2017 Tile Trends You’ll Go Crazy For

We’re three months into 2017, everyone, and I hope it’s going as well as you’d hope thus far. Winter is nearly behind us, and pretty soon, we’ll be setting our eyes upon the beginnings of one of my favorite seasons – Spring. And with a new year, new trends begin to pop up, and that doesn’t exclude designs and styles in the home renovation industry, right? Today, I’d like to specifically discuss tile trends for 2017.
Now, at Builders Surplus, we have a plethora of designs for your tile flooring needs, including, but not limited to polished porcelain, large format tile, and our lovely Daltile line. Not to mention, my personal favorite, wood-look tile. Elegant sleek feel of tile with the genuine appearance of wood. Exceptional. Alright, let’s look at what’s hot right now! Oh, look, this first one looks familiar…

Wood-Look Tile

A hot topic, indeed. But, honestly, no surprise here. Wood-look tile has been gripping homeowners across the nation for quite a few months now, and for good reason. It’s incredibly durable, maintaining the ability to withstand cracks, warps, dents, scratches, and chips. Perfect for those clumsy relatives you may have or turnt-up toddlers want to see what happens “when this glass meets that floor.”
Whatever the accident may be, wood-look will have you covered. What’s more is that you can install this tile anywhere. Yep, anywhere, including bathrooms. The material used in wood-look actually repels liquids. No more stains. No more mold. No more warping. That alone makes this style one of the finer tile trends of 2017, you know what I mean?


Hexagon-Patterned Tile

There’s just something about this design that has sparked a near insane interest in flooring departments everywhere. And, I get, ya know? When it comes to any designs, you must stick to what appeals to the eye. Sometimes regular patterns go amiss because of their standard square patterns, no matter how colorful or intriguing the tile is itself. But, you throw a bit of geometrical curvature down on the floor and you end up with something truly mesmerizing, extremely hard to miss, and downright jaw-dropping. Definitely makes the list for most exciting tile trends of the year.

Dark Tile

You know as well as I do that color is a primary element in any design. That statement continues to reign true through 2017, and now we’ve begun to see a piqued interest in darker tiles. If used correctly given the other elements in the room, a darker tile can exude relaxation and solace in a luxurious fashion. One of the more popular tile colors that we’ll see through the year is gray. It may seem like an ordinary, mundane color, but when used with other rich colors, you can get that relaxing, tranquil feel you’ve been looking for. Sidenote: Darker tiles are also obviously easier to clean. Just a plus on top of a plus.

Brick-Look Tile

Listen, I love the cobblestone look. Love it. It’s probably because of weird fascination with all things 18th century London, but there’s just something about walking across cobblestones that visually takes me across the Pond, holding a coffee, wearing a peacoat, and looking down the lines of cafes, wondering where I’m going to for a sip of tea and a crumb of a crumpet. But then again, maybe I’m not so weird because brick-look tile is one of the hottest tile trends to date and it exhibits the same feel.
People love this look because it’s different. It is far from your usual flooring. It’s a bit quirky, which for some is all the more reason, but it’s also a design that continues to amaze people. With that said, this design is not going anywhere fast. Expect it to be a hot commodity for some years to come.

Cement-Look Tile

Honestly, the all-encompassing hottest trend is flooring that looks like something it’s not. Wood-look, Brick-Look, and now, Cement-Look tile. It’s extremely endearing, folks. I’ve talked about it a few times in previous blog posts, but it’s just interesting to me that a material that is widely known for industrial purposes had made its way into people’s living room and hallways – in a glorious fashion.

Herringbone & Chevron Patterns

Another one that shouldn’t be much of a surprise. These patterns continue to “wow” people because of the inevitable. It WILL get your attention and nine times out of ten, you WILL like it. Now, yes it’s going to continue well into 2017, but I don’t expect this trend to last forever, honestly. It’s a pattern and once people start looking at the same thing for a long, extended period of time, well, they get bored. And then it’s onto the next attractive, more appealing design or pattern.

Well, everyone, keep your eye out for these colors, designs, and patterns for the months to come! I’m sure you’ll find that there’s a reason these characteristics continue to amaze everyone in the industry. What’s your favorite one of these 2017 tile trends? Feel free to leave a comment or let me know by sending me an email! And if you’re in the industry or you’re looking to install some new floors, come on into one of your two locations in Louisville or Cincinnati! Until then, be safe and stay blessed!


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Chris Chamberlain

2017 Tile Trends You'll Go Crazy For

 
 
We’re three months into 2017, everyone, and I hope it’s going as well as you’d hope thus far. Winter is nearly behind us, and pretty soon, we’ll be setting our eyes upon the beginnings of one of my favorite seasons – Spring. And with a new year, new trends begin to pop up, and that doesn’t exclude designs and styles in the home renovation industry, right? Today, I’d like to specifically discuss tile trends for 2017.
Now, at Builders Surplus, we have a plethora of designs for your tile flooring needs, including, but not limited to polished porcelain, large format tile, and our lovely Daltile line. Not to mention, my personal favorite, wood-look tile. Elegant sleek feel of tile with the genuine appearance of wood. Exceptional. Alright, let’s look at what’s hot right now! Oh, look, this first one looks familiar…
 

Wood-Look Tile

A hot topic, indeed. But, honestly, no surprise here. Wood-look tile has been gripping homeowners across the nation for quite a few months now, and for good reason. It’s incredibly durable, maintaining the ability to withstand cracks, warps, dents, scratches, and chips. Perfect for those clumsy relatives you may have or turnt-up toddlers want to see what happens “when this glass meets that floor.”
Whatever the accident may be, wood-look will have you covered. What’s more is that you can install this tile anywhere. Yep, anywhere, including bathrooms. The material used in wood-look actually repels liquids. No more stains. No more mold. No more warping. That alone makes this style one of the finer tile trends of 2017, you know what I mean?
 

 
 


 
 

Hexagon-Patterned Tile

There’s just something about this design that has sparked a near insane interest in flooring departments everywhere. And, I get, ya know? When it comes to any designs, you must stick to what appeals to the eye. Sometimes regular patterns go amiss because of their standard square patterns, no matter how colorful or intriguing the tile is itself. But, you throw a bit of geometrical curvature down on the floor and you end up with something truly mesmerizing, extremely hard to miss, and downright jaw-dropping. Definitely makes the list for most exciting tile trends of the year.
 
 
 

 

Dark Tile

You know as well as I do that color is a primary element in any design. That statement continues to reign true through 2017, and now we’ve begun to see a piqued interest in darker tiles. If used correctly given the other elements in the room, a darker tile can exude relaxation and solace in a luxurious fashion. One of the more popular tile colors that we’ll see through the year is gray. It may seem like an ordinary, mundane color, but when used with other rich colors, you can get that relaxing, tranquil feel you’ve been looking for. Sidenote: Darker tiles are also obviously easier to clean. Just a plus on top of a plus.
 

 

Brick-Look Tile

Listen, I love the cobblestone look. Love it. It’s probably because of weird fascination with all things 18th century London, but there’s just something about walking across cobblestones that visually takes me across the Pond, holding a coffee, wearing a peacoat, and looking down the lines of cafes, wondering where I’m going to for a sip of tea and a crumb of a crumpet. But then again, maybe I’m not so weird because brick-look tile is one of the hottest tile trends to date and it exhibits the same feel.
People love this look because it’s different. It is far from your usual flooring. It’s a bit quirky, which for some is all the more reason, but it’s also a design that continues to amaze people. With that said, this design is not going anywhere fast. Expect it to be a hot commodity for some years to come.
 

 

Cement-Look Tile

Honestly, the all-encompassing hottest trend is flooring that looks like something it’s not. Wood-look, Brick-Look, and now, Cement-Look tile. It’s extremely endearing, folks. I’ve talked about it a few times in previous blog posts, but it’s just interesting to me that a material that is widely known for industrial purposes had made its way into people’s living room and hallways – in a glorious fashion.
 

 
 

Herringbone & Chevron Patterns

Another one that shouldn’t be much of a surprise. These patterns continue to “wow” people because of the inevitable. It WILL get your attention and nine times out of ten, you WILL like it. Now, yes it’s going to continue well into 2017, but I don’t expect this trend to last forever, honestly. It’s a pattern and once people start looking at the same thing for a long, extended period of time, well, they get bored. And then it’s onto the next attractive, more appealing design or pattern.
 

 
Well, everyone, keep your eye out for these colors, designs, and patterns for the months to come! I’m sure you’ll find that there’s a reason these characteristics continue to amaze everyone in the industry. What’s your favorite one of these 2017 tile trends? Feel free to leave a comment or let me know by sending me an email! And if you’re in the industry or you’re looking to install some new floors, come on into one of your two locations in Louisville or Cincinnati! Until then, be safe and stay blessed!
 


 
Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Chris Chamberlain
 

PRO: Additional Options to Impress Your Clients

How’s it going, professionals? I hope business is well, and that you’re so slammed with jobs, you honestly don’t know what to do with yourself at the moment. It’s better to have an abundance of jobs than to be stressing where your next one will be, am I right? Today, I’d like to discuss a few options, quite literally, on how you can maintain repeating customers in your queue. You’ll do this by simply impressing your clients in a way that shows off your finesse as a master of your trade.
In essence, you’ll suggest options that may have been overlooked in the initial design and will hopefully having your customers so satisfied with your expertise that they’ll go to no one else but you during their next renovation. To do so, I’ll break it down by a number of categories – kitchen, bath, flooring, tile, and doors – and provide a suggestion that one, enhances the look of the design, and two, will make your customer very happy that they called you. Cause that’s what it’s all about, right?

