t pull up the base coats.

Seal Floor (Optional): For high-traffic areas, you may want to coat the finished floors with a clear polyurethane.

Let Paint Cure: Within a few days, you should be able to walk gently on the floors, but it will be several weeks before the paint is fully cured and the smell goes away.

VIDEO: How Repaint Wood Floors

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Three Tips for Planning Your Home Improvement Project

The idea has been simmering for a while, and now you’re finally making it happen. If you’re thinking about a home improvement project in the coming months, we don’t doubt you will have put in a lot of effort into it already.

And that’s always a good start. However, increasingly we find ourselves with loan applications to pay for home improvement projects that are half way through; to pay for unexpected costs.

The culprit is almost always the lack of precise planning beforehand (we like having a friendly chat with our customers). While home improvement projects are often a major investment of time and money but, surprisingly, many of us don’t seem to warrant enough thought into planning for the project beforehand.

With all the home improvement blogs on the internet, ideas/inspiration is plenty for us to get excited. With all the DIY inspiration on the internet it is easy to lose focus on the most crucial aspect: planning. This is particularly true for those who have never taken up a project before.

Guarantor My Loan is all about making a smarter choice with money, including those for home improvement projects. So here are three handy tips, based on our experience with customers, to assist planning in advance for your home improvement project.

1. What help will I need?

DIY is the buzzword these days, but not everyone will always be up to the task considering the complexity/size of some projects and lack of experience. It is important for you to sit down and have a good think about the time, patience and skills required for the DIY project.

Do you have them (be honest with yourself)? If yes, great! However, it’s always good to have planned for a back up, which also includes thinking about how to budget for them.

Read the whole article here!

Tiles With Style

Found these really great pieces of contents about tiles with style:

Creative Floors Combining Wood and Ceramic Tile

Kitchens and bathrooms are ideal locations to combine hardwood and ceramic flooring because the materials are durable and easy to match to counters and cabinets. And it looks great! Find out more about this article.

Marble Tiled Shower and Bathroom

New York’s City Club Hotel’s en-suite bathrooms were the inspiration for this masculine shower room. Brown marble tiles sourced from a quarry make for a great reflective surface and the huge mirror adds a feeling of space. Find out more about this article.

Modern Encaustic Tiles

A favourite spotted at Design Junction this September is the fab floor tile collection from Lindsey Lang. Famed for her graphic home textiles, she launched a walls and floors collection in 2012, but has since expanded the range. Find out more about this article.

A Modern Interpretation of Traditional Stone Inlay

Lithos Design aims to change the way you think of stone inlay designs by removing the traditional patterns and transforming them into modern interpretations. The Opus collection, designed by Raffaello Galiotto, explores the classical idea of marble inlay work with a whole new approach to it where they incorporate 25 different types of marble, five patterns, and 12 color ranges for a series of new looks.

Designed for the floor and walls with patterns that can be extended depending on its intended usage. Full of geometric shapes and bold graphic patterns, the Opus collection offers a beautiful, modern look with a bit of a traditional feel. Find out more.

It is always nice to look for tiles with style.

What Are the Best Quarry Tiles

Quarry TilesEver wondered what kind of tile will suit your house best? Tiles come from different sizes and materials and are usually intended  for a range of applications. Knowing the one choice of tile that will be a perfect fit to complement your dream home is not an easy job especially now that there is a huge variety  available in the tile market. The tile industry has now expanded its traditional tile offerings, and also because of departure from the conventional materials, manufacturers can now offer high-quality at an affordable cost.
Quarry tiles, for instance, are made from natural clay, or shale, which are a very good choice for flooring, inside and out. Aside from well-established and proven durability, quarry tiles are also known for their freeze-resistant attributes.

Quarry tiles have been also a popular choice when it comes to decoration and ornamentation. Water resistance  is also a big advantage which is Quarry Tiles are commonly used in commercial and industrial locations. Besides these popular scenarios,  quarry tiles are also used in the construction of laboratories in order to prevent untoward accidents caused by slippery floors.

The Quarry Tile and its Uses

At first impression you may  assume that Quarry Tiles originate from quarries, yet you are wrong! Quarry tiles are so named because they have rustic appearance; they are in fact,  unglazed terra cotta tiles made of natural clay. Similar to bricks’ color range, most quarry tiles are also colored red.
The unique reddish-brown and unglazed feature of quarry tiles and its qualities as a durable tile have now become an increasingly popular choice. Add these attractive features to  low-cost and you can see why quarry tiles have now become increasingly attractive, especially to homeowners. Slip-resistance is a  major reason as to why quarry tiles are  used in kitchen floors and laboratories. The quarry tile’s rough texture which provides greater traction also gives it a unique edge over other kinds of tiles.

Durability and Beauty Combined

Some people would say that it is not always possible for beauty and durability to co-exist. Modern science and technology have, provided us with the means to enjoy a successful marriage of form and practicality . As a result Quarry tiles, are used not only because of their popular durability but because they can equally be used for decoration and ornamentation. Because of its popularity as a low-cost tile, the sales of quarry tiles is now  an upward trend in the broader market.

