4 Timeless Tile Designs

Mar 06, 2018


Whether for future sale or your own personal enjoyment, you're determined to freshen up your home. Like many homeowners, however, time and budget constraints limit the extent to which you can transform your interior aesthetic. A simple tile update could be the solution, but you need a versatile look that will complement your evolving home.

New tile can instantly change the look and feel of any room - particularly those that look hopelessly out of date. Instead of opting for a flash-in-the-pan tile trend that will be old news within a year, consider trying for one of these stylish, yet classic looks:

1. Neutral Colors

Burnt orange and mustard yellows dominated homes designed and constructed during the 1970s. Then, these colors reflected a certain earthy tone that was very much in style. Today, however, they feel hopelessly out of date - without quite holding the appeal of vintage. The same is true of neons and pastels; although trendy at times, such colors can quickly go out of style, leaving homeowners with interior decor they're desperate to change just a few short years following installation. 


This familiar problem can be best avoided by opting for neutral hues. White and grey always hold appeal for vast swathes of space, while elements of black provide structure. Easily matched, neutrals also allow homeowners to update their interior aesthetic in waves versus all at once.

There is no need to avoid bright color altogether. Bursts of color add interest to any room without feeling overwhelming. A throw pillow, lampshade or painting is simply less risky than a fad-worthy color. Neutral tile provides the ultimate opportunity to incorporate these small flashes of color as you see fit without ever suffering buyer's remorse.

In addition to providing ample opportunity to promote pops of bright color, overarching neutral themes also encourage exploration with texture. Subtle textural elements feel more sophisticated than brash hues, and are therefore more likely to remain in style long after installation.


Image via Artistic Tile

From minimalism to eclectic and even rustic, neutral complements all styles. No matter how trends evolve, neutrals will always provide a contemporary backdrop.

2. Natural Materials

Synthetic materials can be affordable, but they rarely provide the structural and stylistic durability of their natural counterparts. Stone is virtually guaranteed to stand the test of time; rarely has it been regarded as anything other than sophisticated. From outdoor patio tile to decorative tile for your entryway, you will never regret investing in long-lasting, beautiful stone. Italian stone tile is particularly gorgeous; extracted from quarries and precisely cut and polished, Italian stone tile features prominently every year at Marmomac in Verona, Italy.natural-materials.jpg

One of the greatest benefits of natural materials such as stone tile? Sheer versatility. Nothing says glamour quite like Italian stone, and nothing says tough like granite. Textured granite captures the best of recent texture tile trends, while still offering the classic appeal of stone.

Persever the beauty of your natural stone - download the stone care guide

3. Deviations from Classic Styles

You love the classic look, but also want to experiment with contemporary aesthetics. Why not combine the best of both worlds by adding an edgy element to a familiar design?

For example: subway tiles have long been a mainstay for kitchen and bathroom backsplashes, but you're ready for something new. Instead of sticking with the expected for your backsplash, give herringbone a try. This updated  pattern could lend your kitchen a unique focal point that is bound to attract attention. You'll emerge with a tile design that can easily stand the test of time, while still capturing the best of modern style. Chevron flooring also provides a fresh feel, as evidenced by the guest bathroom from the Donna Guerra Aspen Park Project.

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Another example: mosaic tiles, which are once again re-emerging following a long-held preference for large-format tiles. Long regarded as sophisticated, mosaics offer ample opportunities for personalization. Modern mosaics, for example, feature unique geometric elements. The right color and pattern can prompt bold, artistic designs - especially for a mosaic backsplash. Mosaic provides the perfect middle ground between trendy and timeless.

4. Glossy and White

White tile holds many advantages over other hues. It visually expands rooms of all sizes. It can match virtually any cabinet, countertop, or decor color. A timeless color, it never goes out of style.


Although matte tiles currently hold favor among many designers, gloss adds further sophistication to classy white tiles. Gloss implies luxury. A white, glossy bathroom feels large, airy, and glamorous, even if, in reality, it's small and cramped. The right color and gloss can alter perception in a positive way. A little gloss could create the exact experience you desire, no matter the reality of your home's construction.


From white gloss to matte grey, a variety of options allow you to express yourself through tile. Whether incorporated via flooring or backsplash, a few minor tile updates can instantly transform your home.

As you choose a tile design, think not only of current trends, but also of the longevity of each option. The sweet spot? A look that exemplifies both contemporary and classic style.

Make your tile design timeless with our help. Learn more about how to prepare for your visit to Decorative Materials with our guide and contact us with any questions.