Kitchen Options – Crown Moulding

It’s no secret that cabinets are a significant factor in any kitchen design. They’re essential for the appearance of the kitchen style, but also for functionality as well. Typically, larger families require more kitchen space, from both the countertops and cabinets. The trick is to blend both together, using aesthetics as well as how functional the cabinets are to produce a design that gives you the best of both worlds. Those two words in bold, two lines above are yet another way to enhance the look of the kitchen without your customer’s digging too deep into their wallets.
The Crown Moulding option is one that can COMPLETELY change the look of a kitchen. Yes, it’s that drastic. It makes the difference of your standard cabinet look to something more elegant, elaborate, and sophisticated. At a pretty low cost. There’s a wide variety of options, too. Everything from extremely intricate designs to simple, smooth beveled edges. Just throw it out as a suggestion, and let your customers determine if they like the look or not. But – and I’m willing to bet – they’ll appreciate the tip.

options

Bath Options – Backsplash

Ah, talk about an enhancement. A tiled backsplash in a kitchen is almost mandatory once you’ve installed a couple during bathroom renovations. It’s simply a lovely feature, and I have a theory on why that is. Bear with me here, but a design is only as good as the components that it’s made of. Let’s take the color aspect of it all. If the colors do not work, the design does not work. But if the colors mesh well with another then it becomes appealing to the eye. So, when it comes to a backsplash, it’s just another asset, or component, that helps blend in the colors in the design.
Plus, look at the materials you’re dealing with, vanity alone. You have the color of the vanity, the color of the countertop, the wall paint color, accessories, and so on…and then when you add a backsplash, it just pulls everything together to make something quite extraordinary. Once again, low on cost, relatively easy on install, and tremendous on appearance. I love this option. Your clients will, as well. Take a peek at our backsplash tile options on our website. We have a wide variety of styles and finishes that will accommodate a number if designs!

Flooring Options – Quarter Round

In the remodeling industry, as you know, you hear the phrase “finishing touches” multiple times in conversation. Putting in quarter round after you’ve installed the floor and finished trimming the room is simply one of those things you can do to really “complete” a room. That God awful gap between the base boards and the floor is simply not a good look, and yes, I know that some people are fine with it to lower costs, but the look is ten times better when it’s taken care of. Maybe twenty.
I’d definitely suggest this option if you’re renovating a wide, open area like a basement or something of that nature. Closets and storage rooms aren’t as important, but in rooms where there’s going to be a flow of traffic, where your clients will entertain their guests, and so on…this is an excellent option. It’s the dot on the ‘i’ and the cross on the ‘t’.

options

Tile Options – Decorative Mosaic

Out of all the options that I’ll list in this post, this is the one that I’d highly suggest. Especially if you’re installing a tiled shower or a backsplash. My father likes to call them “decos,” for short, and we’ve installed quite a bit of them for a number of clients. They absolutely love the look. To me, personally, I think it’s best exemplified in a stand-up, tiled shower. Placing them about eye level, the color blends (or contrast, if you prefer) just make it truly legit design.
Honestly, that’s as best as I can say it. It’s just a 100%, cool-as-all-get-out, bad@$$ design. Straight up. I implore you to at least suggest “deco” tiles when on your next tile job. It’s stunning. Simply stunning. Again, we have a vast amount of some of the finest design and trends in decorative mosaic tiles that one can ask for. Go take a look right here!

[bscolumns class=”one_third”]12 x 12 Silver Grey Mixed Glass Mosaic Decorative Tile at Builders Surplus in Louisville KentuckyBamboo Storm Porcelain & Glass at Builders Surplus in Louisville Kentucky

options

Door Options – Custom Paint it

You have many of your standard colors out there to work with, it is true. But, if you want to really make a lasting impression, suggest to your client that they purchase a custom paint to finish of their door. It may seem a bit…quirky, sure, but I’m telling you, it’s effective. Last summer, one of my father’s longtime clients had us install an exterior door for them. The lady of the house wanted the front door to “pop,” so we went with this Canary Yellow color.
\And I’ll tell ya what, if I wasn’t almost blinded while about 50 times as I applied the paint. Super bright. Vivid. Distinct. At first, I thought these characteristics were faults, but once we installed it, and drove up on it for the first time, I began to appreciate its vivacity. It drew the eye, and to me, that’s what mattered most. Suggest a custom paint color, urge your client to think outside of the box, to have a one of a kind feature in a home that will make it entirely their own. Suggest these options, and watch the effects unfurl.
options


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are one of the leading providers of  kitchen cabinets, tile, flooring, windows and doors in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design comes as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients, home improvement pros & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written by: Chris Chamberlain

10 Best Backsplash Tile Choices For Your Home

Backsplash tile is my favorite of all renovation materials! As a renovation lover, that’s saying a lot, but it’s true! Backsplash tile or wall tile is one of those things that can completely transform your space. Switching out a backsplash can change the whole vibe of your room as well, without touching the larger things like cabinets, countertops or bathroom vanities. It’s useful as well as aesthetic, making it a great investment in your home. We’re going to cover our top 10 best backsplash tile choices for the year. Get ready to find a new favorite!

– Related Posts –

Mesh-Back-Tile-FeaturedBacksplash-Tile-Featured-ImageTop 10 Backsplash Tile For 2017

 

1. Brick Tile

White-Brick-Backsplash-Tile

Click to see Brick Tile Options!

Brick backsplash tile and wall tile has been on the rise since early 2016, but it’s only growing in popularity. This is hands down my favorite new backsplash tile. In the past, it was hard to get this product as a tile. Now, this high quality porcelain comes in a white, taupe, and red brick. It can work with a modern, rustic, industrial, farmhouse or cottage style space with ease!

Shop Backsplash Tile Louisville Cincinnati Builders Surplus

2. Wood Look Tile

wood-look-tile-backsplash

Click to see more wood look tile options!

Wood look tile is not always something that people think of when deciding on a backsplash tile. But that doesn’t mean it’s not an awesome choice! This large format tile gives a very rustic look and adds something really special to your home. It also looks great in bathrooms or as a shower surround!

3. Herringbone

Herringbone backsplash tile

Click to see herringbone tile options!

Herringbone is one of the hottest patterns out right now. You can do a herringbone with brick, subway tile or you can buy a mesh back tile that already has the herringbone pattern like this one above!

4. Pennies

Click to see Penny Backsplash Options!

Pennies are a great backsplash tile choice for your kitchen or bathroom. It is very simple but can add an understated elegance that will give your space a subtle pop. We carry bright white with a glossy finish, a black glossy, or a matte white. Pennies can look vintage or modern depending on the other pieces in the room.

shop bathroom tile cincinnati louisville builders surplus

5. Hexagon

New Hexagon backsplash tile

Click to see more hexagon tile options!

Hexagon tile is one of my favorite tile options! This shape is very very popular, not only for backsplash tile, but for flooring as well. There are so many different materials, such as a simple white ceramic or marble hexagon tile, or this tile above with multiple finishes and colors. It’s always a stunning choice that won’t soon go out of style.

6. Colored Subway Tile

arctic ice subway backsplash tile

Click to see more subway tile options!

Colored subway tile is a great twist on a classic backsplash tile. The arctic ice above is a lovely choice, as well as the morning fog or charcoal glass. It adds a great pop of color and freshness to your space without being too overpowering.

7. Arabesque Tile

Arabesque backsplash tile

Click to see arabesque tile!

Arabesque tile is still on the rise, and I am thrilled! I love this tile and it’s beautiful shape. It adds a very feminine and elegant feel to your kitchen or bathroom. However, you may want to work with a professional on the installation, because it’s not so easy for a beginner to DIY.

8. 1×1 Glass Mosaic

1x1-mosaic backsplash tile

Click to see more mesh back tile options!

Glass mosaics have been popular for a while, but the 1×1 is really on the top of the list this year. It adds so much visual interest and variation. It’s pretty easy to install and it comes in so many different color combinations and finishes that you’re sure to find the right one for your home.

Shop Backsplash Tile Louisville Cincinnati Builders Surplus

9. White Subway Tile with Dark Grout

White-subway-tile-dark-grout

Click to see more subway tile options!

White subway tile has never really gone out of style. It always has been, and always will be, a classic design staple. My favorite variation on this look is to add a dark grout instead of the traditional white. While it doesn’t quite cover all the little imperfections that a white grout would, it makes the backsplash tile really pop and gives it a very vintage and nostalgic look. This can also work in a modern space.

10. Ledger Panels

Ledge-stone backsplash tile

Click here to see all the ledge stone options!

Ledger panels, or ledge stone, is another tile choice that is not always the first thing you might think of for your kitchen. I really love ledge stone because it gives it a very craftsman or rustic look, while still remaining classy and elegant. It comes in so many different colors that you can easily match your cabinets no matter what their finish might be.

– Related Posts –

Mesh-Back-Tile-FeaturedBacksplash-Tile-Featured-ImageWhile there are soooo many more backsplash tile options, these 10 sure steal the show for me this year! What’s your favorite look for backsplash tile? Let us know in the comments below!


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are one of the leading providers of kitchen cabinets, kitchen countertops, backsplash tile, and cabinet hardware in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd

Pet Friendly Spaces For Your Home

Today, we’ll be covering some amazing pet friendly spaces to add in your next remodel! To me, my pets are just as much part of my family as any human being. Because of that, their needs need to be taken into account when doing any renovation or home refresh. Pets present certain challenges that can be overcome with specific design choices, and today, we’ll show you several that will not only make your pets smile, but will make life easier for you as well. Let’s check them out!

