Posts Tagged ‘tile’

I just ate dinner at this cool restaurant in Brooklyn. It was dark outside the whole time I was there. I am sure the place would feel pretty different for breakfast.

The building is an old diner train car with all the inherent architectural charm that you might imagine….. cozy narrow space, curved ceiling, lots of windows.

Instead of accentuating the 50s style, this restaurant has a different, edgier and classier sort of atmosphere.

It easily could have been overly trendy with its “derelict” finishes (ala Zoolander)

The old tile floor is patched with no attempt to hide that fact that it has been patched.

but some how it just works.

Once again the lighting is key. In this case the general lighting is dimmed, and warm flickery candlelight creates the mood.   Mirrors, shiny ceiling  and glass tiles add to the sparkle.

Lara Kaufman, who took most of these photos for me, is pictured on the right and Elissa Steglich, the local friend who took us here is on the left

Photo from Lara K showing some artful floor patches

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I kept this elegant tub surround alive for a few extra years by patching it with fiberglass and epoxy, but I think it was time for an upgrade.

partially demolished, you can see both layers of old surround – fiberglass on top of coated masonite – with a european street scene in sepia….perhaps from the early 60s?

pacific tile putting on a layer of thinset mortar over the wonderboard (over building paper & moiststop at the tub lip)

the first row of tiles – cut to fit the curved tub

I don’t have any photos of the plumber at work, but he installed copper rough plumbing for this shiny new shower faucet. It has a modern take on the cross handle for the valve, and a nice curvy tub spout.

I would not recommend buying the cheapest shower curtain rod or brackets. I did, and I notice spots of rust already forming on the chrome.

The tiles are 4×4 white (0100) Daltile Rittenhouse Square  with a god’s eye pattern in yellows and blues.  Keeping the pattern in the middle meant that all my trim tiles and fussy cut tiles would be white. Extra ones when we ran out were easy to come by.  It also made finding a recessed soap dish easy and repairs down the road possible. Affordability is another advantage.

We used bright white unsanded grout and white adhesive caulking to complete the clean white look.

Daltile white 0100 4×4 squares with a god’s eye pattern in blue and yellow

I don’t think I got a screaming deal, in part because I was in a rush, trying to reduce the inconvenience for my renters.  The plumber was about $575, the tile setter $1300, the tiles, grout, caulk, and sealer, about $250 and the plumbing hardware another $375 or so. Call it about $2500 + a few more hours of carpentry work, sheetrock repair, clean up, and a dump run bring it to about $3200. I still have to repaint the ceiling on the lower level where we had to open it up for plumbing access.

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This bathroom had some charm from the start with its orange-bottomed clawfoot tub and cheerful checkered yellow vinyl flooring. It also had a nice view of the Golden Gate.  After a while I decided that it could use an upgrade.

Hearst Castle Guestroom Bath

I kept the tub, but gave it a fresh coat of fireball orange on the bottom. I made a curved sink counter out of a big slab of redwood salvaged and milled by Matt Mcbride. The toilet was moved to the other side of the room. This way the view can be enjoyed while seated and there is more space for the sink.  I replaced the old toilet with a dual-flush Caroma.

After visiting the Hearst Castle guest room baths, I chose white hex tile for the floor.

The mirror goes wall to wall and all the way to the ceiling for simplicity and so that two people can get ready to go out at the same time. The fluorescent sconces by Justice Design give off a warm glow. The other light in the room is a LED recessed can over the tub.

The secondhand unprotected brass faucets and shower valve are from Ragnar at the Sink Factory on San Pablo, and the nicely patinaed soap dish and towel bar from a secondhand store in Portland, Oregon.

Curved, white-washed corner shelves are filled with colorful towels and plants, and a mural of flowers and butterflies is underway on the back wall behind the tub.

I kept the 100-year-old door (no faux distressing here, just hours of labor with a heatgun and then a sander to take off the layers of paint)

Thanks to Darren McElroy (general help,)  John Mcbride (electrical, plumbing, trim carpentry, and sheetrock help,)  Matt Mcbride (big slab of redwood,)  Dan Lewis (paint removal),  Lara Cushing (demo,)  Ragnar at The Sink Factory, Peter Renoir Plumbing (moved the toilet,) & J & D Glass & Sash (mirror) for their help.  Thanks to my downstairs renters for sharing their bathroom for a while.

Don’t remodel your only bathroom without a good plan.


Great Article about bathroom remodeling by Matt Cantor in the Berkeley Daily Planet

dual flush toilets

Justice Design Group

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