Choosing & laying patterns for tiles
Updated: Nov 13, 2021
Whether choosing tiles for a kitchen, bathroom or powder room it can be a mine field. There are so many options when it comes to choosing tiles and its important to decide not only on the colour and pattern but the shape & laying pattern.
Where possible get sample of the tile(s) you are thinking of using, and test out by laying on the floor. The Porcelain Superstore (www.porcelainsuperstore.co.uk) provides a great service on sample tiles, and I often order samples in multi colours to test out patterns.
The hexagon tiles in the photo are 4 of the colourways available in the Palms Springs collection from the Porcelain Superstore.
The shape and laying pattern of a tile can either add height to a room, create space in a small room, provide a simple backdrop to a sink or add drama.
Brick Bond Pattern
The brick bond pattern can either be laid horizontally or vertically. This horizontal brick pattern is a really popular simple tile pattern. It is more popular with tiled floors but also has the great advantage of hiding imperfections in crooked walls.
Lay using a rectangular tile where its height is at least half the size of its width when laid lengthways. Then you can simply lay your tiles horizontally with an offset of 50%. A varied offset (40/60, 30/70, etc.) creates a softer, more natural look.
Laying in a vertical pattern is perfect for a feature wall in your bathroom or kitchen, adding height to the wall space. Its laid in the same way at horizonal brick bond but just turned to run in a vertical pattern.
Similar to the brick bond pattern but the tiles are stacked one of top of each other. It can be a great pattern if you don't want the tiles to distract from other design features.
With a white tile it provides a modern look that works well with clean shapes and crisp angles, and plays against the fixtures (taps and lighting) in the bathroom in the photo below.
The Herringbone tile creates a sense of space in a small room – it is an elegant way to expand a small room – but can be too busy for a large room. The Herringbone pattern is very similar to the chevron but using parallelogram shaped tiles.
To get the look in this photo use a subway-style tile laid so that they point up a wall or floor in a “V” shape.
You can define the space further by using a contrasting grout or a tile match colour for a more free-flowing pattern.
Hexagon tiles are my favourite and add a playful addition to any space creating a geometric look. I think it’s the maths nerd in me that is drawn to this tile shape.
The hexagon can be used to enhance space with depth and visual interest.
A tip for laying these tiles is to lay (if you can) in tile sheets which can save time.
The basket weave pattern is something a bit different and not a pattern I have seen used many times but it works well in smaller spaces – powder rooms (in my house known as the downstairs loo) and small shower units.
Laid with two or more tiles together so that the perimeter of them altogether is identical and together makes a square.
I hope that has blog has helped you understand how tiles can be used in a space - whether to enhance or bring drama. With thousands of options available it can be overwhelming and it you would like help with designing a space, or choosing a tile, please get in touch here.
If you'd like to read more about bathroom designs that I have created check out the blog posts featured below.
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