Down the Rabbit Hole

Why can’t life be simple? A seemingly straight-forward tasks can take all sorts of twists and turns leaving you all in dither.

That’s where we found ourselves recently. After living with crazy emerald carpet faded to teal (read all about it here), me and the MR decided it was time for something new. With a trip to the carpet store, that sea of green would be gone–if only it were that easy.

We wound up at the carpet store we used ages ago and had a lovely, illuminating chat with the owner.

We have really ugly mauve tile bordering the carpet that we’d like to get rid of.
Tile work is really messy, so you’ll want to do that ahead of time.

We have radiant heat floors.
Demolition will take longer, so contractors don’t damage your pipes and heating system.

Do you know what’s under the carpet? Are the pipes in thin set? How deep?
Uh…Errr…We have no idea.

Here’s another curve ball, we have a sunken area around the fireplace that we’d like to fill in. Is that something you would do or have contractors that you work with complete?
Well, I do have people I recommend, but all of the remodeling needs to be done before we can begin work.

What about adding electrical outlets in the middle of the carpet?
Again, that’s something you need to have done by an electrician of your choosing.

We left the carpet store with way more questions than we started with. The owner did have a tile guy that she recommended, so I took a picture of our situation. Walked through the house counting the tiles and emailed it off. Crossing our fingers, we were hoping her guy could take care of all 104-feet of ugly tile.

Mauve tile

Of course, we had to replace the tile with something else, something new and beautiful without even a hint of purple. The MR picked up a few tiles for the bathroom remodel and checked out some samples. They were gorgeous, wood-grain tiles in dark brown and gray tones, and I told him they were all wrong. I thought we were going for subtle after all that mauve.

So I dropped off one set of samples for another. I decided creamy, beige-y tones would do the trick. I brought them home and was ecstatic–they blended in perfectly.

Beige tile up close

I thought the tile on the far right was too yellow, and the tile on the far left was too gray, but the two in the middle were both quite lovely. And just imagine what it would look like if the carpet were a neutral beige instead of crazy green.

Tile and carpet

I know the samples are woefully small–they’re just a few I picked up at Home Depot, but I know you’re getting the gist. I was aiming for a soothing neutral palette. It was all well and good until the MR came home and tripped on the tiles. Now, that’s not the reason he hated them. We don’t want people to think we couldn’t find a matching tile, or that the tiles along the edges are smudged or dirty, he told me. He was right, but I didn’t want it to look like the great room was outlined with a giant marker in some hideous color that we’d hate just as much in a few years.

We were at a bit of standstill. And then the owner of the carpet store emailed to say her tile guy wanted nothing to do with our job and the radiant floors. She said it nicely, but it was still a blow. So I went to the internet. Maybe I could get a few ideas on borders and tile removal. I’m sure they have wonderful ideas on Pinterest or Houzz.

Sunday afternoon, I spent an hour or so going through tiles, looking for subtle border tile, something that would look intentional without being too in your face. And that’s when I stumbled upon something wonderful in a totally different direction. A professional or DIY tile coating that turns gaggy into gorgeous. Just take a look at some of their photos.

Photo by Semicore Remodeling

While I’m not into the yellow fireplace, I like the industrial vibe of that floor. Just take a look at what they can do outside.

Photo by Semicore Remodeling

What I found most intriguing was that the tiles don’t have to be removed, my house doesn’t have to be covered in dust, and it appears to be quick and easy. The representative from the company assured me this is a green process with very little in the way of off gassing. We can even stay at home during the work. Maybe this is the answer to our tile problem.

Kenji from the Seattle office is headed out later today to check the lay of the land and put together a quote. Me and the MR are hoping to make the trek into Seattle later this week to visit their showroom and see some samples. Just from the the website, I’m leaning toward the Polished Bond in Sandstone or maybe Modern Gray.

In as little as two weeks, those old tile floors could look totally new.

So what do you think? Are we totally crazy to go from a 104-square-foot job to a 2,000-square-foot job in the blink of an eye? Anyone tried tile coating before? Ever remove tile from floors containing pipes that heat your whole silly house?

If you’d like to check out Semcore Remodeling click here and imagine all the floors they can redesign for you.


6 thoughts on “Down the Rabbit Hole

  1. I lave these floors and had ko idea it was possible to lay over old. I so hope this is the answer you are looking for. Did they say if the floor would heat as well with the added layer? I have some floor marked for doing an outside patio.

  2. Owning a beautiful home and property does have its drawbacks, the only thing you can do is enjoy while you can, Some day all this will be fond memories and you will wonder why and how you had such a good time.Like traveling, enjoy while you can. Our love Fred & Carol.

  3. Am thinking it would be a good idea to choose your carpet and THEN choose the color of the tile. Love the idea!

  4. Pingback: March in Review | bigwhitehouseonthehill

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