Pun aside, it can be overwhelming choosing tiles.

When it comes to choosing tiles for your bathroom or kitchen, two fundamental questions always arise. What style and where to go for that one stop shop. With so many options and places to view tiles, it can become overwhelming. Feeling exasperated? Here’s a handy guide to help you make your way out of the showroom with decisions made!

6 points to consider when searching for tiles.

• Situation
• Fake or real
• Personal choice
• Proportion, pattern and scale
• Budget
• Outlet


What type of tile, friend or foe? Always choose for application in hand. Wet areas need careful consideration because water can bring problems if you are not prepared. If choosing natural like marble, make sure you apply a good tile sealant. Time and money spent here will be worth the extra mile of effort when water is saved for your shower or bath, not pouring into your living room! Marble is timeless and elegant, but won’t always wear well without a bit of pre-care planning. I recently found some lovely examples here from Tilesoutlet see below. This beautiful surface will delight you, but it is very porous and will stain and absorb liquids quickly. Porcelain and ceramic tiles are a good safe bet, and particularly if you require a no fuss maintenance regime.

Image attributed to Tilesoutlet



Fake or real.

I am not one for anything interiorly fake, and tiles are one of those hates. Just lately my mind was drastically changed. On walking through a hallway of a client’s house the other day, I commented on the flooring. ‘I love your wooden flooring, I stated confidently. She thanked me but explained that they were tiles. I was amazed! For an Interior Designer, make no bones, I should have clocked, but later thought, should I have? The point here is they were so realistically real I was fooled. Many types of tiles produce very realistic copies; from marble, slate to wood, so do not be put off by substitutes intended for more practical reasons. If you don’t hold a torch for real, then there are some amazing products out there.

Image attributed to Toppstiles


Personal Desire

Clients often ask me what the current trend is. Being perfectly acceptable, I emphatically announce – should there be one? Trends come and go, and I encourage clients to choose their personal style and not be a slave to trend or what they feel your friends will adore. Be true to yourself, and take into consideration practicalities and the situation they will be set in. If you are a stickler for trend, then a good source that I use Topps Tiles have an amazing collection of tiles that are on-trend.

Proportion, pattern and scale.

Are small tiles for small spaces and large for larger? Not always the case. A small bathroom can look more spacious if the tiles are larger, spreading the eye over a smaller area making the area seem more spacious. To accompany this, try a smaller tile on the floor area to balance. Never exceed 60×30 for a small area. Light plays an important leader in choice and works better with lighter tile colours to illuminate. Stay neutral on floors in small spaces. Use pattern in small measures, in borders or in good proportion

Image attributed to Laura Ashley




Never think of your tile purchases as wasted cost, think of them as an investment. If you stay neutral in colour, de-trend your choices, your kitchen or bathroom will stay as fresh and timeless for years to come. Remember too, that some of higher end tiling companies hold spring or quarterly sales where you can catch some long mulled over finds!


Where to purchase your perfect tile. The list is endless. There are Fired Earth and Bert and May – a popular brand for the one off and traditional tiles to middle market leaders such as Topps Tiles and many of the amazing local to you shops that provide a wonderful service for supply and fitting. 

and finally


Always gather as much advice as you can and particularly the fixing and adhesives to use. Remember we are always here at hand to help with sourcing products, design and fit.Tracey Andrews Interiors

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