A Remodeling Update: My Kingdom For Some Tile

Decorative tile, laying on the floor, that’ll be the accent in the shower and by the sinks.

Well, kids, not everything runs smoothly during a remodel.  You see, there’s been a kerfuffle here about the wall tile that goes in the shower stall.  Not the little decorative stuff*, but the large tiles that cover the walls.

The problem, quite simply, has been that the tile company sent the correct decorative and floor tiles over to the house– but filled our wall tile order incorrectly.  They sent packages of tile with the same name + code number, but these packages of tile weren’t from the same “dye lots” so they weren’t the exact same color.

Which they are supposed to be.

Example of the tile in question.

Thus began what turned out to be 3 weeks of discussions among unhappy me, lawyerly Zen-Den, our patient project manager, the perturbed remodeling company design staff, the conscientious tile installer– and the confused [sneaky?] tile company.

Much was said, politely— but with a great deal of emphasis on MAKE THIS RIGHT.

No pithy conclusion to this post.  I’m just happy to report that the correct wall tile finally arrived on Tuesday and that each package has the same batch number.

Even more exciting than getting the tile is knowing that the tile guy is now in the process of installing the tile on the walls in the shower– and that the walls coordinate beautifully with the shower floor.

As planned.

Tile on the floor of the shower stall, installed and looking lovely.

* I wrote this post yesterday mid-afternoon. As the tile guy left late yesterday afternoon he told me that the tile company had shorted us on the decorative tile that is to go on the wall behind the sinks.  This is not as big of a problem as the wall tile kerfuffle, but it’s a problem that will have to be solved nonetheless.  *le sigh*

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Ally Bean

Observant. Creative. Humorous. Adaptable. Happy enough. Looking for the crumb of truth in the cookie of life.

48 thoughts on “A Remodeling Update: My Kingdom For Some Tile”

  1. I really like the look of the decorative wall tile. Subtle, yet distinctive.

    But isn’t it always Something? Wrong stuff, not enough stuff, someone doesn’t show up, rain delays due to weather for outside work, and yada yada yada, next thing you know, your project becomes a Lifestyle. Ugh.

    You still sound relatively Serene. Whatever it is, keep it up; it’s working for you.

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    1. nance, thanks. I’m liking how all of the tiles and textures in the bathroom are coming together which contributes to my serenity, but the project itself hasn’t been a smooth process. Not that I was under any illusion that it would be– knowing, like you said, that “it’s always Something.”

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  2. I did a huge addition about 20 years ago. The project took 6 months and there were only two rooms to retreat to. I remember my constant need to check everything. The plumber put the water lines for the washer on the wrong side (open door would have made the transfer to the dryer complicated). I told the contractor they had to be changed. I was in another room when the plumber gave him a lot of flack about it. I loudly said from another room “any plumber worth his salt would have looked at the washer/dryer to determine where the plumbing lines go.” Everything got quiet. I had the most trouble with the plumber. He did finish plumbing without using a dropcloth on the newly finished hardwood floor. Fortunately I was on him about that too. He must have thought I was the client from hell as I thought he was the plumber from hell. You can see beautiful progress and that’s what keeps you going.

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    1. Oh, Kate, I so relate to your [ridiculously believable] story. I find myself thinking to myself: COMMON SENSE, people. Use common sense.

      This remodeling company seems to hire good people to do the work, but has problems getting stuff to the house for the good workers to use. While I’m not above using Z-D, Esq, to get problems solved, I try to handle them on my own at first. Fortunately, like you said, when I see how pretty things look I continue on, reminding myself how great this will be… eventually.

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  3. Very pretty tile. We are so fortunate we had very little of the “not enough/wrong stuff” with our bathroom remodel. The only thing we had an issue with was that they did not buy the shower head we had picked out, but that actually turned out in our favor since we went and picked another one that was cheaper than the first. Thanks for the continued updates. Love seeing your progress!

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    1. Janet, I like that tile, too. I imagine that every remodel has a different list of things that go wrong! So far *fingers crossed* the tile has been our biggest problem. Lucky for you that your mistake resulted in something less expensive. I like knowing that. It’s inspiring.

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  4. Excellent. I’m glad these mishaps are not permanent and progress continues. Please continue to be diligent with the details.
    One of the things I love about my house is the tile surround in the bath. All up and over the ceiling. Pleases me. But I must admit, it’s an odd hue, and I’ve had quite a time figuring out what to do with my bathroom — Still no revelations.

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    1. joey, I’m a “detail” person to begin with, so being diligent comes naturally to me. And seeing progress makes me happy, so ever onward we go with this remodel.

      My aunt’s house had tile on the ceiling above the bath. It was cool to look at. Maybe it was the style at one time? I’ve lived in houses with odd hues, and sometimes I found the best thing to do was to ignore them! “What jade green counter? I don’t see anything that color in here.” 😉

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      1. Haha! Jade. I like jade…
        Well the tile is newer, 2012, and I like it, it’s ivory with what appears to be neutral accent — until you hold some paint or fabric up to it, and then it’s a sorta ochre… Odd. One day I will work it out!

        I’m glad you’re up on the details. These things are necessary in my opinion.

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  5. Oh my! I can commiserate! We haven’t even started our project yet, and measurements of the kitchen counter were not correct. They measured it with continuing the granite as the back splash, when we have already ordered a glass mosaic. But at least we caught the mistake before the counter was cut! Just waiting on the contractor to start the bathroom. Ye haw for renovations!

