Charmean Neithart loves interior design and all things houses. For the last 18 years, she has been designing homes throughout Southern California for a varied clientele. “The collaborative nature of projects with clients is my favorite part,” said the senior designer at Charmean Neithart Interiors in South Pasadena, CA. “I like spaces that I design to read like a biography of the clients’ needs, experiences and travels. I consider it sport to have every detail of the room give a perspective on the client.”

Neithart, who was recently tasked with re-designing a cottage in Altadena, CA, utilized colored glass tile from Lunada Bay Tile to accent the kitchen and living room features, which provide a nice pop of color in each room. “This lady wanted her home to look tropical,” said Neithart of the 1,700-square-foot space. “She wanted it to look beachy with greens and blues.”

For the re-design, which included widening doorways and adding new windows and wood floors throughout the house, Neithart designed a tiled backsplash in the kitchen, as well as a vibrantly colored tiled fireplace in the living room.

“The backsplash was the main star of the show,” said Neithart, who used 1 ¼- x 5-inch glass tiles from Lunada Bay Tile’s Agate collection. The Taiko pattern was selected, a wave-like design, in the color “Lucca” with a silk finish, which is very elegant and smooth to the touch.

“I found the tile first and set the palette [of the design] according to that tile,” Neithart explained. “I use Lunada Bay Tile a lot, and I feel with their tile, you have to do something quiet on the countertops because there’s a lot of movement and color. If you do something busy on the countertop, it takes away from the tile, which is why I did a basic Caesarstone. I also pulled the cabinet color from the tile.”

A couple of rooms over, in the living room, Neithart selected a more vibrant blue-colored tile from Lunada Bay Tile to clad the fireplace surround. The Rainbow Pisces mosaic, roughly the same size as the tiles in the kitchen backsplash, is from Stone & Pewter’s Accents, which was recently rebranded under Lunada Bay Tile.

For the fireplace, only 10 square feet of tile was needed, while the kitchen backsplash required around 40 square feet. All of the tile was supplied by Tap N’ Tile Inc. in Pasadena, CA.

Altogether, the project took around four months to complete, between sourcing everything, finding and ordering tile, demolishing the kitchen and installing all new features. During the tile installation, Neithart was regularly onsite, as she is with all of her projects, to ensure everything went accordingly to plan.

“When my tile starts to go in, I always go to the jobsite to go over the layout with the installer and cuts and stuff like that,” she said. “I don’t like to stand there and watch them, but we do go and visit them several times.”

Since the project’s completion around three years ago, Neithart has heard nothing but good things from the homeowner. “She loved the kitchen and her new house,” the designer said. “Lunada Bay is a really great source, especially for small accent walls, backsplashes and even an accent wall in a bathroom or powder room. It’s always my ‘go-to’ tile. It’s affordable and they always have fun, new tile colors and shapes to work with.” 

Private residence

Altadena, CA

Designer: Charmean Neithart Interiors, South Pasadena, CA

Tile Supplier: Tap N’ Tile Inc., Pasadena, CA (Lunada Bay Tile’s Agate collection and Rainbow Pisces mosaic)

Quartz Supplier: Caesarstone U.S., Charlotte, NC