First of all - I love all of the comments! I love you for commenting! YAYHOORAY for comments! xxoo
Can't say I'm an expert at this - but here's how we put together the best backsplash in the world (in my humble opinion).
Pick out your tile...
As I said yesterday, we decided to go with Arctic Ice 1" x 2" glass tiles from Home Depot for about $9/sq ft.
We had originally wanted large white subway tiles that were 3" x 6" but then I fell in love with the glass tiles and also thought our all white kitchen could use some color. But when I researched 3" x 6" glass subway tile....eeeesh....expensive! The cheapest I could find in stores and online was $15/sq ft. That would have been around $500! Just for the backsplash!! Not happening. The smaller glass tiles were still not cheap, but much better than $500.
When we purchased our tile, we also picked up some white glass tile mortar, a new blade for the wet saw, a 3/16" x 1/4" V-notch trowel (recommended for this size/type of tile), a grout float, and some bright white non-sanded grout. Non-sanded grout is best for small grout lines and also, we were told by a Home Depot employee that sanded grout can scratch the surface of glass tile.
I'm sure you can use the premixed stuff but this specifically said Glass Tile Thin-set Mortar so we picked up two boxes.
I've also seen on lots of home improvement shows that you should use white grout for glass tile - or at least a color that you won't mind seeing through the tile. Our tile came with a white back though...so maybe it wouldn't have mattered anyway. Better safe than sorry I suppose.
We had a pretty small amount of grout and mortar so we mixed by hand instead of buying a mixing paddle. I have a 99 cent whisk from Ikea for such projects.
Once mixed, you have to let the mortar rest for 10 minutes so we measured where we needed to make the first cuts for a snug fit in the corners and around all of the light switches. Luckily my parents own a wet saw so we were able to take our time and not worry about returning it to a tool rental place.
Momz cuttin' some tile.
Using a wet saw is a messy job. Mom knew this from previous tile jobs and made us a lobster bib of sorts out of a small trash bag. When the saw slows down it spits water all over you. Actually it probably wouldn't if you kept the guard down like you're supposed to....aaaaaanyway..... Definitely use the wet saw outside or in a place where the floor can get wet.
Not too shabby!
Slather on mortar with the flat side of the trowel, then comb it with the notched edge to create some grooves. Then slap your tile on!
Hmmm... notice who's tiling and who's taking pictures? I helped I swear.
First two sheets up.
I'm not sure if spacers would have fit in between each tile because of the mesh attached to the back, but we added some spacers along the bottom to keep it up from the countertop. Once the mat was up, we wiggled and squished it into the mortar and then made sure all of the tiles were evenly spaced. Nothing like eyeballing it! My favorite type of measuring.
We worked our way around the kitchen covering about one sheet's worth of wall with mortar at a time so that it wouldn't dry while we were cutting the next piece. When we were done it looked like this (a repeat from yesterday's post).
The next day, we mixed up some bright white grout and let it sit for ten minutes (same process as the mortar).
And used the grout float to spread it all over the walls.
At first I was nervous that the grout lines would be way too big but Momz assured me once we wiped the tiles down the grout lines would shrink.
After wiping (20 minutes later) and then waiting two hours for the grout to set, we polished off the remaining film with some cheesecloth.
I could not have imagined it turning out this well. I absolutely love it!
Is this my kitchen??
Wowzers. I can't believe there's an actual kitchen where the hole used to be. All we have are finishing touches and we're done!!! DONE-ZO!