DIY Tile Tabletop: Using Merola Tiles
Let’s first talk about the dreamy black and white (link to tile here) Merola tiles. Who else has been oohing-ahhing at these for the last year or so?
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They are such a trend in home decor right now since they are an affordable option to cement tiles and their bold black and white pattern is adding interest to every kitchen and bathroom around! Well, you know I would love to have a bathroom or kitchen or something filled with these gorgeous tiles, but for this girl who’s working on a small budget always and a small home, I’m running out of money and space for these kind of projects. That just made me think outside the box even more so, how I could have these bold beautiful tiles in my home. That’s when the Spring and Summer projects came in mind. Our Outdated Patio Set updated surface, was not doing so well two years later. We needed a new solution to the patio table and though I really just wanted to buy something new…$300-$500 just wasn’t in the budget. I thought about just re-doing the top again as we had in the past, but then a tile top popped in my head. This seemed like it would be a much easier option too…since the hubby and I have a problem with our “carpentry” projects not always turning out so perfect. I figured tile would be easy and all we would have to do is build a frame around the edge. A DIY Tile Tabletop would be the perfect solution!
1 x 2.5″ (3 pieces)
Molding for top trim same thickness as tile.
Our original makeover on this table I spray painted the table with black spray paint. Considering the piece was slightly chippy from it being so old, the spray paint held up well these past two summers. I also always recommend their comfort grip for large spray paint projects like this!
First, we added a thin piece of plywood cut to size of the table, directly on top. Try not to get too thick or heavy of a piece of wood, since the tile will make it heavy and you don’t want to add too much weight to the raggedy outdated patio table.
Next, place the tiles on top of wood trying to keep the rim of the wood the same all the way around.
Trace tiles while they are on top of the wood.
By having the outline this will help when placing the tile back on top. Begin to Mix mortar and apply starting in one corner and working your way down. This tile is like working with a puzzle piece so be sure to not jump all over but work in one section to the next.
Once Tile is all in place let dry overnight. Be sure to choose a non-rainy day or week to do this project.
apologize for the lighting this project we started after the kids went to bed.
*Tip be sure to not get too much mortar around the edge of the table. You are going to be placing your frame here so be as neat as possible. Any excess you can always scrape off.
Okay, an honest story here! If you follow along on Instagram then you have seen my frustrating insta stories…where I grouted the tile the next day and then a big rain storm came through! Yep, you can only imagine. The tiles ended popping up in some areas and we had to scrape and re-do the tiling on some of the table. The project I promise is very easy, but for some reason, we had a black cloud over our heads when doing this project (no pun intended). I think overall even after all the hurdles we had, it still came out pretty amazing..oh and I didn’t mention I bought wood and had it cut at the store and came home to realize my cuts were all wrong. A waste of money and time. So yes, black cloud status here..but as always we have a plan B and it all turns out alright at the end.
On to the framing of the project. Be sure to buy wood trim that is close in thickness to the tile. This will allow the table to be flush and flat. Also, if you have chairs that have an arm be sure to measure for that as well because you are going to want to push your chairs under the table when sitting.
Here we built the frame using our nail gun and nailing the trim right into the wood frame. We chose not to do angle cuts since this would be the easiest to assemble. If you’re a pro craftsman do all the fancy angle cuts of choice. We’re still not there 4 years into DIYing.
This is a close-up shot of the table ready for its top frame. As I mentioned we chose a thickness close to the tile thickness. We assembled to the edge of a table and then grouted inside the line.
That’s it! Super easy if it doesn’t rain on ya!
Funny thing…it was raining when I took these photos too, fortunately, everything is dry and complete. We thought about maybe sealing the grout with a clear epoxy just to make it even better for the outdoor weather.
UPDATE: We have since sold our house and moved since we moved we did not take our table with us due to it’s weight and inconvenience. I believe with sealing the table, covering it or moving to a shed during winter, and correctly building, this table can last you a few years. I get many questions on that and unfortunately we moved so I don’t have a true update on how it held up.