This small space in my house was not designed well. Note the useless space under the counter. White laminate cabinets and yellow walls made for a clean work area but this is right by my back door! Visually, not very appealing. Yet, I was not in the mood for a space modification that would have included removing and possibly replacing cabinets. I wanted a cheap fix. I was lucky enough to have found plenty of left-over white subway tiles in my basement from a prior job, to use on the back splash. The counter was going to be a challenge. As luck would have it, I was checking out the new Menard’s in Ann Arbor and spotted black and white granite tiles for $1.88 each. Bingo!
I bought a dozen. Enough for the counter and extra pieces cut for the bull nose. The first task was to rip out the laminate back splash so the tile goes all the way to the counter. Tiling a back splash and leaving the existing 4″ piece is a big NO NO. Confusing to the eye and does not look intentional. Looks like an afterthought which you don’t want. I installed the subway tile in the traditional brick pattern. Once set and grouted, I moved to the counter.
Using the 12×12 granite tiles on laminate requires some prep.
Clean and dust after you have scratched the surface with a medium grit paper. I use an electric sander because it is faster. Tiles were installed with regular mortar and the front edge tiles are left hanging over the front edge the same depth as a tile thickness. You will then cut the bullnose pieces to fit underneath with a very minimal grout space. The bullnose pieces will need to be glued with Epoxy and clamped until they are secure. Once everything is in, use an unsanded grout to blend the colors, in this case a medium gray, so the visual effect looks seamless and more like a solid slab.
Softened the floor with a matt from Costco for $9.00. My total investment, including the new hardware for the doors, tile, decal, rug, and rack was about $200 and it’s given me lots of “Wow!”