Pet Friendly Washing Station:

This is by far my favorite pet friendly space and one that is on my list of projects to do in my own home. Bath time for my pitbull and retriever/shepherd mix is difficult, wet, and hairy to say the least. We wash them in our bath tub which makes cleaning it after a real mess. No matter how well you dry them off when they get out, they will always shake themselves off and get more water and hair all over the bathroom. This makes us want to bathe them less, but when we don’t, we risk hair and the scent of stinky dog throughout the rest of our house. It can feel like a lose-lose sometimes. This dog washing station eliminates so much of that pain.

Photo Credit to SJ Janis Company

The steps up can be built into a cabinet, which is a great idea for pets of all sizes. Knowing that there is no climbing or jumping involved can make it more appealing for a pet to get up and will definitely make it easier for the pet parent as well. This keeps water and hair in a very specific area, and one in which you don’t also clean yourself.

Built in Food & Water Bowl:

I’m sure I’m not the only pet parent who has the never ending task of cleaning up water off of the floor. Depending on the type of flooring that you have, it’s probably not pet friendly, and this could be a serious issue. I myself have a water resistant laminate flooring, but if water gets into the cracks it can still damage it, so making sure that I clean it up immediately is a big deal. The times when I’m not home to do that really make me worry. This is a great soltuion to avoid messes! The added spigot is another great idea to avoid spills to and from the water bowl. This will not only save you trouble, time and hassle, but your floor as well.

Photo Credit SJ Janis Company

Tucked Away Water & Food Bowls

Similar to the idea above, you can create a tucked away space for your pets nourishment. Many people see food and water bowls as an eye sore, and I can’t say I disagree. This look is classy and gives your pet it’s own space without you having to worry about stepping over anything. The kitchen island is a great place to do this, but you could find other nooks in the kitchen or other rooms of the house to make this look work.

Photo Credit: The Creativity Exchange

The “Mutt” Room

This is a fresh twist on a Mud Room that focuses on pets! If you have a decent sized mud room, you could still have an area for your shoes and jackets as well as your pet supplies! Depending on how many pets you have or how often you use your mudroom, dedicating the whole space to your furry friends could be a great option as well. This keeps toys and grooming supplies in an easy to reach area on the way out the door, or in a space that is easy to clean.

Photo Credit SJ Janis Company

There you have it! Our favorite pet friendly spaces for your next remodel. Which space is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are one of the leading providers of ceramic, porcelain, and large format tiles in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd

Kitchen Backsplash Step By Step!

Today, I’ll lay out my first DIY backsplash tile job to show you how easy it can be to do yourself! While you do need some special tools to accomplish the job, you can complete this project without prior experience and still have a great end result (if I don’t say so myself!). Lets get started!

Materials You’ll Need For a Subway Tile Backsplash Install:

Materials for subway tile backsplash Now, I’ll assume you’ve measured your space and have the appropriate number of tile for your square footage. If not, you need to measure the length x width and multiply the two together. This will give you your square footage.

Leveling:

Your first step is to make sure that you have a level line to start with. While you may assume that starting on the ledge of the countertops and going straight across is the best way to go, you may find yourself with rows that are crooked, due to a floor or cabinets that are not level. After using the level on my countertops, I saw that they were level, but here is what you can do if yours aren’t. In the event that you cant follow the line of the countertops, you’ll want to measure the height of half of your tile, which in our case is 1.5″ since our subway tile is 3″ in height. Now, use your level to make a line all the way across. This will give you an even line to follow. You can either build a small wooden ledge on that line to ensure that your tiles don’t slip, or you can make a point to check that they’re not sliding as you work, and adjust them if they are. When your wall is tiled to the top of your space, you’ll then go back and make cuts for this last half row on the bottom, next to your countertop. If you have a slight angle, that is something you can cut into the tile if needed. This way, the bottom of the tile may be angled ever so slightly on the edge of the countertop, but the row itself will be straight.

Time to Tile:

Now, it was time to tile. Because my tile was level, I started in the left and moved to the right. Some people may tell you to do it in sections instead of row by row, but I found this way to be fairly easy. My husband, who does have tiling experience, was not home when I decided to tackle this project, and since I was not experienced with a tile saw, I found a solution. I decided to leave all my cuts for the end of my project, which may or may not have been the best way to do it, but it turned out fine in the end and made it easy for me! Here was the space prior to backsplash. We have two other areas of splash but I will just focus on how we did this wall, as the others were more simple versions of this wall. Before-backsplash My first step was to lay a layer of premixed tile mastic on the wall. I did it to right above the outlet because I didn’t want it to dry before I could tile it. I started with my first tile, added my spacer to the right, and continued until the first row was done. The most important thing you can do with any tile job is butter the back. This makes the bond strong and makes sure you won’t have loose tiles. All you do is spread a thin coat of mastic on the back of your tile before sticking it to the wall. butter backsplash tile For my second row, I started it in the middle of the first tile on the bottom row. Because I was not making any cuts, I just placed that tile and did my row. I would cut that piece later. Two-rows-backsplash After stepping back and looking at my first two rows, I noticed that I had a few tiles that I needed to adjust for my second row to be perfectly straight. This was very important I found, because what looks straight up close may not actually be. Things can be tilted and still technically line up with the tiles that follow. Every few rows, step back to check your work. I kept going until I hit the outlet. When I got the the outlet, I came as close as I could. I then measured the space and included the space for my tile spacers on either side of the tile. I make a mark and I skipped over that area. I would do it later when I made all my cuts. I did make sure to clear off the mastic because if it dried that way, I wouldn’t be able to get my tile even when I went back to lay it.   I continued this way until I hit the top. I left spaces on either side of my row where cuts would need to go. When all the non cut pieces were complete, we wanted to make cuts all at one time, so we measured all the spots at once. numbering-tile backsplash   Then, I wrote down all of the numbers on a piece of paper, and measured each one, writing it down as I went, making sure I left room for my spacers. When cutting, its always best to cut it a little long than short. You can always trim it down if needed. We then made our cuts (I actually learned how to use the tile saw!) and we went to work placing each piece in it’s designated slot. Luckily, it worked out perfectly for us! After Kitchen Backsplash While it may not have been perfect, I was very proud of my first time doing a tile backsplash. Make sure that you remember to get bullnose tile for your edges. This will be a smooth curve to end your tile at the corners which will look much better than the regular edge of a tile. You can get them with the curve on the long edge or the short edge. We chose long edge and cut them like this (shown below).

Grouting your Backsplash:

When grouting backsplash tile, decide if you’re using premixed grout or you’re mixing it yourself. If you are mixing yourself, make sure you only mix enough that you can use in a 1-2 hr time period. I mixed half my bag, then the other half.  I used Montana Grey to give my bright white subway tile the extra pop I was looking for. Remove tile spacers and make sure that your tile surface is thoroughly cleaned. If you have mastic on your tile faces like I did, get a bucket of very hot water and a sponge, soft bristled scrub brush, or wash cloth. The hot water takes it off fairly quickly.

After you mix (directions will be on the grout), make sure you have a bucket of clean water and a grout sponge ready. Spread grout on the tile surface, use a rubber grout float or a squeegee to force it down into the joints. I used an un-sanded grout from North American Adhesive because of the size of my tile and grout lines (see link above to determine yours).

Tilt the float at a 45-degree angle and with the edge of the float, remove the excess grout from the surface immediately. Now tilt the float at a 90-degree angle and scrape it diagonally across the tiles. After you’ve done an area, use your wet sponge and wipe the surface clean. See if any areas need extra grout. Rinse out sponge and repeat. Change water as needed. Continue this process until your tile is grouted. There may be some areas that you need to use a finger to get the grout in, like around tight corners.

After-backsplash-grout

After-Grout-Backsplash right-side

Polish with a soft cloth when the grout has dried and a haze forms on the tile surface. Rinse again with sponge and clean water if necessary. Give your newly grouted a good look and yourself a pat on the back for a job well done!

Grouted-backsplash

 

diy backsplash aqua kitchen cabinets louisville cincinnati

I still need to give it one last scrub down. Some of the areas have a bit of extra grout on the tile, but it should come right off with hot water and a sponge. I hope this helps you in your own DIY backsplash journey and I can’t wait to hear about how it turns out! Leave your thoughts in the comments below!


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are one of the leading providers of ceramic, porcelain, and large format tiles in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd

Achieving the Best Cincinnati Kitchen Remodel

Alright, so you’re living in Cincy. Perhaps you’ve just purchased a house and have some work to do to make it exactly to your liking OR you’ve been living there for a while and feel the need to make some adjustments. It goes without saying that this process can get a bit overwhelming, so during this blog post, I’d like to lay it all out for you on how to achieve the best Cincinnati kitchen remodel!
kitchen remodel Cincinnati

Planning

This is a HUGE component to the entire process, and it’s multi-faceted, so listen up, folks. As part of the planning process, you need to know exactly what you’d like to do. Whether it’s your or your spouse, or both, it’s essential that you try to pinpoint exactly what you’d like to do before you go out shopping. The reasoning is simple.
kitchen remodeling Cincinnati
If you have a good idea of your wants and needs, you can fixate your budget, as opposed to shopping around blind, and end up spending much more than you accounted for. There are some truly brilliant design commodities in this industry, but some are better suited than others. Please, keep that in mind.
kitchen remodels Cincinnati

Research Contractors

Once you’ve gathered all of your thoughts on what you’d like to do, it’s time to do a bit of research. First, you should research contractors around the Cincinnati area. Go online, look at reviews, ask around on social media, and make a list of the contractors you like. I encourage you to visit the Better Business Bureau website on contractor services in the Cincy area. In fact, if you’ll click here, it’ll direct you to the full list that you’ll need. Once you’ve done this, call them.
Explain in as much detail as you can on what you want your kitchen remodel to be entirely. Once you’ve done this with each respectable contractor, it’s time to get estimates. This will determine your budget as far as labor goes. This number will dictate how much you’re willing to spend on the materials you’ll need – the other half of this process.

kitchen remodel Cincinnati Newport

Young couple in love sitting on the floor of their new apartment planning redecoration and searching for ideas on a laptop computer and in a home decorating magazine

Research Materials

Now, for the fun part. Getting the materials you need for your Cincinnati Kitchen Remodel. I encourage you look around to as many department stores as you can in the Cincy area. But, and I would be remiss not to mention it, we have a store located in Newport that should accommodate your entire kitchen remodel. I say you should compare because once you do, you’ll see how truly great out prices are, and why the services we offer are such an incentive.

