You know at SeaWorld they have the “Splash Zone” at the bottom of Shamu’s stadium? Well, we went to SeaWorld earlier this year and holy cow, I do not remember the splash zone being so…splashy? I mean, they didn’t just have the whales splash the people, they dumped buckets of water on peoples’ heads! I guess that didn’t seem so extreme the last time I went when I was 10. But, clearly other people didn’t expect it either. I can’t even tell you how many people came tearing up the stairs cradling their cameras/lunches/small children in their arms.
Anyway, there is an analogy here. I feel like backsplashes are the same way. You put them in mainly because they’re beautiful and fun. And don’t think that there will be much splashing. But, then there is. And you end up tearing around your kitchen with the same mad expression that dad did as he carried his screaming 9 month old out of Shamu’s wake.
Fortunately this isn’t a precautionary tale. We know how messy
we are I am while cooking and so, as you avid readers of casa marcelli know, we chose a tile backsplash for over the stove for that very reason. (You can read about that selection here.)
Wanna see it?
Isn’t it gorgeous?!
It turned out so much better than I had worried it would, since it was our first tiling experience ever. Here’s the process of putting it together.
We had to remove the old metal sheet that tucked behind the old hood, which revealed some holes and dents in the drywall, as well as some glue spots. So, one day while I was at work, Rob patched the holes, sanded everything down and measured it out.
We laid out the tile to see how many sheets it would take to cover the space and determine the best placement of our seams.
Notice the chair in the background? That was in place to keep Sophie out of the kitchen since we were using nippers to cut the tiles since they were glass. We were able to contain the shards decently, but didn’t want to take any chances of the puppy getting glass in her feet. She didn’t really understand why we excluded her.
It was a bit of a learning curve since we’d never done this before, but pretty soon we were in the groove and it went surprisingly quickly.
Well, Rob was in the groove. I mostly watched, sorted out half- and quarter-pieces, and wiped up messes.
Once the rest of the tile was installed, we had to wait a few days for everything to dry before we could grout. Even so, the kitchen was looking a million times better.
A couple days later, we were ready to grout. We picked an unsanded grout in “Straw,” a tan color. In our tile shopping, we learned the grout needed to be unsanded because we were using glass tiles and the sand can scratch the surface of the tile.
After we grouted, wiped up the excess, wiped it again, and again, we finally were able to remove the haze it had left. A few days after that, we were able to caulk around the edges and finish everything up.
I know I say this just about every time we do another project in the kitchen, but I am in love.
And now we’re just that much closer to sticking a fork in this kitchen and calling it done!