This is the second post about a kitchen I recently finished in Fort Collins, Colorado. The first post detailed the backsplash in the same kitchen. You can find it HERE.
This particular countertop replaced a stainless steel top which had no overhang for the seating side of the counter. In order to add an area for bar stools and enable the counter to be used as a seating / eating area as well as counter space for the kitchen the existing top was replaced with this larger custom built and tiled top.
The countertop was built with four separate layers of plywood totaling 1 1/2 inches thick when complete. Rather than include corbels or exterior support for the overhang I incorporated three one inch aluminum bars built into the top itself. By having the supports built directly into the countertop itself the need for exterior support is eliminated and there are no visible supports to detract from the lines of the countertop.
The top was then covered with Schluter Ditra which is an uncoupling membrane. The mechanics of Ditra actually work differently than a physical bond directly to the substrate. By utilizing a dovetail shaped, waffle-like surface the tile is actually attached mechanically to the Ditra rather than physically bonded to it. The advantage of this method is that the actual substrate, the plywood countertop in this case, can expand and contract without transferring that movement through to the tile. Essentially the plywood substrate can move independently of the tile installed upon it. This is only one advantage of Ditra, it has many others which make it my preferred substrate for countertop installations.
The tile is “Livingston Leather” porcelain from Florida tile. The 13 x 13 inch tile is framed with 2 x 2 mosaics of the same tile. I also cut individual 2 x 2 tiles into each corner of the larger tiles. The vertical edges of the countertop are tiled and topped with a 3 x 13 inch bullnose (rounded over edge) around the counter edges.
If you need a custom tiled kitchen countertop / bar or just need a tile installation contractor in Fort Collins or any part of Northern Colorado, just give us a call or use our contact form on the right to discuss your project.
You may click on any of the photos below for a full-size version.