Bathroom tiling progress pics

Hello there! I’m back with a long overdue update on our bathroom renovation progress! We took quite the hiatus actually over the past month. I think we both really needed a break after the labor intensive tiling job. To put it politely, tiling a large-ish area is a great test of all kinds of marital relationship skills, especially those of the communication variety.

It’s kind of like the Amazing Race. As much as I want to deny it, we were more like the annoying couple who you just want to stop fighting already than we are the cool hippie couple you root for because they’re just so chill with the attitude of,  hey, we’re just here to have fun. I wish I could say that was us. But alas, it was not.

As I’ve told a couple people, we are NO match for Young House Love, who gave us our initial inspiration for this whole project. They make it seem so…easy. I really want to be encouraging of other people who want to try tiling for the first time. We wouldn’t have done it without the advice and encouragement of some awesome bloggers.

But I also think it’s important to be honest. It’s easy to get excited about a project, but once the reality sets it, I think it can also be motivating to know that there are others who get tired. And lose motivation. And take much, much longer than other speedy and seemingly tireless DIYers.

So I’m gonna be honest. It wasn’t easy. Not for us anyway. Here are some progress pics to give you a bit of a timeline.

I took this photo on April 10th:

First we measured, remeasured, measured again. Then, when we thought we had the perfect starting point, we  screwed in that board there around the tub at just the right spot. Well, as it turned out, not so much.

The next picture was also taken on April 10th and it was as far as we got on our first day of tiling:

At this point, we could easily see that all our measuring had been for, um, nothing because the tiles were not going to line up evenly with the bottom or the top of the the window. Which of course was exactly the MAJOR pain in the arse we had tried to avoid.

Here we go with Day 2 on April 11th: At this point we were still highly optimistic that we might have the bathroom usable before my friend came into town a couple weeks later. Well, it’s the end of July as I write this and we still have no toilet or vanity in the room. However, our optimism kept us forging ahead at the time, thank God.

Looks good right? Well, if you don’t think so, please don’t tell me, because it was a semi-hellish experience. Truly. Just take a look at those tiny tiles up top and if you know anything about the laws of gravity, you may begin to understand why it was torture. I won’t go in to all the details, but that was just a smidge of what made tiling around the window so difficult.

Okay, moving on. This first full weekend of tiling mainly taught us that we couldn’t work on tiling both days of the weekend because we were way too tired all the next week at work. I felt ill the whole next week and thought my eyes would close at any moment while at my work computer which is NOT like me. Keep in mind though, we aren’t the highest energy people you’ve ever met. The main point is that after that first weekend we only worked on tiling one weekend day, all day long, at the very most. So, here we are on May 29th after having finally finished tiling (no grout yet!) the entire shower surround:

Let me just mention here that the shampoo box you see below, although not as hard as the window, was also a doozy.

I will say, it felt pretty glorious to finish (even though we still needed to grout). I made lots of errors at the beginning of the first wall, but by the final wall, I really had a system and feel for how to get the tiles very even. I guess the true test is if they stay adhered to the wall for a few years.

I was going to finish this and show the post-grout pictures too, but I guess I’ll wait since my posts are probably way longer than necessary. So I’ll just sum it up by answering the question, would I do it again? Well, yes and no. Yes, I would do it again for the first time because it’s something I always had wanted to try. Would I did it again now? No. And that means we’re gonna probably hire someone to do the floor.

I’m truly not trying to scare anyone away from doing their own projects because there is definitely a certain satisfaction that comes from that process.  But I also wanted to share my honest experience in the reality of how it all went down for us. So tell me. Was the honesty encouraging or discouraging?

Up next…tile with grout. Exciting!

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