Replicating Alice’s blue 50s bathroom tile floor

Palm Springs Stephan noticed how cool Alice’s blue bathroom floor was, and is now working to replicate it in his California bathroom. He’s using unglazed mosaic’s, I believe, and I can’t wait to see the results. I also think you could use matte finish just fine. Alice was kind enough to send close ups of her floor so we could figure out how to replicate it.

If you’re looking for an authentic floor design – and one that’s not too expensive, either — this is a great find. 4×4 field tiles, and 1×1 mosaics are abundant in many colorways from Daltile and American Olean (which are owned by the same company) and, I am sure, other regional makers in your area.

What I also like about this floor, is that you can make it basically neutral via the larger tiles — but with just a little punch in the mosaics. A nice compromise.

  • See Alice’s green bathroom, too! Click a couple of times on the photo and it will fill your screen for a good close up of the design. Clearly – the pattern was sold in sheets; don’t try to piece this together yourself, you will go insane.

And see these other two posts for other mosaic tile ideas:

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Comments

  1. Jason says

    It’s gorgeous! Alice is one lucky woman!

    This is going into my file as a possible look for my new laundry room floor.

  2. Palm Springs Stephan says

    Just a little update on my own attempt to replicate this pattern: The 4×4 tile is proving dang near impossible to find. I need “arctic white,” the brightest white possible, and I want to use unglazed porcelain tiles that are 1/4 inch think. DalTile makes unglazed porcelain, arctic white, in only 1×1 and 2×2. Nothing larger. The American Olean website has a problem with its internal search engine adn I cannot find it there. So I’m stumped, at the moment. If anyone has any resource for 4×4 color-body porcelain unglazed tile, 4x4x1/4, I’d be grateful. Oh, and the small 1×1 tiles in my version of the pattern will be one black and three blue (DalTile “Waterfall”).

  3. Kathy says

    Hi Stephen,

    You might try e-mailing American Olean to ask them. I found them to be incredibly fast and helpful. Unusal these days!

    Kathy

  4. Sheila Funderburke says

    Alice…I viewed the blue floor on the RetroRenovation site online…I’m very intrested in installing that floor in a vintage 1950’s home that I’m renovating right now….Could you share any info from the manufacture of the tile….names or number of the colors of the blues used….Any info will be helpful…Thank you for your help….Sheila Funderburke

  5. says

    Sheila, this is 50s Pam. Alice just bought this house so I don’t think that she can tell you where the bathroom floor tile came from. And, I don’t know of many sources for that matte finish 4×4 tile in 50s colorways. But I will look. Meanwhile – can you send me your retro reno story – along with some jpegs of your project? Send to: pam@retrorenovation.com. Many thanks!

  6. Alice says

    Shelia,
    Sorry that I do not know the manufacturer of the tile in the bathrooms. Meanwhile, Pam has posted the photos and the dimensions…is that helpful?

  7. Gio says

    Hello,

    Does anyone know where I can find retro blue tiles in San Francisco/Bay area, CA?

    Some tiles were broken by a plumber while replacing a pipe and I just want to restore with originals but haven’t had any luck finding a place that sells them.

    Any help would be great 🙂

    Thanks
    Gio

    • pam kueber says

      @Gio – head up to the blue navigation bar. Find PRODUCTS/Bathrooms/Tile… B&W might be your best bet, but you can browse all of our sources there. Good luck.

  8. Alice says

    Dear Pam! Help! Remember our blue bathroom that you featured? The tank on the toilet cracked due to an over-twist of wrench! We are desparately trying to find a MATCHING blue tank and having trouble locating one…we’ve found lots of tanks, and some that are even blue, but not THIS blue. Perhaps your readers could be helpful? Thanks for anything you can do!

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