Tile Decisions, Storage Cabinet Plans, and Progress

I haven’t done as much in the bathroom the past two days as you might expect, but keep in mind that I don’t work on Wednesdays. 🙂 But on Tuesday, I improved the tile on the bathroom floor.

I couldn’t decide what I wanted to do on the floor in the toilet area. When I started tiling the floor, the plan was to use a small 2 x 2 tile on the shower floor only, and then use the large tile on the floor in the toilet area.

But when I decided to use the small brushed brass Schluter strip as a separator between the large floor tile and the 2 x 2 shower floor tile, that dropped a wrench into my plans. You know how much I like (should) symmetry, so I can’t make a brushed brass transition strip on the left side of the bathtub area (the bathtub goes in front of the mural), and not make a transition strip on the right side of the bathtub.

I briefly thought about making a transition strip on the right side and then moving on to the large tiles in the toilet area, but that seemed random and unnecessary. The transition strip only makes sense (in my opinion) if there is a real floor transition applied to either side of the transition strip.

So I went for symmetry, including the transition strip and the 2 x 2 floor tiles in the toilet area.

Here is a view of both areas. I really like symmetry. It calmed my mind. ⁇

bathroom floor tiling-progress 1

If it was a tiling job that I could have done by starting at the back wall and coming out the door, it could be finished in a day.

bathroom floor tiling-improvement 2

But if I had done that, I would almost have been left with cut tiles right on the transition strip. And it was so important to me that I had entire tiles on both sides of the Schluter strip. That means I have to start with the row of tiles on the Schluter strip…

bathroom floor tiling-improvement 3

And then make the rows vertical first, starting at the side wall.

bathroom floor tiling-improvement 4

When I had finished that much, I had to stop because that place was too crowded for me working on my knees, in addition to my 5-gallon bucket of mortar, in addition to my 2-gallon bucket of water. I ran out of room to maneuver without stepping on and kneeling on the tiles to work, and that wasn’t an option. So I had to stop and release these tiles so I could go back (now) and walk and kneel on the tiles to make up the rest of the floor.

bathroom floor tiling-improvement 6

It usually comes back to bite me when I say, “Today, I’m going to do X, Y, and Z,” but I’ll go ahead and set a goal. At the end of today, I want the remaining tile to be placed in the toilet area, all excess mortar cleaned out, and the shower floor grouted. That’s the goal, so let’s see how close I am.

There is a big way where the shower and the toilet area are not symmetrical. You may have noticed on my “to do” list for this bathroom that one of the construction projects listed is to make cabinets in this bathroom area. (You can find my master’s “to do” lists for the bathroom and home gym here.) I decided on this design when I struggled repeatedly between having a window seat between two vanities, or filling that area with extra storage.

I finally decided that I really wanted a window seat, but I couldn’t sacrifice a lot of storage space without finding another place for storage. The toilet area is the perfect place. That’s a big area, and even if I lose 14 inches of depth to the back wall, it’s still big. So the cabinets go here …

These cabinets are not walnut like vanities. Since I wanted this area and the shower to be as symmetrical as possible, it was painted white to blend in with the white tile walls. So I’ll sacrifice perfect symmetry, but for a load of storage in an area where there’s plenty of space available, I think it’s totally worth it, especially if it means I can get a nice seat in the windows. the main part of the bathroom where it matters.

As a side note, I want to let everyone know that my hands were fine after tiling on Tuesday. I put coconut oil on my hands, and then put on two layers of disposable blue nitrile gloves from Home Depot, and it worked perfectly. The outer layer had some holes and tears (but not as many as I expected), but the inner layer remained intact, so nothing got through my hands.

When I took off the gloves at the end of the day, my hands were filled with water and soaked like a whole day in a swimming pool, but they disappeared after about an hour. And I prefer the water to return to normal in an hour instead of dry, cracked skin and sore, swollen hands that take a week to return to normal. So double-gloving with disposable nitrile gloves for victory!

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