Retro Renovation http://retrorenovation.com Remodeling, decor and home improvement for mid century and vintage homes Wed, 27 May 2015 14:26:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.2 Nicole’s DIY Daltile mosaic tile floor http://retrorenovation.com/2015/05/27/diy-mosaic-tile-floor/ http://retrorenovation.com/2015/05/27/diy-mosaic-tile-floor/#comments Wed, 27 May 2015 08:30:25 +0000 http://retrorenovation.com/?p=120772 “The meaning of insanity or dedication?” Nicole could not wait 10 weeks for Daltile to deliver the custom color mosaic tile that she designed using their Mosaic Tile Designer. So she took matters into her own hands — literally. She bought the pieces and made her own mosaic tile floor.  Sure, it’s what we call “some therapy” to piece together a […]

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“The meaning of insanity or dedication?”

midcentury tile patternNicole could not wait 10 weeks for Daltile to deliver the custom color mosaic tile that she designed using their Mosaic Tile Designer. So she took matters into her own hands — literally. She bought the pieces and made her own mosaic tile floor. 

Sure, it’s what we call “some therapy” to piece together a mosaic floor like this. But, the spaces that Nicole was having tiled were relatively small, so we surmise that the job was not … too mind boggling.

vintage tile

Nicole first created the pattern she wanted, using Daltile’s Mosaic Design Tool.

Nicole writes:

The meaning of insanity or dedication? I’m creating my own custom “random” pattern mosaic 12″ x 12″s because Daltile’s custom option takes 10 weeks. We’re redoing our family room. We wanted tile at the exterior door entry (3′ x 3′) and under the wood stove (4′ x 4′). Our contractor will be setting the tile into the floor and carpeting around it.

room-before-2

Basically the process to make each tile mosaic sheet is: Break apart the tiles; cut all the glue nubs off each tile; place and space (affiliate link) the design; criss-cross tape over the top of the tiles; remove spacers; repeat.

Our contractor has been sooo great. I’m impressed that he’s willing to let me do this experiment in custom tile, and he and his employee have given support and ideas along the way. Thanks for the interest in my project. :-)

midcentury mosaic floor tile midcentury mosaic floor tile

A few days after our initial emails with Nicole, the project was done and she sent us a few photos of the finished floor. Kate tried to just count how many tiles were in each 12″ square of the pattern and her eyes crossed after counting to 60. Our hats are off to you, Nicol. For sure: We call it “dedication”!

dog-showerMore stories about designs using Daltile’s Mosaic Designer:

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Diana opens her 1963 kitchen nook to her family room — and gets new Marmoleum, too http://retrorenovation.com/2015/05/26/open-kitchen-to-living-room/ http://retrorenovation.com/2015/05/26/open-kitchen-to-living-room/#comments Tue, 26 May 2015 08:30:59 +0000 http://retrorenovation.com/?p=120876 Do you recognize this kitchen? It was one of the first reader kitchens we ever featured on the blog, back in the wee early days when RetroRenovation.com was still just a fooling-around-on-the-internet hobby. It’s Diana’s lovely 1963 kitchen — showcased to spotlight the beauty of the original oak kitchen cabinets. This past year, Diana made some structural […]

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retro kitchen beforeDo you recognize this kitchen? It was one of the first reader kitchens we ever featured on the blog, back in the wee early days when RetroRenovation.com was still just a fooling-around-on-the-internet hobby. It’s Diana’s lovely 1963 kitchen — showcased to spotlight the beauty of the original oak kitchen cabinets. This past year, Diana made some structural design changes — and in the process, the kitchen and dining room got a flooring update. So darn cheery I could bust! Lots of great photos from the architects on this project, qkArchitecture. Let’s take a look! 

midcentury kitchenDiana wrote:

Hi Pam, it’s been a few years since you posted about my kitchen cabinets on your blog.

retro aqua kitchen

We recently opened up two walls that separate our kitchen from the hall and family room, and I thought you might appreciate the end result.

remodeling construction

We have lived in this house for eight years. We only decided to open the walls a year ago.

There were very good reasons for us to open these two walls. One wall was causing a bottle neck in the hallway/top of basement stairs and it made it hard to walk through the hallway. The other was that there was no direct route out of the kitchen from our nook and it felt like we needed some flow near the nook.

