Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Kitchen Renovation: Backsplash

When the hubs and I made our kitchen plans we were a divided house when it came to the backsplash:
- he wanted to have our wonderful contractors install it and he wanted to have it done immediately;
- I wanted to try to install it ourselves and would be totally cool if we waited a few months to put it in.

Let the record show that the hubs won. I know, he's shocked as well.

Flash back to late December and everything was ordered for our kitchen except for the backsplash. It looked like I was going to win for once when I made the mistake of checking my phone the day after Christmas.  Sure enough, there was an email from The Tile Shop that they were having a massive end of year sale through the weekend. I don't know how often classic marble tile goes on sale, so seeing that we could get our materials for 20% off was the deciding factor. 

The hubs picked out a gorgeous meram carrara marble subway tile that was light enough, but not too white for our kitchen. We wanted something that was heavy on texture, gray, and not too polished looking so it would compliment our crazy granite.  Even when we were picking up our stone I joked that we could take a DIY class at The Tile Shop and figure this out on our own.  

Two things then happened: 
- the hubs pointed out that he put in the floors and that I had talked him into installing wood floors in our living room. I should stop pressing my luck. 
- we didn't own any of the tools needed to install the tile, let alone know how to work a wet saw. 

Then the sales associate asked where we were going to cut the tile in the cold weather. We looked a tad bit dumbfounded and said, "outside" because we don't have a garage. Turns out you can't exactly use a wet saw outside in 20 degree weather.  The real final kicker was when the hubs came home from work later the next week with his work schedule and we realized he wouldn't be home for a full weekend until mid-February.  The executive decision was made to have our contractors install the tile! 

And boy was it pretty coming home to that last week! Day 32 the weather got just over freezing and the tile was cut and installed! 

This is where the hubs joked that if he installed the tile it wouldn't have gone that close to our cabinets. I think he meant he wouldn't have cut the tile and it would have just ended at the last full tile. 

Day 33: I had a meeting, then a much needed happy hour, but the real party began when I got home and saw the kitchen like this: 

Dishwasher was in (and worked!) and the backsplash had been grouted. 

Lots of texture and veins in this marble and we love it. There are also slight copperish veins in quite a few of the pieces and they really help tie in our pendant lights. We went with a standard white grout. As much as I love gray I couldn't go with a darker grout because they look dirty to me. I know standard white isn't for everyone, but I'm weird and it's okay. My hubs is cool with it. 

And then the Jack and Gingers started flowing in the kitchen. Honestly, I don't even remember what we ate for dinner, but I do remember having a few beverages. We Face-timed with our families and showed them the kitchen before I posted more photos on Facebook. My sister was kind enough to call me out on my tipsy behavior.  Like two crazy poor adults the hubs and I spent the rest of our Wednesday night dancing around our kitchen (literally) and just amazed that it was finally here. 

We left the to-do lists for another day and just soaked it all in for a night.  We're not entirely done, we didn't get accomplished what we wanted to this weekend, but we're in a very happy place right now. So happy that I pushed "add to cart" on our living room floors and we spent our Saturday morning loading up the new floors and organizing the boards by color and length so we can install them this weekend. 

Later in the weekend the sunlight came out and we just continued to soak in our kitchen. We have a few paint touch-ups to do and we still need to paint the window frame, but other than that I think our kitchen is done, for now.  At some point we'll upgrade our basic outlet covers to fancy marble ones and we obviously need new furniture, but the major pieces are D-O-N-E! There's unpacking to do and I can't seem to find our toaster, but again we're not rushing it. 

Oh, this is NOT a sponsored post by The Tile Shop.  We actually fell in love with a marble tile when we were at the stone yard picking out our granite slab. From there we were able to hone our search and The Tile Shop had the best prices by far. Plus, we really liked that we could return a full box of tile, which we did, and didn't have to pay a restocking fee.  We still have a decent bit of tile leftover from another box and right now we plan to use that in one of our bathrooms as a accent piece. And I hope to install it myself at that point! 

Just a few more kitchen posts left, I promise! I'm going to show the final photos once it's actually finalized and I get a daylight day to take photos. I'm also going to do a source post so if you liked something you can track it down. And finally, the post I'm not looking forward to at all - how much this remodel cost. We haven't run the final numbers yet and I don't want to look at them just yet! 


  1. GORGEOUS!! How would you like to come to Nova Scotia and look after my kitchen design? Good choice on the backsplash tile!

  2. Loved the title of the blog, seems like a fitting one. Please would you be able to review my kitchen design because you seem to have an eye for such things because your kitchen looks really amazing. My wife is also into design and interior decorating but she does not trust her own taste, don't know why don't ask me.

    Essie Reed @ Valley Home Improvement