Trying to decide what bathroom tile is right for you? These principles of tile selection will help make the job a lot easier.
Light colors can make the space feel bigger
As a general rule it’s safe to say that light colors make a space feel bigger, but nowhere is this more true than in a bathroom. Bathrooms tend to be small, and sometimes they’re without windows, so it’s up to the decor and lighting to make the space feel open and airy. Before you choose bathroom tile, think about how the colour will impact the perceived size of the room.
Don’t use more than three in the same space
When it comes to choosing bathroom tile it’s best to remember the rule of threes. As soon as you start to incorporate more you create visual clutter. So consider one main tile for the walls, one for the floors, and another as an accent or feature.
- Glass: One of the most popular choices for bathrooms, glass comes in a massive assortment of colors and styles. Because it reflects light it can help to make a small bathroom look bigger, however due to the difficulty of installation glass can be a lot more expensive than other options.
- Ceramic: A terrific option for bathrooms because it’s durable, waterproof and stain resistant. It’s also resistant to bacteria and odours, easy to install, and easy to clean. If you’re using it on the floor look for something that is certified slip resistant in order to avoid slips.
- Porcelain: Harder than ceramic, porcelain is a popular bathroom tile choice because it’s a little bit tougher. It’s ideal for bathrooms because it’s not very absorbent, but it is more expensive than ceramic.
- Stone (Limestone, Slate, etc.): Natural stone offers a nice way to get some texture, however it tends to need more maintenance than traditional ceramic or porcelain. Since natural stone is somewhat porous it tends to hold on to dirt and grime. If you want the look without a lot of maintenance use it outside of the shower area.
Choose your most expensive tile first
You may only want to use one tile throughout, and that’s fine, but if you want to use more than one tile choose your favorite first and then determine where you want it to go and how much of it you can afford. Since some types of tile can be very pricey you may have to design strategically in order to make it work. For example, a high-end tile could go up the wall behind the sink to become a feature or it could simply be used for a niche in a shower wall. Choose bathroom tile accordingly to fit your budget.
Large scale tiles are very trendy right now, and they’re ideal for walls and shower benches (large slabs feel nicer to sit on than itty bitty tiles). But unless you have a slip resistant material, it’s better to use small scale tiles for the shower floor as they can help to reduce slip and fall accidents.
Grout plays a design role
Grout is necessary for filling the voids between the tiles and for making the surface stronger by bonding the tiles together. It also helps to keep the edges of individual tiles from chipping. But grout also plays an important design role. Whether you choose light or dark grout can have a big impact. Matching the grout color to tile color accentuates the tile, while contrasting tile and grout calls attention to the pattern. Keep in mind also that light grout requires a lot of maintenance – otherwise it gets dingy and grimy. Don’t forget to consider this before you choose bathroom tile.
Profiles are more important than you think
The finishing touches can make or break a room, and tile profiles play a very important role in finishing a space. But even more than that, they help protect the edges of tiled walls ensuring no chipping or cracking, while eliminating the need for unsightly caulking. If you’re going to the trouble and expense of tiling a bathroom it’s imperative that you finish it off with a profile to suit the space. Schluter profiles come in a wide variety of materials, colors and finishes in order to compliment virtually any bathroom design.
Photos courtesy of Skit Inc.