Tiles are an essential part of a bathroom. They form a barrier that doesn't allow water to seep through and damage the walls and floors. Plus, they dress up the room in beautiful colours and textures. Here are some considerations to keep in mind when choosing tiles for your renovation.
You need to think about what material to use for the tiling. Do you want ceramic, porcelain or natural stone? Each of these will give your bathroom a distinct ambience.
Ceramic tiles are shaped pieces of clay fired in a kiln. They're finished with a baked-on glaze that forms a nonporous film and gives the tiles their colours and patterns. If you want subtle tiling, opt for a soft matte finish. You can alternatively go for a sophisticated glossy look.
Porcelain, which is a type of ceramic, is another tile material you can choose. These tiles use a specific type of clay, and they're baked at extremely high temperatures. Porcelain tiles are naturally non-porous and tough, and they don't require glazing.
You could alternatively choose from natural stone tiles, such as slate, marble, granite or limestone. These tiles are carved from pieces of organic rock, but they can be given different finishes to leave them smoother or more textured than they are in their natural state. For example, slate can be split with a chisel into thin pieces. These can be left with a natural cleft finish or treated to smooth out the subtle ridges.
Regardless of whether you pick ceramic, porcelain or stone, you need to pay attention to the concept of natural variance. Even ceramic and porcelain tiles, which are hand-crafted, will have slight colour variations between different batches of the same shade. So if you want to have the most consistent colours possible, you should buy all tiles from the same batch during your bathroom renovations.
In any case, the colour shifts are often barely noticeable, and contractors have a way of dealing with this issue. They mix the tiles from different boxes, which hides the subtle differences between the individual tiles. If they don't do this, one-half of the tiled wall or floor may be noticeably lighter or darker than the other half.
Natural stone tiles also vary, as rock naturally comes in a variety of colours and patterns. For example, a slate tile can show swirls of blue, grey, tan and purple on the surface. One tile may have more of one specific colour, so it may be predominantly tan, for instance. Other tiles can feature a blend of several hues. These disparities are part of the charm of stone; they showcase its organic character. They create a connection to nature in your bathroom design.
Contact a contractor to learn more about bathroom renovations.
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