Feel free to head to our website and check out what we have!  We have cabinets, hardware, countertops, sinks, and plenty more where that came from. Once you’ve shopped around and picked out what you’d like…it’s nearly time to start.
kitchen remodel Cincinnati 1

Remodel Time

You’ve got your contractor, you’ve picked out your materials, and now it’s time to break ground on your Cincinnati Kitchen Remodel! Okay, so, the number one thing I have to make sure I get across is to be patient. Patience is key during this entire process. It’s going to be noisy, you’re kitchen will be gone as you know it, and it’ll never be the same. Cause eventually, it’ll be better. But, it’s important to note that you are losing some things, like the obvious, a place to cook meals.
Amazing kitchen remodel Cincinnati
Pretty important, I’d say. It’s imperative you take this into consideration. Make a temporary meal-making place, plan to have dinner with some neighbors, go out to eat at a family restaurant a couple nights a week. Ideally, you have a contractor that you trust, and you can go away for a little bit, but we don’t live in a perfect world, do we? In any case, have patience and solace in the fact that when it’s over…you’ll have your dream kitchen. Case closed.

White kitchen remodel Cincinnati

And there it is, folks. Your Cincinnati Kitchen Remodel. It really is all about planning, so it is in my hopes that you heed my advice. Plan accordingly, and be patient. It can be as simple as that.

Scott Rolen of the Cincinnati Reds checks his swing against the Pittsburgh Pirates on September 24, 2009 in Pittsburgh, PA. ** Note: Slight blurriness, best at smaller sizes


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are the leading provider of Ledge Stone, wall tile and backsplash tile in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Chris Chamberlain

DIY: Tips For Laying Floor Tile

Today, I’m going to teach you all about laying floor tile. Laying floor tile can be a different experience for those laying large format tile vs. smaller tile, or laying in big spaces vs. small spaces, but ultimately, the steps should be very similar. I hope it’s helpful!
First, we need to be prepared. That means having all the materials so that you don’t have to run out and get them mid project, because lets face it, that’s the worst.

Below are a few things (and resources) you’ll need for laying floor tile:

shop-ad-bathroom-tile

1st: Prep Your Surface & For Tile Type!

This is very important. Inspect flatness before you begin. Is your surface clean and dry? Do you need a leveling compound? Take the time to repair anything that is damaged or uneven before you start. We took out old tile, so there was some dried mortar on the floor for me. I took my chisel and mallet and chiseled it up before I started. I took a shop vac and vacuumed everything up very well.
Make sure baseboards and moulding is off, check out your door jambs to make sure that the tile has enough space under it. If not, you will need to trim. It’s always better to identify this BEFORE you start as opposed to after.
If you are laying large format tile, do research on the unique challenges you may encounter. I laid large format tile in this bathroom, so I had to buy a mortar for large format tile (any tile over 15″ on any side), I decided on a tile leveling system (awesome by the way) to prevent lippage. Click here to learn what to think about before using large format tile.

2nd: Lay it out before you lay it

To make sure your layout works, you want to do a dry layout first. This is when you lay out all your tile and you’re happy with the way that it looks, how big your grout lines will be, get an idea of where cuts will be on certain tiles, and any other issues you may encounter.
It’s important not to simply follow the walls to get a straight layout. Many walls are not level, and if you are following the wall, you could end up with a crooked first row, making all of your subsequent tile crooked as well. Mark the center point of each of the walls in the room. Next, snap chalk lines between the center points of opposite walls to pinpoint the center of the room. Make any necessary adjustments to ensure that the intersection creates perfect squares. Starting at the center point, lay a row of loose tiles along the center lines in both directions, using tile spacers as you go to for even grout joints. Once you reach the walls, you’ll need to cut tiles for a proper fit.
I didn’t take pictures of my dry layout, but it worked out very well and I was able to use this to go ahead and cut a lot of my tile!

3rd: Time to Tile

I used premixed adhesive, so I didn’t need to worry about how much I mixed going in. This is why I like it. It won’t dry up. If you run into complications and can’t finish right away, you’re not wasting. Using the flat side of your trowel (see above to make sure you’re using the right size for your tile) lay down your adhesive on the wall farthest from the door. When laying floor tile, you want to make sure you work from back of room to the front, because you will not be able to walk on the tile once it’s laid to get out of the room. This may seem like common sense, but not everyone realizes this until it’s too late!
When laying floor tile, I put adhesive down one row at a time. I make sure I come out at least an inch or two so that on my next row, I can easily see the thickness of the mortar that was used and can use the same amount. Using the notched side of our trowel, comb in the ridges. This removes excess and gives you a uniform surface. You can go ahead and make all cuts for that row based on your dry layout or cut as you go. Make sure that when cutting out for a toilet flange, you measure your toilet’s width so you know how wide your cut can be.
toilet-flange laying floor tile
Make sure you “butter” the back of your tile when laying floor tile. This is rubbing a thin layer of mortar on the back of your tile in addition to the mortar on the floor. This ensures a better hold. I have made the mistake of not doing it in the past and found several loose tiles. When I use this method, they adhere. If you are using a tile leveling system (see how to video above), set them as you go from one tile to the next, along with your spacers.
Always start at the center of the row and work your way out. This gives you a better end result. If you’re doing a brick pattern, your second row should start in the center of your first row’s center tile. This gives you the perfect brick pattern! Press tiles in firmly or use your leveling block and mallet. With the tile leveling system, you don’t really have to worry about the leveling block because they are going to lock your tiles in place.

center-tile laying floor tile

Make sure you remove any excess mortar around the toilet flange after setting.

Continue your pattern of laying floor tile and move through the rest of the room in the same way, making sure each tile has spacers appropriately applied and is pressed in firmly.Lastly, allow your tile to set at least 24 hours to set before walking on it. Some people recommend more, but I like to see if there are any loose tiles right away. After 24 hours, you can still reset them fairly easily.

laying floor tile

This last row was done the next day. I was dry laying my last tile for the complicated cut around the floor vent.

 4th: Grouting

When laying floor tile, decide if you’re using premixed or you’re mixing yourself. If you are mixing yourself, make sure you only mix enough that you can use in a 1 hr time period. A small room such as this typically doesn’t take much time so I just mixed mine all at once. I used a grey that was very similar to my tile so that it would be lower maintenance than a white, and it would hide any minor imperfections better (grout has this amazing way of doing that). Remove tile spacers and your tile leveling system.

After you mix, make sure you have a bucket of clean water and a sponge ready. Spread grout on the tile surface, use a rubber grout float or a squeegee to force it down into the joints. I used a sanded grout from North American Adhesive because of the size of my tile and grout lines (see link above to determine yours).

Tilt the float at a 45-degree angle and with the edge of the float, remove the excess grout from the surface immediately. Now tilt the float at a 90-degree angle and scrape it diagonally across the tiles. After you’ve done an area, use your wet sponge and wipe the surface clean. See if any areas need extra grout. Rinse out sponge and repeat. Change water as needed.

Polish with a soft cloth when the grout has dried and a haze forms on the tile surface. Rinse again with sponge and clean water if necessary. Give your newly grouted floor 72 hours before any heavy use and at least three weeks before applying sealers or polishes.

Admire your new tile and give yourself a pat on the back for laying floor tile!

finished

Before thoroughly cleaning grout joints

finished-2

bathroom-12
bathroom-6


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are one of the leading providers of ceramic, porcelain, and large format tiles in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd

10 Ways To Create a Spa Bathroom Design

Life is busy and at times stressful, which is why creating a spa bathroom design can be so crucial. Nothing is more important than your mental wellbeing, which can mean spending time to take care of yourself. How do you create the perfect spa bathroom design you might ask? Easy! Just read on below!

