August 6, 2014

Adding a Tiled Entry

At last look, our new front entry way was looking pretty good.

The plan is to lay new hardwoods from this new door all the way to the Living Room,  but that had me pretty worried given the amount of wet boots and wet feet this floor would see over it's lifetime.  So we decided to add tile that would further define this entry and help protect our yet-to-be-installed hardwoods. 

I chose a dark gray/blue tile with a lot of variation in it that would help hide the dirt.  The first step was to lay it out to figure out the exact footprint.  

Apparently I did this while I was drunk because I couldn't hold the camera still.
 It's best if you have an adorable toddler in a muscle shirt help you with this step. 


Once in I traced the perimeter on the floor.

Then it was time to break out the saw.  I wanted my new tile to be level, if not slightly lower than my new hardwoods, so I had to cut out the existing wood planks to get down to the original sub floor. 

Then I laid down a new subfloor to raise it up to the perfect height. I could have used Durock or cement board here, but the guy at Home Depot assured me that this was overkill, and that the 1/4" plywood subfloor would be just fine for this particular instance.  I'm still regretting the decision a bit though.

No time for regrets anymore though, because once the kiddos went to bed that night I laid the tile. 

The tile is intentionally level with the surrounding floors now, which will put it 5/8" lower than the new hardwoods once they're installed.  That way any moisture on this tile will stay on the tile and not run onto the hardwoods.  There is also plenty of clearance for the door to still swing once we place a rug in this space. 

The next afternoon when my tile was dry I got to the business of grouting.  I used a dark charcoal grout that disappears in the tile and won't show dirt. For more on this process- click here.

And after about an hour of rinsing, wiping and buffing, I had this.

While it's not our most exciting home improvement up here, it may end up being our most useful.  I can't wait to see this space surrounded by beautiful hardwoods.  On. Step. At. A. Time!

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