Thursday, April 28, 2011

Kitchen Floors

Ok so lets wrap this kitchen series up with my kitchen floors. The kitchen had new sheet vinyl floors put in for the house sale. This is the only "before" picture I have of the old floors. I have ALWAYS wanted brick floors. They are so southern and warm and I would love to have a big huge den/kitchen with brick floors one day. While I may have to wait on that, I was determined to have brick floors in my kitchen now. Plus my rep gave me a discount on my company's cost so I got a great deal.

The pavers I went with were actually resin. They are imperfect and not squared off and have different shading. They have a smooth top finish so they are great for cleaning. The bricks come in 4 different colorways. I chose the Antique Copper color way, I liked it best and it was also the closest to the color of our brick exterior before it was painted.

As you can tell from the picture below the bricks come with white and black shading as well as plain. We separated them into stacks according to the shading so we wouldn't get a cluster of one color together. The bricks we didn't care for got put under an appliance. We used floor tile backerboard for the underlayment.

If we had a larger space I would have gone with a 45 herringbone pattern but for our tiny space the basketweave pattern worked best.

Laying the bricks was the easy part. Eric was the cutter and I would lay them. It took about 3 hours. We used a grey thinset so if any got on the side of the bricks it wasn't noticeable since the grout was a grey shade. These bricks are pre sealant.

The next day after the bricks had dried, I put 2 coats of sealant on before grouting. I used a special sealant from the paver manufacturer but I have heard of people using poly. I wasn't happy once I started to seal the bricks, they looked really cheap and fake. Once the sealant dried they looked a lot better.

If you use this sealer make sure you can leave your house while it dries. We had no idea that the fumes would be so bad. We thought we may die in our sleep. I have been around a lot of fumes with 2 house renovations, but I have never been around something so strong. All of our windows were painted shut by the old owners so we slept with the back door open.

Grouting the bricks was the worst thing I have ever done. I am sure there was an easier way to do it but I didn't know about it. Even with the sealer, the grout was hard to get off the bricks. With the dark grout, the water had to be changed constantly. I was determined to finish the grout in one night which should have been an easy goal. Since it was such a nightmare to grout and I was working solo that didn't happen. A few meltdowns might have occurred.

I did learn to use a grout bag with about four square feet to go. Once I started using the grout bag things got so much easier!

I don't think I would grout pavers again myself, probably hire someone that knows what they are doing to grout. We saved a lot of money but it was miserable for a few days.

All that hard work and tears paid off, we love our brick floors! They never show dirt and are so durable. I am looking forward to putting them in our next home as long as someone else grouts...
After it was all grouted and the haze was washed over the pavers I did reseal the floor but I waited until we were going out of town for the weekend. A much better move! After the floors were finished we were able to move the appliances back into the kitchen. This was our normal life for a couple of weeks.

While the pavers were drying Eric was landscaping the front yard

And I was grouting the bathroom!

We were officially crazy. A kitchen, bathroom and yard renovation all at the same time!

Brick Pavers: Premiere Tile Heritage Pavers Color: Old Copper
The company I purchased the pavers from, Premiere Tile, changed the original style name of the pavers but kept the manufacturer's color names. The manufacturer is Alpha Concrete Products, they may be able to direct you to a local dealer.

Grout: ProSpec Woodsmoke

To see the posts on our kitchen before & afters, lighting, countertops click the links.


Red Gate Farm said...

Wow, the three projects at once sounds like something my husband and I would do!

I love your brick floors and had wondered about them from prior pictures... I love how they turned out, as well as the entire kitchen! I know what you mean about toxic fumes... in our prior home my husband had finished our attached garage with sheetrock and painted walls (it was the nicest room in the house -ha ha) and decided to paint the floors with epoxy paint, we had to sleep with the garage door open for a couple of days!

Your bathroom tiles are similar to what I want to do in our bathroom... however we only have ONE bathroom so we may need to nix the tile idea and go with something a little quicker :)


Nikki said...

I love the look. You guys are crazy busy. Why would they paint all the windows shut? what if there was a fire??

alanna rose said...

I love the floors, totally saving this idea for my next house :)
Great job and I'm glad you survived the fumes ;)

rindercella @ neatheringourfest said...

yay! the post i have been waiting for!! i so love those floors and i think they are a great idea for long term. they will last forever! :)

i had to share something funny! i was at a friends house the other day and their copy of BH&G was laying on the coffee table... i picked it up and flipped open to the back page and said "i know this girl!" they were all impressed! :)

classic • casual • home said...

The floor was sooo worth your effort. Congratulations for a great job. I am not sure I would have even had the guts to start much less finish it.

classic • casual • home said...

Following you to see the rest :)

Kim said...

LOVE that tile in the bath! It's so retro fun. Your kitchen is so bright and cheery, and cozy. I just love it! Your renovations are inspiring!

Directions Not Included said...

What a transformation! I'm your newest follower. We are also doing some major renovations so I love to see the progress others are making.

ac said...

I wish the guy at the brick company told you about the pasty bag trick. When you are dealing with a thick floor tile, it's the best way to go. At least you know now so the next time you put them in, you'll avoid those meltdowns :)

Breena said...

Everything you are saying about the floors and your sense of style match so amazingly with mine! This is STUNNING!
Am I blind?! ;) ...I can't seem to find out where you purchased the tiles. I have not seen this in Central Ohio. I have been dieing for brick floors for a couple of years now!

vanessa said...

The pavers were bought through a local tile distribution company. They changed the manufacturer's original name to Heritage Pavers. I'm not sure what other companies have named the pavers. I do know that Alpha Concrete in Oklahoma is the manufacturer, maybe they could direct you to a local distributor.

Bree said...

Thank you! I appreciate you getting back with me and look forward to reading more of your blog :)

Maggie said...

LOVE these floors. Just love. Warnings about misery and all!

Anonymous said...

For an easiser less messy way on the brick grouting, you could try the "pastry bag" technique. Squeeze it out where it is needed rather than rubbing it all over the place. Use the rounded tool bricklayers use to push the grout into the spaces.

Really awesome makeover. The kitchen even before the floor looks simply wonderful,, fresh, charming and warm. =)

Great work you two!!

Anonymous said...

when i look at your link to the alpha concrete website there are two colors that look like yours: used red and antique copper. if you get time could you look and see which one you believe yours is? thanks and great floors!

vanessa said...

Anon- My floors are the Antique Copper color. The Used Red has a lot of orange in it. If you could I would try to get a sample before ordering. Hope that helps! -V

Margaret Blaney said...

I had to laugh when I opened your blog and saw everything I'm doing or dreaming of for my 1940s house in your home. I love it! So inspirational, and proof to my husband that it can be done :)

genny poulin said...

Absolutely gorgeous. It is so beautiful. You did great job. thanks for sharing with us
Flooring Installation

klotylda said...

Looks very classy, well done! I also just got my kitchen done by the kitchens supplier aberdeen - THe Home Expert, and they also did an amazing job! The kitchen looks so bright now and it's a pure pleasure to spend time in it.

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