DO order a sample first. Ordering either a swatch sample (a small cut of the full tile) or a full tile sample (the best for helping you envisage how it will look in your home) will help you to see the true colour, texture and finish on a tile. We also offer 30 x 40cm samples on our large-format tiles, including natural stone. These are particularly helpful in showing the pattern and tonal variations on natural stone products such as limestone and marble where no two are the same.
DO order enough tiles. It’s a common and sometimes costly mistake when ordering online, as it’s easy not to take wastage and breakages into consideration. Always order an extra 10% to cover this. Please note, when it comes to laying tiles in a herringbone formation (whether wall or floor), we recommend ordering an extra 15% to allow for all of those fiddly cuts. It’s also worth noting that different batches of tiles can vary in colour, so it’s even more important to get it right from the get-go, to prevent any mix-match shades in your design.
DO consider the size of your tile carefully. A larger bathroom will generally be able to accommodate large-format tiles. Another thing to think about is grout lines as these will impact the final result. The smaller the tile, the more grout lines, and this can make the space look busy. If lots of grout lines are unavoidable, try using a coloured grout in a similar shade to the tile to help them flow better.
DON’T use the wrong tile in the wrong place. Location will influence the type of tile you will want to go for. If it’s for a bathroom floor, for example, you’ll need to check whether it’s slip resistant or if it’s a wet room, and whether the tile is compatible with underfloor heating.
DON’T allow your efforts in finding the right tiles for your project be in vain. If you have purchased natural stone, or tiles that require sealing, ensure you seal them correctly and with the right product. Once your tiles are installed, you will need to use an impregnating sealant for protection against fading and staining, such as Stone Essentials Stain Block (or for crackle glaze tiles, a crackle glaze sealant). This should be applied after they have been installed and cleaned using Stone Essentials Deep Clean or similar, but prior to grouting, in accordance with the product label. You should apply a second coat after grouting. You could also choose to apply a surface finish such as Stone Essentials Stone Shield or Wax polish as this will offer further protection and give an attractive patina, although in non-wet areas only. This would be applied after grouting once fully dry (around seven days depending on humidity).