In this second post about our recent master bath renovation, today we will look at the selections and my thought process behind them. First and foremost, I wanted selections that were timeless, not trendy. That meant neutrals and natural stone whenever possible for this traditional girl. The first selection was for the tile that would cover the largest area; the flooring that covered the bathroom and water closet, and that we now wanted to continue into the adjacent walk-in closet, replacing the existing carpet.
A style that I had always liked was a tile that looked like the natural oak hardwood that we have throughout the rest of the house, but with the functionality needed for a wet space. Initially, I wanted it laid in a herringbone pattern, but that comes at a much higher installation cost and more waste, due to the extra cuts. Selection 1: hardwood looking tile, laid in a random pattern, like our existing hardwoods. That floor might be my favorite part of the whole project, I love it that much. It may not be trending, but it looks amazing and will stand the test of time.
The next selection was the large format tile for the tub decking, and for that we selected a marble with striations of tan, cream, gold, gray and white. It really “plays well with others” as it speaks to everything else in the room. We selected a matte finish, again to minimize slippery surfaces as we age in place in this home. One thing about using a natural stone marble, as you can see from the tile pieces below, is that it can be very inconsistent. We don’t mind that, but if you want each tile to look the same, you are better off using porcelain or quartz. Selection 2: large non slippery marble tiles.
The next selection was the tile that would cover the front of the tub, behind the tub, and the walls of the shower. For that, we chose a subway type tile in cream, but with a sculpted handmade look. Again, this turned out to be an excellent choice, as the way the light plays off of this tile is beautiful. Selection 3: subway tile in cream, but with a twist.
The last selections were for the tub floor, the niches, and accent tiles to create a band for behind the tub. For the shower floor and top of the tub step, we selected a diamond shaped marble with lots of color variation. For the niches and band behind the tub, we selected the coordinating marble, but this time in a linear brick pattern. By choosing some of the items from the same collection of marble, we were assured that they would work well together.
Another consideration for all of the selections was contrast, in not only the patterns and style, but also in the sheen. The floor is somewhat matte finished, as are the large format marble pieces that form the deck tub. The patterned marble on the shower floor, tub step, and accents across the back of the tub and in the niches, are a softer satin sheen. And the subway tiles are high gloss. If everything was matte, the room would appear flat, and if everything was shiny, it might come off a little Vegas:) For us, a combination of sheens created a more interesting look and straddled the line of contrast perfectly.
Almost as important as the tile selections is the where and how they are installed. It is important to consider balance when deciding where and how to use the different patterns. The tub area has some of the subway, linear marble and patterned marble, in addition to the large format marble on the tub deck. The shower also has the pattern on the floor, the linear in the niches, and the subway on the walls. By bringing a little of each pattern into each of the two areas, it creates harmony. Selection 4: patterned tile and linear tile, spread equally between the tub and shower areas.
The last choices were to select grout color and the pencil that was used to finish off any exposed edges. Once those selections were made, it was time to order!
So, those are the selections we made for the floor, tub and shower areas. In the end, we cannot believe how well these patterns and textures play off of each other, and blend seamlessly with the existing countertop on the other side of the room. Next up, the big reveal, which I am so excited to share with you!