The H&A guide to finding the perfect tiles for your home
Practical, durable, and available in myriad designs, the right tiles will add character to your bathroom, kitchen or hallway. Choose from our round-up of the latest styles
Plain or patterned, every bathroom needs a splashback. Take your pick from these stylish designs...
Tiles in soft, muted hues are a lovely foil for a pastel basin, Potters Glaze Leach tiles, £64.24 per sq m, Claybrook
Mix and match encaustic wall tiles with reclaimed terracotta floor tiles, from £7.20 each, Maitland & Poate
Arranged artfully to rise above the boxed-in plumbing, these glazed clay tiles create discreet storage space. White Bejmat tiles, £1.38 each, Bert & May.
Create a charming pattern of scattered leaves using Orchard tiles in Basil/Cream, €160 per box of 16, Marrakech Design
Influenced by 1930s design, these green tiles with a bold black border add a touch of deco glamour to the bathroom. Cinema tiles in Lincoln (green) and Pantages (black), £49.80 per sq m, Fired Earth.
Yousef Mansuri Head of Design at C.P. Hart
‘The first thing you should focus on when cleaning bathroom tiles is the grout. A simple way to clean it is by using an old toothbrush in combination with baking soda and vinegar – a mix that is less harsh than bleach, but just as effective. Leave the mixture on the grout for half an hour, then rinse off with clean water.’
Tiles make practical and stylish additions to the kitchen. Check out these chic options...
For a feature wall that doesn’t overpower, create a classic herringbone pattern with Brickwork Chalk Porcelain tiles, £30.46 per sq m, Mandarin Stone
Diamond-shaped tiles let you get creative with strong, graphic looks. Use Rhomba tiles in Blush, Charcoal and Torrano, £67.71 per sq m, Topps Tiles
Create texture with small circular mosaic tiles, £21.12 per sq m, Walls and Floors
Bridge the gap between traditional and contemporary with Pera encaustic floor tiles, £151.44 per sq m, and Ecru Zellige tiles, £153.60 per sq m, both Otto Tiles & Design
Use reclaimed tiles in shades that tone with the colour of your walls to create a patchwork-effect splashback. Find similar salvaged tiles from £4 at Maitland & Poate. Wall painted in Light Peachblossom, from £47 per 2.5l, Little Greene.
Chris Gulson-Brooke Founder, Maitland & Poate
‘Using a small quantity of reclaimed designs in a kitchen setting is the perfect way to include rare finds, as well as creating a unique look. Simply add accent tiles in the splashback for an addition of colour. It’s ideal for getting the vintage tile experience on a smaller scale.’
Make an entrance with our pick of floor tiles...
Inspired by encaustic designs, the traditional pattern of these Ezra Green Decor porcelain tiles will ensure your flooring has enduring charm, £40.80 per m sq, Mandarin Stone
Elegant and stylish, the Inverse Luna Old Iron tile gives a playful edge to this hallway, £4.20 each, Bert & May
Take inspiration from Victorian entrance halls with these striking black and white Beckford panels, £179.02 per sq m, Topps Tiles
Piece together four Celestial Flower cement tiles to form an elegant pattern, £154.50 per sq m, Otto Tiles & Design
Tiles arranged in a chequerboard design make a grand statement in a wide hall. Amtico Signature Mirabelle Creme and Graphite Slate tiles, both £70 per sq m, Gillies.
Chris Gulson-Brooke Founder, Maitland & Poate
‘The charm of a monochrome scheme is its ability to be reinvented to emphasise a desired style. Simply add a chevron to a hallway and create a natural flow from one room to another, or lay them in horizontal lines to add drama to an open-plan room. The choices are only as limited as your imagination.’
Lee Thornley, Founder of Bert & May, shares his expertise on what to look out for when buying tiles
In recent years the bathroom has become more than just a space for morning preparation and evening cleansing. Many people want their bathroom to function a little like a home spa – providing them with a calm and relaxing place in which to escape and unwind at the end of the day. But for families with young children, the bathroom must also be a place that can accommodate the attendant chaos of toys and splashing.
The design process can feel daunting: how does one achieve a balance between beautiful design and practical considerations, such as multiple users, durability of materials and easy-to-clean surfaces? In a space that is used as frequently as the bathroom, these aspects cannot be ignored. The best approach is to break down your needs, both in terms of daily use and personal aesthetics. When advising clients, we generally recommend that they avoid faddy, fashion-led schemes, as these may feel outdated in a year or two. It is better to focus instead on timeless design that will last and last. To do this, we advise opting for natural materials that will not only take the knocks of everyday life, but will also improve over time.
Using reclaimed tiles in the bathroom, such as the ones we sell at Bert & May, is an excellent way to achieve a unique look that won’t go out of fashion. Give yourself the longest timeframe you can to curate the look and feel you want to achieve. It’s a pain, but by collecting your finds bit by bit you will suddenly see how it all comes together, like a good jigsaw puzzle. When dealing with reclaimed materials there is no need to worry about imperfections, you can celebrate them instead. With our reclaimed tiles it’s the variations between individual tiles that make them so appealing – be it sun damage or scuffing, this is where the real beauty lies. These differences are what will guarantee the uniqueness of a scheme. But, of course, however attractive they are, reclaimed materials must also be practical and work for modern-day living. Team them with modern fittings – your taps, basins and shower heads – and make a virtue of the contrast between old and new.
To ensure the longevity of your tiles it’s important to seal them. This is true whether they are new handmade tiles or old reclaimed tiles – both require the same standard of care. Sealing should be done before grouting. If you need to wash off building residue, use Lithofin MN Power-Clean diluted as per the instructions, then, once the tiles are dry, impregnate them with Lithofin MN Stain-Stop, again following the instructions. Our tiles are resistant and tough. Some of our reclaimed finds have been around for over 100 years, so they really are robust and, if properly cared for, they will keep going for longer still.
From ornate patterns to graphic designs, here’s our pick of stylish new and antique tiles to suit every budget
- Cozar reclaimed tile, £1,804.80 for a 9.4sq m lot, Bert & May
- Flotilla Bottle Green tiles, £239.54 per sq m, Claybrook
- Handmade reclaimed Jara tile, £210 per sq m, Maitland & Poate
- Deco Tayberry tile, £199.95 per sq m, Original Style
- New Ravenna Belen mosaic tile, £POA, West One Bathrooms
- Hanoi Cube Grey floor tiles, £18.98 per sq m, Tile Mountain
- Rare biblical tiles c1640, £1,627 for nine, Regts Antique Tiles
- Scintilla Sky pattern tiles, £24.95 per sq m, Walls and Floors
- Ajuda Warm patterned tiles, £49.50 per sq m, The London Tile Co
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