We have created
several tile surrounds for display in our showroom and as part of customers' fireplace renovation projects. Using historic
methods as our guide, we construct metal pans, lined with cement board
(Ultra Board, Hardibacker) into which we lay the tile. We use a high
temperature adhesive - high temp silicone works great for us - and lay
the tiles tightly against each other in the pan. This
way the tiles are easy to lay, and all the materials are fireproof for
use around the fireplace. I took the photo at left when Mike was
installing a new display in the store.
The next day, allowing for the adhesive to set up properly, we can attach the tiled surround to the face of the fireplace. We design the pans to be approximately 3-4 inches larger than the mantel opening, as the mantel will overlay the outer edges. This also means that the tiles laid in the outer edges of the pan don't have to be perfect in cut and size. Using this method, no grout is needed for a tiled fireplace facing and the result rewards you with a great vintage look. The finished installation, shown right, looks great!
Here are a few more tile photos. Be sure and see our great selection of vintage style reproduction fireplace tiles.