Christine and Pierre's Kitchen: Time for Tile

Renovation Diary

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Name: Christine & Pierre
Type of Project: Kitchen remodel
Location: Montreal, Quebec
Type of building: Ground floor apartment of a triplex, 1,100 square feet

The Renovation Diaries are a new collaboration with our community in which we feature your step by step renovation progress and provide monetary support towards getting it done in style. See all of our Reno Diaries here.

Our plumber came back this week to finish up his work. He installed the faucet, dishwasher, soap pump and water filtration system. After months of hand washing all our dishes in the basement utility sink, having a sink and dishwasher upstairs feels like an incredible luxury.

The water filter was a last-minute addition, but I think it's one of the best $100 we've spent on the entire renovation. We are so excited to get rid of the Brita that was always taking up counter space! The system we installed was a Rainfresh Twist system. It has excellent reviews and so we're really happy about that decision.

This tile was a total jerk. We cut it three times and it still snapped in the middle when I was installing it.
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This weekend was the mega tiling weekend. We wanted to avoid having to rent a wet saw, so we bought a basic tile snapper from Home Depot, and then borrowed a friend's dremel for the more complicated cuts. We knew we would need to make a few precise drill holes in tiles so the Dremel, combined with a variety of diamond drills and blades, worked really well for us. We had to make a few failed attempts using other blades to realize that the diamond bits are really the only way to go. With Pierre on tile-cutting duty and me on tile-installation duty, the work went pretty quickly. The hardest part by far was working around outlets.

Cutting around outlets is a pain in the behind.
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Before we started laying tiles, I did some measurements to ensure that we wouldn't end up with weird slivers of tiles at either end or at the top or bottom. I basically followed the instructions here to figure out where to lay the first tile. So far, so good! I'm not sure this would matter if you were tiling under cabinets, since the top row of tiles would be mostly hidden. But since we're going all the way to the ceiling, we wanted to ensure things looked nice on all sides. This meant our first row of tiles was 2" high instead of 3". I had hoped that we would finish the entire wall in the weekend, which didn't happen. But we've done the bulk of the work and we're certain we can finish it up next week.
We were VERY proud of this one!
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We received all our hardware this week too, but made an unfortunate discovery: while the knobs are well proportioned, the handles I ordered were too small for the drawers. It gave a really piddly look to everything. So we bit the bullet and packaged them up to send back to the company in exchange for a larger model. We're trying hard to not make quick, stupid decisions just because we want things to be DONE, but it's not easy. It helps that we are close to the end!

Our progress after the weekend. Yeah!
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Estimated time for project: 18 - 20 weeks?
Time remaining: 2 weeks?

Check out the full series (so far) and be sure to join us next week for #21 of Christine and Pierre's Diary.

(Images and diary text: Christine Zoltok)

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Renovation Diary: Christine & Pierre's Kitchen

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