Line up your straightedge and cut a small notch on each end with your utility knife.
After years of perusing FLOR's catalog and website, I finally bit the bullet and ordered the carpet tiles for my entryway and kitchen. The Problem: I have gone through about five different rugs in my entryway. With one pitiful rug pad and two overly-welcoming dogs that rush the front door every time they hear a noise — I was forever straightening, fixing and flattening the front rug. I had already tried multiple kinds of rug pads topped with different rug styles and nothing eliminated the problem. The Solution: Modular carpet tiles by FLOR.
We've talked about FLOR many times here, price often being the biggest factor that keeps people from making the purchase. But when you consider how many different rugs and pads I had already purchased — as well as the enormous headaches of constant rug-fixing — the $110 for the FLOR tiles for my entryway was a no-brainer at this point. And when they get too dirty or one of the dogs inevitably vomits on them, they can be picked up and washed off in a cinch, which will undoubtedly extend their lifespan. And when your tiles are beyond saving, you can send them back to the company for recycling.
What You Need
Of course you'll need your FLOR tiles and the adhesive FLOR dots. For my entryway I chose Good Vibrations in Jade. You'll also need a ruler/measuring tape, straightedge, heavy duty utility knife, scissors, self-healing mat or cardboard and a pen.
1. Many of you might not ever need to cut your tiles. But for my situation, I wanted an entryway rug and the standard 19.7" x 19.7" squares tiles in a row of two were slightly too big to fit in the designated area. Simple solution since FLOR tiles are designed to be cut. But given the cost of the tiles and no experience doing it, I was slightly hesitant to just start cutting. Since I had order multiple sample tiles earlier to help with the decision making process, I figured I'd take a practice run on one of those before tackling a big tile. Smart to practice, but easy enough to get right on the first try just in case you don't have any samples laying around.
2. First I positioned the 8 tiles down in the pattern I wanted. You can align them straight or in a parquet pattern (which basically looks like a basketweave pattern), I chose the parquet pattern. There are arrows on the back of the tiles to easily guide you with your pattern. The arrows should face the same direction as the tile next to it for a straight installation or the arrows should be turned 90degrees to the tile next to it for parquet. For my tiles, all I needed to remove was a half inch off one side of each tile. Measure and mark on both ends of your tile.
3. Before you start cutting, make sure you have a self-healing mat or piece of cardboard underneath your tile to protect your work surface. Line up your straightedge and cut a small notch on each end with your utility knife.
4. With the ends notched, now go back and realign your straightedge with your markings. Firmly hold the straightedge in place while you guide your utility knife along the edge to score your tile.
5. Bend the tile back to expose the scored section.
6. Now go back with your utility knife and repeat step 4 until you have completely separated it. The thickness of your tile will determine how many times you'll need to do this, it took me about 4 or 5 tries each time for mine.
7. Because of the loop weave on my tiles, I went back with my scissors and removed all the stragglers so there was a nice clean edge. Depending on your tiles, this may or may not be necessary.
8. The cut and cleaned-up edge.
9. Even closer-up view of the cut edge.
10. After I cut all my tiles and placed them back in the desired pattern, it was time to adhere them together with FLOR's adhesive dots. The FLOR dots are designed with marks on them so you can align the 4 corner edges of the tiles together. Pull the corner edge of one tile up and slip the dot (lined up with the marks, of course) behind that tile. The adhesive side should be facing up.
11. Then adhere the other 3 corners to the dot.
12. Press firmly. FLOR says your dots are designed to become stickier the longer they are in place, so if you mess up and need to take it off and fix it or rearrange, no problem.
13. My finished customized entryway rug that actually stays in place!
Images: Kimberly Watson