Nothing transforms the look of your kitchen or bath like tile. Whether it’s a tile backsplash for your kitchen or a tile shower or floor for the bath your room will feel brand new. And one of the newest and most exciting types of tile today is glass.
Glass tile has been around for a while but it wasn’t until the glass mosaic tiles hit the design magazines and home improvement stores that glass really hit it big. And now with the mixed media—glass plus stone—it has hit a whole new high. Glass used to be mainly a contemporary style phenomenon but now that it has merged with marble and granite it has become just as popular in traditional and transitional style kitchens and baths.
Some homeowners have been avoiding glass with the belief that it is fragile—nothing could be further from the truth. Glass is durable and long lasting even for children’s baths. Glass won’t absorb moisture and it will not stain so it’s perfect for sink and tub/shower areas.
One of the most beautiful for traditional style kitchens are deep brown and bronze glass/stone mosaics. These are perfect to pair with the cream, ivory, mushroom and/or sage green painted cabinet colors. But don’t be afraid to use them with wood stains they can complement them very nicely. Look for those with cream/ivory stone and glass combo and greens are very popular and attractive.
For baths, including my own, the sea and sand shades in glass with or without stone are beautiful in coastal theme baths particularly. Team these tiles with light painted vanities. The brown or dark green mix glass and stone combinations can look rich and traditional in Master baths and these are stunning with stains– such as cherry or oak vanities. Be sure there’s a lot of natural light as well as good vanity lighting or the bath can look too dark.
Jelly bean glass tile is perfect for children’s baths and the colors are right too. Combine these with strong primary color vanities like red, blue or green.
While glass floor tile looks great with your glass wall tile you do not have to use glass on the floor. A nice ceramic, stone or porcelain floor tile in matching or coordinating colors can look fabulous. Wood—including wood looks is another very good possibility. There are wood-look ceramics now that are perfect for the bath.
Mosaic tiles come in sheets and they are fast and easy to install. Always measure carefully and purchase the correct number of tiles—it’s very easy to calculate and look on the website or packaging for directions. Be sure to allow for grout—it will take up a little room.
Don’t freak out at the work ‘’grout’’ it’s not hard and grouts have improved greatly in recent years. You won’t need many tools but you will need the proper ones. You will need a pencil or Sharpie marker, a glass tile cutter (Carbide Wheel Tile Nippers or a Carbide Tile Cutter available at Home Depot, some Walmart stores and online), these are very easy to use, a measuring tape, a straight edge ruler, and a rubbing stone for sanding your tile cuts, available at the stores above or online.
Thinset mortars will require mixing, I recommend a premixed product such as SimpleSet. Many thinset mortars do have high bond strengths so if you are going to install your tile in a very hot steamy bath for instance, weight your options. If you are using a light colored tile use a white mortar, be sure to read the packaging to ensure it’s compatible with your tile. Something new is a tile adhesive on a roll. This is super easy. Protect your countertop with cardboard, heavy duty craft paper, or plastic to protect your costly counter from debris and damage.
Use gloves—you are working with glass—and safety glasses and be sure to read all safely precautions as you would anytime you are preforming home improvement.
For simple directions for installing and grouting your glass tile go to:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m6SRWCWI1TE How to Install a Glass Tile Backsplash – This Old House
Glass tile is one of the fastest and easiest ways for a beautiful kitchen or bath.