1. Stretch Out in a Soaker Tub

Soaker tubs are amazing for many reasons. One of them is the beautiful aesthetic they bring to your bathroom design. The other is the fact that you can truly stretch out! No one likes to be cramped in the tub, and soaker tubs prevent this from happening (to most people). They allow you to fully enjoy your soak and rest your back and neck on a much more comfortable surface.
soaker tub for spa bathroom design

2. Continuous Tile For a Spa Bathroom Design

Running one tile choice on the floors, on the walls, and over the tub surround is a great way to create the spa bathroom design. Not only does it create the illusion of extra space, it keeps your eye running from one surface to the next, giving the space a continuous flow that is much more relaxing than a space that is broken up with many different elements.
continuous-bathroom-tile-for-spa-bathroom-design

3. Captivating Candles

Candles are the ultimate in relaxation. Lighting a few candles, and keeping several for when those run out, will be the perfect way to add ambiance to your bathroom. It will help you ease in or out of the day, add a soothing aroma, and give a dim light that is not harsh on the eyes.
spa-bathroom design

4. Neutral or Calming Color Choices

This is an obvious choice, but your color choices will greatly impact your mood. A spa bathroom design does not feature bright red, orange, or yellow walls. If blues or greens are used, they are subdued shades, typically on the lighter spectrum. You can’t go wrong with a crisp white, a calming grey, or a subdued tan.
shop-ad-freestanding-tubs

5. Plenty of Storage

One thing really gets my nerves going, and that’s clutter. The surest way to make sure you can’t relax is to see  products spread out everywhere, with no place to go. Make sure you factor in shelves, closet or vanity space in your bathroom to create the spa bathroom you’re dreaming of.
bathroom-storage

6. Sounds of Serenity

Sound can easily change my mood. Consider getting an iHome or some sort of device to plug your phone or mp3 player into. Create a calming playlist for times that you want to wind down. Or, consider getting a sound machine with sounds of the ocean, rain, or forest.
music-in-bathroom

7. Trey Fun

Setting up a trey with your favorite book, drink or essential oils is a great way to upgrade your bathroom experience. I always keep a clean wash cloth or hand towel to make sure I don’t dampen my pages!
bathroom-trey

8. Scrubs & Salts

Having your favorite soaps, scrubs, bath bombs or salts is a great way to add another layer of aroma therapy and relaxation to your bathroom experience. Many of these have qualities that will sooth aching muscles or exfoliate your skin, making you feel super clean and your skin luxurious.
shop-ad-bathroom-tile

9. A Beautiful Vessel

Vessel sinks are the ultimate in spa like luxury. They are functional and beautiful, and the sight on one of these bathroom favorites is sure to transport you to the spa mentality in a flash!
vessel-sink

10. Stepping Stones (Or add to walls)

Natural elements like stones in the bottom of your shower, or on your walls, is a great way to upgrade your spa bathroom design. Not only will they feel great on your feet, but they look great, and very zen.
pebble-floor
We hope you’ve enjoyed these tips and will use them to create a space that you truly want to spend time in! After all, we should enjoy the spaces in our homes and they should add to the beauty and happiness in our lives.


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are the leading provider of bathroom remodeling and spa bathroom design materials in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd

Trendiest Tile Flooring Options For Your Home

tile flooring
Tile flooring has and always will be an excellent flooring option for a number of reasons. You’ve got like Wood Look, Ledge Stone, Polished Porcelain and Decorative. And those are just to name a few. Today, I’d like to discuss some of the hottest trends out there right now, explain their uniqueness, and dive into some really cool designs that up-and-coming in the industry. Let’s get it!

Wood-Look Tile Flooring

tile flooring
Wood-Look tile has seriously been all the rage for the past couple of years, and I’ll be honest, folks, it’s not going anywhere. It’s incredibly durable, easy to clean, much cheaper than regular hardwood flooring, and it’s extremely versatile. When you use this material with an interesting, unique pattern, such as the herringbone (pictures above), it just sets it off. Also, wood-look tile can go just about anywhere in the household, a feature that regular hardwood flooring merely wishes it had.
tile flooring
Also, it’s pretty environmental. According to our friends at Daltile, nearly 20 million trees are cut down each year. Wood-look tile certainly doesn’t contribute to that number, and in its usage, as a whole we can decrease that number drastically. Just a little food for thought in that regard.
 

Cement-Look Tile Flooring

tile flooring
Now, I know what you’re thinking. Cement? Seriously? Isn’t that used in, like, garages and industrial factories, stuff like that? The answer is…yes, sure….and sort of. But you’d be surprised by how incredibly nice this material looks when there’s a unique design attached to it. Also, large format tiles works best for this material, specifically 32×32.
tile flooring
 
They also come in a variety of colors, like you’ll see above. I just think it’s insane how what was once purely used for industrial/commercial reasons is now an extremely hot commodity in the residential area, as well. Excellent stuff.

Brick-Look Tile Flooring

tile flooring
 
Easily my favorite of three hottest trends rights now, hands down. It has the look and feel of actually brick. Plus, we know that porcelain is an excellent tile flooring option, so this is almost a tried and true material of sorts.
tile flooring
 
I guess what really wows me about this particular material as a flooring option is the historical vibes I get from it. It’s like I’m in 18th century England, and quite honestly, it makes me want to write for days. It’s unique, it’s durable, and pretty quirky. Also, it’s to be noted that there’s a particular material, aged brick, that has seemed to rise in popularity.
 
So, there you have it! Three extremely popular, extra unique tile flooring options that have continued to drop jaws across the nation. Another side note, one of the main reasons for the fame is because you’re getting the look and feel of the material it mimics without the high price of labor difficulty. It’s a win/win all around.


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are the leading provider of granite countertops, quartz countertops and laminate countertops in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Chris Chamberlain

Featherweight LVT – Heavy on Style

featherweight
 
Let’s be honest, folks. There an abundance of floor styles and designs to choose from. So much, that I’d find it pretty impressive for someone not to get overwhelmed by it. After all, floors are a pretty essential element to your household’s overall design. Do you go with the soft, lush feel of carpet? Or maybe the smooth, elegant appearance of tile? Perhaps you like the wood look, and would much rather install hardwood floors? If you’re in the market for something a little bit different, then search no more. Today, I’ll discuss our Featherweight LVT flooring, give you a glimpse of its benefits, and then at the end, I’ll leave it up to you to decide whether or not it’s the right choice for you and your family. Sound like a good plan? Alright, cool, let’s dig in.

What Exactly is Featherweight LVT?

featherweight
 
featherweight
First off, LVT stands for Luxury Vinyl Tile, and it’s a beautiful product with a number of benefits. Specifically, though, FeatherWeight is an LVT product from Feather Lodge flooring. Available in variety of colors, this product sports a seamless design. It’s epic, really. Alright, now that you know the gist of it, let’s move on to some benefits.

The Benefits of Featherweight LVT

featherweight
 
Durability: This is 100% a built-to-last product. LVT is manufactured to withstand extremely high-trafficked areas. I’m talking your hallways, your kitchens, your bathrooms. Not only that, but it’s scratch-resistant and comes with a fiberglass reinforced core for added strength and stability. I’m not going to sit here and say that it’s impenetrable, but I may or may not have dropped a full jar of jelly once or twice, and it didn’t even budge. Hardcore, man. For real.
featherweight
 
Water-resistant: Yes, you read that right. Gone are the days where your selection is limited because you couldn’t put certain styles in certain areas due to risk. Nope, take all of that and shove it out the window. We’ve just made your process of selection just a tad more difficult, but hey, it’s better to have more choices than a few sloppy ones, right? So, LVT is able to withstand water, no problem. Pretty cool, right?
featherweight
 
Maintenance: So, so simple. A Swiffer broom will do the trick, and when it’s extra clean, it’s definitely a sight to see. Unlike most carpet or some hardwood floors, this style was designed to as simple as possible. Maintenance included.
featherweight
Comfort: Super comfy. It’s warmer than laminate and tile. No one likes cold toes. Which is why I’m staving off winter as long as possible. Featherweight LVT will keep each foot cozy. Rest assured.
featherweight
Installation: The “click” system is an relatively simple one, and it’s actually quite satisfying once you get the hang of it. Not too time consuming, and you’ll be happy to know at the very end, you’ll have a seamless floor. That’s a little something we can all appreciate.
 

Why is Featherweight LVT a Good Choice?

Let’s pretend I didn’t just list a good chunk of the pretty cool benefits of this style, okay? It’s an excellent choice because you get your dollars worth. You’re not paying for high, outrageous prices. Not at all. And guess what? We have them here at Builders Surplus. I heavily advise you to come in and take a look at this awesome product AND at the price. You’ll find it’s considerably less than your standard hardwood flooring, and you get the same look. Don’t believe me? Come in to our store! We’d love to sit down and talk to you, maybe work out a FREE DESIGN. You can contact us any day of the week, too. We’re always happy to help!


Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Chris Chamberlain

What's the REAL difference between porcelain and ceramic tile?

Many people have heard the terms Ceramic tile and Porcelain Tile throughout their life and home renovating experiences, but they don’t know the difference between porcelain and ceramic tile. Some think they know the difference, but do they really? Strictly based on prices, it seems that porcelain is of a much higher quality, but is that the case? We are here to determine just that, among other things, in this blog today.
First of all, you’ve got the tricky situation that you used to hear when talking about fingers when you were young. All thumbs are fingers, but not all fingers are thumbs. All Porcelain Tiles are Ceramic, but not all Ceramic Tiles are Porcelain.

the difference between porcelain and ceramic tile

Porcelain Tile

Difference between Porcelain and Ceramic Tile Manufacturing

The one of the main difference in the manufacturing of ceramic tile and porcelain tile are in the clays that are used. Ceramic tiles are usually made with brown, white or red clays. Refined and purified white clay is what will make up your porcelain tiles. The clays used in porcelain tile tends to have fewer impurities than clays used in ceramic tiles. This does more than just making it more visually appealing. This will create a stronger, denser and more durable tile. Ceramic tile is baked in a kiln to remove most of the moisture. Porcelain tile is also baked, but it’s baked at a much higher temperature and is left to dry  longer, meaning that there is virtually no moisture left in the tile. This leaves you with a harder and more durable tile.
Tile-Shop-Ad

Difference between Porcelain and Ceramic Tile Appearance

Obviously due to the different kinds of clays that are used in the manufacturing process, the appearance is going to be different as well. Ceramic usually reflects the terra cotta color of it’s clay, or can also be white. Porcelain tile is almost always going to be white, grey or cream/tan. Ceramic tile is sometimes glazed and occasionally has different patterns on it as a result. Porcelain tile is almost always left unglazed. Chips can be much more noticeable in ceramic tile than they are in porcelain. This is because porcelain tile is the same color all the way through. If a ceramic tile has been glazed, the chip will reveal a different color internally. This is a big benefit for many people when choosing porcelain over ceramic.

