BATH & KITCHEN

Old House Journal - - Restore -

Noth­ing makes a bath­room or kitchen back­splash look more au­then­tic than orig­i­nal pe­riod tile. It’s a rare tile wall that sur­vives in­tact over a pe­riod of 70 years or more, how­ever, as tiles can break, suf­fer wa­ter dam­age, or be fully or par­tially re­moved.

If only a few tiles are dam­aged or heav­ily dis­col­ored, it’s pos­si­ble to re­place them with new tile of sim­i­lar size, color, and fin­ish. Early 20th-cen­tury hexes, penny rounds, and “sub­way” tiles are avail­able from at least two sources, in both glazed and unglazed fin­ishes and mul­ti­ple col­ors.

Make sure the re­place­ment tile matches in all de­tails: size (width x length x depth), square edge or round edge. In­stall on a clean sub­strate and fol­low the man­u­fac­turer’s in­struc­tions, tak­ing care to butt the tile closely to sur­round­ing tile us­ing grout lines as nar­row or wide as the rest of the tile. Match re­place­ment tile (this is from Sub­way Ce­ram­ics) closely to the old, in­clud­ing de­tails like tight grout lines.

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