With the subfloor prepped and sealed, I started to layout the tiles. I knew I wanted a full tile at the door, so rather than the conventional “start in the middle and work out” I started with the keystone piece and worked from there, After a couple of re-alignments I finally had in my mind the layout.
Next, I started to lay the tile using 1/8 inch spacer. The spacer are in a + shape so you can use them in a standard layout. but since my seams were staggered, I placed them between the tiles like X’s on their ends. Sorry no pictures of that. But you can see them sticking up in the image below.
After way too many hours on my knees, I finally had all the tile down and ready for grouting.
The secret to laying vinyl self-stick tile so that it actually sticks, is to make sure the floor is prepped and sealed AND completely free of dust! Before I laid each tile I would pull out the vacuum dusting brush and clean that square area throughly. It added a lot of time but the results are worth it.
With all the tile in, I let it sit overnight to assure great adhesion and the next morning removed the spacers in preparation for the grout. The grout I used was from Lowe’s – Blue Hawk Vinyl Tile Grout in Saddle Gray. It’s a premixed grout. I used a grout bag (think cake decorating bags!) to lay the grout in the lines. Then just a quick wipe with a sponge to clean away the excess and a wipe down on each tile with a microfiber cloth to remove the residue.
It’s really, really, really important to wipe that residue off immediately. If you don’t it dries very quickly and will leave a haze over your tile that you will not be able to get rid of.
After another way too many hours on my knees – I bought knee pads after the first round and they did the trick – I was finished grouting!
I love the way it came out.
Next on to picking the paint color. Here’s a sneak peek of the final two…
Can you quess which one we went with?