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Note to self: I have the wingspan of a fruit fly. With only a few days left before Black Friday (and consequently my Black Friday laundry appliance shopping plans), the weekend was prime for laundry room floor tiling. After installing the Ditra last weekend, I used a box of inexpensive gray ceramic tiles ($0.99 per tile) to dry fit their placement and it got me thinking how to plan a tile layout in an awkward space.

how to plan a tile layout in an awkward space.

I chose this particular layout mainly to limit the number of cuts I’d need to make per tile. Couple of thoughts on that:

plan a tile layout in an awkward space – tips

  • When possible, an easy (square, ceramic, no-nonsense) tile in a difficult room seems best.
  • This room has one heck of an odd layout (see below).
  • By cutting the 12-inch tile in half and using those six-inch lengths along the longest wall, I’d be using far less tile overall than if I had used any other layout (since the other half could be used for the very next row instead of throwing out as waste).
  • To lay out or dry fit tile, always start in the middle of the room. My hair-brained 6-inch tile idea on both sides could have looked really weird if I hadn’t mapped things out a little at first, but luckily, at the room’s widest point, I had six inch cuts along both sides and the back wall. The only part that would look slightly off is the narrower doorway area, which would have eight inches on the right side instead of six, but no odd 2-inch pieces or anything (and Ditra needs at least 2 inches of tile for it to work properly). Hooray for things working out to my advantage!

laundry room tile layout

plan a tile layout in an awkward space – what I learned

Once again, I did the install in the room while Dad was Sir Mix-A-Lot. And a few things I learned during the actual installation of the tile:

  • While I’m not smart enough to remove the door when I installed Ditra, I am smart enough to remove it while installing tile (or rather, Dad is).
  • I have very short arms and an endless need for perfection on an imperfect room with imperfect walls.
  • Because of said need for perfection and skipping breakfast, about halfway in, I was a snarling mess of frustration. Luckily it was also the moment when I ran out of supplies, so Dad and I conveniently broke for lunch (gotta give the guy credit, he puts up with both my learning curve and the frustration it causes me when things don’t go well right away).
  • It is astounding how a single room can feel like both the smallest (in terms of freedom of movement) and largest (in terms of time spent stretching my arms out while on my hands and knees) room on the effing planet.

plan a tile layout in an awkward space

In other words, on Saturday, I had an 8-hour yoga session in the room I hate to be in the most (since I loathe doing laundry). And it seems as though all I managed to do is install tile that is nearly the same freaking color as the cement slab that I spent all of this time tiling over.

Huh. There’s that.

plan a tile layout in an awkward space – #yogabody

At any rate, my to-do list is getting shorter. And perhaps with enough tile jobs, I’ll have that super lean yoga body I’ve always wanted (pssh, ha!). I’ve got the paint (spoiler alert: it’s the same color I’ve used in the hallway and living room downstairs, only with a different sheen – I saw no need to spend hours agonizing over paint considering how long it takes me to decide, and this needed to be a quicker project than most). I’ve got my grout, too.

plan a tile layout in an awkward space - what I learned

My hands aren’t too happy from leaning on the Ditra for the day (at least I had kneepads though). Progress is starting to feel a lot like bruises and sore muscles, but it helps to envision a clean, efficient laundry space that doesn’t thwart my efforts to stay organized (since I tend to want to leave the room asap, I take unfolded laundry upstairs to fold in my bedroo- oh hey, new season of something is on Netflix and Charlie wants a snuggle).

So, for now, I can leave you with this before pic (taken when I moved in – blech):

laundry room before

And an in-progress shot of where I am at the moment:

laundry room floor tile

Later this week, I’ve got a few other things to share about some repair jobs to the walls (perhaps including a video) and more details on the overall design plan, too. Then, it’s turkey-slash-appliance-getting time. How was your weekend?

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  1. It is lookin’ good! I think you should paint out the window trim white–it will really brighten up the room and not look so60-70’ish. We started a board and batten festivity this morning in our upstairs hall of our 60’s tri-level. Very excited to do! My husband decided to tear out the door mouldings prior to our start as they were dinged up and bugging him enough that I have heard it about a zillion times. So I was figuring out how to add a cool top to the door frames (at HD) as he continued prying off door moulding at home. This will extend our few day project into my “after thanksgiving Christmas decor out” time….hmmmm. He does have the week off so we’ll get some stuff done I hope–yehaw! Do we find out what you decided for the W/D in the reveal??

    1. Oh, it’s left out of these photos, but I painted that window white early on. I’m hoping to share the design plan soon so you can see more!

      1. Pleased DO NOT add me to any of your follow’s. I once asked to follow one board and was soon on a massive number of boards I am not interested in. I realize this is to your benefit, but it is not to mine. It was an intrusive, rude, inconsiderate thing for you to do.

        1. Hi Grammy, not sure what you’re referring to here, but I’d like to help if I can. I don’t add people to anything (boards, feeds, or otherwise), so maybe you clicked on a button once and didn’t mean to? Following/unfollowing is left up to the individual reader.

  2. Looks great! Yes, having a short wingspan is literally a pain. Glad Dad could help! Happy Thanksgiving, friend.

  3. I think the progress looks great! Any idea on grout color? Going to try to match the tile or go with something lighter/darker? Looks like that Ditra stuff was pretty simple to work with too. I’ve been wanting to give it a try, but currently have no rooms that need to be tiled!

    1. I’m going with a gray that seemed fine in the store, no idea how it will look once it’s in the room (if it will be lighter/darker). I’ll probably find out soon enough!

  4. Awesome job! Enjoy Thanksgiving, take some ibuprofen and get ready for your Black Friday sprint!

  5. Laying tile is the worse. Sore knees, ankles, and joints in general. I do not envy that task!