| d.i.y. glass tile | part I

I've always wanted to learn to tile! My parents raised my sister and I like lil tomboys- we learned to install fans, replace kitchen sinks, and built tool sheds together! I just like knowing how things work and how they're assembled.
We acquired some beautiful crimson red, glass tiles that I've been wanting to put up in the house! Wedding chaos kinda put that project on hold, so it patiently collected dust in our garage. We finally made time this past weekend! Our good friend (& best man!), Scott, came up for the weekend to show us how it's done.

Here's part I of II. Enjoy the process! It's a bit more tedious than I anticipated. (I originally thought I could do it myself and knock it out in a day!) Why not? see below :)

Our kitchen below the day it all started- the naked drywall. We get a great morning sun! :)
Supplies and lots of little tiles!

Maybe we shouldn't have started super late...on a work night. My poor husband cutting glass tile at midnight on the back patio.....

The boys did the measuring. Luckily there wasn't too much cutting- Just under the window sill, and around all 984 outlets.

Since the tiles were so small (& cute! Like jolly ranchers!) I thought it would be appropriate to spread the thin-set like I do my ghetto fabulous cake piping! Bet this was a first to tiling :)

I got so excited (& careless) and I scraped my ring against the wet wall and got a nice chunk of gunk in it :/. I got demoted, so I played games with the spacers.

The boys continued to work hard and work their way around the kitchen while I supervised!

I was allowed back on the job and we completed half a wall! Weird thing with this kind of tile- the paper backing is actually the front of the tile. The back sides of the tile had lil beveled dimples to reinforce sticking to the wall! Kind of a pain- you couldn't see much once you stuck it up there.

The next morning, Scott and I knocked out the other wall pretty fast! I like to think of myself as a professional 'mudder'. My left hand worked like a machine!

Then it was time to remove the paper backing. I just took a wet sponge and continued to dab and soak the paper until the glue un-stuck. The paper would peel right off!

This was the messiest and most tedious part: grout. We got a Mapei brand grout (from Lowe's) and you had to manually mix it until it was the perfect consistency. Then you were on a time line- to get all the grout filled (without pockets!) before it dried. So we did section by section. The beautiful tile revealed! Then all dirtied up on the right while grouting.
Some tight spaces in the corner, and we had to work fast! I'd go in and wet the grout a little bit to smooth out some rough patches and make sure all spaces were filled.

Finished product! Well at least half the wall! The left side is ungrouted and the right side still needs a couple of rub downs to get some chunks of grout off the tile surface.

I can't wait to get undercounter lights to really make the tile glow! :)


  1. Beautiful! It really customizes your already-gorgeous kitchen!

  2. holy wow!! sonja, this looks AMAZING!! maybe my husband and i should do this to our kitchen as well, i've always loved colorful tile like that!! you guys did a GREAT job!! can't wait to see it in person next week!! :)

  3. This looks fanTAStic! That's so fun you got to help with the whole thing, too! Post a pic of the whole kitchen so we can see a "big picture" view, LOVE IT!!!