7 Tips For Choosing The Right Tiles For Your Home

tiles in a kitchen

Choosing the right tiles for your home can seem impossible with so many styles and sizes to choose from. You can quickly find yourself overwhelmed, lost in a sea of cheap tiles online, trying to figure out where to turn or who to trust.

How will you narrow your search and find the right tile for your space?

Well, that is where we come in. Today, we have seven tips for choosing the right tile for your space. Use these to help you narrow your search when choosing tiles and find the perfect style, size, and material for your home. 

How to Choose Tiles for Your Home

wood tiles on the floor in the dining room

Tiles are a versatile and stylish choice for many areas of your home, from bathrooms and kitchens to living rooms and outdoor spaces. The right tiles not only enhance a room, but also serve practical purposes such as durability, ease of maintenance, and functionality.

1. Consider Room and Tile Size

brown black and white tiles

First, you need to consider the room size when choosing tiles. Not only does considering the room size help you order the right amount of tiles (preventing wasting money or not ordering enough tiles), but it also helps you find the right size and style of tile for your space. 

You can use the size of your room to determine what size tile will work best. Large tiles, for example, look great in large rooms such as hallways and kitchen diners. There will be minimal grout lines to create a seamless look and spacious feel.

On the other hand, smaller rooms or smaller tiled areas work well with smaller tiles. They look stylish (think metro tiles) and save time, as you don’t need to cut larger tiles to fit the space. 

A patterned tile can work well when tiling a smaller area, like a kitchen splashback or above a sink. Mosaic tiles are particularly useful for curved or unusually shaped areas.

You can also experiment with different-shaped tiles in smaller areas, like hexagons, which make your tiles the room’s focal point

2. Consider the Tile’s Purpose and Placement

interior of a modern minimalist bathroom

When choosing tiles you need to consider the intended location and usage. Different areas of the home have unique requirements that will influence the ideal type of tile, based on factors such as foot traffic, moisture exposure, and overall wear and tear.

For example:

Bathroom Tiles: Water and moisture resistance are critical for bathroom tiles, especially for floors and shower walls. Choose porcelain or ceramic tiles that are specifically designed for high-moisture environments.

Opt for bathroom tiles with textured surfaces to prevent slips and falls. Mosaic tiles work well on shower floors, as their smaller size provides ample grip.

Kitchen Tiles: Tiles used for kitchen backsplashes and flooring should be easy to clean due to inevitable food splatters and spills. Glossy ceramic tiles can provide a sleek, easy-to-maintain surface for backsplashes.

On the floor, porcelain kitchen tiles are durable and resistant to stains and heavy traffic, making them an excellent choice for a busy kitchen.

Living Room and Entryway Tiles: In these high-traffic areas, you need tiles that can withstand constant foot traffic. Porcelain tiles are highly durable and can handle heavy use without losing their appearance.

Additionally, natural stone tiles, such as slate or travertine, can add a touch of luxury and elegance.

Outdoor Tiles: Exterior tiles should be resistant to temperature changes, moisture, and sunlight. Porcelain tiles with a low absorption rate or natural stone tiles like slate are ideal choices for outdoor spaces like patios or walkways.

3. Consider Fixtures And Fittings 

wooden shelves over a sink in a kitchen

Next, you will want to consider any fixtures and fittings in the area you are tiling. This especially needs to be considered in bathrooms, where you must tile around taps, sinks, and pipework. Pipes and toilets must be cut around, so consider how this will impact your tiles. 

Will it leave you with mismatched patterns? Does it make sense to opt for a plain, larger tile to make these cuts?

Ask yourself these questions when measuring your space, as it will help you determine what tile would better suit the space. Consider this when tiling a kitchen, around power sockets, or cupboards and appliances. 

4. Play with Color, Pattern, and Texture

a hallway with white tiles and a living room with terracotta tiles connecting to the hallway

Once you have chosen the tile shape and size, consider your tile’s color. The tile color will make a huge difference in your room, with lighter tiles brightening the space and darker colors creating an atmospheric feel.

