My Dirty Old Kitchen Floor

new floor
Some of the sample tiles on the old kitchen floor (I’m embarrassed to say)

So, in the middle of my panicking over not having enough time to do everything I need to do, Joe Darfler shows up at 1pm to give us an estimate on a new kitchen floor.  Now, even though Jon spends more time in the kitchen than I do, I’m the one who has a problem with the kitchen floor.  You see, it’s old, really old, and not old in the good way of being old.  It’s dirty old.  It’s not as old as the bathroom floor, which I’m sure was put in when the bathroom was in 1956, but I don’t have a problem with the bathroom floor, it’s old, but I can clean it.  The kitchen floor, I’ve scrubbed it with Spic n Span and Lestoil and Ajax,  but the dirt still won’t  come off.  There are actually parts of the floor that are starting to disintegrate.  So, I’ve basically given up on it.

Until I went to Athena’s house and saw her kitchen floor.   It’s just what I was looking for, those industrial tiles (like the kind in our bathroom) that you see in schools and hospitals, that last forever.  But Athena’s floor was not those industrial colors.   It was yellow and grey in her own design.  That’s when I got serious about the kitchen floor again.  The thing is, Jon doesn’t get it.  Somehow, it’s like he doesn’t see what the kitchen floor really looks like.  He’s surprised by my girlish “yuk” reaction to the floor that can’t be cleaned.  For a moment, just a tiny  moment I considered if I was over reacting, but no, I know it’s not me. Disgusting is disgusting and our kitchen floor is disgusting.

After meeting Joe, Jon left for his Tai Chi class.  Joe told me my options (and assured me I would never be able to get the old kitchen floor clean)  and gave me a price.  My tiles are the most inexpensive and long-lasting flooring available.  If I knew how cheap it was going to be (we have a small kitchen) I’d have done it years ago. (I know we only moved into the house in October, but I feel like I’ve been living with that kitchen floor for years) Joe said I would be sick of the floor before it wore out.  The only down side is I have to wax it once a year.  But I’m not so worried about that, I think I’ll be so happy with that new floor I’ll be glad to wax it.

Joe was here and gone in 1/2 hour.  He left a small sample box of 2 inch square tiles to choose colors from.  I started to play then forced myself to get back to work.   I think I’ll go with blue and grey, that works with the kitchen in its original 1956 colors.  Maybe a checker but probably not.   I have something more random in mind.

Kitchen Floor tile samples
Kitchen Floor tile samples

35 thoughts on “My Dirty Old Kitchen Floor

  1. omg! Look at all those colors!! I know what you mean, Maria. Our kitchen floor is the same way and it’s white. Well, it was white, now it’s just an institutional gray.

    Good luck picking a color – have fun!

  2. Oh boy. For me this would be the ultimate fun. Flow-zone time. Happy that you are going to get a floor you design. -JulieBrown

  3. P.S. I’m almost ready to do the same thing with the carpet tiles from FLOR(.com). Such a fabulous array of choices there. -JB

  4. I recognize that linoleum tile. I’ve used it before for a kitchen floor. I loved it. Great colors, durable, easy to keep clean. Every once in a while, it’s ok for something to be a “girl thing”. Go for it.

  5. I chose the same one you did Maria….I dont think it will show dirt much and yet will look very nice when its laid on your kitchen floor.

    Loved your comment….about sometimes men just dont get it….not through a womans eyes anyhow…lol!

  6. By the way, I made a patchwork quilt design out of this tile for my kitchen floor. Drove the linoleum installer a little nuts but I loved it.

  7. Maria, hmmmmm, wish I could. Unfortunately, “the ex” got that house in our divorce. We’re not in a sharing photos kind of place at present 🙂

    1. Oh too bad Heidi, I’m not the only one who would like to see it. Too bad you couldn’t pick up the floor and take it with you too. Ah Divorce….