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    1. Beth, I think some of the mistakes are honest ones, while other mistakes are because people aren’t listening. I’m glad that you stopped things before you were stuck with the wrong size counter. EEK! Can’t wait to hear about your bathroom redo. Ours is looking good, but it has taken a long time– and it’s nowhere near finished yet. 👀

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  6. Oh sigh – those snags can be such energy drains – both in time and emotion. Wishing you quick resolution to the new issue, and a rapid finish to the entire remodeling project. But what a loveliness you’ll have to celebrate when it’s all over!

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    1. Deborah, you said it! It’s been a huge energy drain to do these projects all at once. I’m sure I’ll/we’ll figure out how to deal with this new little snag, and it’ll work out. But sooner would be better than later. Getting very tired of this chaos.

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    1. Betsy, I’m glad that we figured out what was wrong BEFORE it went on the wall. And that’s the thing about all of this remodeling, best to keep track of it as it happens rather than find the mistakes later. But I’ll admit that monitoring everything all the time is wearing me out. *LE SIGH*

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  7. Why is every little thing such a problem – so draining (especially if you’ve had any experience you just know there’ll be glitches shortly in the future no matter how careful you are…the waiting for the other shoe to drop is exhausting, too.)
    When we had stone/ tile put down in the guest bath, I carefully went through and pulled out the “pretty” pieces I wanted in that small area – and sorted out the ugly/bad ones I wanted to put out of sight in closets/under cabinets – and clearly showed the tile guy the 2 piles and said “Do not use these ugly ones in that bath….went to work, leaving husband to work at home that day, and came home to – you guessed it the worst tiles of the lot right there all over in that guest bath. It all had to come out. And another day of mess and chaos…
    Your tile is beautiful – you’re almost making me wish to redo the kitchen backsplash …almost…
    “Le sigh” is perfect. Hang in there!

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    1. philmouse, I wish I had an answer to your question, but like you said every little thing becomes a big deal just for the reason you mentioned in your sad tale of tile woe. *shaking head at the stupid*

      At first I was thinking about a new tile backsplash in the kitchen, too. BUT the designer helped us pick out new tile to use throughout the house that coordinates with the existing kitchen tile. Meaning that this house, when/if finished, will look cohesive, but fresh. I hope.

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      1. First it would be the backsplash, then new countertops would go better, the cabinet update, then while we’re at it, the floor tile changed….but like yours, right now it all coordinates with the house….but I hate that tile…not sure how much HAHA

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        1. One thing leads to another. We had the kitchen remodeled 9 years ago, and already the tile backsplash is dated. I love it, so I was pleased when the designer found a way to bring some new looks into the house without destroying what we did [to me a few short] years ago.

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    1. Maggie, you make a good point. There will be entertainment value in all of this… later. I like the PITT acronym. I’ve never seen it before, but feel like it describes my exact feelings right now.

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  8. It’s always something, right? Hubby and I have done a few tile jobs ourselves with fairly good results. But, when we started using a highly-recommended professional, we never tried to do it ourselves again. He was so much better, quicker and the challenges we agonized over, he just powered through. Experience is everything.

    I hope you have everything sorted out now and all will go smoothly for now on… ha!

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    1. Janis, I know what you mean: once you see the professionals do something, you realize that they know what they’re doing… and it’s so much easier/better for them to do those things than it ever was for you. Our ah-ha experience revolved around landscaping our yard.

      It’s Friday afternoon now and I’m still working on getting the rest of the decorative tile delivered, but the rest of the tile is here and glued to the walls. Grouting begins on Monday. And [who know?] by then the missing decorative tile may have turned up too. 🤞

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  9. Why, WHY does this always happen? Lot numbers matter, people who work there! Sheesh!

    Hope it ALL gets sorted out and finished, like, yesterday. 🙂

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    1. Tara, I know that lot numbers matter. You know that lot numbers matter… so how is it that the tile store didn’t pick up on that fact? Another unanswered mystery. 🙄

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  10. All I can do is commiserate and continue to keep my fingers crossed that all your reno annoyances are relatively minor.
    I must say though – 3 weeks to get the tile company to correct their error sounds excessive. Grrr. Somehow I get the impression they won’t be making it onto your Christmas card list this year 😉

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    1. Joanne, you are absolutely right. No Christmas card for the tile company. The tile installer guy, however, is on my good people list for life. He battled for the correct tile as hard as I did– was called fussy along the way– and proudly said: “Yes, I am.”

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    1. nancy, thanks for your support. I’d no illusions that this would go smoothly, but I never thought that something as simple as procuring tile would be the problem. But hey, what is life if not a learning experience?

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  11. What? You mean not all remodels are like ours at Mecca…. where if the wrong supplies show up they just get installed anyway regardless of how tacky or unsafe they might be? Apparently your project supervisors have the common courtesy not to laugh with impunity over any suggestion that the work is not correct….

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    1. evil, yes, our remodeling company, clearly one that Mecca does not use, will get it done the right way– and I’ll survive all of this. But the process is trying…

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  12. We recently remodeled our bathroom. Hubs did some of the work, but we hired a company to lay the tile, which was not the same company from whom we purchased the tile. Amazing how many different sources have to be involved in such a project! It’s not surprising we run into kerfuffles!

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    1. Kate, I agree. There are more companies, and people, coming and going from this house than there are people on the street. Well, I exaggerate, but… it seems that way to me… a quiet introvert. Of course, the finished product will be wonderbar… I hope… so I’m rising above it all…

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  13. I love the word “kerfuffle” anyway, and as long as you keep that word in your head it should keep making you smile through all kinds of craziness.

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