Basketweave is a Bitch

I LOVE our basketweave tile bathroom floor. But love was NOT the feeling I was having while laying it this weekend. The feeling was more like...supreme anger, which involved me throwing a 3x12 sheet across the backyard when I messed up on a cut and was really pissed off. It's very humorous now, but at the moment I forced myself to sit in the corner of the backyard for a timeout (more like a cool down before I decided to heave anything else that might do any actual damage).

Chris began working on the tile a few weeks back

But with all the Hana adventures and work at my parent's we had a 1/3 tiled bathroom floor for a little while.

Over the last week and a half or so we've finished the floor and it looks GREAT, but it took a lot to get there. You see, all those little tiny pieces are a BITCH to measure, cut, lay, make sure they're level...it is NOT fun. ESPECIALLY when you have to go around a curved tub.

It's fun doing this part on large stretches of floor with no (or very few) strange cuts to make

Things got a little more "fun" when we went around the heater vent (and we thought THAT was difficult)

But things got really exciting when we started going around the tub area yesterday. I spent over 2 hours, YES 2+ HOURS, making all the little tiny cuts and shaves off of singular pieces of tile to fit around the curve of the tub (and those gray dots are 3/8" x 3/8" - the tile saw and I were REAL friendly by the end of the day). Chris did nearly the entire rest of the room in the time it took me to do about 1 linear foot

By the end of the day I wanted to throw that damn tile saw into the street and let the garbage man run over it.

Alas, despite my DEEP frustration and anger with every supply and tool involved with laying tile, I PREVAILED!


Chris and I whipped up a magical floor

But we have both agreed: NO basketweave when we remodel the back bathroom.


Shiloe @ Tar Paper Crane said...

That floor is gorgeous! I think this is my favorite project of yours yet. Tedious yes, but what a payoff!

meryl rose said...

Thanks Shiloe! :) It is quite a payoff because I LOVE LOVE LOVE it (I stop and admire it nearly everytime I walk by). But MAN do I have a new found respect for tilers, PHEW!

threeacres said...

OMG that looks amazing!! I can't believe how close your fingers are to that wet saw but I guess there isn't any other way to do it. Would a snippers and scorer work? Or does that not work with marble?

On a side note we would love to have hexagon marble in our main bathroom but we're really worried about the wear and tear since it is heavily used. Have you seen any old marble floors with heavy use? How long does it take to etch?

LeighC said...

Wow, Super job! Now you are pros at basket weave.

aptpupil said...

you can touch the tile saw blade when it's going (meryl didn't believe me at first) so you don't have to worry about getting real close on those smaller pieces. still a pain though.

meryl rose said...
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meryl rose said...

Chris (aptpupil) - LOL! it's true! :) I made him run the tile saw in ALL SORTS of ways because the psychology that it's a SAW really freaked me out at first. By the end I had run my fingers into it a few times though :)

threeacres - scoring and snipping would work with marble, but because the individual pieces of tile are so small, it would make the job a bit more difficult. Scoring and snipping is a lot easier when working with larger format tiles.
Marble is very comperable to ceramic and porcelain in terms of wearing well - it doesn't really chip easier or anything. One thing that's a plus about marble and porcelain over ceramic is that they are through-body materials, meaning that if the tile chips, the material beneath the initial layer is the same because the pattern goes through the body of the tile. If you're using ceramic tile and you chip it, you're knocking off the ceramic surface and below you'll see that flaky white material. Ceramic is of course a lot cheaper than traditional marble and porcelain, so there are of course trade offs. The one thing we're a bit nervous about is staining because I know kitchen counter manufacturers say marble is a bit more porous than granite - but then again it's not like we're drinking red wine in the bathroom. We will seal it just to be safe though.

threeacres said...

Thanks for the reply. That is a good point about being a true natural stone being better for chipping I hadn't thought of that. My husband has been against using marble ever since someone he knows had marble floors and their daughter threw up on the floor. The acid pitted the marble so much that they had to replace it. LOL what are the odds?

KBB said...

It looks great. About to pay someone to do mine.Where did you get the tile? It looks like marble? I want that with gray grout.

meryl rose said...

It is marble. We got it from Buytile.com, but I just clicked the link from our Sources page and it looks like it's not available anymore :( That sucks too because I looked around FOREVER for white basketweave with a gray dot :(