Subway, subway on the wall… Which is the best size of them all?

With so many different versions and sizes of a subway tile available (not to mention colour), it’s no wonder so many people get confused when they get to this stage of the selection process.

Whether it’s for bathrooms, laundries, kitchens, outdoor bbq areas, the classic yet contemporary subway has been around forever.

So when selecting the right size for you, start by asking yourself a couple of simple questions:


  1. • What is the total size of the area I’m tiling?

Proportions are really important in design, usually just as important as the products themselves. Take into account whether you have overhead cupboards in a kitchen, or whether or not you want to tile to the ceiling in a bathroom or laundry.


  1. • Are there any other stand-out features, artworks, or items of particular interest that I want to enhance or not take away from?

Many times we see customers come in with an idea of a ‘standard’ subway size (for example, 200x100mm or ‘brick’), only to leave with a completely different size for their project. This is because if you have chosen, say, a large round statement mirror for your bathroom, you don’t want to draw away from it with a small, handmade-edged subway tile – which should really be a feature in itself.

As always, if in doubt, or you’ve narrowed it down to 2 and are stuck on a decision, don’t go for the cheaper one or the easiest one. In the end, you’ve got to go with what you love – no matter what the current trends!

To Grey or Not To Grey?

So grey is in.

Really? You had NO idea?

Well I have to say I’m quite surprised.

You can’t look in a restaurant, hair salon, barber shop, dentist, grocery store, butcher, lighting store, homewares store, deli, bakery or bar that’s been renovated in the last 7 years and not see it, in all its worn concrete look glory.

Just as the early noughties we were utterly obsessed with every version of beige you could imagine (do you remember ‘Hogs Bristle’ being the colour of the decade), our obsession with everything grey has almost hit its peak.

That’s not to say that it’s not still going to look fabulous for many years to come, but why not put a little more warmth into our lives?

Now, now…nothing crazy. Unless it’s really your ‘thing’, I don’t think fluro magenta is going to be the IT colour for some time, but is there anyone out there who really feels that ‘Greige’ is the best we can do?

We’re seeing burnt umbers, gem greens, worn-down charcoals and deep, velvety indigos. Using these tones as your anchor in your spaces will really set them apart and make them feel truly yours.

Colour is back people!

Terracotta…The New Grey??

Yes. It’s true. I admit it…I love terracotta. I’m not sure if it’s the nostalgia of the late 80’s to early 90’s where everyone’s backyard pools were hugged by the humble terracotta tile, or just the fact that it’s one of the first tiles I remember as a child in mum and dad’s tile shop. But it’s a tile that always evokes feelings of warmth and character. Even on these chilly winter mornings we’ve had lately (thanks for that “Artic Winds”).

And the best thing about terracotta I hear you ask? The point of this article? It’s making a comeback! Yay! Could it be that terracotta is the new grey?

Ok, so maybe the Saltillo terracotta’s are still a specialised taste, but more and more we’re seeing emerge from the cracks in our current grey-obsession the inviting, rich and colourful tones of our old friend terracotta. Be it either in its terracotta form, or as a more durable and resilient ceramic or vitrified porcelain tile.

And I for one am excited!

(Not) Keeping up with the Jones’

Do a quick Google search on interior styles and trends and your brain will be instantly flooded quicker than you can say mid-century modern meets minimalism. It seems that along with the speed of technology and information delivery these days, we are getting so bombarded by different styles, trends, ideas and collections that we are sometimes losing our own sense of (style) identity.

Most of us like to think that we are doing something different, something unique, but all we’re really doing is trying to keep up with the Jones’. What can sometimes offer some relief is by switching off – both mentally and technologically – and starting at the basics.

“Who is this space for?”

“What do I need this space to do?”

“What stands out to me personally in terms of the most important parts of it?”

It is wonderful that we can be inspired by so many different mediums including, television, radio, news print, friends, fashion, family, Anna Smith from the PTA, and of course – the beloved Google. But if we really want to be happy with our choices and feel truly at home in our spaces, we need to get the right advice to find a style that reflects us.

So if you have intoxicatingly happy childhood memories that were created amongst the Mexican Rustic style, or in an Art Deco style kitchen, and you want to recreate that space (or perhaps a style you’ve always admired but been afraid to try), don’t be afraid to try something new and be truly unique!


0% Planning = 99%* Failing *with the small exception of the lucky flukes

No one wants to plan.


Let’s face it – we’re all happy to go confer with Pintrest, forums, facebook, twitter, instagram, and your neighbour’s sister-in-law from Manhattan, but when it comes down to the nitty gritty of it, most of us just want to see what’s in our minds executed with samurai precision in front of our eyes (yours truly included).

And while the fantastic renovation shows filling our tv screens at the moment are wonderful for inspiration, some would suggest they are giving the rest of us unrealistic expectation as to how long a job should take.

So don’t just plan what you want your new bathroom/kitchen/outdoor entertaining area/office/lounge room to look like, but plan who you want to carry out the job, how long (realistically) it should take, and of course – the all important one – plan for a contingency.

Yep – a Plan B.

I know… I hear you… you don’t need one because it’s your cousin who’s doing the tiling, and a friend of a friend is doing the electrical.

Wrong – that’s even more of a reason for your all important Plan B and/or backup emergency funds.

Plan for it all – because the end result will be truly worth it!

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© 2017 Tile Living.    Terms & Conditions

Renovation and Home Design