A blog about the restoration, remodel and renovation of a 1929 Chicago-style brick bungalow

Bathroom Odds & Ends

Last night we cut and installed the top half of the sink/toilet wall. Sconces will go on either side of the medicine cabinet.


We’re a little shy of 8 feet long, so we had to cut some of the long ends off. Lo and behold the leftover strips from these 2 sheets will fit perfectly side-by-side near the ceiling to complete the wall. I love when that works out!

In addition to the ceiling we still have the door wall to do. I started to cut it out this morning but I need a second person to help move it so that will have to wait for Pete to get home from work.


I thought I might start tiling today, but I decided to finish scrubbing the chimney and apply the sealer instead. I bought the Low Lustre sealer from Behr (Home Depot).

I scrubbed the bricks with a cheap grill brush and then vacuumed it really well with the Shop Vac. I don’t mind the dark spots and imperfections, so I wasn’t going to go crazy with cleaning.


The sealer looks milky out of the jug and it’s very thin. I applied it with a cheap brush and a roller with a nap suited for uneven/rough surfaces. It took no time at all to apply two coats. It seemed to darken the brick slightly (no photo of that yet), but it doesn’t bother me.

After that I thought I better recheck my tiling plan, and it’s a good thing I did. We bought oversize subway tile which I thought was 4″ x 16″, but when I measured one it was really 4″ x 15-3/4″.

For the short faucet wall (on the right in the illustration below), we installed a 32″ x 60″ sheet of Durock and with the wall adjustment we had to make to compensate for the lack of original tile flooring, it made that wall a little wider, so almost 34″ total. The faucet holes are about 14″ on center from the back wall, and I originally planned to center the tiles based on that (and therefore cut about 2″ off the long tiles close to the wall). When I realized the tiles were less than 16″,  it seemed like it was really going to throw things off.

I determined if I use 2 full tiles along with the 2″ bullnose trim it would fit perfectly to the corner/edge of that wall, however that meant the faucet holes are slightly off-center to the tiles and I wasn’t sure if that would look weird. So while I was out running errands I stopped at The Tile Shop where we bought the tile and asked them about it. The guy assured me it wouldn’t look weird at all and that my layout looked good. So I’m going to hope he’s right and just go with it.


Finally, I thought I’d do a quick rendering of what I’m envisioning with the slate ledge/surround. At first I was going to just do a 90° angle where the corners meet, but after trying it both ways I think it’ll look much better if we follow the curve of the tub.


There’s really no room to continue the slate along the back wall nor on the faucet wall, so I’m just going to have it go straight back to the tile. I might try and get some quotes from a stone/countertop installer to see how much it would cost to have them measure and cut the slate. Along with the curve of the tub, it might be rather difficult to get a tight fit against the brick.



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