The Cool House: Inspiration after the fact

Friday, February 19, 2010

Inspiration after the fact

Shower walls: 8 x 13 porcelain tiles
I think the hiatus on the master bathroom renovation while I went to Palm Springs Modernism Week reinvigorated everyone. By late afternoon yesterday the shower was covered in anthracite Talis in a running bond pattern (the iphone camera makes it look brown) and half the bath walls were tiled in mosaic Eidos Grafito (both by Porcelanosa); perfectly positioned against the vertical Carrera marble slabs.

Master bath walls: 8 x 13 ceramic mosaic tiles
To tell the truth I was a little worried about the marble edge but it seemed the most creative way to solve the dilemma of joining two tiles with differing patterns and thicknesses. I'd never seen it done before - not in real life, not in a modern setting - and I wanted to ensure it looked neither obnoxious nor like the entrance to a mausoleum. After lots of research on the vanity top option I had decided marble would be the best way to keep within the grey/black palette; it also repeats the counter in the powder room and the credenzas in the great room and dining room, and I want to maintain continuity throughout the house. Once I'd settled on that for the horizontal planes it seemed fussy to add another element - wood - for the vertical.

Second floor Women's Restrooms, Gettty Villa: black marble mosaic tile
It's funny how you can worry about the details - even though the tiler, the contractor, the carpenter, the painter and most importantly The Guy assured me it was the simplest solution. I really seconded guessed myself for days and several sleepless night in Palm Springs until I found tranquility and validation in the restrooms of the Getty villa in Los Angeles. Mosaic and marble - classic but uniquely modern.


Nadine @ BDG said...

It's looking FAB! You'll be the cleanest woman in town, mesmerized by admiring your new tiles.

Paul Anater said...

I love the tile you used in your shower. It's simple, substantial and truly beautiful.

modernemama said...

Thanks. Is it weird that I like dark showers? I cannot wait until the final plumbing is done next week.

details and Design said...

Funny! I just specified the same mosaic tile from porcelanosa for a BHG Kit and BAth ideas kitchen ( not a real one but one they had me design save and splurge) and used a porcelanosa tile on floors...they have a pix of your very tile in the mag! small world...and looks awesome! does the "pre done" aspect of the mosaic bother you? I have not used it in real life yet but have done a lot of their other curious as to what you think about it after the fact! ~~Cheryl

modernemama said...

Cheryl - I first used the mosaic about 4 years ago as a cheaper (and easier to clean) alternative to stone and glass mosaic. See here.
I was absolutely blown away by the quality of the porcelain, it has fooled even high-end stone workers. I love the way you can get a different look simply by choice of grout color. The only issue for tile setters is that there is a lot of grout!

Laura @ the shorehouse. said...

I'm been on bloggy hiatus partially due to extreme tile shopping...I should have been filming. We're settling on a bit of a funky and modern floor for our shower -- much like the mosaic you've show. I'm a little nervous about the somewhat scattered pattern we've put together for our hundred year old house...but to be honest if I have to go back to one more tile store I'll scream. :-)

I can't WAIT to see yours in its final glory.

modernemama said...

Laura - it was the original '68 funky mosaic tile on the floor in the downstairs bath that set us off - those squares are now repeated in shower drains, hardware and lighting. It was an unconscious choice of motif but we can;t see to get away from i now!