Statement tiles can create major impact in your home but it’s easy to get lost in the array of colours and shapes. Let us smooth the way with these top tile tips
6 of the hottest statement tile trends to inspire your next project
To make a statement with tiles, you needn’t choose a brash colour or riotous pattern – by thinking about texture, shape and variation, an interesting effect can still be produced using a single shade or quirky arrangement.
A tiled floor, splashback or feature wall offers scope for a statement look with real impact, while allowing you to save on the cost of tiling multiple surfaces. If tiling an entire room, think about the effect your choice will have – will it make the room feel larger and lighter or moodier and more intimate? Does your tile create a sense of height or draw the eye downwards? We’ve rounded up the latest shapes and styles to get you started.
The trusty subway tile has become the go-to look for modern homes. This classic oblong brings a heritage feel to kitchens, bathrooms and laundries and works just as well for a small splashback as it does for floor-to-ceilling coverage in wet areas. While it has reached saturation point, the subway trend looks set to continue but in a fresh range of shapes and designs.
- Long and narrow – The traditional subway tile gets a shape update in longer and flatter styles that have a sleek, elongating effect, drawing the eye to the back of a space.
- Vertical placement – Create a feeling of height by flipping the tile on its end for a new spin on the traditional look.
- Blues and greens – Subway tiles in tonal shades introduce some variety to this geometric look. Emerald green has a deep, mysterious quality while aqua, turquoise and seafoam create a calming effect.
While the honeycomb effect created by using hexagonal tiles may seem like a fad, this shape has huge potential to make a lasting statement. By varying the size, tone and pattern of hexagonal tiles, this look can be customised to suit homes of any era and is perfect for a feature wall.
- Monochrome – Matte hexagonal tiles in a single colour create a subtle effect that feels luxurious. All-black or all-white marble hexagonal tiles are proving a strong trend, and we love these textured, blush-coloured mosaic tiles from Tile Depot (no 1).
- Pattern play – Jumbling up hexagonal tiles in a variety of patterns (but in similar colours) creates an ancient, artisanal feel that can look Moroccan, Spanish or even eastern European, depending on your selection.
- Illusory – The repetition of hexagonal shapes can trick the eye into seeing triangles, diamonds or stars instead. Play around with patterns and see what effects you can conjure.
The repetition of sharp corners and dramatic angles creates a real statement when brought to life in tiles. “Using a geometric tile with the same colour as your main tile is a great way to pull a space together but add depth and interest,” says Miranda Powrie, marketing manager at Tile Space.
- Faceted – Tiles with 3D facets create an almost crystalline look and add an extra dimension to your room. The appearance of facets can also be created using contrasting diamond tiles.
- Chevrons – These arrow-shaped tiles bring a sense of direction and movement that looks contemporary but also suits art deco homes particularly well.
- Black, white & grey – Graphic tiles are at their most striking in black and white. Whether in alternating stripes or offset by grey for added depth, black and white tiles will always look timeless.
4. Dark and stormy
“Dark bathrooms are seeing a resurgence and they are a great option for a space with little natural light,” says Miranda from Tile Space. Dark greys and blacks create a moody look with a velvety feeling of luxury.
- Glossy – While matte black is still popular for tapware, a glossy black tile will dial up the luxe factor and create some interest. “Choose a tile with a bit of variation between pieces for a really natural and organic look,” says Miranda.
- Marble – Using a black marble tile keeps the look from being too heavy by introducing variety in the surface texture and breaking up the black with silvery threads of quartz.
- Large format – Big, black tiles will create a flat, monolithic feel and make your space feel larger. If you like the minimal look (and easy-to-clean surfaces), give this one a go.
5. Spanish and Moroccan
This traditional yet colourful look is back in a big way for bathrooms inspired by the spa trend. Miranda at Tile Space says: “For this style, we find it’s best to go for tiles that reference traditional geometric patterns but interpret them in a modern way. The most popular Moroccan looks use a neutral colour palette and let the patterns do the talking.” Use a matte finish for that dusty, old-world vibe.
- Earthy tones – Red and yellow ochre, khaki, grey and navy are the palette for an authentic yet modern Moroccan look.
- Geometric – The repetition of a single graphic motif is the quintessential Moorish tile arrangement. A looser take on this look is to repeat several different designs at random.
- Stars and flowers – Stylised flower and star designs hark back to the era of heraldry and are a softer, more romantic option.
These sheets of small, square, glass tiles add interest because of the reflections they create en masse. Mosaic an entire bathroom to add glitter and texture, or do one feature wall (a thin strip around the room is officially passé).
- Nostalgia – Used extensively in swimming pools, interiors and public spaces in the 1950s and 1960s, mosaic tiles are great for a mid-century modern look.
- Patterns and pictures – Use mosaics in different shades of the same colour family to make patterns such as squares or a graduated effect. Mosaics can even be laid to create pictures.
- If you’re after quality, architects and designers around the world have used Bisazza mosaics to create ultra-luxe effects – these Italian tiles can be sourced from Tile Space.
Words by: Sally Conor. Photography by: Jason Lerace, Maree Homer, John Paul Urizar, Scott Hawkins, Maree Homer/Bauersyndication.com.au.