Small Bathroom: What size tiles should I use?

scotty0613March 12, 2014

I live in a 2/2 condo and my master bathroom floor is 56 x 56, minus single sink cabinet.
Shower floor L: 55 W: 26, two side shower walls 30 x 78 and back wall 55 x 78.
I�m getting ready to retile floor & shower. The bathroom floor tile 13 x 13. My tile guy I hired suggests I tile the shower floor and walls with 13 x 13 tiles, plus a 2 x 2 tile boarder. Because it�s a small bathroom and too many tile sizes won�t look good.
Is he correct? I would like the bathroom floor 13 x 13 tiles, shower floor with smaller tiles and the walls smaller than 13 x 13.

What should I do?

Thanks, Scotty13

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ineffablespace

You will want smaller tiles on the shower floor than the rest of the floor. Sometimes I think that large tiles on the walls, if there needs to be lots of cuts and the larger grout lines , can actually chop up the wall more than a conventional sized 4x4 or 3x6 wall tile.

I think what I would be concerned about is too much contrast, so I would be likely to tile all in the same color or in very similar shades with the floor slightly darker. I might skip the border.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2014 at 2:08PM
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scotty0613

@ineffablespace - Thanks for you input. So what youâÂÂre suggesting isâ¦
Keep the bathroom floor & shower walls the same size tile with no boarder and the shower floor smaller tile but a tile that is a little darker that will complement the wall tile.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2014 at 2:29PM
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Babka NorCal 9b

Larger tiles on the shower walls don't necessarily mean larger grout line. We have 12x24" tile in a 3x5' shower with 1/16" grout. Fewer grout lines to clean than with smaller tiles. You do need smaller tiles on the floor for traction. Mixing sizes is fine, but introducing too many different types/colors can get a little "less restful" in a place where you like to relax. Our floor is 24" (1/8" grout) squares with just 3 across. Amazing how it makes the room look bigger! I'm sure you will get many differing opinions Do what YOU want to look at every day. Have you looked at houzz.com? Search for small bathrooms with large tile. You can get a feel for what you like from some of the photos to help you decide.

-Babka

    Bookmark   March 12, 2014 at 2:32PM
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ineffablespace

Oh, I agree, large format tiles can be very nice, but you have to pick the "right" large format tile to be able to do smaller groutlines. and if you use a larger tile in the shower it has to be a tile that is not slippery when wet and also one that can be cut if it needs to follow the slope for the drain. On the Floor, particularly, it is easier to use larger tiles in a large shower. In a small shower you may need to do diagonal cuts in the larger tiles to follow the slope.

Also with large format tile, figuring out the Layout ahead of time is very important. There have been posts in this forum where entire walls of bathrooms have had to be redone because the large format tile ended up looking off balance or with slivers of tile somewhere because the layout was not planned right.

If you want to use large format tiles for everything, that's definitely and option but it takes more planning in advance than with smaller tiles.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2014 at 8:59PM
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scotty0613

@ ineffablespace - The funny thing is I really donâÂÂt want ALL large tiles. What I would like is the bathroom floor 13x13. The shower floor tile 2x2 (a color that blends with the walls). The shower walls 10x13. I could live with or without a boarder.

The tile IâÂÂve picked out is glazed porcelain (looks n feels like stone) with a texture.

What do you think? Too much going on? I want to make the bathroom to appear bigger. I personally hiring someone who quoted me $1700.00, plus I have to hire a plumber for the shower pan installation.

Thanks,
Scotty13

P.S. Thanks to everyone else for your excellent feed back.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2014 at 10:42AM
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enduring

I like the idea of a smaller tile on the floor so that the grout line provides added traction. The 2x2 trim, may be something you'd like on the walls but it might not lend itself to spacious open spaces. To me it will break up the space and make it look smaller, but I may be wrong. Have you gone to houzz yet as Babka suggested? There are millions and millions of bathroom pictures. Well maybe only 330,927, I just looked :)

But there are so many, you will be able to narrow your search and find something that fits with what you have in mind and compare.

I will post several:

Traditional Bathroom by Chanhassen Design-Build Firms Knight Construction Design : Chanhassen, Minnesota

Contemporary Bathroom by San Francisco Architects & Designers Mike Connell

Contemporary Bathroom by Portland Interior Designers & Decorators Angela Todd Designs

Midcentury Bathroom by Los Angeles Interior Designers & Decorators Susan Jay Design

Traditional Bathroom by Saratoga Springs Architects & Designers Plum and Crimson Fine Interior Design

Traditional Bathroom by Cherry Hill Tile, Stone & Countertops StoneMar Natural Stone Company LLC

    Bookmark   March 13, 2014 at 11:17AM
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scotty0613

@ enduring - I did look and I'm sick. LOL! So many BEAUTIFUL bathrooms. I donâÂÂt have that kind of money. Thanks for your help.

Scotty

    Bookmark   March 13, 2014 at 11:31AM
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enduring

Scotty, you don't have to have that kind of money to find the details you like and replicate. The pictures I posted, I tried to show the difference between the "listello" trim work mixed in the field tile as well as some pictures that have only field tile. Which do you like better? Ignore all the glitz.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2014 at 12:26PM
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Babka NorCal 9b

Yes, just use the pics at houzz.com to see what combos appeal to you. Enduring gave some great examples above. Do you like larger rectangles on the wall and 2x2 on the floor, or large squares on the wall and 1" mosaic on the floor? Do you like to see tiles stacked or staggered like bricks? Diagonal, diamond? If you don't know what you want then go to houzz.com.

After living with 4" square ceramic tile for over 40 years I welcomed the chance to mix large and small in the same room. Go thru the photos at houzz and whenever you see ANYTHING that catches your eye (sinks, towel bars, lights, tile, etc) in a room and flag that photo making note of what you see that caught your eye. You will probably see a pattern after a while, and then you can narrow your search for just "bathrooms with mosaic tile" or "bathroom with large tile", etc.

Sometimes the hundreds of thousands of photos are WAY overwhelming at first. But you will indeed be rewarded.

-Babka

    Bookmark   March 13, 2014 at 2:04PM
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scotty0613

I want to thank everyone for the great advice. I decided to go with a diff tile company, who had a much better looking tile and diff sizes. I decided to go with⦠the bathroom floor 20x20, shower floor 3x3 (mosaic) and shower walls 12x24 (vertical) with no boarder.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 10:11AM
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scotty0613

I want to thank everyone for the great advice. I decided to go with a diff tile company, who had a much better looking tile and diff sizes. I decided to go with⦠the bathroom floor 20x20, shower floor 3x3 (mosaic) and shower walls 12x24 (vertical) with no boarder.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 10:12AM
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badgergal

My daughter is in the process of redoing her small main bath. She went with 12x24 tile on the walls of her tub/shower and 24x24s on her bathroom floor. Just thought you might like a visual since you are considering similar tile sizes.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 11:05PM
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enduring

Scotty, I hope you post pictures. It will be a nice project.

Badgergal, your daughter is going to have a very nice relaxing environment. The tile looks great.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 11:45PM
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scotty0613

@badgergal - Thanks for the pictures. I love her bathroom. The tiles size is perfect and IâÂÂm so happy I changed my mind.

@enduring - I will post pictures when itâÂÂs done.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2014 at 7:47AM
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