Tiles offer endless opportunities to express your personal style and create a cohesive look in your home. When choosing tiles, consider the following:

  • Color: Choose colors that complement your existing decor or create a desired mood. Neutral tones like white, beige, and gray are timeless and versatile, while bold colors can add a pop of personality.
  • Pattern: Patterned tiles can create visual interest and depth in a room. Options range from subtle geometric shapes to intricate Moroccan or Spanish-inspired designs.
  • Texture: Textured tiles add dimension and tactile appeal to a space. Options include honed, tumbled, or brushed finishes for natural stone, or wood-look and fabric-look textures for porcelain tiles.
  • Finish: Tiles come in different finishes that contribute to their look and practicality. Glossy finishes can make a room feel more polished but may show dirt more easily. Matte finishes, on the other hand, have a more subtle look and are better at hiding imperfections.

Don’t be afraid to mix and match different colors, patterns, and textures to create a unique and personalized look. However, be mindful of creating a balanced and harmonious design that doesn’t overwhelm the space.

5. Choose the Right Tile Size and Shape

stainless steel sink under a window

The size and shape of your tiles can greatly impact the overall look and feel of a room. Here are some guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Small Tiles: Mosaics and penny tiles are great for adding detail and texture to a space, particularly in bathrooms or as kitchen backsplashes. They can also make a small room feel more spacious.
  • Large Tiles: Larger tiles, such as 12×24 or 24×24, can make a room feel more expansive and open. They also mean fewer grout lines, which can create a cleaner, more streamlined look.
  • Plank Tiles: Long, narrow tiles that mimic the look of hardwood are a popular choice for creating a sense of depth and direction in a room.
  • Geometric Shapes: Hexagons, arabesques, and other unique shapes can add a playful, eye-catching element to your design.

Consider the scale of your room and the overall design aesthetic you want to achieve when selecting tile sizes and shapes.

6. Consider Grout Lines 

shower in bathroom

It is also worth considering your grout lines when choosing tiles. The smaller your tiles are, the more you notice grout lines, adding extra detail to your space.

Larger tiles have fewer grout lines, creating a clean and simple look whilst smaller tiles will look busier, especially if you choose a grout color different from your tile. It adds depth and makes the tiles stand out. 

Conversely, matching grout with tile color creates a more cohesive, seamless appearance.

Consider these factors when selecting grout:

  • Color: Grout color can blend in with your tiles for a seamless look or create a contrast for a bolder statement. Keep in mind that lighter grout colors may require more frequent cleaning.
  • Width: Grout line thickness can impact the overall appearance of your tiles. Thinner lines create a more seamless look, while thicker lines can add visual interest and definition.
  • Maintenance: Different grout types have varying levels of stain resistance and maintenance requirements. Consider using epoxy grout for high-traffic or moisture-prone areas, as it’s more durable and less porous than traditional cement grout.

Finally, consider the maintenance needs of tiles for your home. Some materials, like natural stone, require regular sealing and special cleaning products, while others, like porcelain, are relatively low-maintenance.

Factor in your lifestyle and cleaning preferences when making your final decision.

7. Consider Tile Layout 

a bathroom with herringbone tiles

You should also consider your tile layout. You can use the layout of your tiles to change your space with minimal effort!

Diagonally laid tiles can make the space seem larger, especially when laid on a floor. You can also lay rectangular tiles with a long edge along a shorter room wall to make narrow rooms seem longer. These tricks can transform a space, making it feel larger and lighter. 

You might want to lay larger wall tiles vertically instead of horizontally to make the room feel taller, too. Doing so also reduces how many tiles need to be cut, saving time and preventing wastage.

Your tile layout can also impact your grout lines, so play with the positioning before laying them to see what works best. 

There you have it: seven tips that will help you choose the right tiles for your home. Choosing the right tiles for your home involves a combination of practical considerations and personal style preferences.

By understanding the function and location of the room, exploring various materials, playing with color and pattern, selecting the appropriate size and shape, and considering grout and maintenance, you’ll be well-equipped to make an informed decision.

Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning that at no additional cost to you, I will receive a very small commission if you click through and make a purchase. These links help to pay the editorial costs of writing a blog. For more information, please read my full affiliate disclosure here.

I also use Artificial Intelligence Image generators to create some of my images. These are to show you examples of my ideas and inspiration when I cannot produce the real images myself.

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