Tile Installed - Toilets Installed and Interior Walls Painted

July 1, 2001 - Well, you didn't need to be much of a weatherman to know that we have been going through a hot spell even by Houston standards. Last night it was made official - the past month was the hottest June on record! There were so many days that the mercury hit 100 we stopped counting. And the days when it was just under 100, the humidity made it feel like a sauna.  Working in it has been miserable, but we got a great deal of work done in June and are on track to have our anchor tenant (Silver Rock Productions) move in on August 1.

This week we got some relief from the heat by being able to work indoors. Over 1000 square feet of porcelain tile was installed in the hallways, bathrooms, kitchens and entry areas. Some of tile came from a storage unit of a contractor who bought it for an upscale condo project that was cancelled. Most of the tile was purchased at the American Tile store on FM 1960, Martin, the manager of the store, and Lynn, an interior designer helped us select a really nice tile. We learned some things about tile I will share with you.

When it comes to tile there is an incredibly large number of colors, patterns, sizes and textures to choose from. Walking into a tile store the size of American Tile can be overwhelming. They have tile here from $.39/square foot to fifteen dollars for a single tile. Since we are working on a tight budget, we looked only for the "yellow stickers" which were their sale items.  

We looked at both ceramic tile and porcelain tile, and ultimately chose porcelain. Ceramic is made primarily of clay mixed with various minerals and water which is then heated to create a solidified product. Ceramic material is porous so the top surface is usually sealed with a glaze which gives the tile its design and texture.

The key ingredient in porcelain tile is finely-ground sand which is subject to pressure and extremely high temperatures. This results in a very dense, glass-like tile with a very low water absorption rate. Porcelain is denser and stronger than ceramic tile  It is also more challenging to install. Luckily, we have some excellent installers who came up with an interesting pattern and did a great job on the floors.

With the tile all but finished, next week we will turn our attention to installing the toilets. We found a great place to buy ADA oval toilets at about half the price you will find them at the big box stores. Banco Supply is in Pasadena, TX (a long way from The Woodlands, but worth the drive). It is in a run-down part of town, and their store is a no-frills warehouse filled with lots of wallboard, moldings, lights, toilets, and other odds and ends. It looks like they buy close out items - for example you can buy toilets here, but not the wax rings needed to install them. You can get their contact information from the Craigslist ads they run on a regular basis.

The guys from Silver Rock also made their interior paint selections this week and 2 coats of a really nice khaki color latex paint (again from the local Glidden store) were used for the walls. We also got two coats of black paint on two of the walls in the studio. The timing is perfect in that we have a photo shoot scheduled for an oil field client next week.

Late this afternoon we also received a shipment of counter-top laminate from WilsonArt in Temple, Texas. It is simply beautiful, and we plan on installing it on all of the counter-tops in the kitchen and bathrooms next week. We have an experienced installer and we will be detailing the step-by-step installation of the laminate. 




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