Thursday, December 12, 2013

DIE Lots

Yes, yes, I know. It should properly be spelled "dye" lots; as in, those batches of manufactured goods that are processed at the same time so they are the exact same color, shading, thickness, etc. But when you're really frustrated with poor quality control, it feels like it should be DIE lots!

Our bathroom remodel is coming along very slowly, but we aren't being helped by Chinese outsourcing. Namely, I discovered that all my boxes of glass mosaic tile must be from disparate dye lots. It became strikingly clear when I noticed one set of sheets was a good 1/8" smaller than another set. That doesn't sound like much, but over a one square foot sheet composed of one inch tiles and scant 1/8" grout lines, it means the joints won't line up!

As I frantically started comparing all 70 square feet of tile, I began to realize there are some pretty dramatic shade variations going on, too. Each sheet is composed of three colors; an icy seafoam, a medium blue-green, and a taupe. I now have five boxes with about six different permutations! The palest color may match between two boxes, but the taupe will be off. On others, the taupes look the same but the blue-green shade is very different. Overall, some of the boxes have a much bluer hue and some a greener. I've now spent hours on my hands and knees trying to figure out exactly how many tiles I need for each wall of the tub surround and finding enough similar ones for each surface. If the tiles weren't such a good deal, they would definitely be going back!

 photo 2013-12-12011.jpg
The camera doesn't capture the variations well, but you can probably see the far right box doesn't look much like the middle and left boxes!


  1. Oh, that's terrible. Will you have enough?

  2. I think I can make it work, but it's sure taking a lot of time and energy!