Grout: Lighter or Darker?

stlouieSeptember 30, 2009

Our tile installer will be using an epoxy grout for our travertine tile install.

Does anyone have pics. of tiled showers that have grout than "blends" with the tile color, and also grout that is darker than the tile color?

I'm assuming going with a darker grout will make the tile pattern stand-out more, and the lighter will not.

The 18x18 tiles will be cut to 9x18 and run horizontally in a brick pattern with a 12" wide section of the same tile in a 1x2 running vertically floor to ceiling in the center.

I just don't want a darker grout to make the tiles "JUMP" out at me.

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bill_vincent

Lighter OR darker-- any contrast will make the tile pattern stand out. The closer the grout is to the color of the tile, the more it'll blend.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2009 at 11:04PM
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susanlynn2012

I just prefer grout to blend with tiles are be slightly lightly which is more pleasing to my eyes.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2009 at 11:59PM
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weedyacres

I like the grout to blend, so I usually select a grout color in the middle of the color range on a tile. Here's a shot that shows this concept applied in our master bath, on the floor and in the shower.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2009 at 9:34AM
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bill_vincent

Hey weedy-- I just finished a bathroom yesterday where I used that very same listello!

    Bookmark   October 1, 2009 at 11:14AM
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weedyacres

Great example to show contrasting vs. coordinating grout. They picked one to coordinate with the listello and I picked one to coordinate with the main tile.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2009 at 3:06PM
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olychic

I found this in my folder, sorry I don't remember where I saved it from, but I liked how it shows the wall tile and floor tile with different grout. The tiles look like they are the same or are very close to the same, but in different sizes and placement. The floor tile has a dark grout; the wall tile has a lighter grout to blend with the tile.

Here is a link that might be useful: Two grout colors same tile (I think).

    Bookmark   October 2, 2009 at 12:47AM
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susanlynn2012

I prefer the grout to blend by picking a color in the middle range like in Weedyacres pictures. I chose Mushroom Grout color to go with my Akoya Bone tiles which I love the look of. They were so much like the lighter Rialto Beige tile I fell in love with but had many boxes for me in the same lot number.

I had a seminar at a Holiday Inn today that had the same tile on the wall as the floor but with the ligher grout on the wall and the darker grout on the floor just like in the picture Olychic posted the link to.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2009 at 1:08AM
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stlouie

Those pics. were a great help. My installer leans toward having the grout darker so the pattern stands out. But, I believe I like it to blend more because it seems like a "softer" look. He did say he would do a sample board to see if I liked the color of the grout.

Is there any concern with epoxy grout showing discoloration since it doesn't get sealed?

The hardibacker is up, and he will be pouring a mudbed and using Kerdi. There shouldn't be any reason for mold to appear in the grout......I wouldn't think.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2009 at 8:10PM
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stlouie

Also, has anyone used Laticrete grout?

    Bookmark   October 2, 2009 at 10:11PM
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bill_vincent

I use it all the time. As for discoloration, that shouldn't be a problem if you're using epoxy, especially something like Spectralock. With reference to mold, all Laticrete's grouts-- Spectralock OR the cement based grouts-- all have antimicrobial agents added to the grout so that mold is no longer an issue.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2009 at 10:52AM
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stlouie

Thank you Bill.

The Laticrete grout color our tile contractor is wanting to use is the "Marble Beige". That color is close to the darkest color in the tile. But there's not that much of that color so I'm afraid it would really stand out.

I'm leaning toward blending with the "Sauterne". Everything else is either too brown or gray.

Good to know we won't have discoloration or mold issues.

Any recommendation on a cleaning product for our travertine?

The travertine will be in our shower, knee walls and bathroom floor. He wants to wrap the knee walls completely with the tile instead of it just being in the shower and top of the knee wall. The knee walls are 41" high on each end of the vanity. Do you think this will look good? My plan is for possibly a very light quartz countertop on the espresso vanity. It's hard for me to envision.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2009 at 2:21PM
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bill_vincent

It sounds like it'll be beautiful! As for a good cleaning product, for the most part, hot water. But when you need a detergent, look for something made for cleaning stone that's ph neutral.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2009 at 2:51PM
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stlouie

I'm really going to have to get out of the mindset of scrubbing with brushes and toxic bathroom cleaner!! I'm one of those "bleach every surface" kinda person. So, the thought of not using anything but water doesn't sound clean to me. That's why I tried so hard to find a porcelain tile that I liked so I could use a tub and tile cleaner. But alas, the travertine drew us in.

Can I get a ph neutral cleaner at any store and what kind of store? Any particular brand? Will it be ok for me to clean with it weekly?

    Bookmark   October 3, 2009 at 8:05PM
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bill_vincent

Go to a tile showroom, and they should be able to sell you one from one of the better stone sealer companies. If not, you can buy the Stone Tech brand right off John Bridge's website at the website's store.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2009 at 11:46PM
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stlouie

Thanks for your help.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2009 at 2:54PM
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