So a little bit of background about the house. When Oli and I bought our pad, it was neglected. It wasn’t falling apart at the seams (well, at least not entirely), but it hadn’t been taken care of. Every room needed work of some description.
Some rooms needed urgent work, like the dining room, which had suffered a leak at some point and this had caused the plaster to come away from the walls, or the bedroom which was just plain ugly with its peeling wallpaper and filthy carpet. And as for the bathroom! So, the money went pretty quick on replastering, painting, carpeting and fitting a sparkly new bathroom. These were the priority rooms.
Other rooms were liveable. The living room wasn’t exactly how we wanted it; it had shiny, flowery feature wallpaper and needed a fresh lick of paint, but there was nothing wrong with it. Same in the kitchen. Aside from being painted a terrifying shade of acid yellow, it was in pretty good nick. We re-painted a neutral colour first and then we left it a while.
We both liked the white metro tiles that were already in place in the kitchen, but the grout was looking grubby. Then I heard about grout pens! They were a revelation: so cheap and so easy to use. We wanted to go dark, but black felt a bit too dark, so we opted for a dark grey shade and ordered two grout pens from Amazon for £3.99 each.
These pens are so easy to use and come in all sorts of different shades. So if you want an update, give them a try. Here’s how we did it (including mistakes I made, that you can avoid).
- Give the grout and tiles a good clean. I just got a bowl of warm water with washing up liquid and a bit of vinegar and gave them a good scrub with an old nail brush. Leave to dry for at least a few hours. I was a bit lazy at first and didn’t bother with a good clean; as the grout was a bit greasy it just meant the pen didn’t really work, so it’s worth taking the extra time to have a good old scrub first.
- Give your pen a good shake and press the nib into some kitchen roll on a flat surface to get it flowing. Then it is literally a matter of drawing it onto your grout. Go slow so that the pigment can penetrate down into the grout.
- If any areas of the grout aren’t clean, you’ll probably find that the pen doesn’t take. Just rub it back with kitchen roll, give it a really good scrub clean and try again.
- Wipe off any excess from the tile with a kitchen towel. Our tiles are glazed so this was easy enough – I would be much more careful with non-glazed tiles!
- Leave to dry overnight (we left our for about 24 hours) and then give the tiles a wipe with soapy water to get the last of the excess off and to see that the pen has taken properly.
- Some areas (especially grubby areas of those that had been greasy) may need ta couple of coats.
And that’s it! Easy or what? I know a couple of my followers had a go after I posted our results with success and I’d love to know if you give it a try too.