We did all this work without moving or changing any other original structures like the cabinets in both rooms. And we managed to find a place for our cute Aqua hutch in the nook.

remodeling construction

We hired the architect first. We wanted someone to understand what we wanted architecturally, as I really didn’t want the house to lose the character. And, since we were removing two load-bearing walls, we wanted to make sure the design (both from a historic perspective and an engineering perspective0 was sound. Of course we had to get a permit too.

The architect helped us even after the plans were prepared; he was a person we could get advice from as the project progressed and we also knew he could look for issues we may have missed. My husband and I really liked that.

The project required that we hire a contractor (we opened up load bearing walls). The contractor was Pittsburgh Remodeling Company; they were great at respecting that we wanted to keep the original details and not “gut” the space.

midcentury living room

The new doorway opens the kitchen dining area to the living room, creating a nice circular flow in and out of the kitchen — previously, this was a solid wall.

Regarding the floor, we had to replace what was in the kitchen because when we opened up the two walls next to the kitchen there was no floor in the transition between the rooms; so we replaced the kitchen floor and added new oak planks that was feathered in from the family room. The floor that was previously in the kitchen was not the original floor so I didn’t feel too bad about changing that.

retro aqua kitchen

Diana also updated/”backdated” the lighting in the kitchen. “The old ones were very 1990s and we didn’t think they were good design choices,” she said. The fixture above the dinette is vintage found on craigslist, while the rest of the fixtures are from Rejuvenation.

The colors we picked for the new kitchen floor were pulled from the vintage kitchen table; the pattern was a plaid pattern that I liked because it felt very 1960s to me.

We installed linoleum (Marmoleum) by Forbo.  Colors are:

Relaxing lagoon
Stardust
Frost

We are so happy to have better flow yet keep the retro feel of the space (if anything it feels even more retro now).

Peace,
Diana

And the pup’s name? Boo, Diana says:)

Live in your house a while before making architectural changes

Diana, the new flooring looks great fantastic — in fact, it seems to make the whole kitchen literally glow with the retro-happy.

I also love this story because it is a reminder that sometimes — often, I believe — it’s only over the course of some years that you know for sure what you want to do to change the existing architecture of a home. I am very pro “go slow.”

In this case, Diana was in her home seven years before making the decision to open the kitchen to the living room and expand the doorway to the hall. Her time spent in the house gave her the rich understanding and confidence as caretaker to make a decision that would truly benefit [rather than remuddle] the house. When the time came to make the change, she also engaged an architect so that the changes made were in harmony with the house, so they were structurally sound, and so she could have a sounding board and more advice as the project progressed.

I think that also: Taking time before you change an old house that’s new to you gives you meaningful time to study and grow into your retro style — again, so that you can make cosmetic (albeit often expensive) changes — like flooring — that will make you happy for many years to come.

Thank you, qkArchitecture, for the great photos. And thank you, Diana, for sharing your story and all the back and forth with me via email to pull it together. Incredibly beautiful — and inspiring!

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240 photos uploaded by readers — see their recent vintage finds http://retrorenovation.com/2015/05/22/vintage-collections/ http://retrorenovation.com/2015/05/22/vintage-collections/#comments Fri, 22 May 2015 08:30:46 +0000 http://retrorenovation.com/?p=120787 Thanks to everyone who uploaded photos of their recent vintage finds and home project while our uploader was on all Memorial Day weekend. Above: Reader Bette Jean made us super-smile and wrote about her finds: “Cobra phone purchased on-line from company that furnished telephones to Mad Men. It works.” Click on through to see all 240 photos… […]

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vintage typewriterThanks to everyone who uploaded photos of their recent vintage finds and home project while our uploader was on all Memorial Day weekend. Above: Reader Bette Jean made us super-smile and wrote about her finds: “Cobra phone purchased on-line from company that furnished telephones to Mad Men. It works.” Click on through to see all 240 photos…  

(Uploader now closed. We’ll do another soon.)

View the slide show

Tips to view slide show: Click on any image… it will enlarge and you can also read any captions… click anywhere to move forward and look for previous and next buttons within photo to move back or forth… you can start or stop at any image:

Want to browse previous uploaders — super fun!
Click here to see our uploader archive.

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