After being in our house for a year and a half, I was itching to do something in our kitchen. One day we hope to rip everything out and start over, but in the meantime we wanted to freshen things up. My best friend had recently used Smart Tiles in her kitchen and it looked incredible. She and her husband she us home with a few of their extra sheets to try out.
I had been wanting white subway tile in our kitchen and I was happy to find white subway tile in the Smart Tile brand. After a little stalking on Wayfair over a few weeks, the price per sheet dropped one day to $2.99. Considering it usually sells for $4.99-6.99, depending on the day, I snatched it up. I ordered 45 sheets and our total for the project was only $135.
A word to the wise - measure twice and then still order more than you need. We barely made it by after a few mistakes and discarded tiles!
First, clean the surfaces really well (we used Biokleen) and start in a corner and work your way out.
One of our biggest hurdles was keeping everything level, especially in this one area where the backsplash dipped below the countertop. Having a light to spotlight where our "grout lines" were overlapping was key to making it look seamless.
We did this project over two days, about four hours each day. As you can see, Paul took the role of cutting and laying down the tiles, while I'd be there with the next tile partially peeled and ready to go. Once he had laid a tile, I would go back and make sure everything was straight. This worked really well for us.
Some of our cuts weren't exactly even on the top and our countertop is not completely level on the bottom, so we knew we'd have to caulk everything to seal it in the end. (You can see this in the image below)
Here we are after caulking. We LOVE the look of the backsplash. Did it take a good bit of time and patience? Yes. Would be recommend this to friends and family? In a heart beat.
Now the question is - should be resurface the countertops while we are at it? I've been looking at different options and have one in mind that makes countertops look like concrete. I'll keep you updated on what we decide to do! (This Encore Countertops kit is high on our list.)