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3 Essential Tips For Choosing The Perfect Tile Patterns For Any Space

Updated on November 10, 2015

Choosing the right tile pattern can sometimes seem like an overwhelming task. However there are 3 easy steps anyone can take to help make the process is a cinch. By doing so, you'll save time, money, and be sure to end up with the best possible pattern for your unique space.

A Little More Incentive

While following these simple steps does take some thinking and a little research, this small time investment can safeguard you from endless headaches. The biggest one is possibly having to rip out your installation and re-tile, because you are ultimately unhappy with the end result of your project. This can be very costly,time consuming, and not to mention extremely messy.

Another worst-case scenario that occurs more often than you'd think, is actually settling for a project you are not satisfied with. While this may mean you won't have to spend any more cash the mental annoyance and frustration of having to look at a pattern which doesn't "work," with your space every day, can really get on your nerves. However, since you'll be beginning your project the right way, you will be able to skip the disappointment by setting yourself up for an end result that let's you enjoy both the beauty and increased value that only a properly chosen tile pattern can bring to your home! So let's get started.

Even a simple pattern like the straight lay used with colorful tiles can make quite an impact on any floor, wall, backsplash, or counter top!
Even a simple pattern like the straight lay used with colorful tiles can make quite an impact on any floor, wall, backsplash, or counter top!

1. Decide What You Want To Accomplish

The first step before you look at any tile patterns at all, is to first ask yourself what you really want. Not doing this, is hands down the biggest mistake people make when attempting any home project not just when installing tiles. How can you expect to get the results you want if you really don't know what you desire in the first place? The answer is, you can't. You would have to get extremely lucky. Deciding what end result you want first will give you a clear destination to reach. It is the simplest way to make sure you start out right from the beginning, with no luck needed.

So take some time, get comfy and really think about what look, style and feel, you want to create with this installation. Checking out examples in magazines, idea books, online, or in friends' homes can be a great way to get your ideas and creativity flowing if you feel stuck. Do you want something modern? Or maybe something more classic that portrays an era from the past? Are you trying to add a splash of color to the room? You might just want a pattern that complements or highlights your existing decor. Since tile patterns each have a distinct look, asking questions like these will help you to quickly narrow down the list to only the ones that can give you the results you want.

If you're not really sure what you want to get from your tile pattern, taking the time to think and plan can make a world of difference!
If you're not really sure what you want to get from your tile pattern, taking the time to think and plan can make a world of difference!

2. Be Honest About Your Space

Most people don't realize that each pattern is only meant for use in certain types of spaces. Some work well in smaller ones while others are ideally suited for use in larger areas. Many can even be used to create an illusion of space and openness. The diagonal tile pattern for example, is great for very narrow rooms. As it is set at a forty five degree angle, the widest part of the pattern is lined up with the viewer's eye making it an excellent tool that can help make a narrow room seem as if it is much wider than it really is.

Each room in your home is its own unique space. And now that you already have decided what you want to accomplish you need to look at the space you will be working with and accurately assess how big, small, wide, or narrow it really is. This will help you to further weed out the patterns which can't be used to get the results leaving the handful that can. These will be further sifted through in the next step.

You can see how looking at the width of the tiles in the diagonal pattern can trick the eye into thinking the room is bigger than it actually is.
You can see how looking at the width of the tiles in the diagonal pattern can trick the eye into thinking the room is bigger than it actually is.

3. Choose The Appropriate Material For Your Pattern

The next thing you need to do is decide on a material. Just like the patterns themselves, each type of material has its own unique advantages and disadvantages. Some can be used on both the floor and wall, while others depending on their weight and durability, only on one of these. And of course many materials are specifically suited for either indoor or outdoor applications. The location your project will be installed therefore will have a big influence on the material you choose. You need to find a material that can be used where and how you want to use it.

The best idea is to choose a tile material that can work in your space but also is well-known for looking great with the patterns you are considering. The Versailles tile pattern for example looks extremely attractive on floors when using stone tiles like travertine. Marble tiles alternatively are a fabulous way to go if you are considering the checkerboard pattern and are famous for creating an elegant and classic feel.

Don't forget to consider color as well. Some materials are only are available within a certain range of colors or shades and this may or may not go with the color scheme of the area you are working with. At this point there most likely will only be one or two patterns that can meet all of your criteria. And that makes deciding easy. However no one can make that final decision but you. Go with your gut and you can't go wrong!

The checkerboard pattern is a classic!
The checkerboard pattern is a classic!

A gorgeous looking tile project is definitely within your reach if you follow these simple steps. Just remember to decide what you want to achieve and look at your space honestly. After that, take your time and do some research on which materials work best with the particular tile pattern you prefer and your space. This will leave you with only what works not what doesn't. And that leads to beauty and satisfaction!

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