Matching tile and fixtures

embethNovember 17, 2012

I am having a mini-panic over what to do with matching tile and fixtures.

We are in the middle of having a bathroom in our house remodeled. (The house is a Victorian. The bathroom is a tiny room on the main floor that was added in the 1920's, and we are remodeling to add a shower to the tub, add tile, and update some very worn components.)

We are planning to add tile to the shower area and lower half of the rest of the room, and I bought subway tile in snow white from Lowes to do it. But the sink I purchased is a much brighter white, closer to Toto's cotton white for reference. (Because the bathroom is tiny and we wanted it to fit into the style of the house, there were very few appropriate sinks.)

1. Any thoughts on how this will look once things are installed? (I could change the tile, although I prefer the warmer white of the tile to something brighter. Also, the Lowes tile is significantly less than other tile options.)

2. If I stick with the sink and tile I have, would it be better to match the toilet to the sink (Toto's cotton white) or to get a toilet that bridges the colors between the sink and tile (Toto's Colonial White)?

Thanks for any suggestions.

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I assume the toilet will have the tile behind/beside it? The sink will be separated from the the tile and from the toilet. (Are you going to have a different backsplash?). I think it's more important that the toilet match the tile behind it. I couldn't even tell you if my sink matched my toilet exactly. I wouldn't worry, and certainly wouldn't panic over it! LOL

    Bookmark   November 17, 2012 at 7:19PM
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A couple of questions...

Is the sink that you purchased a pedestal? If it is, I'd want the toilet to match the sink since both will be fairly prominent in a small room.

Are you keeping the existing tub? What color is it? Does it match either the tile or sink or is it a 3rd shade?

Personally, I either like shades to match or to be different enough that it looks like it was an obvious decision. (I have to admit I hated that the two original sinks in our guest bath were a slightly different shade shade of beige. Most people probably never noticed but I couldn't NOT notice it!)

Having said that, once the room is done, it will probably look lovely, whatever you choose. If you haven't already, take a look at for some inspiration pictures. Here are a few that appear to use several shades of white...

Contemporary Bathroom design by San Francisco Architect John Lum Architecture, Inc. AIA

Traditional Bathroom design by Milwaukee General Contractor One Room at a Time, Inc.

Contemporary Bathroom design by Minneapolis Architect Charlie Simmons - Charlie & Co. Design, Ltd.

Traditional Bathroom design by Chicago Kitchen And Bath Stonebreaker Builders & Remodelers

I thought this was a very charming vintage look...

Traditional Bathroom design by New York Architect Linda Yowell Architects

    Bookmark   November 17, 2012 at 7:36PM
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Thanks for the replies! I really appreciate the photos, as some of them are a pretty good match for the kind of set-up we are likely to have.

To follow up on some of your questions: The tile will run around the entire bottom of the (very tiny) room, so both the toilet and the sink will be in front of the tile. We are keeping the tub but having it refinished. (I'm not sure how much choice there will be on the color of the tub.) Since there is no way to match the sink to the tile, we've decided to have both the sink and toilet the same color. (Hopefully the tub as well.) Although the fixtures won't match the tile, we're hoping that the matched fixtures will still make the room feel cohesive. And, as you say, I probably won't notice after a few days :)

    Bookmark   November 20, 2012 at 5:31PM
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