Tile is one of the most popular materials for bathroom and kitchen walls and floors. Tiles are easy to maintain, easy to clean and come in a wide range of colours, styles, patterns, and sizes. Because there is such variety, it can be tricky to choose the right tile for your space. In this guide, we will go through everything you need to know when it comes to choosing tiles.
Tiles can be made from many different materials including porcelain, ceramic, natural stone, and glass. Bathshack tiles are made from either ceramic or porcelain, the two most popular tile materials.
Ceramic tiles are made from clay and topped with a decorative glaze that’s then hardened by heat. It is suitable for light traffic areas, including bathrooms.
Ceramic has many benefits. It is durable and easy to maintain, as the protective top layer is resistant to water, high humidity and stains. It is also easy to cut and fix, and less expensive than natural stone or porcelain.
Porcelain tiles are fired at a much higher temperature than ceramic, making them denser, hard-wearing and waterproof. They are ideal for high-traffic spaces including living areas, kitchens and bathrooms
Porcelain is scratch resistant and easy to clean. It also comes in a wide range of finishes, including wood or stone effect. This allows you to have organic textures in your home without having to maintain natural stone or wood.
When deciding on a design, decide how you want to feel when you walk into your bathroom. A mood board can help with this. Perhaps you want a calming atmosphere, or a bright 'wake me up' kind of feeling? Browse our full range to find out if you like accent tiles, textured tiles, shiny tiles etc. You can also consider the preferences of whoever else will be using the room. Here are some design ideas to inspire you:
Spa-like and sleek
The same colour (or similar colour) tile can be used on the floor and walls of the bathroom to give a spa-like and sleek effect. When a pale colour palette is used, it’s also space-enhancing.
If you want a gloss tile on the wall and a continuous appearance, look for a range that offers the same tile in a matt finish for the floor. This avoids slip hazards without sacrificing continuity.
Consider using the same tile in different formats for subtle variation. For example, you could choose a square tile for the floor and a rectangular version of the same tile for the walls, or vice versa.
If you like the idea of contrasting wall and floor tiles, there’s a world of opportunity. Try colour on the walls and a quieter finish on the floor; make cleaning easier with a dark floor tile and light walls; pick a pattern tile for one surface and plain tile for the other, and so on. You can also use contrasting shapes. For example, metro wall tiles work happily alongside square floor tiles on the floor.
Features and patterns
You don’t have to use the same tile on all 4 walls of your bathroom. Create a feature wall in your shower enclosure or around your basin using a patterned tile, or one that contrasts in colour or shape. Similarly, mosaics can be fixed to zone particular areas of the bathroom, or used as an eye-catching border. Choosing a different colour of the same tile above and below dado level can also look smart. Alternatively, textured tiles can add dimension to your bathroom design when set against all the smooth surfaces of the room.
With so many colour choices to choose from, it can be difficult to work out how to keep the design cohesive with the rest of your bathroom.
Neutral tones are always a good choice. A neutral colour palette may be "safe," but it is also timeless, stunning, and suitable for bathrooms and kitchens of all sizes.
Building up Colour
Your choice of colours depends on your individual preferences. Try find one tile you love and build the colour scheme around it. This can be a simple tile with a simple colour or something bolder that will become more of an accent tile.
An accent tile is perfect for injecting a bold colour into your bathroom without going overboard. Keep to one bold tile; this will help it stand out as it won’t be competing with other bold colours.
Tile Shapes & Sizes
There are many sizes of tile for you to choose from. The size you choose can make or break the look of your design, so it’s important to choose the right one. The first thing you should do is consider where the tiles need to go. For example, wall tiles are usually thinner, smaller and lighter. You should also Look at the room as a whole and select a tile size that enhances the space.
For example, large floor tiles in a small bathroom or kitchen can make the space feel bigger and less ‘busy’. This is because they create fewer grout lines. Smaller tiles will create a charming look, especially on bathroom and kitchen walls. For example, mosaic tiles tend to be made in a smaller format, so they really stand out against other tiles when used as a feature tile.
When it comes to shapes, there are so many to choose from besides the traditional square tile. Here is a taster of some of our trendiest shapes:
Mosaic tile has its roots in the ancient world and continues to be used in a wide variety of locations in the home. Mosaic tiles are usually small square tiles (about 1/2 – 2 square inches) and are produced in a range of colours and materials. These days, mosaics are often supplied on a pre-made cloth backing, which makes applying them much easier than it used to be!
Mosaic tiles are incredibly versatile. They can be used to define areas such as a border and create texture due to the grout line prominence.
The penny tile, or circle tile, is a common shape that is growing in popularity. Originally popular in the early 20th century in black and white patterns, the eye-catching penny tile is now available in a wide range of colours, materials, and finishes.
Penny tiles are affordable and easy to install They are a good choice for curved walls, since they are round tiles installed on a sheet. They are also slip-resistant, which is great for shower enclosures and floors.
Sleek metro tiles are timeless yet modern. They are perfect for a contemporary finish. Inspired by the iconic tiles found in subway/metro stations, they combine the simplistic stonework effect of inner-city life with modern-day living. This has made them highly popular with homeowners. Our metro tiles are highly durable and come in a large variety of colours and finishes.
Hex mosaic tiles are very on-trend and are a brilliant way to add personality and pattern to your home. They make an excellent feature tile in your bathroom or kitchen and will blend in with many different design schemes, from traditional to modern.
When it comes to purchasing your tiles, you will first need to calculate how many you need. Start by measuring the surface you are tiling, then calculate it in square meters. Use this to work out how many of your chosen tiles you will need, then add an extra 10% for wastage. For example, if the area requires 10 tiles, add one extra tile (10%). This allows for any mistakes you might make along the way when tiling. To make this whole process easier, use our handy Tile Calculator.
Ready to choose tiles for your bathroom or kitchen? Explore our full range online today to find the perfect shape, size and style for your design scheme. If you would like further advice on choosing tiles, don’t hesitate to Contact Us. You can also book an appointment for one of our showrooms on the island of Ireland to view our tiles up close; our team will be happy to assist you!