We often get asked by our clients about the latest trends and what’s new when it comes to flooring and tiling.

So we thought we would get the latest from our suppliers to perhaps get you thinking about possibilities for your future build or renovation.  If you have not built or renovated for a while you can lose touch with the myriad of options that continue to come on the market.

This blog focuses on tiling.  All sorts of tiling!

Feature Walls

Yes, feature walls have been around for a long time and, in the painting world, some argue is out of date!   However, it appears featured tiled walls have not suffered the same fate and instead the choice of tiles has become much bolder!

These wood-look feature tiles are increasingly popular and are laid both horizontal and vertical to create a striking rustic look where timber would normally not be permitted.

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Hexagons….and More Hexagons!!

Hexagonal shaped tiles are also taking front stage and the darker shades particularly create a ‘wow’ feature whether on the wall or the floor.  The traditional Hexagon shape is also competing now with an elongated hexagon, again available in a range of colours.

Mixing matt and gloss hexagon tiles is a great way to add texture and interest without the need for extensive polishing!

Source: Dakota Tiles



Textured tiles are back and in demand.  Again they are popular as feature walls and in tiled showers. Whilst white is the most common and frequently used colour, black and greys are also available.  The texture adds something to what could otherwise be a stark cold colour.  Many people love white in a bathroom because it represents ‘cleanliness’, and it matches white ceramic bathroom hardware.  However, too much flat white surfaces can create a stark interior so these textured tiles can offer an appealing alternative.

Size – Is bigger better?

Tiles on offer have become bigger and bigger over recent years!  Did you know you can now get a 600mm x 1200mm tile?

1200mm is actually the width of the average tiled shower so you can just ‘stack ‘em up’ one on top of the other for a clean finish with less grout lines!

800×800 tiles

Large tiles are not the easiest tiles to lay and you need to ensure you have a very good builder and tile layer the larger your tiles are!!!

Tiled Shower – Tile to Ceiling or Not??

We often get asked whether to tile to shower height or to ceiling height.  The tiler must tile to at least 300mm above the shower rose, which would typically mean a height of 2.2m.  If your stud height is 2.4 the recommendation is to tile to the ceiling as there is only a 200mm gap.  If your stud is 2.7 there is a larger gap so aesthetically it is a case of preference but if you want to avoid the risk of paint peeling above the shower the recommendation again is to tile to ceiling height.

Subway Tiles Still Popular!

So the cheeky white subway tile is still very much alive and kicking but cousins are popping up left right and centre.  Apart from a huge array of colours, from a range of neutrals to the very bright, more sizes are now available and more finishes.

The rustic look is getting a lot of attention.  Here the sides of the tile are rough, not straight, and this can be exaggerated further by the use of an opposing grout colour.  In the example below they have mixed 3 different complimentary shades of rustic subway tile together to create a point of difference.

The Herringbone pattern is also incredibly eye catching, and a great contrast to otherwise straight horizontal and vertical lines often found in the kitchen.

Image Source: Dakota Tiles

So, all in all there are an incredible amount of options available.  I would recommend seeing your tile of choice laid in the pattern you are considering to see the effect it has as a pattern, as opposed to just seeing the tile on its own.  Just look at the humble subway tile that has evolved and surpassed itself through creative layout and use of grout.

Showrooms are a great place to see tile displays, and many tile suppliers are happy to lay a few down for you to view, if they don’t have a display on hand.

I would like to acknowledge Dakota Tiles in Rangiora for assisting in this article.