2.28.2013

We are Grouted. Well, Except the Curb of Course

Grouting isn't a lot of fun, but it certainly makes things look beautiful and finished. And while I wasn't looking forward to grouting (just like I wasn't looking forward to tiling) I knew it was the last big hurdle to getting this bathroom done (small tasks from here on out!)

So Tuesday after both Chris and I got home from work we decided to get started. We knew it would take a while because of the beveled tile so we thought breaking it up into a couple smaller grouting sessions would be a lot more tolerable. Fantastic idea by Chris because doing it in 3 90 minute sessions made me feel much less like I wanted to gouge my eyes out.

We mixed up the grout (white of course, I LOVE white grout with white tile) and started spreading it out


Grouting beveled subway tile is incredibly wasteful. Because of the angles on the edges it's difficult to just shove grout into the line, so you sorta get it everywhere. It was very slow going at first




Mostly I was hanging around keeping things from getting crazy messy (grout was dropping everywhere) and keeping all the sponges clean (we were using 3 because they got so dirty so quick from all the extra grout all over the tiles). But then we made a little discovery: if you used your fingers to shove the grout in the grout lines, it went a lot faster. So that's just what we did: I took a clump of grout in my hand, spread it out into all the cracks (which was also a lot less wasteful), Chris came back around with the grout float and really pressed it into all the lines, and then we went back around and cleaned. It was faster, less messy and did a better job



I was pretty quick spreading out all the grout with my hands which was great because once Chris started using the float to press it all in I was able to stay ahead of him spreading out grout in more areas and also keep the sponges clean for him when it was time to clean it all off. It was actually a really fluid system and ended up working out well, which was great because it was really frustrating at first. By the end of the night we got the window wall done and about half of the sink wall as well



When we were finishing cleaning up Tuesday night I was excited about the fact that soon we could install the toilet. Then Chris said, "Or we could do it right now." This is my completely unflattering reaction




Oh, hahahahahhahaha Chris you're SO funny. The pregnant lady needs to eat :) And then marvel at the beautiful wall



Nice :)

Yesterday we were back at it. We worked in two 90 minute or so shifts again and used the same method of me spreading it out with my hands first, Chris shoving it in with the float, and then cleaning it all up







Towards the end Chris even got into the hand spreading action


And by yesterday evening all the walls were complete


Doesn't that look so much prettier than this?


Yes, yes it does :)

There is one casualty though: the middle finger on my left hand is a little cut up. I guess shoving sanded grout into grout lines for 3 hours will do that to a finger. But hey, the grout is 90% done, so I'll take a cut up finger any day.

2.27.2013

Sillybagoody and Kissyface

Here's my Pinterest Challenge inspired artwork for Cashew's nursery!

The theme for artwork in Cashew's room is to keep things free. I made a deal with Chris that because the chair we got ended up costly just a little more than we expected that I would make all the art that would go up on her walls with things on hand. So I trolled Pinterest for some ideas. I think I typed in something like nursery art or something similar and scrolled, scrolled, scrolled. I was looking for something framed and quick, and these looked perfect












I really liked the idea of a simple, one color drawing over a patterned background. But you know I've been loving the word art lately so I thought I'd paint a word in my frames instead of an image.

First, I gathered my materials. I have a bunch of frames laying around the house from other projects or from when I intended to put something in them so I grabbed one and spray painted it white


For my patterned background I did something totally simple and quick: I took the backer from the frame...


Went through my scrap fabric...