Difference between Porcelain and Ceramic Tile Durability

Ceramic tile is not as strong as porcelain tile due to the manufacturing process. This means that it cannot be expected to hold up nearly as well. You typically don’t want to put ceramic tile anywhere that is a high traffic area or that will be exposed to a lot of wear and tear. Ceramic flooring in an entryway, for example, would be a bad idea. Not only will it much more easily chip or crack if you drop something on it, but those imperfections are going to be pretty noticeable. Porcelain tile is denser and less porous than ceramic tile and doesn’t show its imperfections easily. Because porcelain tile is baked at a higher temperature, as well as the extended drying process time, porcelain tile is much more water resistant than its ceramic counterpart.

the difference between porcelain and ceramic tile

Ceramic Tile

Difference between Porcelain and Ceramic Tile Uses

Porcelain and ceramic tile is never recommended for outdoor installation. While porcelain is more water resistant than ceramic, you still don’t want them exposed to that level of damage from the elements. Because of the water resistance issue, porcelain is a better choice for flooring in bathrooms or on shower walls, but ceramic could be used as well. Backsplash can be used with both, as water is not a huge issue. Porcelain would be a better flooring choice for most areas that get a high amount of traffic due to their increased durability. You can use either for wall covering, ceiling covering or countertops.

Difference between Porcelain and Ceramic Tile Installation

The consensus is that ceramic tile is easier to install than porcelain tile. Porcelain tile is harder than ceramic tile, so it is harder to cut, especially when the cuts are not a straight line. Porcelain can also require special tools to install. If you are a DIY tile installer or a novice tile worker, I would say choose ceramic over porcelain.

Ceramic tile backsplash

Ceramic tile backsplash

Difference between Porcelain and Ceramic Tile Costs

Porcelain generally costs more than ceramic tile. At the same time, porcelain is more durable and longer lasting, so it may be the cheaper of the two over the life of the installation. Porcelain is also less porous, making it easier to clean and less likely to stain. Stained ceramic may require replacement due to the difficulty of removing stains from porous tiles.
Tile-Shop-Ad

I hope this has helped you decide between porcelain and ceramic tile for your next tile project!

Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are the leading provider of Ledge Stone, wall tile and backsplash tile in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd

Get the Look: Coastal Kitchen

Summer is beginning to turn to fall in the coming weeks and that means that families are returning from their beach vacations in droves. Gone will be the days of sun-kissed skin and relaxing morning mimosas on the veranda or energetic days building sand castles with kiddos. No, it’ll be back to the same old routine day after day. After a vacation like that everyone will be wanting to take a piece of the beach home with them! Bring yours into your home by transforming your cooking space into a coastal kitchen – then your entire family can relive every day as if they were by the sand! Coastal Kitchen: Beadboard Kitchen

Get the Look: Coastal Kitchen

Coastal Colors

The quintessential colors of a coastal kitchen – like any beach themed space – are white, beige and some variation of blue. Darker colors like Navy bring a more refined taste to a room while brighter, saturated colors like aqua are more fun and definitely add personality. Alternatively, a good compromise is to go with a pastel blue which allows for more light and brightness to enter the room but it also feels more delicate. Coastal Kitchen: Facebook & Twitter Image

Countertops

Cambria has a beautiful selection of quartz countertops that directly reflect the sands of different coasts found from around the world. However any sandy colored countertop will mimic the swirls of an expanse of wet and dry sand on the beach! Alternatively, wood textures work really well in a coastal kitchen. Opt for a butcher-block countertop to add some texture and a unique focal point to your kitchen.Shop Prefab Granite Countertops

Cabinets

Depending on the look and feel that you’re wanting to achieve there are several different cabinet styles that you can choose from to complete your coastal kitchen. Choosing a lightly stained, natural wood like hickory that shows it’s different colored banding creates a more earthy and natural feel. However, the trend in painted cabinets continues to show no signs of abating! Shaker cabinets prove to be a simple and classic addition. Wellborn cabinets has several distinct beadboard styles which are a little more detailed in Harbour, Bridgeport, New Haven, and Nantucket.Shop Now Kitchen Cabinets

Flooring

Flooring is by far the easiest decision you have to make when you have a coastal kitchen. Wood-look floors – it doesn’t matter if they’re real hardwood, laminate, LVT, or WPC – a textured, weathered wood-look floor brings in that old drift-wood feel that makes the space feel slightly less polished, but definitely more authentic! Coastal Kitchen: Flooring  

Backsplash

This can be a tricky portion to figure out in a kitchen design! There are so many different styles of backsplash that even if someone ordered the same cabinets, countertops and floors, their backsplashes would be completely different! Backsplash tile can dramatically change the mood and personality of your space! Opt for a shimmery blue tile for a more funky oceanic look while a patterned tile that depicts shells or sea life is more traditional!Shop Backsplash Tile Builders Surplus Cincinnati Newport Louisville  
Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation! Written By: Kat Flaherty

Tile Grout Colors: The Thin Line Between Good & Great

Tile grout can really ruin the perfect image of a kitchen or bath, whether it’s strikingly different from your tile or it’s just plain dirty, and it’s often because grout is treated as an afterthought. It’s not particularly pretty and you kind of need it when installing any kind of tile. Take out advice and consider colored grout to take your kitchen tile selection from good to great!
Tile Grout Colors: Grout Repair

Grout

A Quick Breakdown on Tile Grout:

Cement or Epoxy

Cement grout is the most common that you’ll run into and have installed in your home. Tile grout made form Epoxy is much more expensive and harder to find. However, epoxy grout does offer more resistance to water damage and staining.

Sanded versus Unsanded

Cement grout comes in sanded and unsanded versions. Sanded grout should be used when spacing between tiles would be 1/8″th of an inch or larger. The sand helps to prevent cracking or expansion/shrinkage of the grout between the tile pieces.

Sealing your Grout

You grout needs to be sealed. You can either use a penetrating sealer or opt for one that sits on the top, however the latter might get cloudy – especially when exposed to moisture.
Tile Grout Colors: Our Grout Color Selection

Mastic

Great Grout Colors!

There are plenty of colors to choose from when deciding which kind of grout would be best for your home and project. We carry North American Adhesives cement tile grout and it comes in over 30 colors!
Typically there are 3 ways to choose your grout color. All of them are generally up to you and your specific tastes as well as the overall vision you have for your kitchen or bathroom remodel.

Neutral

It’s neither here nor there. Whites, beiges, and grays are usually a safe bet when installing tile with grout, especially for homeowners who are intending to sell.

Contrasting

This typically lends a more funky, creative look to the space – and that doesn’t mean it can’t be elegant or beautiful. It’s different, that’s for sure. White subway tile is a really popular trend right now and homeowners are cashing in with black or dark grout when installing it! Other times you’ll see contrasting grout is with more decorative tile.

Matching

This is the best option, especially when your tile is really expensive and it’ll work especially well in a smaller bathroom! The matching tile and grout colors make the area look seamless which can make the room appear larger and more open.

Dark versus Light Grout

The debate between these two shades comes down to whether you believe that darker grout is better at hiding dirt than light colored grouts or if it just always looks dirty. That’s really up to you. But often times grout and tile maintenance does require a little more cleaning and upkeep.

No matter what color grout you choose to pair with your next tiling project you’ll be able to find the perfect match (or contrast) to what you’re looking for! It can be a little harder to keep clean, but in the end you’ll have a gorgeous floor or wall tile that compliments your perfect kitchen or bath!


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Kat Flaherty

Pre-mixed Mastic vs. Powder Based Mortar

I’d like to dig into a construction element known as “mastic” today, and more specifically, the two forms it’s available in. If you’ve never heard of mastic, then you’re in for a little treat because it’s actually pretty neat stuff and has a variety of uses. Before I give too much away, let’s first discuss exactly what it is.

Mastic is an extremely strong adhesive most commonly used in a construction setting. It’s what builders use to seal windows, doors, cracks, but it’s most common usage is hidden beneath your feet. The substance is perfect for setting and bonding tile to concrete or underlayment board due to its properties. Once dried, it is nearly impossible to come off.

Trust me, I’ve had the honor of having to bust out a tiled floor that had been installed in a heavy traffic area for 20 years. Two words: Chisel and hammer. It’s 100% not how you want to spend a Saturday afternoon. Sounds pretty neat though, right? It’s origin is just as interesting. Mastic, coincidentally enough, derives from the resin of the “mastic” tree. Scientifically, this tree is named Pistacia lentiscus, and can be commonly found in the Mediterranean region, specifically Greece and Turkey. Now that you know a little bit more about it, let’s dig into the two forms.


Pre-mixed Mastic

Advantage:

In pre-mixed form, the adhesive tends to be a bit more solid, a little more consistent, making it easier to work with in most instances.

For example, if you’re installing tile for a standup shower, it would be more prudent to use the pre-mixed, so your material isn’t slopping around everywhere, creating waste.

