threegracesJune 13, 2013

We're not quite ready for a reveal here, still have several pesky details to address but I would love some direction for selecting a backsplash. Of course I am in love with a few very expensive water jet marble mosaics. I also love the classic look of white subway tile and we have 25 sq ft left over from a bathroom remodel.

Here's a mini reveal. Our cabinets are painted white, the perimeter granite is opalescence, the island is honed white delicatus. The floors are red oak and the walls Ace's Dover Gray. Our white range and fridge will be staying for awhile. Being hopelessly practical, I want to keep it relatively neutral like the rest of our kitchen so that we can change paint color or accessories down the road and our backsplash will still match.

Things that I love
Waterworks Promenade (no idea on price)
All of the Silk Road mosaics by New Ravenna (approx 130-200/sq ft) swoon!

Waterworks Aqualinea

I was thinking we could do a more decorative tile above the range but with the high back of the range, it would cover a lot of that pretty tile. I'm looking for something that would emulate what I love without the cost. I don't care for basketweave or herringbone styles. I don't care what material it is - doesn't have to be stone, porcelain or ceramic is fine.


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Another love ($120-130/sq ft) Danse Azul by Artistic Tile

Here is a shot of the white tile we have against our island granite. I was worried the granite is too creamy but I think it looks just fine together.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2013 at 10:35PM
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Check out the marble mosaics from Saltillo tile. They have a similar look to the ones you love, but they are more like $20 a sq ft. I will link below. Their US distributor is Caledonia Tile in Indianapolis, and they have reasonable shipping rates. Here is an example:

Here is a link that might be useful: Saltillo Tile marble mosaics

    Bookmark   June 13, 2013 at 11:33PM
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How many square feet do you need? The cream tile looks fine with the island - how does it look against the cabinets? It might help you to compare the total cost of your options instead of the square foot cost. I love the color of the waterworks promenade, would you tie it in with accessories or do you have that color elsewhere in adjoining rooms? The shape would look great with your island light.
Thank you for posting the pics! One of current pre-demo dilemmas is about granite and I've considered delicatus for the island with something black on the perimeter. Was the slab honed when you saw it, and if not, how did you know how it would turn out? Do you love it?

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 6:42AM
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We would need about 31 sq ft. Which seems like a lot of white subway. I should have prefaced on the Promenade tile that we would probably do a different color (that example was the only one I could find) even though I love, love that color, it's probably too limiting for me. It comes in several grays as well.

I haven't seen any examples of accent tiles that I just love but I would be open to that. We live in a 1910 Craftsman and I think I've designed a pretty traditional looking kitchen - most of the accent designs I have seen are modern. Normally I consider myself an internet search guru, but I'm really falling down here, LOL

The tile is a pretty dead-on match for the cabinets and looks good with the perimeter granite

One idea I had is this tile with a gray grout. It would kind of give that general feeling as the ideas I posted but for 15/sq ft. Is that a dumb idea?

Here is a link that might be useful: Promenade tile

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 7:10AM
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I will have to check out that Saltillo option; I really like that.

As for our delicatus. Hmmm, well I am making peace with it now. It was not what I thought it was going to be colorwise. We committed the classic rookie mistake of not seeing the templated slab. We live in podunk so it's a trek to any of the granite yards. We both work full time and have a baby so it's not easy for us to get away. Next time I would MAKE TIME to do it though. I expected something that had more white and gray and less brown/rust and wine based on the pretty large sample we got. But knowing that granite is dynamic and this particular variety is quite variable, we should have known better. Lesson learned. That said, it has really grown on me and anyone who has seen it loves it because they didn't have the same preconceived ideas that we had, you know?

I am thrilled with the honed finish on it. Like so many others, marble made my heart sing but being who I am, I knew I couldn't live with etching. I had a hard time finding anyone even 2 hours away who had white quartzite slabs. I live in the land of Cambria and polished granite. So the gal at the granite yard suggested honing a white granite and the price was certainly right at $60/sq ft (compared to the $170/sq ft of honed white maccabus I was quoted elsewhere)

We did get a sample of the honed piece and tested it with various staining substances and it cleaned up perfectly. Seems to be bulletproof so far, but it's only been a couple of months. Honed is very rare in my neck of the woods and it gets a reaction from everyone who sees it. I wanted the perimeter honed too but I lost that one with the hubs. I might just take a sander to it one day when he's not home :)

So there's my long answer to a short question. Is it beautiful and durable? yes! It is what I expected, perhaps unrealistically? No, but every day I see it, I like it more. I would absolutely not hesitate to get a honed finish, the way it feels is like butter.

