White Subway Tile
It's everywhere. You can't even watch TV for five minutes without seeing white subway tile in a commercial or on the set of your favorite sitcom. It's so prevalent that some are beginning to think that white subway tile will date kitchens and baths from this era.
Could white bread ever go out of style? Could white paint be frowned upon? No. Never. And neither will subway tile.
The beauty of plain white is that it's versatile. It can be the focus of the room or it can become the background. You can turn it into something unique to your kitchen or bath or you can go with the timeless classic. It suits classic designs just as well as it suits modern designs. It's the end-all, be-all.
Here are a few ideas to think about as you plan for your tile.
Consider the Material
Subway tile is available in several materials. Ceramic, of course, is the most popular. Daltile carries five different ceramic series for you to choose from. But if you are looking for something a bit different, think about natural stone. Marble, limestone, and travertine make a positive impact on your design. The natural veining and graininess create a warmth and texture that elevate it.
Decide on the Finish
Classic subway tile is glossy, but you might want to try something a bit softer depending on the style of your bathroom or kitchen. If you want your tile to be the focal point of the space, gloss can draw attention. If you want to highlight other elements of your space, a softer finish (matte or semi-glossy) might work better.
Keep in mind that the finish you choose should be part of the overall plan for your design. Too much gloss in a space can be overwhelming and serve to make your tile fade into the background. Your tile is only one element that needs to fit in to your scheme. Make sure it will play nice with everything else in the room.
Play with Different Sizes
Subway tile is defined as 3 x 6 tiles set in a brick joint pattern. But with the popularity of subway tile, we've made several sizes available to you. Though it's a more transitional style, a larger tile gives you the same effect with a twist. It's one way to make your tile stand out from the crowd.
Other sizes you can use include sizes in the range of 4 x 8 and 6 x 12. You may choose to custom cut your tiles for a different size and completely unique design.
Try a White Variation
Pure white makes for a bright, clean space. If you are going for something a little softer, one way to get it is to adjust the color ever so slightly. Creamy whites can change the feeling of your room. Daltile has more than a dozen variations of white to choose from.
You could stick one toe over the line and go with a tile that's the slightest bit beige, gray, or yellow to introduce a hint of cooling or warming color to the space.
Experiment with Grout
The color of grout you select has a huge impact on how the finished product looks. White grout with white tile makes the tile blend together in harmony—your guests might have to look twice to appreciate the subway design. Black grout will make your subway pattern pop out unmistakably. A gray or beige grout will add a slight accent that will bring out and harmonize the accent colors in your space.
Think through this decision carefully. It's pretty permanent and does make a big difference as to what the room feels like in the end.
Don't Forget the Edges
It may not even be on your radar, but a specialty edge adds a little elegance to your white subway tile that sets it apart. The most popular edge on tile is the standard rounded edge. But other edges can add texture and definition to your space.
The beveled edge or undefined edge brings a little texture to your otherwise flat wall. White is a reflective color and a beveled edge reflects on a different angle than the regular surface. It's subtle, but it does give the wall some texture. One of our newest subway tile options, Artigiano has a beautiful undulating surface with rustic edges that are perfect for this sort of design.
Think about Extending the Backsplash
White subway tile backsplash makes up the majority of all subway tile applications. But it looks great spread over the whole wall or the entire bathroom too. Extend the durability of a tile backsplash to the wall and turn it into a feature instead of an accent.