Gravity can be a nuisance when doing projects like tiled showers or backsplashes in your kitchen and bathroom. If you’re not too careful, your workspace can resemble a typhoon rather quickly. And the cleanup is horrendous.

There’s also the convenience factor. When you purchase this kind of mastic, it’s literally ready to go. Take the lid off, grab your trowel, and get to work. It’s as simple as that, BUT like everything else, the convenience of it being pre-mixed comes at a cost.

Disadvantage: 

Depending on where you go, the price comparison is going to be different, but generally speaking, pre-mixed is ALWAYS going to be more expensive. Covering the same amount of square feet, you can typically purchase a bucket of pre-mix for $35 and a bag of powder based mortar for around $16.

It also doesn’t dry as quickly as powder-based mortar, especially if you’re using large tiles. In my experience, we always let shower tiles dry for up to three days before we let the customers use it. Just to be safe. Another thing, if you have to “double float” an area on a wall or the floor because it’s not level, pre-mixed can be a bit of a pain.


Powder-based Mortar

Advantage:

When working with floor tile, powder-based mortar is MUCH easier to work with, especially when working with an uneven floor.

Since you have to mix before applying, you are in complete control over the consistency, allowing you to manipulate if you need a more solid foundation in a certain area, or something a bit “runnier” and easier to work with.

If you’ve ever worked with floor tile then you know exactly how difficult it can be to ensure that every piece is consistently level. No one wants a rocky road in their hallway. I’ve always found the mortar much easier to spread across larger surfaces.

Mastic is a gummy substance, and it can seem like you’re putting much more effort than you need to across a wider surface. With mortar, simply mix it so the consistency isn’t so dry, and it spreads like butter.

Obviously, there are a lot of factors that come into play here like room temperature, how level the surface is, what size or kind of tile you’re using. But for the most part, mortar is the way to go in larger areas. Also, it’s way cheaper than premixed mastic. There’s a reason why, though.

Disadvantage: 

The process of making it can be crazily monotonous, not to mention messy. Plus, there’s the inconvenience of having to keep mixing when you’ve finished your last batch.

Maintaining the same consistency takes a bit of practice, as well. I can’t tell you how many head shakes or sighs of disapproval my father has given me because one batch it perfect in consistency and the next is terribly dry or way too runny. It does take practice, and I’ll go ahead and tell you, if you can’t stand the feeling of dry hands for hours on end, powder-based mortar is not for you. Just throwing that out there.

Using this form of tile adhesive takes some extreme precision, too. Not just in the aspect of consistency, but of neatness, as well. Long story short, things can get horrifyingly messy if you’re not used to it.

My dad and I have a very simple approach when it comes to using these two forms of tile adhesives. Simply stated, we use the premixed when we’re working vertically (shower tiles and backsplashes) and powder-based on horizontal surfaces (floor tile). We’ve done enough tile projects to know gravity can be your worse enemy.

They’re both outstanding products, really. It just depends on the type of work you’re doing and your personal preference. Much like Android vs. iPhone in that regard. Take your pick. Good luck on your tile project!



Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are the leading provider of Ledge Stone, wall tile and backsplash tile in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Chris Chamberlain

Schedule Your FREE TILE INSTALLATION & Style CONSULTATION!

Small Bathroom: Choosing the Right Vanity & Tile

A small bathroom is one of the worst things on the planet. I remember the one in my first apartment, there was barely any space to move, you had to close the door to open the vanity cabinet but you also had to stand off to the side or sit on the toilet sideways so you didn’t hit your shins! There are many different factors that can keep someone from being able to do much about a small bathroom; whether it be that you’re stuck in an apartment and can’t make any structural changes or you own your own home, but you don’t have the budget to do a full bathroom remodel at the moment.
Small Bathroom: Monochromatic Color Scheme
Updating your tile and replacing your vanity are a couple of the easiest and most inexpensive ways that you can make your bathroom appear more open. We’ve got some tips and tricks on how you can utilize these to make your cramped bath appear “bigger on the inside.”
Shop-Now-Vanities

Be Basic

Simplicity is key when you’re wanting to make a small bathroom feel bigger! Skip the highly decorative and opt-in for more simplistic shapes and styles. In a space like this, less is more.
The subway tile look is super popular, and it’s a really basic look that’s also classy. However, what needs to be remembered with tile is size. Go for larger format tile – the less lines and grout, the better. This creates a longer line that isn’t broken up which makes the space appear larger because the pattern is continuous.
There are two ways to go with vanities her. You can choose a pedestal sink and be really minimal, but if you must have some storage space choose a floating single-sink vanity or one with open shelves instead of cabinets or drawers. A floating vanity will open up the floor space, which breaks up the space less, while an open vanity (shelves instead of drawers) moves your eye through the room and makes you think about what you really need in your bath.
Small Bathroom: Floating Vanity

Color is Key

This goes along with keeping it simple. When it comes to color in a small space you want to choose a single color or monochromatic theme. Brighter colors work best in small spaces, especially whites – plus white is classy!
Select bright, glossy white tile or backsplash that is bigger than the palm of your hand at least (remember go big or go home with the whole tile selection). If you have a light color scheme that isn’t white then keep your tile selection in that hue, it’ll still make the room feel bigger. However, it’s a little more complicated where you already have a dark bath. When you have a dark space that you can’t completely overhaul you can still choose a lighter wall tile or backsplash. Remember, you want to try to break up the colors and patterns as little as possible!
Small Bathroom: Contrasting Vanity
Lighter vanities are often less popular because bathrooms are already pretty bright so a vanity is the perfect piece to contrast lighter colors! This is where you can have some fun if you want to. Keep the vanity white (or whatever single color the rest of your bathroom is) especially if it’s one with drawers and cabinets, this breaks up the space less and makes a small bathroom feel larger. If you think you can spare to have some color feel free to contrast the room with a darker vanity, however, this will work best with an open style shelf vanity.
Shop Backsplash Tile Builders Surplus Cincinnati Newport Louisville
There are plenty of other tips to make your small bathroom look and feel larger, updating your tile and replacing your vanity are just a couple of the easiest and most inexpensive ways that you can make your cramped bathroom space look and feel “bigger on the inside.”
Small Bathroom: Bigger on the Inside Doctor Who


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Kat Flaherty

Mesh Back Tile: Backsplash Made Quick & Easy

Why Use Backsplash Tile:

Nothing makes quite a statement in such a small space like mosaic backsplash tile. So if your kitchen’s down in the dumps, give it a quick boost of beauty with a tile backsplash. Backsplash tile is usually fairly inexpensive, although you can get into some very pricey pieces if you look at a high end store. I’ve seen $74 per square foot backsplash tile, all the way down to a few dollars a square foot, like we carry here at Builders Surplus. Most people don’t have a ton of square footage above their cabinets, so this is a very cost effective project that will be worth it’s weight in RIO gold.
Mesh-back-Tile Options Builders Surplus Cincinnati Newport Louisville

Why Some People Think Backsplash Is Expensive:

Some backsplash can get expensive, depending on the type that you choose. But where it can get even more pricey is when you factor in the labor of installation. I know some installers that charge a flat rate of $400 or $500, regardless of the size of the kitchen. Other professionals charge about $20 per sq. ft. in addition to the materials, so learning how to tile yourself can be a big money saver!
Shop Backsplash Tile Builders Surplus Cincinnati Newport Louisville
It can be a pretty intimidating project if you’re a renovation newbie. If you are new to tiling, it doesn’t mean you can’t do it, but you should choose an easy and DIY friendly tile for your first crack at it. Stay away from materials like slate that will crumble easily when you cut them. A ceramic, porcelain, stone or even glass tile will all be solid choices for this. Don’t choose an intricate pattern, such as an arabesque. Even though it may be a mesh back, the cuts will be complicated and you will likely get frustrated and quit, or worse, do a haphazard job that you have to live with for years to come. If you don’t own a wet saw, you’ll need to rent one, but you can do that from a Home Depot of Lowes for a decent price.

Mesh Back Tile: The Best For The Job

Most mosaic tiles are now what they call mesh back tile. Mosaic tile can look difficult to install because there are so many small pieces, but it’s quite the opposite, actually. Mesh back tile and mosaic tiles typically come mounted on 12 x 12-sheets, which makes your installation super quick, especially compared to other types of backsplash. You can install the tile on Saturday and then grout it on Sunday.
 
Mosaic-Mesh Back Tile Backsplash-
 
These mosaic patterns are mounted together with a mesh backing. Why is this good for you? Easy. Because the mesh backing comes to about 1 square foot each, your working with a much bigger “tile”, meaning that you have less tiles to place. This makes the job go much quicker. When you’re using a backsplash tile, you may have to lay about 6 tiles to cover what one mesh back tile sheet would cover. When you factor in getting your tile adhesive on each one, adding multiple spacers, and adjusting each tile individually to make sure that they are completely straight, you’ve spend quite a lot of time. With mesh back tile, it’s line up, press and move on. Not only does mesh back cover a larger space, but it’s usually easier to cut. Sometimes you get lucky and you don’t have to do much cutting with a tile saw. If your mosaic is the right size, you might get away with just having to use a utility knife to cut the mesh backing to make the sheets fit. However, you rarely get away with zero cuts, but you do have a chance of cutting much less with mesh back tile.
Some mesh back tiles need grout, while others don’t. If you choose a mesh back tile that doesn’t need grout, you’re already saving money. Cutting down on your installation costs has already got you backsplashin’ on a budget, so that’s just another win.
Shop Backsplash Tile Builders Surplus Cincinnati Newport Louisville
Mesh back tile has come a long way in ease of installation. There are an unlimited number of styles, colors, and materials in mosaic mesh back tiles. What’s your favorite mesh back tile shown above? Send us pictures of your mesh back tile backsplash!
 


