Choosing tiles for your kitchen and bathroom is hard enough, but deciding which pattern should you lay them in – grid, herringbone, chevron – only adds to the overwhelm!
Depending on the shape, size and pattern of your chosen tile, there are myriad patterns you can use when you lay them to achieve a finished surface with maximum impact, or have them completely disappear from view.
If you’re looking to use a tile pattern other than a conventional “stretcher bond” or brick wall lay, consider it at length before you buy your tiles as this may impact the size and style you buy. A combination of more than one shape or size will yield some interesting pattern options and introducing more than one colour tile can multiply the options even further.
More complicated patterns might benefit from being laid by a professional, otherwise, there are plenty of tutorials online to show you how it’s done. Further, there are now Apps available for you to download that will take your measurements to calculate your pattern and estimate the number of tiles (and grout!) you’ll need to use.
Think outside the square with the use of traditional designs with modern colours or patterned tiles, starting with these classic tile patterns.
Types of tile patterns
1. Straight lay (grid) – a classic use of square tiles and simple to install yourself.
2. Pinwheel (or Hopscotch) – similar to the French pattern, this uses 3 tile sizes: large square, small square and rectangle.
3. Stretcher or Running Bond/Brick wall – rows of tiles offset by exactly half the width of the next row. Easy to install, economical and flexible with little wastage. Can be done with square or rectangular tiles.
4. Herringbone – rectangular tiles are laid at 45 degrees to the wall to produce a v-shaped pattern resembling wood parquet flooring.
5. Chevron – similar to Herringbone pattern but uses parallelogram shaped tiles.
6. Cobblestone – uses 2 tile sizes laid in a grid of 9 to resemble heritage cobblestone paving.
7. Basketweave – pairs of rectangular tiles laid at 90 degrees to one another. Simple to achieve and a step on from a basic pattern. Looks completely different when two or three colours are used.
8. Harlequin – usually uses square tiles in a straight grid pattern but tiles are laid at a 45-degree angle to the wall.
9. Windmill – classic pattern using a combination of rectangular brick tiles around a central square tile. Looks great with contrasting colours. Often supplied ready-made onto mesh.
10. Tessellation – uses more than one shape to create a three-dimensional pattern.
All of these patterns will look different when used with coloured tiles – any number of combinations are possible and it’s fun to have a play around on an app or design software if you’re looking to step away from a basic pattern to get an idea how it will look.
A plain pattern will be straightforward when working out how many tiles you will need to cover your wall or floor space, but take your room measurements into the shop and enlist the help of your supplier to double-check your measurements and calculations before you finalise your order.