Many of my favorite bathrooms have tiled floors AND walls and since I love that look I thought I’d share what I look for in a good tile pairing. It’s essentially just like mixing patterns in your wardrobe, which I can never get enough of, and it’s even better when bringing it into the home.
My number one trick is to create balance with one small scale pattern and one large scale pattern. For example, if you have a detailed tile pattern with smaller shapes on the floor, choose a larger scale, simple tile (with no pattern) on the wall so it doesn’t compete with the floor. This bathroom by Capree Kimball illustrates it perfectly with the bold pattern on the floor and large subway tiles on the walls (see more of her bathroom here).
Try using a natural stone as a neutral pattern. In this bathroom, the wall commands all of the attention. Although they are small scale tiles, they make up a large graphic print and you wouldn’t want anything to fight with that. By using large marble tiles on the floor there is visual interest down there, giving it a rich layered look, but it reads as a neutral. The subtle irregular pattern on the marble is beautifully juxtaposed with the bold graphic pattern on the wall.
This bathroom is by Greg Natale, see more of his work here.
A fool proof way to combining two tiles is to stick with the same color for both the floor and the wall, and only switch up the scale. You might remember that we did this in our last bathroom. This also reinforces my first tip where the scale of the floor tile is significantly smaller and more intricate than the scale of the wall tile and this way there’s no battling for attention. Each plane has it’s own pattern and they live happily next to each other.
Image from Target
And finally, the tile I chose from Wayfair for the new bathroom also follows the opposite scale rule (this time large tiles on the floor and small on the wall), but I am using my final tip to mix two solid colored tiles of different shapes and let the grout lines make up the only patterns.
To catch you up on what is happening in said bathroom… last week I shared the beginning stages and plans for our remodel. Basically, everything was demoed and hauled out, an insanely messy job that I was a little sad I could be no part of this time around (growing a baby and construction dust probably don’t go so well together), and now the new tub is in place and the tile is going in!
It isn’t much to look at yet, with no grout and the bathroom in shambles. BUT, the old shower is gone, they rebuilt that wall (pushing it back to make room for the larger bath and flipped around the shower head to empty into the tub), and you get the first look at how I’m laying out the tile in a herringbone pattern on the walls to compliment the large hexagons that will go on the floor. A whole new bathroom is just around the corner, eek (I HOPE)!!