And picked a pattern I liked. I also added batting to it to make it a little more dimensional. Then I cut out a rectangle and stapled it in place




Depending on how many layers of batting you have, you might need to trim a little bit off of the backer so that the backer with batting and fabric stapled to it fit in the frame. If you don't add any batting and it's just fabric, you don't need to trim the backer at all


With my framed piece of fabric all done it was time to think of what to paint on. Immediately I thought of the perfect word: sillybagoody. My mom called me that when I was little and to this day it's still my myyahoo home page ID name. I just think it's the perfect, silly, word. I went through my acrylic paint (craft paint would probably work too, but acrylic paint is thicker so I wouldn't have to worry about it bleeding through the fabric and spreading or smearing weird)


I really liked the bright green. So I brought out a skinny paintbrush and painted the words on. In about 30 minutes, it was done


I LOVE it! In fact, I loved it so much, I decided I wanted to make another one. Cashew will have a little piece of artwork in her room of something I was called when I was little, so I thought it would only be fitting to have a piece of artwork sharing a name that Chris was called when he was little too. I asked Chris and he couldn't remember anything so I emailed his mom to ask her. She wrote me back that his baby sitter used to call him kissyface. And if you know Chris, that is just about the most hilarious thing in the world because he is the much quieter one to my spastastic personality. That word fit perfect.

So I grabbed another frame and stapled some fabric to it


But it didn't look too hot


The fabric was a really loose weave so the herringbone pattern wasn't lining up straight. No worries, on to fabric number two (that I just stapled right over the first one)


I went with silver this time and painted the word "kissyface" on it and voila, 20 minutes later I was done!


2 very personal, fun, cheap (as in FREE) pieces of artwork for little Cashew's room


Now I just have to get to actually putting the art on the walls and put the furniture in it's proper place...


Hey, we've still got 3 months till her arrival, right? Plenty of time :)

And don't forget, Chris and I would love you FOREVER if you voted for us in the 2013 JDR blogger awards. Click HERE and vote for us in the remodeling category. THANKS!

And also some linky love for inspiration in actually getting this project completed goes to Young House Love, Megan, Michelle and Katie. Thanks ladies!

2.26.2013

52.5 Hours of Tiling Later

You may think that's just some random number I came up with because I'm so sick of tiling, but nope, that's the amount of hours Chris and I spent tiling the floor, shower floor, walls, cubby and curb of the bathroom. I know that because I'm a completely insane person who keeps track of all the hours we spend tiling on a little post-it note on my desk


I bet you thought I was joking about that too. Nope, totally crazy person. I did the same thing when we tiled in the main bathroom also. In fact, I was even crazier that time because I'd write down how many tiles we laid each time we tiled. But it was actually kind of cool to see how many hours we spent in the end. Well, I guess "kind of cool" is the wrong way to put it. It probably feels more true to life to say, "It was completely ridiculous but made me feel better about myself for having a reason why I sat in a bathroom for 40 hours."

This time I didn't write down how many tiles we set each time we tiled, but I did keep a log of how many hours we spent tiling, and when you add up tiling the main floor, the shower floor, alllll the walls, the cubby and that stupid curb we spent 52.5 hours tiling. That's a lot of time. And while I didn't count the tiles day by day, I did go in the bathroom yesterday evening and counted all the tiles we set on the walls (again, crazy).

Would you like to know how many? Of course you would! :)

Here's the "door wall"


On the small slivers of wall to the left and right of the door there are 190 tiles.

Then there's the "sink wall" (where there is currently no sink, but there could be one day in the near future)


On this nice block of wall we've got 270 tiles.

We've got a pretty big wall to count with the "window wall"


This wall clocks in at 330 tiles.

Then there's the adjacent "cubby wall"



Not to be outdone, this big ol' span o' wall has 346 tiles.

The cubby itself has 30 quarter rounds, and would you like to know how many tiles that stupid curb has?


Just think of a really stupidly high number. Got it? Well, you're wrong. 110. Yes, that's right, this curb has 110 fucking tiles on it. After I counted that I counted AGAIN because I could not believe it. Those 110 tiles will be the death of me.

Now, let's count how many tiles total that is:
Door wall: 190
Sink wall: 270
Window wall: 330
Cubby wall: 346
Cubby: 30
Curb: 110
GRAND TOTAL: 1276 tiles. Oh god.

