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Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Questions, answers and advice for people who own or work on houses built during the 20th century.

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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby crazyjo on Sun Jun 29, 2008 9:49 am

It is, thanks for that information! I've had my eye on the Jane Powell books...I guess the time has come to go get them. Thanks everyone for your ideas.

Carol ~ Yes, we're pretty sure it's original because of the way it slides right into the chair rail. The whole thing just feels like one piece and the few renovations done to this house were not that sensitive. To the best of our knowledge, the house was built in 1920.

Once again, thanks everyone!
1920 Bungalow
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby utopia13 on Sun Jun 29, 2008 11:28 am

Hi crazyjo! I have that "tile" too. ca '20's Bungalow. Unfortunately, the po decided that he should "freshen up" the paint in the bath...so he painted the entire thing in cheap flat paint. You can see what happened in the shower area. I couldn't help myself & got out my heat gun to check out the condition of my "tile". Imagine my surprise!

For now, I have shower liners hanging all the way around :evil:

Sink area..I've got the ghosting as well...

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Funky shower area...

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I truely wish he'd have left it alone! It seems when it was painted with the oil base paint, you could actually shower without ending up with paint chips at your feet!
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ca 1916 Craftsman Bungalow
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby crazyjo on Mon Jun 30, 2008 2:26 pm

That's how I discovered ours, too! When we first moved in, we just assumed someone had painted over tile, thought "how stupid is that?" and when to work with the soygel. I realized who the stupid one was when I found that plaster underneath... :oops:
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby scooter on Tue Jul 01, 2008 5:53 pm

to all you people with the plaster still in the shower area, how is it standing up? my bathroom has the faux plaster tile but was replaced with lousy universal fiberglass surround at some point. seeing as how the rest of the bathroom has the plaster tile I was thinking about putting in some durock and then using durabond over it as it would probably stand up longer than I'll be around!
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby mollywobbles on Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:36 pm

I have a 1912 bungalow with the plaster tile design on lower walls. After 96 years of paint, paint no longer sticks in some areas. I started stripping one wall--it's looking much like yours, crazyjo. So far very little damage to it and plaster seems in good shape all over. i would like to keep the tile pattern and paint it, but it's a huge job for me (on my own). it's been suggested I clean,cover with PlasterWeld, skimcoat, then paint. Have thought about putting in wainscoting, even new PVC beadboard, but it may be a bit pricey for me. Wondering what others in the same situation are doing.
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby MsPiggy858 on Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:11 pm

I just uncovered 5x5" tiles in my 1918 home's half bath. I had pretty much figured out what they were and did a search to find out how common they are when I stumbled upon this forum. I just took a trip to Lowes to try to figure out how I was going to cover it all up. Now, after reading all of this, I'm thinking I might try to save it! After peeling off three layers of wallpaper I found them. They are covered in MANY layers of paint, and some have chipped off in big chunks. I think I will definitely need stripped before I can do anything with it. There is evidence that there was a one inch chair rail, which I understand was normal. Now I have to rethink the whole project! I was hoping this would be done in a few days, now I have decisions to make!

Thanks for all the advice on this forum about what to do!
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby elsmerian on Thu Jun 24, 2010 6:37 am

It's not just bungalows. We have a 1927 Dutch Colonial and when we retiled our bathroom last year we discovered this etched plaster as well. I think it was pretty common during that period. I'm not sure how well it would really hold up around the shower area because of all the moisture (I would think most homes in the 1920s had baths rather than showers, so moisture would have been less of an issue), but it's something I wish we had been able to keep. Unfortunately when the old tile was taken down (it was installed in the 1960s directly on top of the plaster) most of the old subway-tile plaster was ripped off with it so repair would have been virtually impossible. But at least we still have a small remnant on the wall behind the linen closet and in the kitchen.

BTW, I noticed in your pictures that you seem to have a linen cabinet by your bathroom door. We have something that, at least from that angle, looks almost exactly similar. Is it original to your house? Do you have any other pictures of it? I've been trying to date mine, but have been having trouble. Thanks.
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby schmthaus on Sat Jun 26, 2010 5:25 pm

Below is the exact wording from the original 'Blueprint Specifications' for my 1910 Mission Foursqaure...(which also had the plaster bathroom tile)


Cement Wainscot. 12. The bath rooms throughout the building shall have a “Keene’s Cement” wainscot mixed in exact accordance with the manufacturer’s speci-fications. The finish coat to be trowelled to a fine glossy surface, marked off in imitation of tile; wainscot to be 4’-6” high.
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby schmthaus on Sat Jun 26, 2010 6:00 pm

From the following website: http://chestofbooks.com/architecture/Bu ... sters.html


242. Keene's Cement
Keene's Cement. When it is necessary to give walls, ceilings, etc. a hard and highly polished surface, a prepared plaster known as Keene's cement is generally used as a finishing coat. Strictly speaking, this is not a cement, but is made of plaster of Paris, soaked in a solution of alum and then recalcined. Applied to the walls, this material becomes very hard and takes a high polish, so that surfaces finished with it may be washed without injury. Its hardness also makes it very satisfactory to use for finishing the lower portions of walls where the surface is liable to injury by contact with furniture, etc.
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Re: Plaster "tile" in Bungalow Bathroom

Postby rehabbingisgreen on Sat Jun 26, 2010 10:11 pm

Ok so I was reading this thread today and happen to notice that the faux tile I thought I had in the upstairs bath was in fact this very thing. How very interesting! I had to go take some photo's of course :) Mine has wallpaper on the top of the wall but some is loose so I was able to show under where the tile design meets the flat and where the original dividing trim used to be.

I love this site so much! It is so nice to have a place to learn so much.

Our house is said to have been built right around 1900.
Attachments
019.JPG
photo with the wallpaper pulled up to expose the faux tile and place where the trim used to be.
019.JPG (220.88 KiB) Viewed 7442 times
016.JPG
Example in the corner of the room
016.JPG (251.26 KiB) Viewed 7447 times
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