DIY Instructions for Ceramic Tile Installation

Installing your own tile can save money and is easier than you might think. Follow these simple steps to create a beautifully tiled backsplash, bathroom, fireplace, or floor. Here are the materials and tools you will need. Good luck and have fun!
Diy Tool Materials

Before You Begin

Verify Your Order

Is it correct and complete?

Layout Your Project

Arrange your tiles to enhance the variation inherent in their handmade character. Make sure they fit the measurments of the space to be tiled.

Locate Cuts

Find which tiles you need to cut. We recommend a wet saw for straight, clean cuts. Cut the tile glaze side down, to prevent the finished edge from chipping.

Select a Surface

Concrete makes the best tile adhearance surface and comes in several forms. Do not adhere ceramic tile to wood because wood will warp. An exception may be made for very small projects.

POURED CONCRETE Do not cover the surface with a sealer.

HARDIBACKER™ This ceramic tile backer board comes in many different thicknesses. Score and cut it like sheetrock or with a masonry saw blade.

UNPAINTED SHEETROCK or DENSESHIELD™ This is the next best surface to adhere tile to.

Prepare the Surface

Any surface that tile is adhered to must be structurally sound, dry and free from oil, grease, dust, loose and peeling paint, concrete sealers and curing compounds. Sand any painted surfaces. Clean all surfaces your tiles will be adhered to with a dry towel.

Adhere Tile

Clay Squared recommends thinset mortar to adhere tile. Wear rubber gloves and mix only as much mortar as you can set in 20-30 minutes. 100% Silicone comes in a tube and also works well to adhere tiles in small projects. Use silicone specifically for glass tiles as it dries clear.

Mix Mortar

Follow manufacturer’s directions or pour thinset mortar powder into your bucket and slowly add water, mixing thoroughly with a trowel until mixture reaches a creamy, peanut butter consistency.

Spread Mortar

With a notched trowel, spread your mortar mixture across the surface to be tiled. To guarantee full coverage on our handmade tile, we recommend that you also thinly back butter the tile (apply mortar to the back of the tile).

Allow Tiles to Set 24-48 Hours


The filler between tile joints is not an adhesive but rather a concrete material called grout:

SANDED For joints 1/8” and larger. Best with most handmade tile. (Sanded grout will not scratch the glazed surface of your tile.)

UNSANDED For joints less than 1/8”. Best with most commercial tile.

EPOXY The strongest of grouts, it comes sanded or unsanded with added polymer chemicals.

Mask Dimensional or Matte Tiles

Apply masking tape to the face of dimensional or matte tiles before grouting speeds clean up and prevents grout from adhering to unglazed areas. Remove tape once grout has been cleaned.

Fill Joints

Wear rubber gloves. Force grout diagonally into joints with a rubber grout float or gloved hand. Ensure joints are completely filled. Wipe clean with a dry paper towel until haze is entirely gone. Do not use water.

Cure Grout 24 Hours

Allow grout to cure 24 hours before using tiled surface or applying an optional sealer.


DO NOT DUMP any mortar or grout water IN THE SINK – it destroys plumbing. ALWAYS clean your hands, tools and buckets with a SEPARATE BUCKET of clean water.

Installation Instructions for Clay Squared Art Tiles and Accessories

Diy Switchplate 200

Installing Switch Plates

Our ceramic switch plates come supplied with color matching plastic screws. Use a screw driver to tighten screws by hand. Do not use power tools to install switch plates. Ceramic switch plates do not bend. They will break if screws are overtightened.

DO NOT overtighten screws.

DO NOT use power tools.

Diy House Number Installation

Installing House Numbers

Hold your house numbers up to the side of your house and mark the hole location with a pencil. Pre-drill holes. Use a masonry bit to drill holes into any stucco exterior. Ceramic house numbers do not bend and will break if screws are overtightened.

DO NOT overtighten screws.

DO NOT use power tools.

Diy Medieval Install

Installing Medieval Floral Tiles

To Hang: Use the impressions on the back of the tile to hang either horizontally or at a 45 degree angle. It is recommended the tile be hung from a screw in the wall.

Every Medieval Floral tile is a one of a kind, hand carved, bas relief tile made by Josh Blanc. Each tile is individually hand glazed and fired.

Diy Cosmic Install

Installing Cosmic Spot Art Tile

To Hang: Use either a gallery hanger or install a screw in the wall.

Every Cosmic Spot is a one of a kind, handmade tile created by Josh Blanc.

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