Our KD, who really just ordered the cabinets because I was the KD came over and told our GC "wow, she's got it." I will take that as a compliment.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 7:23AM
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Love the whole kitchen and especially the honed delicatus on the island.

I really like your last tile (the white floral mosaic). I lived in a 1920 bungalow for 10 years and think a white subway isn't quite right. A 4"square tile might be better, but the smaller format of those florals seems perfect to me.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 10:58AM
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threegraces, I love your Delicatus, even though I understand it wasn't what you had in mind. It's beautiful anyway and I'm glad you are making peace with it. Such is life.

Can you tell me about the towel rack device you have under your sink? How is it attached and how is it treating the painted finish? Like yours, my DW doesn't have a handle and I'm reduced to hanging my dish towels on the oven handle. Although I've adapted, it's just not that convenient.

Your kitchen is really lovely. I'm sure you'll pick an awesome backsplash.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 11:21AM
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I understand your feelings about your granite. It's lovely, and it's probably the best you can do for the low maintenance and lower cost you wanted. I second-guess my choices all the time and whether I should have put more time into the whole granite process, but I gave it the time I had and it's very good if not necessarily perfect. Your kitchen is truly beautiful.

I really like your last tile with gray grout, depending on the scale of it. Subway tile with gray grout might also be a good choice, and simpler is sometimes better if you have a lot on your counters. I have also liked polished marble mini-bricks with kitchens like yours. Here's an example from mbarbie's kitchen:

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 11:41AM
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Wow, what an awesome kitchen! I love your honed island and the look you are going for with the back splash is lovely. Being the super practical person I am, if I had 25 sq. ft left over and only need 30+ then I would probably use the subway, it does seem a great color match, and its classic.

Do you mind if I ask the measurements of your stacked upper cabinets. Are they 30" with 18" on top?

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 11:46AM
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Thanks for explaining, threegraces! I'm not sure my GC can be talked into honing, he said it is labor intensive, you can't tell what it will look like, and it just hasn't caught on...but I'm sure it would if people could see/feel more of it. I wish there were more slab yards closer to my house and feel terrible for all of you who have to drive further!

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 1:41PM
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Holly- Kay

I really would love a honed finish but I just really have had this on my mind for a few days so I know it is too late. Can granite be honed after it is installed?

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 3:50PM
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linelle - it's just a nickel holder I got at Home Goods for $6. It has padding on the side against the cabinet - so far, so good. I am careful with it though and really since my sink is so low, it's not all that convenient anyway. On a standard sink cabinet, it would be fine.

mpagmom - I did consider gray grout on subway. I don't want it to look "dirty" but having white grout in our bath, it gets dirty on it's own anyway, LOL. I need to get half the crap on my counters off, but it's a lived in kitchen, not a magazine...that's what I tell myself anyway. Lord knows nothing else in my house looks like a magazine.

kam - yes, they are 30 + 18 stacked with about a 6" crown. Our ceilings are 9' but seem much higher. Being an old house, the ceilings are uneven so having a 2 piece molding allowed for some flexibility there. It is tempting to buy another few feet of the subway we already have vs forking out another $600 for different tile. I have a feeling I will be ABB for awhile.

kksmama - If you want honed, get it! It was an extra $10/sq ft for us. You should be able to get a sample of it honed. I don't buy your GC's excuse - it's your money, do it if you want it.

holly - I have no idea. I would imagine it would be hard to hone the edges on site.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 5:33PM
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    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 5:38PM
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I have white subway with gray grout in my shower, and it looks really nice. Also, check out segbrown's kitchen with gray grout, linked below.

Here is a link that might be useful: segbrown's kitchen

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 9:16PM
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I really like the 2nd one for your kitchen.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2013 at 2:45PM
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Like that Platinum grout. I was leaning toward Dolorean Gray only for the name, LOL.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2013 at 10:10PM
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