If you’re looking for an affordable and attractive way to retile the surfaces in your bathroom as part of your remodel process, subway tile might be the perfect option. Learn more about subway tile and why it could be the ideal complement to your contemporary vanity, mirror, cabinets, and tub.
What Is Subway Tile?
If you’ve ever been in the New York City subway, you’ve seen subway tile whether you’re aware of it or not. While this type of tile used to be reserved for the inner walls of subways, it’s now a popular material for floors, walls, and other surfaces in contemporary bathrooms.
Subway tile originally only came in white, but these days, it’s possible to find this unique type of tile in every color under the sun. Black and white tile patterns have been popular for centuries, and this alluring contrast of bright and dark hues continues to look great in bathrooms.
Use Subway Tile in Your Shower
Putting black and white tile inside your shower is probably the most traditional way to deploy black and white subway tile in your bathroom. No matter which type of tile you use, it’s common for shower enclosures to feature this water-resistant type of wall covering, and you might as well mix things up with some striking black and white subway tile instead of playing it safe with a conventional option.
If you’re relatively handy, you can run the same alternating black and white pattern all along the floor, walls, and ceiling of your shower. On the other hand, you might prefer to stick with a single wall with black and white subway tile to accentuate the attractive attributes of this type of tile pattern.
Extend It Out on Your Walls
For a seamless effect, you might want to extend the tile you install in your shower all the way out of the shower enclosure and onto the surrounding walls. In many bathrooms, the sink is near the shower enclosure, and if your bathroom follows this pattern, you can end your tile pattern just after your sink.
Extending your black and white subway tile out of your shower creates an effect that’s pleasing to the eye, and it also makes your bathroom look bigger. Therefore, extending your tile pattern is the perfect option if you’re working with a small or narrow grooming space.
Put Subway Tile on Your Floors
Even if you decide you don’t want to put subway tile on the walls of your shower, there’s no reason you shouldn’t use this material on the floors of your bathroom. If you do already have this tile pattern in your shower, you can create a unique effect by putting black and white subway tile on the floor in your shower and extending this tile pattern out of your shower and onto the rest of your bathroom floor.
However, this approach only works if you have a walk-in shower room; even a step-in shower divides your bathroom and ruins the seamless effect you’re trying to achieve. If you have a different type of shower, deploying black and white subway tile on just the floor of your bathroom also looks good, and this approach is even more attractive if you have a relatively minimalistic bathroom with lots of white.
Consider Covering Every Surface
While it may seem like overkill, you might want to consider the benefits of covering every single surface in your bathroom with black and white subway tile. This approach definitely isn’t right if you want your bathroom to look relatively normal, but if you’re already committed to coming up with an eclectic look, there’s no reason you shouldn’t take this décor idea seriously.
To get started, you’d need to make sure that all the surfaces in your bathroom can accept new tile. Therefore, it will be necessary to remove everything from your walls and tear up any tiling that’s currently present. Keep in mind that your walls, ceiling, and floor aren’t the only surfaces you could potentially cover with black and white subway tile; you could take things even further by using this material to cover the sides and top of your bathroom vanity.
Contain It to a Single Wall
On the other hand, a minimalist approach might be best if you want to enjoy the aesthetic effects of black and white subway tile without allowing this type of décor to take over your entire bathroom. Especially when combined with other types of tile, subway tile looks highly alluring when it’s constrained to a certain small part of your bathroom.
In a long, narrow bathroom, for instance, you might want to make the wall furthest from the door your subway tile wall. This wall is the most prominent when you enter your bathroom, which allows your subway tile to have a dramatic effect even if it doesn’t take up much wall space in this part of your home.
Use Multiple Colors
While we’ve only covered uses for black and white subway tile so far, it’s important to point out that these aren’t the only colors you can choose from in your quest to create the ultimate tile combo in your bathroom. For instance, you can use alternative alternating colors, or you could even set up a seemingly random medley of subway tile colors across one of your walls.
Try a Single Solid Color
On the other hand, a single color of subway tile might look nice on one of the surfaces in your bathroom. A single color can actually go great with a black and white pattern as well; for instance, you might want to put black and white subway tile in your shower room and cover the sides of your vanity with bright, gleaming gold tiles to create a beautifully contrasting avant-garde effect.