The world today has proliferated  from the traditional and conventional uses of most products and quarry tiles are no exception. The quality of quarry tiles has become more advanced and sophisticated through the use of high specification natural clay and advanced extrusion techniques. This allows manufacturers to deviate from the usual red-colored tiles to a variety of hues that will appeal to a wide range of tastes.Most  tile companies has now reinvented their quarry tiles and revolutionized them in such a way that it can uniquely match the specific tastes and preferences of each buyer by providing  a range of different-colours and  styles..

Cleaning and Maintaining your Quarry tiles

Dirt and other stains deposited on quarry tiles can be easily cleaned through all-purpose cleaners available in supermarkets. A glass cleaner can be used to immediately remove the stain and protect the quarry tiles from accumulating dirt. On the other hand, you could use a water-based silicone sealer to give your quarry tiles a natural look while giving it  long-term stain protection. To protect the beauty of the quarry tiles and maintain attractive looks, you can also apply sealers and wax to make your quarry tile floors look like brand new!

All About Tiles

All About TilesThe tiles we see today originate from all over the world. In the UK we see a range of glass floor tiles that come from China and Mexico as well as Italy. Each offer different styles and attributes  to please a wide range of customers. Some have clean lines and look sophisticated while others have more of a handmade artesian quality. The design variations are unlimited.

Glass tiles are available in clear, glass with white backing, non- transparent glass (Venetian), harsh glass and also a whole host of numerous styles, shapes and sizes. Some are straight and even in sizing/shapes, while others have a much more random look to them.

Consider exactly what you prefer to see that pleases the eye. If you like refraction style light to bounce off the floor chooses tilesthat are either all clear or clear with a white backing.

Simply want the smoothness of glass however, not the transparency? Choose Venetian glass.

Whichever style, dimension or colour you pick, it should reflect your personal style as well as the setting. If you like strong colours, purple may be a wonderful alternative. If you favour a more monochromatic look, matching the ceramic tile to the bordering decking colours would certainly suit you better.

The majority of typical sizes we view installed in swimming pools are 1″x1″ and 3/4″x 3/4″. Nonetheless, you could use 1″x2″, 3/8″x3/8″ and other dimensions. When considering glass ceramic tiles remember a couple of realities. If you can see-through the ceramic tile you will be able to see the inset bed too. So the white or grey inset will show through as well as change the colour of your ceramic tile accordingly, regardless of grout colour. If you have a see through ceramic tile attempt to keep the grout the exact same shade as the setup materials for consistency of look.

The costs of tiles vary enormously so find a ceramic or glass tilethat fits the budget and don’t forget the extra expenses.

Glass tile costs depend on various factors: Where tile is produced, just how long the transportation takes, and the tile quality. E.G: You can obtain glass tile with real gold specks!

You will need to know how many rooms you are tiling in square feet or square meters before you begin shopping. By doing this when you compare prices you can do a quick computation to see if it is within your budget. If you find a tile you are absolutely crazy about but is outside the budget think about utilising it as an accent just to help costs.

Glass floor tiles are tougher to set up than normal ceramic or porcelain ceramic tile so your labour expense will higher. This is due to the fact that glass floor tiles needs to be sized by hand and in specific shapes to suit locations where a full ceramic tile cannot be used. E.G:In the rounded corner of a pool where the floor meets the wall.

An additional factor to consider is an anti-fracture membrane. This membrane is applied quickly over the mortar bed and gives a little flex for the floor tile. In frost/freeze environments this is a must on ceramic tile bands and specifically any type of tiled locations which are above ground. While these preventive actions add to the initial financial investment it’s an investment for the longer term. Many glass ceramic tile makersinsist that you utilise this product under their product.

It’s a good idea to have a sample sheet for your ceramic tile setter to view when they evaluate your job. This way there are no unexpected surprises..

Not all ceramic tile setters are skilled in glass tile and also not all know just what foundation materials to make use of. Glass is smooth, therefore creating a strong bond for an underwater application is essential. Using the right setting products is important. Ask your ceramic tile setter if they have had experience in using glass tiles in your type of location. Some ceramic tile producer’s, such as Bisazza, offer training certification programs in glass ceramic tile setup.

Most ceramic tiles are available in sheets, usually a 12″ x 12″ square, held together on a mesh backing or a paper/plastic facing. For underwater applications a paper/plastic facing is suitable. With many mesh supports occasionally the adhesive used to stick the mesh to the ceramic tile is not as strong as that used in the production process. This limits the bond of the setting products to the ceramic tile. While mesh is the preferred backing available as well as frequently the more budget-friendly choice, take care to determine whether it agrees with standards for underwater applications. Some ceramic tile distributors/manufacturers have glass ceramic tile on mesh which is assured for pool installation.

When considering where in your swimming pool, whirlpool or waterscape you will want glass tile, think of the functional side.. Glass is extremely slippery so for some places actions it may not be the most effective option. Adding a couple of rows of a non-slip ceramic tile for security can assist. If you are installing glass tile in a whirlpool you will not want a ceramic tile that has sharp edges; resting or leaning your back on these kinds of floor tiles could cut you as grout decays over time. These environments are a lot better matched to a ceramic tile band where people rubbing up against it are not a problem.

Here’s a tile buying guide: