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TILING TIPS

Can you tile without grout?

It’s the age-old question, but simply put – no, you can’t. 

Mosaics that have not being grouted have a higher change of breaking, so while it does require extra time and meticulous work, you will benefit from it in the long run.

Regardless of whether you’re tiling a small area of a wall or a large floor space, particles and debris will find their way in between your mosaics if they’re not grouted. Although you might think your installation is quite compact, there will always be tiny spaces between the mosaics that acts like a magnet attracting debris. Without grout, your project will be highly susceptible to wear and tear. 

Just like cracks form on walls overtime, times move, too. To minimise movement, and prevent the tiles from breakage and becoming loose, grout acts as a buffer and avoids the chance of tiles making contact as they expand or contract.  

While your mosaics may look identical to the naked eye, no mosaic is the same and they actually slightly differ in size. Although the differences are small and may seem insignificant, they will be noticeable in the final project, making the end result look unprofessional. Grout works as a mask in this instance as you can control the outcome – even the smallest lines can conceal any unevenness, allowing you to have perfectly symmetrical final result. 

  

Finding the perfect tiler 

Choosing the right tiler will either make or break your project. Even if it’s a small job, we strongly recommend hiring someone to tile your mosaics instead of attempting to do it yourself. You can get in touch with experienced local tillers in your local paper or by searching online, who will be able to help with a small residential project, sans the expensive costs. Before hiring anyone, make sure to ask for references from past projects. 

For larger projects, it is recommend you speak directly to the builder who will be able to recommend experienced tilers. Again, before hiring anyone, request for references from some of their previous work. 

 

What mosaics to choose?

With the large range of mosaics you’re presented with, it can be extremely stressful trying to choose the right one for your project

These are 8 tips you should consider when trying to choose the right mosaics for the job:

 

1. Look for inspo

Go out and purchase a couple of home décor magazines, or hop online to look for some inspiration. We recommend hopping onto Instagram and Pinterest, too, where you’ll be able to find never-ending ideas on how you could style your space. Try and look for images that reflect the same colour scheme as the space you’re trying to fill. If you’ve never used these social media applications or just don't know where to start, we’ve made it easy for you – just check out our Instagram and Pinterest pages.

2. Consider the room size

It might seem like a simple concept, but large mosaics make a room feel larger and spacious, therefore the bigger the room, the larger the mosaic. If you have a small room, light-coloured mosaics  (think anything white or any of our Cararra mosaics) will make the space feel bigger. If you have a larger space, you have more options. However don’t let this stop you from purchasing the mosaics that you have your heart set on. 

3. Consider the mosaic size

Additionally, small-sized mosaics are usually well-suited to small domestic areas such as bathrooms, kitchens and laundries. Our Penny Round collection is the most popular for small spaces.

4. Consider the colour

Ask yourself this question: ‘What is the vibe you’re wanting to create in the room you are tiling?’ For example, if you want to create a relaxed feel, lean towards light colours; if you’re looking to create an atmospheric mood, choose a bright colour; alternatively, our Mirror Mosaics are versatile and can be used in a home to create elegance, or used in a public area like a club, to create a chic dimensional vibe.

For a bathroom, you might want a relaxing setting so opt for colours that blend well. Also consider the hardware of your appliances in the bathroom. Black mosaics with rose gold appliances make for a modern and sophisticated look, while white mosaics paired with gold hardware creates a more classic look. For a kitchen, you might want to opt for colours that contrast well to match the buzz and liveliness that’s often created when cooking and eating with others.  

5.  Grout, grout and grout

This is such an important step in making your project look professional, ensuring long-term wear, and preventing your mosaics from breaking and becoming loose. Read all about the importance of grouting above.

The choice of grout colour can also make a difference. A complementary grout colour to your mosaic will give a subtle effect and blend in well, while a contrasting grout will emphasise lines and design. 

6. Think about the natural light in the space

Are there windows in the room? Or will the only light be from artificial sources of light? This is where the finish of the mosaic may come in hand. For example, a mosaic with a gloss finish will suit a dark space as it reflects more light. Opting for a lighter colour will also make a dark space look bigger.

7.  Matte or gloss? Glazed or unglazed?

Although this is a personal choice, you should consider the maintenance of each. All of our glazed porcelain mosaics are easy to clean and maintain, making them suitable for walls and floors around the house. However, our unglazed mosaics are only suitable for floors and are recommended for high traffic areas like pathways.

8. Consider other shapes and tiles used within the space

If you enter a bathroom and have white rectangular tiles on the floor, green penny rounds on the wall, a small feature wall of black hexagons, and mirror mosaics around the basin area, it can look too busy. 

Try a limit the amount of different shapes and colours within a single room. If you want one wall to be the focal point, choose a unique colour or pattern for it and then use one colour for the rest of the space.  

However, this is just a guideline, and don’t be afraid to go with your gut – if you love a look, then no one can argue with your decision.