Now, we spent a grand total of 52.5 hours tiling, but we only spent 41.5 hours tiling the beveled subway tile (walls, cubby, curb). Would you like to know our tile per hour average? Of course you would ! :) With 41.5 hours spent tiling 1276 tiles, we set an average on 30.7 tiles per hour. That's not that big of an increase in a tiling per hour average of 23.5 that we did in the main bathroom, but of course we spent 11 hours alone on the cubby and curb. If we subtract those hours and those tiles we have 30.5 hours spent tiling 1136 tiles for an average of 37.2 tiles per hour. That is pretty damn good. And do you want to know what I'm even happier about? The fact that the tiling is DONE. Hooray!

Now, in honor of the tiling being done, want to do me and Chris the BIGGEST favor??? Vote for us for the 2013 JDR Industry Blogger Awards! We've been nominated for the second year in a row in the remodeling category so please go HERE and vote for us!


The winner gets $500 (hell yes please!) We lost by just a handful of votes last year (it was so close), so we'd be super amazingly excited to win this year. Pretty please! :) AND, you should also vote for one of our fellow amazing bloggers Heather at Just a Girl with a Hammer in the Interior Design category. You may remember, we visited Heather's awesome self on the renovation roadtrip. Vote here!

But seriously, just you reading this blog and being nominated is pretty damn cool. And you're also really awesome for listening to me complain about tiling. We did it to ourselves. I'd say "never again!" for white beveled subway tile, but I shouldn't really say that because it looks so pretty I want to lick it.

I'm a masochist.

2.25.2013

The Fucking Tile is Finally Done

I say that because our last day of tiling involved me getting really pissed off twice and leaving Chris to fend for himself. That tile is a bitch I tell you. I'm also 7 months pregnant and don't like getting up and down over and over and over again. So sue me.

Yesterday morning we started here


With the goal of not having to rip off half the tiles midway through tiling like last time we set up the tiles in two ways on the top of the curb: running horizontal and running vertical



It was a good thing we did that because Chris and I had intended on running them vertically (how they are in the 2nd pic above), but upon laying them out horizontally we liked the look a lot better. Hooray for preparing properly! After we decided to run them horizontally we thought having the seam in the middle would look best instead of one full piece and one really tiny sliver. So Chris figured out center and I went out to cut a bunch of tiles down and then we did a dry run to make sure things fit


Then the thinset got spread out and Chris was hard at work


We got to the corner and thought the best way to deal with the turn was to just connect corner to corner




We did a fair amount of measuring for the middle section to figure out how to line up the tiles to make sure we didn't have some lame little stub piece on either end


And when we thought we had it we continued the tiling


But apparently we completely mis-measured because by the time we got to the other corner we were left with a teeny tiny itty bitty stupid fucking stub piece. I thought I wasn't having annoying pregnancy mood swings, but for some reason that stupid stub piece sent me into a tizzy and I got so pissed. I stalked out of the bathroom and went into my office and did day job work (one of the benefits of working for yourself = making money on the weekend when house projects really piss you off) while Chris resumed tiling. He got the third side of the curb all done while I sulked in the other room. He did a wonderful job, but I still can't look at that corner and not get pissed off


I hope the framing for our glass enclosure covers that stupid fucking triangle.

After my freak out was over I came back to help Chris with the inside of the curb



But again, only about 30 minutes in there was another mis-measurement, or actually not measuring at all and just hoping it turned out okay, and we were left with another stub piece in one of the inside corners. Damnit! Again, apparently now needing anger management pregnant Meryl had another freak out and I resumed day job work in my office. Seriously, I don't know what the hell came over me, but those tiles were really fucking pissing me off. And I wasn't even the one crouched down in all the weird positions to lay the tile like Chris had to be, I was merely going in and out cutting tile down, but something about it completely set me off. Because Chris is the awesome person that he is, he took the tile out from the inside edge where we had the non-measurement mistake and evened things out so we didn't end up with a little tiny stub piece. He's awesome that guy.

So at the end of about 3 1/2 hours with little help from raging Meryl, Chris finished the curb





And THAT my friends, is the end of tiling. THANK YOU GOD.

Now it's on to grouting. And hopefully I can keep my shit together from now on.