Choosing the right tile flooring requires a bit of research, because there are many things you have to keep in mind – the size, shape, composition, color and texture. Tile comes in a variety of options and is a very popular choice for various applications. For example, tile flooring can even mimic the appearance of stylish hardwood floors and can be applied in rooms where proper hardwood floors can’t stand up the moisture – bathrooms, mud rooms or laundry rooms.
Here we present you with some clear guidelines when it comes to choosing the right tile flooring for your home. The first and foremost thing one should do is consider the overall end result. What do you want to achieve regarding your home’s interior design? How much variety would you like? Aim to achieve the perfect combination of quality and aesthetic appearance.
Tile flooring comes in a vast array of sizes. You can simply place an order for tiles of any size, but you must keep in mind the space where it is going to be placed and choose the size accordingly. Choose large tiles for a large room (because the room will look too busy if you use small tiles) and vice versa. By using larger tile, you will make a space appear larger by limiting pattern effects of grout. The most common tile size is 1.5 feet.
Tile Composition and Durability
Tile flooring is generally divided into three categories: ceramic, stone, and porcelain.
Ceramic and porcelain – The wear of ceramic tile flooring is rated via PEI scale. The surfaces are classified from 1 to 5, with PEI1 being the least resistant to abrasion and PEI5 being the most resistant. Class 1 tile is usually used for floors, because they withstand greater tear and wear; Class 2 is good for residential use; Class 3 and 4 are suitable for entryways, kitchens, and other high traffic areas.
Natural stone – Stone is not a man-made material, so it does not follow the same scale for porcelain and ceramic. However, stone gives a classic look and is a long lasting material. For example, sandstone pavers are mostly used for paving outdoor surfaces due to the hard-wearing nature of the material.
Among additional choices of materials, you will find an extensive selection of metal, glass and mosaics. Consider mixing these textures and styles to create your own style that will match your unique vision.
Finding the right color or color combination for your tiles depends on your own taste. However, here are some basic rules to follow:
– Darker colors add warmth;
– Neutral colors allow the change of accessories;
– Light colors create an illusion of a larger space;
– Shade variations blend and mask better;
– Vibrant colors add character and are cheerful.
Even though tile pieces appear to be identical, they vary each time they are quarried or produced. Each tile has a different color and shade variation to give character and depth to the overall look. Clarify all questions regarding your stone or tile selection before you lay them out.
When choosing floor tile, keep in mind that tile with matte or textured finishes is less slippery than the shiny and smooth ones. If you plan to lay tile flooring in your bathroom, kitchen, entryway or other areas prone to moisture, opting for textured tile is a safer choice.
For a cohesive and clean aesthetic, use grout that matches the tile color in order to make grout lines disappear. If you want the individual tiles to stand out, use a contrasting color. This will give it a more dramatic look. Make sure you use stain proof grout for areas that are hard to keep clean.
These are some basic guidelines for tile and stone flooring. The style is what entirely depends on your desires and preferences. White tile is quite popular nowadays, while metal and glass tiles are used in conjunction with porcelain, ceramic and stone. Tumbled marble fits with many different styles and has a timeless look, as well as a stone look tile, while wood look tile is great for areas unsuitable for hardwood flooring.