Inspirational Ideas and Tips to Design Subway Tiles

Subway tiles need no introduction in the modern home interior décor industry. The choice of subway tiles in home design is growingly becoming famous and fanciful, especially recently. We all love to create a unique design that can last a worthwhile, but the classic choice of subway tiles slightly differs. Meanwhile, the experience from professional tilers and interior decorators has proven that the subway tiles are flexible enough to create unique designs.

A Brief History of Subway Tiles

Architects Heins and LaFarge were the original first subway tiles user, over a century ago during construction. In addition, guess what the project was the subway tiles used? The New York City Subway of 1904. These subway tiles were the perfect choice for the site because they were economical, clean, and simple to use and maintain. Subway tiles also traveled from the US to London’s underground to Paris metro station. Now, it is widely used in Sydney, Australia.

Until today, subway tiles have made a bold statement about style, design, function, and durability. Meanwhile, you can easily combine them to make several patterns, which gives a comprehensive option of use. Amid all these facts about subway tiles, what are the three most important factors to consider when picking subway tiles for the home?

Top Three (3) Factors to consider for Subway Tiles


Depending on the type of look you intend to create, the subway tiles have both standard and custom sizes to suit your space. For instance, authentic 3 x 6 inches subway tiles will work for a classic look. Meanwhile, a contemporary look will require using more extended subway tiles such as the 4 x 12 inches or the 2.3 x 9 inches, 4 x 24 inches. In addition, the larger the sizes, the lesser the amount of grout joint that you need. So, while you intend to modernize the design of your subway tiles, you may likely get a design that makes the space appear more prominent than usual.


The type of finish you have in your home interior is also an essential factor in determining the choice of subway tiles. Some of the available options to you include the matte, glossy, handmade look or solid. Meanwhile, the easiest choice to create a classic finish is a solid color with an even finish. If you prefer the handmade look in the room, check out some subway tiles with various color shades and uneven edges. They usually differ in character and depth.


The shape of the subway tiles is also a crucial factor in choosing your favorite one. For instance, do you want your subway tiles to appear flat or in a dimensional shape? It is important to note that the form of your tile plays a massive role in the overall look of a finished tile arrangement. Whether flat or beveled, framed or uneven edges, what shape you finally go for will tell how efficient your design will be. Meanwhile, you can even choose sculptural tiles to show your skills.

Excellent Design Tips for Subway Tiles

Now, let us look at some of the fascinating design tips for subway tiles. The three factors above give you an idea of what choice of subway tiles to make. You now have an idea of the size you intend to pick, the right shape, and the kind of finish you prefer. It is now time to explore some of the different subway tile designs and work with them.

Wallpaper-look Subway Tile Pattern

When you have a rare space above your wainscot, you may love to add subway tiles to compliment the color at the bottom. In addition, this creation is an excellent excuse to add some layers of color and interest to the room. Then you can decide to keep the overall palette neutral to distinguish the subway pattern.

Vertical Straight Set Pattern

Another one to consider is the vertical straight set pattern, which is instrumental for creating a charming space below your small shower heights. This creation works in a contemporary way by ensuring a continuous fancy design. Meanwhile, many interior designers love to keep this ultramodern style in the room.

Herringbone pattern

The herringbone pattern is another classic …

Inspirational Ideas and Tips to Design Subway Tiles Read More