Dollhouse Tile Floor Tutorial
There are a multitude of excellent tutorials out there for how to make your own dollhouse tile out of card stock, how to use scrapbook paper to look like dollhouse tile, etc. I was tempted to go in the make-your-own-tile direction, but then I stumbled across this bag of tiny mosaic tiles on clearance at Hobby Lobby, and I was sold! I have done some actual tiling in my real-person-size house, and this project follows most of the basic steps of any tiling project.
Here is an up close of the three colors of tile I used in this old-fashioned square tiling pattern. The dark grey, which I used to highlight the corners, is my favorite! It has an almost granite hue to it.
In most tiling or mosaic projects, it is important to use actual tile adhesive. I cut corners here and used tacky glue, since no actual feet will be walking on this flooring! To keep things super simple I used a craft stick as a trowel to spread a smooth, not too thick layer of glue across a small patch of the bare floor. Then I lined up my pattern, one square of tiles at a time. The glue stays wet for an hour or more, plenty long enough to slide a tile back into alignment if you decide something doesn't look straight.
I did notice the lines of tile closest to the walls going a bit crooked, so I peeled up some tile to re-lay it. I should have drawn a grid on the floor before I started--this is what you get for trying to save time!
Here is the floor! You can see the pattern in all its glory.
In the spirit of full disclosure, I maybe should have cut a bunch of tiles in half and slid in one more half row of tiles to fill up the space wall-to-wall. That would have kept my tile lines a teensy bit straighter. But I don't currently own those cool glass and tile cutting plier things, so I made do by leaving a narrow valley along each wall, which I filled in with grout in the next step.
Next up, the most fun but worrying part of the process--grouting!
This is a very large bag of tile grout. I looked at the tiny tubs sold at craft stores--in fact, I checked Michaels, A.C. Moore, and Hobby Lobby--but they charge $8-$10 each! I decided to check my local home improvement store, where I found this very large bag for only $3. (It was on sale, but still!). I will just have to think of more tiling projects in the near future.
I roughly followed the directions on the grout package, though I was mixing up about 1/4 of a cup of grout, not the gallon or so the package gave instructions for! As with most tiling, you stir the grout extensively, let it sit for about five minutes, then smooth it over the entire tiling surface. I used a craft stick again for this part of the process.
This is the scary part--what if you mixed the grout wrong, and it won't come back off? (Painter's tape around the edges is a good idea, too.Just in case your grout trowel gets away form you in the tiny dollhouse bathroom space!). I let the grout sit to firm up for about 30 minutes. To wipe off the grout, I used soft paper towels dipped into a cup of water over and over again, because I didn't think a sponge would fit easily in that space.
I let the surface dry for another 30 minutes, and then used a microfiber cloth to rub the tiles smooth.
And--voila! The grout adds a nice definition to the pattern, don't you think?
I was surprised by how quickly I completed this chapter in the lengthy saga of dollhouse remodeling. Laying the tile straight takes a bit of time and care, but you can work on something else while the grout sets, so that part was practically no time at all (though I do recommend setting a timer, unless you want to have a near-heart attack when you realize you let the grout turn into a layer of rough cement over the tiles!).
As a finishing touch, add baseboards around the edge of the floor!