  8. That kind of tile is indestructible (though apparently not as indestructible as the old floor – I can see why you want it gone). We installed those tiles in my husband’s house, which he turned into a rental property this year after finally moving all his stuff into my house. It was actually not difficult to do at all, except for the oddly shaped bits, since no old house is ever square. I would have loved to have had someone do it, but we were over budget on the renovation and I decreed that anything we could do, we WOULD do. I sometimes regret when I get like that. 🙂

    And I want to see Heidi’s floor too.

  9. We have the industrial tile in our kitchen. We put it in 34 years ago! It has held up to numerous dogs, dogs, kids, parties, and life in general. It’s in great shape and caring for it is not difficult. I think you made a good choice. Post pictures as you go – before, during and after, please!

  10. Maria, I can identify with the floor that was old and dirty and disintegrating. My mother wanted to buy me a new kitchen floor, and since I have six brothers and sisters, I didn’t want to take advantage of her generosity, I wanted the most economical floor available. I recalled a picture of a kitchen makeover that I really liked in a Better Homes and Gardens Magazine and dug it up. It turns out that the industrial tiles you are showing here are exactly what they used and what I chose. They would last forever and they are very inexpensive. So I chose my color. RED. My husband balked, but when I showed him the picture in the magazine, he succumbed to my choice. The first step was removing the old floor. Upon removal of the old flooring, which I am sure predated me at age 57, what do you think we discovered? Brick red linoleum. I was convinced that I had chosen the perfect color for my old home. It is true that you have to wax or polish the floor to keep it looking like the floors you see in doctor’s offices and hospitals, but I have never regretted my choice.

  11. Oh My………….did this post ring my bell. Yes, I read Jon’s as well. Of course I copied both and sent them to Hubby. Mine is 1950 and it has disolved….as it flooded. There is no end to things that need attention now.
    For some reason…and I do get why with resentment…the kitchen waits. Both posts made me laugh….
    and OH MY………..I’ve got your back !!!!
    The colors are wonderful……..can’t wait to see the new able to Clean floor. 🙂

  12. I totally get what you’re saying — I adore my husband but he can be the same way sometimes — he just doesn’t see what I see — I am so happy about your floor — it sounds terrific! 🙂

  13. I know the new floor will look lovely. I hope you give that man of yours a big kiss. They (men) can be hard to understand but we can too. I lost my guy 9 years ago and miss him somethin fierce.

  14. This reminds me of a David Wilcox song about a woman who is an artist and spills a can of paint on the kitchen floor. Instead of bemoaning the spilled paint, she is fascinated by the pattern of the spill and decides to leave it. People begin coming to see the painting on the floor and ask for their own.

    I can’t remember the name of the song or the CD it’s on, it was stolen when my car was broken into, but you could probably find it with a search on iTunes.

    Enjoy your new floor, and have fun on Sunday (and until then!).

  15. Oh the POSSIBILITIES! Just looking at all those colors I’m imagining a background with a fake “floorcloth’ in the center or tumbling black and with with the irreverent POP! of red … or yellow … or ALL of them … Wheeee! Have FUN!

  16. That is the type of floor we put in our kitchen and I love it! We have cream and brown and it ties right in with our counter top and walls. My friend did the same thing in her kitchen. No worries if you spill something and works good with dog foot prints.

  17. Good for you Maria! The blue and grey sound perfect but “random” seems even more exciting. I think as time passes you could get Jon to do the yearly waxing. (He did clean the oven after all.) 🙂

  18. Loving those tile colors! We also had a very funky, worn & dirty kitchen linoleum floor when we bought our farmhouse and it wasn’t until years later that we finally got around to ripping it up and discovering a nice fir floor beneath it, which we had refinished. When we rebuilt the mudroom we chose terra cotta colored tiles and I loved them so much we had the same put in our downstairs bathroom, but in a smaller size. With 3 dogs and 2 cats of various colors, I learned that terra cotta didn’t show the dirt and little of the animal hair, which was a great surprise! I think the same will go with the colors you are leaning towards and I look forward to seeing your finished floor.

  19. How are you cleaning the colored tiles? I have red and black — love the pattern, but need a better cleaning solution.

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