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5 ways with patterned tiles

By Rachel Wallace

Having shrugged off their kitsch, retro associations, patterned tiles are back in a new and stylish way.

When it comes to tiling, many people are reluctant to make a statement and thus run a mile from a patterned tile. Formerly a high-risk gambit, the latest interpretation of this trend allows you to dip your toes in, rather than diving in headfirst.

From large-scale floral designs to wood grain prints, ethnic motifs (traditional Spanish mission and Moroccan patterns are on trend) or geometric designs, patterned tiles can look super chic if executed in the right way.

Where patterned tiles may have been used on both the walls and floor in the past, now it’s just one feature spot.

1. Kitchen splash back

A fabulous alternative to plain glass, patterned tiles add interest to the kitchen area while providing a focal point for the eye. From Moroccan-inspired Moorish designs to shiny white subway tiles accented by black grout (laid in standard or herringbone designs), the kitchen is a great spot to embrace the trend.

2. Shower niche

Like a feature wall for the bathroom, punching out a shower nook with patterned tiling can be very effective. Keep it to one wall for maximum impact and remember that it’s essential to run the tiles from floor to ceiling.

Remember too that large-scale patterns look amazing in wet areas.

3. Feature flooring

Rather than run them throughout your entire home, patterned tiles are even more effective when used in specific areas. A feature floor in the bathroom, kitchen or even just the entry or hallway of your home makes a perfect statement.

Black and white checkerboard is a fail-safe classic while a large-scale floral motif or mosaic design works too, depending on your taste.

4. Stairs

For something a little unexpected, patterned tiles can look fabulous on a stairwell. Restrict the tile to just the stair-riser for an understated approach and remember that patterned tiles look amazing when paired with wood.

Evoke the Mediterranean with Spanish or Moroccan designs or embrace Japanese motifs for a minimalist vibe.

Well travelled: Interior styles from around the globe

5. Outdoor tabletops

From Moorish designs to 70s-inspired geometric patterns, tiling your outdoor table can be a brilliant way of bringing it back to life. Avoid a DIY, crafty look by restricting your palette to a maximum of three colours.

For the time-poor, there are plenty of store-bought varieties available too.


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