We just picked up our tiles and they are UGLY!

ruthie51March 28, 2013

We ordered 4x4 honed & filled ivory travertine tiles for our backsplash. The salesman ordered samples for us and we loved the color and variation within the tiles so we ordered 53 sq.ft. We were told they couldn't guarantee we'd get the same color since it's natural stone, but we were also told that the tile we would receive should look very much like the samples which are what they're currently selling (as opposed to the sample board). Well, my husband picked up the tiles today and they are just awful. The variation in each tile is so extreme, it looks like they're covered with mold (see picture). Is this normal when ordering honed & filled travertine? The color isn't the problem...it's whatever they filled it with. The samples looked "creamy"; these look "choppy". Has this happened to anyone else?

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Here's a picture I took of the samples we received.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 6:19PM
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There are about 1,000 posts on this forum alone on how awful travertine bs tiles are for any number of reasons, with the primary complaint being color. Most people don't realize how bad thing are until they've done the install, so your a little ahead of the game. Although you could have run a site search....

Sell them online if you can't return them, then buy something else.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 7:02PM
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Thank you for your response. It's not the color of the actual tile, it's whatever they filled it with. The samples were white, this is a dark greenish color. I did a search for "travertine color" and I found no posts about it.

This post was edited by ruthie51 on Thu, Mar 28, 13 at 19:12

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 7:06PM
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Try a google search for travertine tile on gardenweb.

Again, I'd return it if possible, get rid of it otherwise, and start looking for other options.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 7:17PM
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We used Botticino honed marble for the BS in our basement bathroom. I loved how it looked. I can't remember if I bought stock (so saw exactly what I was getting) or ordered it. I know we had to order the pencil liner, and it was as expected. Perhaps a tile warehouse, where they have large stock on hand?

If you really have to 'eat this', could you try using an enhancer to see if it would change the look enough to be able to use?

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 7:23PM
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This is exactly why travertine is out of favor. You order something and it comes completely different. Or, once installed together it might give off a pink or grey cast.
Would you consider ceramic?

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 8:09PM
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Ruthie, sorry you are unhappy with your travertine. I have Portsan Pearl travertine that looks very similar to Raehelen's honed marble and we love it. You will probably be looking at your backsplash more than anything else in your kitchen so you need to have something pleasing to the eye. Return it and start looking for something else. Good luck to you.

This post was edited by stacieann63 on Thu, Mar 28, 13 at 20:34

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 8:17PM
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Fori is not pleased

Wait a sec. Yeah yeah travertine sucks blah blah. (not really)

BUT. The tiles you got are filled with something different than the samples? That's not your mistake--it's someone else's mistake. Sure, stone will vary from the sample, but the color of the filler should NOT.

You shouldn't have to accept it. You ordered the travertine filled with white goo, not green goo.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 8:33PM
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Oh dear, that's too bad, I'm so sorry this happened to you!! I know you must be so disappointed. I hope they will take them back. Maybe they will just charge you a little restocking fee and you can choose something else but I know it is stressful until you know for sure. Good luck.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 8:44PM
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I've seen pictures lot of other people's travertine backsplashes (like the ones posted here) and they look wonderful and when I put the 9 sample tiles together, they also looked wonderful, but....oh well. Yes, I would consider ceramic, porcelain....man made so there would be no surprises. My husband hasn't seen them yet; I'm waiting for him to come home from work. I sent him pictures but they didn't do them justice, so to speak. Thank you all for taking the time to respond; if I have to eat it, I will. I can't have these on my walls.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 8:45PM
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Yikes. I agree this is unacceptable. We used travertine for the BS and what we received looked just like the samples from the store. There is no green.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 11:30PM
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Well, we went back to the tile store this morning and the manager agreed with us 100%. He said he had ordered 9 samples to give us a good idea of the variation, and very few of what we received actually looked like the samples. He was very surprised and apologetic. So now I was leaning towards porcelain, but then he showed us a honed Durango travertine that was very similar to what we had originally picked out. I was skeptical, but he told us that this tile would not have the many holes that the other tile did. The Durango did look very similar to our original samples, so we went with that. I'm expecting a much better outcome, but if not, the store manager is very easy to work with so I'm not concerned. Here's a picture of the Durango board that we picked out with our original sample in the lower left corner. You can see how similar they are. So, we're keeping our fingers crossed.

This post was edited by ruthie51 on Fri, Mar 29, 13 at 11:45

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 11:40AM
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Hmm...perhaps your samples were Durango in the first place? Whatever. Hopefully this will work out just like you planned the first time :)

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 1:14PM
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I just put up chiaro travertine in my kitchen. It looks nice, not sure it goes with my kitchen, but that's another story. I'll post some pictures soon. I have to figure out how to get them from the camera to the computer. I did enhance them which brought out the beigeness (is that a word?), as they looked a dusty creamy color before. I don't mind the holes as they are grouted and I like that look.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 3:01PM
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suzannesl, You may very well be right. There was a slight difference from my sample and the Durango...the Durango did appear to be a little darker, but that's fine with me. Your travertine looks beautiful, love the color and the layout. Momand3boys, I'm looking forward to seeing your pictures when they're posted.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 4:20PM
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That Durango travertine is really pretty.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 4:24PM
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Fori is not pleased

That's great that the manager is a standup guy. I hope you're writing him a nice Yelp review right now!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 6:17PM
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We picked up the Durango tile today and it's quite nice. As others mentioned is typical of travertine, the color isn't exactly the same as the sample board, but we're both happy with it. Now we just have to decide whether to use two or three lines of the trim. Any preferences? The travertine is 4x4 and will be placed on the diagonal.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2013 at 9:32PM
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Oh! I love that trim! Where is it going? My first inclination is to go 3 high. You know, the rule of 3's?

Keep in mind where your outlets are going to be placed, when you design the placing of the trim. We didn't, and when we realized our very expensive marble pencil liners were going to be smack dab in the middle of them, we had to forgo the marble and suck up a hefty re-stocking fee!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2013 at 10:28PM
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raehelen, please pardon my ignorance, but the rule of 3's? We plan to place the trim under the lowest outlets which are on the short wall of the peninsula; here is a picture with ribbon showing where we want to place it. Would that work? And thank you for the good advice.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 7:28AM
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Sorry you had that experience with travertine. We have it for our kitchen backsplash and it is exactly what we saw on the example board. We have subway tiles and I think they are the most beautiful thing in the kitchen.

Hopefully your new tiles will be better.

Attaching a picture of our backsplash, just for reference. Excuse the mismatched outlet covers; we are still in finishing-mode.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 8:02AM
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Amanda, LOVE your backsplash! Those tiles look a lot like ours except they are subway, of course (I couldn't decide between subway and diagonal so my husband make the choice). I love the trim...that is the look we are going for, so 3 rows seems to be winning now. Thank you!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 9:56AM
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