 
 
 
Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are the leading provider of Ledge Stone, wall tile and backsplash tile in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd

 
 

Aqua Vision: WPC vs LVT Flooring

Aqua Vision Flooring
Finding the right kind of flooring for your home and your project can be a daunting task because if you’re anything like my Dad, then you want hardwood flooring throughout the home – including the kitchen and the bath, but you also want as little maintenance as possible on it. We all know that’s just not a possibility with hardwoods. However, now-a-days because the look of hardwood floors is so in demand vendors have developed floors that look like wood, can be installed anywhere in the home, and require very little upkeep. But what is this magical and mysterious unicorn of the flooring world? You might know it as Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) but this flooring is a subcategory of LVT, and it’s called WPC.
Aqua Vision: Shop Now

What is WPC flooring?

WPC stands for Wood Plastic/Polymer Composite. The fact of it is: many WPC flooring types don’t actually contain any actual wood, but a wood flour (a finely ground wood powder) made from hardwoods. However, this  doesn’t hinder the strength or durability, especially since it’s combined with tough plastics!
WPC flooring is technically a LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tile/Plank) because it has a vinyl surface. It can also be marketed as being an engineered or enhanced vinyl floor. People have known about LVT and similar products for a while, but WPC is just catching on in terms of popularity. The reason it’s gaining so much popularity and flying off our shelves is because of the promises that it makes as being dimensionally stable, waterproof, and recyclable! Our main WPC product, Aqua Vision, also starts at a lower price point than the other LVT’s we carry.

So it’s an LVT?

No, but yes. Just so we’re clear WPC is not actually vinyl – it’s just marketed as a Luxury or Engineered Vinyl because vinyl is more widely well known; and because people know what it is that makes it easier to market! So, basically at this point, until WPC becomes a household term for flooring WPC and LVT are somewhat interchangeable. Remember when you were in grade school and you learned that a square was a rectangle, but a rectangle is not a square? It’s the same concept. WPC floors are LVT but LVT floors are not WPC floors.
Aqua Vision
 

Aqua Vision vs. Other LVTs?

What’s the difference?

Well, we, like many other businesses that sell flooring have also been marketing our WPC floors along with our LVT products. However, the most distinct difference between Aqua Vision and other LVTs is that is it 100% waterproof. They use this stuff by pools! That’s how serious they are about this stuff being waterproof!

Aqua Vision: Waterproof

Any Advantages?

Many LVTs will advertise themselves as being waterproof to some degree – and some are – but Aqua Vision is 100% waterproof. This means that it can be installed below-grade, for example: in your basement, in moisture-rich environments, like your bathroom, or anywhere that other floors like hardwood, laminate, or carpet would never go!
Other advantages to Aqua Vision and other WPC floors is that it has a rigid core design! This means that it’s dimensionally stable and that, in turn, means that it can be installed just about anywhere and over just about any hard surface floor without showing any dips or imperfections! This also means that it won’t expand, so it doesn’t need time to acclimate before being installed in your home or business and that it doesn’t need any spaces during installation to account for any shifting or expanding!
Aqua Vision: Shop Now
Aqua Vision and other WPC is really the future of Vinyl and Laminate flooring! The way that the popularity of this product is rising, we’re sure that it’s going to stick around for a long time because of it’s many advantages of being waterproof, easy to install and maintain! Nothing is stopping this product from flying off the shelves and into homes around the country!


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written By: Kat Flaherty

Choosing Wall Tile to Match Bathroom Vanities

Hola! Alright, so you have your brand new, fresh-out-of-the-wrapping bathroom vanity. It’s placed properly, fastened tight to the interior wall, and maybe you’ve even hooked up the plumbing to the sink along with the countertop. In essence, you’ve never been more excited to wash your hands before in your life. After doing so, that next thought springs into your head, the next step to really put that finishing touch on your vanity – what wall tile will look best? Well, luckily, I’m here to tell you of a couple of options to choose from. And it can be as simple (or as complex) as you’d like it to be!
 

Contrasting Light Tile to Dark Vanity

If you really want to accentuate your vanity, I’d suggest going with a light-colored tile. The pictures above demonstrate how a lighter tile can make your vanity pop, giving it the proper attention it needs. Contrast in any design platform plays with a viewer’s eyes a bit and is perfect for redirecting or emphasizing a particular piece. Notice how the wall tile from the picture on the left contains smaller dark tiles, as well. We’ll get to this a bit later, but it brings out the darker tone of the vanity, giving a nice blend to the whole bathroom. The picture in the middle sports a classy white tile, and the vanity’s contrast sets it apart, but it works! Never be afraid in the effects of contrast. It adds visual interest and appeals to the eye. Uniformity and blending definitely has its perks, but this design element is simply too attractive to dismiss. Literally.
 
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A Blending of Colors

Sometimes going with the grain just makes sense. As you can see, the pictures above exemplify that statement perfectly. Matching wall tile with the color of your vanity gives your bathroom design a sense of unity and can make for a stunning visual effect. The first picture displays a marvelous, antique-style vanity. The soft brown hue of the wall tile allows the entire display to streamline the eye’s focus in unison. In essence, it’s a beautiful blend of style and color. The picture in the middle is my personal favorite, though. But I’m a sucker for the natural pine stain color, so there’s no surprise there. Notice how the wall tile really hones that color in and makes it shine. Now, earlier I told you how a wall tile can bring out a color in a vanity. The picture on the right is a prime example of how a subtle blend between the vanity and wall color can make your primary color jump out at you! Like an exclamation point. At Builder’s Surplus, we offer a cast of tile brands that will help you pull of this look. We’ll help you in the design process and make sure your vision becomes a reality.
 
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The Products to Choose

Daltile is one of the best products in the business, in my opinion, but you don’t have to take my word for it. You’ve just glanced at their product, and I’m willing to bet you liked what you saw. But, see, that’s the thing about Daltile – there’s so much to choose from. I think we can all agree that when it comes to home restoration/renovation, variety is essential, right? Daltile’s selection is bar none, yes, but it’s the quality that really sets this product from the rest. Established since 1947, the company has acquired a tremendous reputation for their innovative ideas, and it’s directly reflected in their designs. And you know what the best part is? This awesomely legit product is available through special order at Builders Surplus. Come talk to us in person or set something up so we can get things rolling on your bathroom remodel! You can do so here. 
 


Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!
Written by: Chris Chamberlain
 
 

Highland Park Tile: Classic Beauty

Highland Park backsplash tile is one of my absolute favorite tile lines. This line embodies classic style and cutting edge trends all in one beautifully tiled package. When you are deciding on backsplash tile for your kitchen or bathroom, you should definitely look into highland park backsplash tile before making any final decisions. Highland Park backsplash tile is GREENGUARD indoor air quality certified and is designed to last.
Shop Highland Park Backsplash Tile
Highland park offers five color collections, including whisper white, antique white, artisan taupe, dove grey and morning fog. These colors are in style at the moment but will definitely stand the test of time, as they are all appealing neutrals with a little something extra to make them stand out. No matter what your cabinet color, wall color, or floor color, you can choose one of these five classic colors and can be sure that it will coordinate perfectly.
Within each color family you’ll find up to 8 styles: The classic 3×6 subway tile, the up-in-coming 4×12 subway tile, a trendy hexagon tile or elongated hexagon, the ultra desirable arabesque pattern tile, the stunning mini-brick tile, the new classic diamond pattern, the stylish arched herringbone, and your additional quarter round, pencil or crown molding tile for your edges.
Below are just a few of our favorites from the Highland Park Collection! Let us know your favorite in the comments!

Highland Park Dove Grey

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Pictured above is the highland park dove grey handcrafted 3×6 subway tile. As you can see, it is lighter on the edges to give it a more dramatic look. It also features a beautiful crackle finish that definitely separates it from the rest. You won’t see this in most homes and it will be a conversation starter and focal piece in your home.
 
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Above are three of the of the Highland Park Dove Grey Tile styles, the diamond to the left, subway tile center, and brick to the right. The 4×12 subway tile is also offered in Dove Grey.
 
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The Highland Park Dove Grey Arabesque tile is one of my favorites. This look is stunning and so unique. The arabesque pattern is so important in design right now and will continue to be for some time. It can go with virtually every cabinet style and always creates an ultra-elegant look.
 

Highland Park Whisper White

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The Highland Park whisper white collection features a lot of classic styles. Above you’ll see the arabesque and below the hexagon. Hexagon is on the rise in terms of trendiness and can be seen everywhere right now, from the largest tile, remodeling and flooring conventions in the world, to the homes of many. It is another style that can transcend any time period and gives a clean, fresh look to you space.
 
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Highland Park Antique White

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The antique white elongated hexagon is truly a unique backsplash tile option. This transitional look can coordinate with a lot of color options and styles. This honeycomb style is growing in popularity and gives it a very cottage feel.
 
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The handcrafted 3×6 subway tile backsplash is one of our top sellers. The wavy appearance sets it apart from your traditional subway tile and the artisan look really comes through.
There you have it, some of our favorite highland park looks. However, there are many more, so don’t forget to check them out! We offer most of the above styles in stock every day, but can custom order anything not shown with a short lead time, and only freight as an additional cost. What is your favorite highland park backsplash tile? Would you every put one in your home? Let us know in the comments below!
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Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are the leading provider of Ledge Stone, wall tile and backsplash tile in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd