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Last month we finished work on this beautiful Craftsman style kitchen in Tacoma, WA for homeowners, Robert and Timothy who happen to be tile makers, and owners of Grid Architectural Surfaces + Tile.  As you can see their handmade tile features prominently here on the floor and the backsplash.


I really think Robert and Timothy did a fantastic job of opening up and updating the kitchen while still preserving the incredible character of their home.


It seems like wet bars went out of style for a while there, but they are definitely making a comeback and we find ourselves installing more and more of them in the kitchens we remodel. For the backsplash Robert and Timothy were able to re-purpose the glass panels from the dining room wainscoting which were removed when they opened up the entryway to the kitchen.  The glass was cut into hexagonal tiles at their studio using a water jet, then carefully arranged into sheets for installation.


No matter how much we tweaked the cabinet design, we kept ending up with a bunch of extra space next to the fridge.  Not wanting that space to go to waste, I suggested we build some open shelves using matching panels from IKEA.  In the end it looks great, and works perfectly for storing bottles of wine, glasses, and decorative pieces.


I really love the handmade hexagonal tile here.  The variation in color and slight imperfections and differences in each tile combine to create a richness and depth of character that you just can’t get with factory made commercial tile.


To finish off the end of the island, and to add support for the granite, we decided to make a custom open shelf cabinet using matching panels from IKEA.


IKEA’s LIDINGO cabinets were a perfect choice for this kitchen.  The cabinets look perfectly at home amongst the traditional moldings and the original coffered ceiling in this 1905 house.


Finishing touch:  The tile ended up a little higher than the hardwoods in the dining room, and while most people would have just settled for a wood or metal transition strip, these guys are perfectionists, so they decided to make these custom bullnose tiles by hand.  It was tricky business because, being an older house, the room wasn’t perfectly square so each tile had to be individually shaped to the room to get a nice straight line.

All in all it was a fun project for us, and another project we are proud to have been a part of!

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