Wednesday, July 9th, 2008
A hundred million years or so ago, I bought some black and white hexagon tile for our kitchen countertops. At that time I perkily predicted we’d get started on the tiling in “a couple of weeks.” Oh, that silly, silly 2005 me. How hopeful and bright and full of speedy renovation the future seemed then!
Now I accept that all projects will take not just three times longer than initially predicted but 10 times longer, 15 times longer, 100 million years longer. Take, for example, last week when Darwin was on vacation and I was at home, and I thought surely we could get the master bathroom finished once and for all. Of course, that did not happen. All it lacks is a little caulk and some touch-up paint, but I’m sure that will be enough to hold up the project’s completion for another century at least.
In the mean time, now that I’m working from home, staring all our unfinished projects are starting to get on my last nerve, especially the kitchen countertops. It’s funny how you can overlook for more than three years the paint-splattered, outdated, gold-flecked laminate countertops, and then one day you just SEE them and suddenly they have to go or your head will explode.
One hold-up all this time – besides laziness and busyness and countertop blindness – has been the backsplash. I bought the hexagon tiles for the horizontal surface of the countertops, but I never bought the subway tiles for the backsplash or the black tiles for the edges. The main reason for that is I could never figure out what to do with the backsplash behind the sink. It’s a tall, useless, empty space, like what most people have behind a stove, the place where the homeowners on Kitchen Renovations on the DIY Network (which I’ve had on in the background nonstop lately) tend to put some snazzy “accent tiles.”
That seems like a good idea to me, but I’m nervous any accent tile I choose will begin to look hokey and crapola to me in a few short years. I don’t want something trendy or too specific that I’ll get sick of. I just want something plain and black and white … I guess.
This is the kind of decision that always holds up our progress – so tiny yet so monumental. We’ll have the same conversation about it 50 times over the course of two years, always getting all worked up about it and then letting it recede into the back of our minds again for three months, while the project stalls.
So I need help, folks. Tell me what to do. One thing we’ve considered is making a band of black around the room with these square black tiles I found, and bumping the band up into the backsplash a few extra inches. And when I was playing around with it in Photoshop, I found another configuration I liked. So what do you think? Would something like this work?
I like the first one more, but then the faucet gets lost in the black tile, whereas the second one highlights the faucet. Remember the field will be rectangular subway tiles, so that may complicate matters.