How to put 12 x 24 tile in shower

L AApril 8, 2014

I have a walk-in shower with glass doors and acrylic base. I have 12 x 24 tiles and mosaic that come as 12 x 24 but consists of 6 rows of longer thick and thin pieces, see photo. I'm wondering whether to go vertical or horizontal with my tile. I haven't seen either in person. My tile is going to the ceiling..9ft. My shower is 36x60. Im questioning too if I should cut the mosaic in half to be narrower 6 inches for accents instaed of the full width of 12 inches. Any suggestions? Thanks everyone.
My tiles are a dark grey, and the mosaic is a light grey.

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I have two suggestions:

ONe is to mock-up on paper various layouts. Even if you decide on horizontal or vertical, you then have to determine how you're going to lay them out...brick like your mosaic, soldier, offset by 1/3 or 1/2? Unless you know your tiles are rectified, and have NO variance, laying them in a 1/2 offset brick pattern can leave you with noticeable lippage. I literally cut out tiles from paper to see how I liked it. If you're good with a drawing program you can also do it on the computer.
The mock-up will help you decide on whether you prefer 6" or 12" of the accent tile

Two, is to determine if one way leaves you with significantly more waste. We had a 36 X 60 shower and ~ 5 X 6 floor done with 12 X 24 tiles, and nearly every single tile had to be cut.

Three, OK, I thought of one more...will one way give you a better spot to place niches, shelves, faucets, etc.? We laid ours horizontally and had the bottom of the niche line up exactly with a grout line (that takes some figuring...)

    Bookmark   April 8, 2014 at 7:09PM
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How you arrange the tiles is purely esthetics and only you can answer that one. Who is doing the tiling? Have you looked at inspiration pictures on Houzz?

You will need to plan every detail of the layout before you start. That means very detailed drawings to accommodate the grout width and the exact tile dimensions. My tiles are 12x24" but not really, more like 11 something and 23 something.

You don't want to have a sliver of tile at the top or the bottom of the layout. I center my tile on the wall area so that it is equal tiles top and bottom, side to side. you will need to figure out how you will lay them, squared or staggered. If there is any bow to the tiles, and there very well could be, you will want to do squared, or a 1/4 or 1/3 (or so) staggered. Not a 50%, because the distortion in the tiles will be very obvious.

How are your wrapped walls going to line up? This needs to be determined as well.

Are you going to have a niche, if so that is another element that you just don't want to through in there without careful planning of how it will lay with the tile layout.

Remember, go to Houzz dot com to look at pictures if you haven't already.

ps it seems with my 12x24 bathroom, there was a lot of wasted material. I had to do a lot of cutting of almost every tile. You might want to revisit if 12x24 is really what you want. I wouldn't do it again, I don't believe. I could be wrong about the wastage and it would be interesting is someone that has done more tiling them me to weigh in on the subject of wastage.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2014 at 7:25PM
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Ha, Raehelen beat me to the post! Everything she says.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2014 at 7:27PM
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Here is my similar size shower with 12 x 24 tile and an accent tile. Above and below the accent tiles the field tile is stacked vertically. Between the two strips of accent tile the field tile goes horizontally.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2014 at 8:13PM
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Enduring that is too funny, eery almost, but still funny!

Like you, we had to cut a lot of tiles. But DH came up with what I thought was a brilliant idea! We used the cut offs to create a tile baseboard for the floor, and we had a 3" return on one wall of the shower (walls are ~ 63" and we made shower 60" to accommodate a store bought shower door, and to give us more room for the niche), so we actually ended up with not too much waste.

I would think that since a 60" by 36" shower seems to be fairly popular, that tile places would have/should have figured out which size of tile works best to 'fit in there'. In my case, I fell in love with the tile, and it only came in 12 X 24, 24 X 24, 18 X18 or 12 X 12. The 12 X 12 would have been less wasteful, but I preferred the long look of the 12 X 24, plus less grout lines...

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 12:42PM
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The tiles are already bought. I will be going 1/3's with the tile. The guy doing the tile recommended going vertical and horizontal with the mosaic. There is also a 2 x 1.5' recessed shelf as well on the wall that the mosaic will be going into too. I'm trying to see if I can get a couple corner shelves put in with the tile I have. I've read online you can do it with your tile and not have to buy a special shelf, just cut to a triangle. I'll have to ask my guy about this. My contractor assures me his tile guy is excellent and I have no reason to doubt him, he's been excellent and takes pride in his work.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 12:52PM
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Great to hear! You will be sure to post pictures, right?

Raehelen, I thought about using some pieces to make a base around the bottom, but I ruled that out after much thought. I will spring for some more tiles if I don't have enough for my wrap around. Then I will cut down all the trimmings to a regular size 1:2 so that it is a nice brick shape. I will see what the coverage will be and look at options for giving it to family or doing a project at home. I am thinking of rehabilitating an old granary as a guest cabin; I could make a modest backsplash with it!

This post was edited by enduring on Wed, Apr 9, 14 at 18:16

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 6:11PM
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