New and improved backsplash and counter

I posted a while back about sealing my backsplash and counter with silicone caulking. There was a problem with it. The black was extremely shiny and distracting. We didn’t want the granite to be outshone, so I ripped it out the caulking between the counter and backsplash in the most visible areas of the kitchen. The caulking in the breadbox and the heavily-shaded-under-the-cabinets-area stayed because they weren’t glaring back at us during our every day activities. This left the top edge of the backsplash and the bottom edge unfinished.

The top edge. The fix was a bead of ‘clear’  silicone caulking on the top edge, followed by a nice swipe of a plastic wedge give a nice profile. (By the way, I hate using the word “clear” — noncolored, transparent seems a better term.) This caulking is not nearly as shiny. It is reflective, but most light is allowed through the material, which we find -very- attractive when compared to the black caulking.

The bottom edge: When I first laid down the granite tiles for the counter, Mr. TellBlast and I mixed black grout out in the garage. The weather isn’t as nice as it was then, so I bought a tub of ready-made gray grout. Not really happy about gray, but there was no black, and I wanted to re-grout some places where the original grout didn’t hold. I made all of the seams turn gray one night.

Last night, I made them black.

grout pen in use

The grout pen. Gray grout against black tiles wasn’t the best look. It was passable, but I knew I had seen grout pens at the stores. However, there were no black pens at our local stores.

What’s a girl to do? Visit ebay! A person can find almost anything there. I finally got the pen (shipped from the U.K. for a total of less than $10) and spent last night ‘re-grouting.’

Here are the results, which we love. You probably can’t tell the difference from the photos, but believe me, you ought to consider a grout pen if you need a new look, but not new tiles. WE LOVE IT!

Water clean-up, extremely easy to apply and quick, no fumes (I say this because we considered using a Sharpie), one hour to dry. I used only one coat and do not anticipated needing a second coat. For up to 60m of seams, this pen is a great value.

grout CollageI still need to go over the seams on the other side of the sink, so we have a few spots that look unfinished (see the backsplash below), but give me one more night and the ENTIRE COUNTER will go from OK to FANTASTIC.

grout pen seam in progress


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