When undertaking a renovation project which includes tiling, most people will concentrate on the look of the tiles themselves, rather than the grouting which will go in between them. But tile grout shouldn't be overlooked: although it may not be immediately obvious, your choice of colour when it comes to grouting can do wonders for accentuating certain colours within tiles, or indeed creating visual effects using the tiles themselves.
Here's how to make the most of both wall and floor tiles by choosing a grout to create a stunning effect:
Using a tile grout which matches the colour of your tiles, either exactly or as close a match as you can get, will create a seamless finish. If you're not able to match your tile colour, using a neutral shade such as grey or cream will give almost the same effect as a matching grout, as these colours do not particularly stand out and will fade into the background of your tiling scheme.
This technique works well with natural coloured tiles such as limestone tiles. Remember, if you're using a neutral colour, or even white, these colours do tend to be harder to keep clean. Also bear in mind that if you're using a bold or dark coloured tile, neutrals or light tones won't blend in! You will need to match the shade as closely as possible to achieve the same effect when using a darker tile.
It has become increasingly popular to use contrasting grout to pick out the pattern or overall layout of the tiles, or to emphasise the tiles themselves. For example, contrasting grout is often used with metro or brick style tiles to create an interesting splash back in a kitchen – think bold fire-engine red or navy blue ceramic tiles or porcelain tiles with a light-coloured grout – or a neutral tile with a darker brown grout works great on floor tiles.
You don't have to go totally wild with your grout colour – a colour which is just two or three shades away from your tile colour can be considered a contrasting colour – and you may find it helpful to lay your tiles out against a background similar to the grout you're thinking of using to get an idea of how the finished product will look.
Using a darker grout as a contrast can be a great way of hiding dirt which naturally accumulates in high-traffic rooms and is particularly good for use with floor tiles, but remember that dark grout, no matter where it is used, also fades quicker and is more prone to staining if it comes into contact with certain cleaning substances.
Using accenting grout with porcelain and ceramic tiles is a bold and brave move, but it can pay off wonderfully if used correctly. The easiest way to use this method to its maximum effect is to either pick out one colour within a multi-coloured ceramic or porcelain tile and use that as the accent, or alternatively, decide on an accent colour which will be used for all accessories and finishing touches throughout the room as a whole, and then use that colour for your grout.
The difficulty with using an accent colour is that it can be difficult to change your colour scheme at a future point in time, so if you like to have the flexibility of changing the colour scheme within your room regularly, your grout colour should be chosen wisely, as, indeed, it should be with all of these grouting options, to optimise your tiling effect.
The Art of Living and the Ceramic Tile Warehouse: for all Your Interior Design Inspiration Needs
If you'd like to be a bit bolder with grout, then it's time to check out the range of limestone, porcelain and ceramic tiles available at the Ceramic Tile Warehouse in Camberley, Surrey.
With over a million tiles in stock at any given point, both wall and floor tiles, you're sure to find the inspiration you're after. Ask our experts for advice on what grout colours will work well with your chosen tiles – you may just be surprised!
And don't forget that for more style inspiration, The Art of Living triangle can help: the Stone Gallery can provide beautiful natural stone wall and floor tiles, and Park Street Interiors will aid you in creating your perfect kitchen or bedroom. You may just come away with a beautiful look you may never have dreamt up yourself!