Elisha Albretsen of Pneumatic Addict has come up with a clever way to get the luxe look of patterned tile on your doorstep, without actually having to tile your front porch. It’s a ceramic tile doormat.
This tile doormat will dress up your front door very nicely. And, as Elisha points out, this DIY project is a great way to learn out how to lay tile without committing to a full tiling project.
Just follow Elisha’s step-by-step tutorial.
DIY Tile Doormat
If you follow home design blogs or read decorating magazines you know patterned tiles are everywhere! Concrete tiles and ceramic mosaic tiles are super trendy and seem to be popping up in everyone’s kitchen and bathrooms. I absolutely love the look, but I’ve laid tile before and know how difficult it can be to remove.
I wanted a way to incorporate the fun patterned tiles I’ve been coveting, without committing to a design trend that may be passé in a couple years. I came up with a DIY Concrete Tile Doormat, and I love how it turned out!
- (1) 3 x 5 sheet of ½ in. cement board
- (6) 7¾ in. x 7¾ in. ceramic tiles (I used Twenties Circle by Merola)
- (1) 11/16 x 1 x 96 in. wood “stop” trim
- (1) 10 lb. box – All Multi-purpose concrete
- (1) 1 lb. tub – sanded grout
- Construction adhesive
- ¼ in. tile spacers
- Spray paint
- 5 in. steel trowel
- Grout float
- Grouting sponge
- Measuring tape
- Miter saw
- Speed square
- Angle grinder with masonry wheel or utility knife
- 24 in. bar clamps or masking tape
Step 1: Measure Your Tiles
The first thing I did was to measure the tiles and determine what size to cut the cement board.
In addition to the tiles, I had to account for the grout lines between the tiles and around the perimeter.
I used six 7¾ in. ceramic tiles. Including the ¼ in. grout lines, the total dimensions were 24¼ in. x 16¼ in.
Step 2: Cut the Cement Board
I used an angle grinder with a masonry wheel to cut the cement board panel down to size. Another option is to use a straight edge and utility knife. Score the cement board with heavy pressure, and break over a straight edge surface like a workbench.
Step 3: Cut Pieces for the Wood Frame
I used the dimensions of my cement board panel to determine the length of my wood frame.
I set the miter on my saw to 45 degrees and placed the stop trim vertically on the saw (1 in. length oriented vertically). I cut two pieces of trim at 16¼ in. (short end to short end) and two pieces at 24¼ in. (short end to short end).
Step 4: Attach the Wood Frame to the Cement Board
To attach the frame to the cement board, I needed a strong construction adhesive.
I applied a thick bead of adhesive along the bottom edge of the short side of the trim pieces and on the faces of the mitered corners. I attached the frame to the board and made sure to align the corners.
While the adhesive dried, I clamped the frame in place to ensure a tight fit. If you don’t have clamps, you could use tape or tie-down straps.
I allowed the frame to dry fully and removed the clamps.
Step 5: Paint the Frame
Next, I sprayed three coats of paint on the frame and let it dry overnight.
Step 6: Pour the Cement
I mixed the multi-purpose concrete according to the instructions on the box. The cement sets up very quickly, so I made sure to have all my materials close by. I spread an even coat of cement inside the frame, about ¼ in. thick.
Step 7: Place the Tiles in the Frame
I quickly placed my tiles and tapped them in place. I used a scrap of ¼ in. plywood as a spacer, but ¼ in. tile spacers would ensure perfectly spaced grout lines.
Step 8: Grout the Tiles
I let the concrete dry for several hours, then mixed up the grout. I went with the color “Natural Gray” which matched the light streaked in my tiles.
I followed the instructions on the container, applying and wiping the grout residue.
The Completed Tile Doormat
The next day, the grout was dry and I placed my new tile doormat outside.
I got a dose of beautiful concrete tile in front of my house without having to spend thousands of dollars or commit to a trend.
Making this DIY tile doormat is an easy project you could make over the weekend. If you’re contemplating doing a big tile job, this would be a great project to practice on before making a big investment.
My new tile doormat is super durable and will withstand whatever Mother Nature (or my kids) can throw at it.
Elisha Albretsen writes about home improvement, decor, recipes and demystifying power tools on her blog Pneumatic Addict. She lives with her husband and twin boys in Queen Creek, Arizona.