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7 Tile Tricks to Make Your Small Home Look Less Cramped

Tiles are some of the best interior design materials out there. Most of them are plenty affordable and they come in a wide array of designs that would fit in with any style. If your home is short on floor estate, learn these tile tricks that will make your space feel bigger than it really is.

1. Open plan? Go with one floor tile.

One tile to rule them all. Keep to one continuous floor tile throughout an open-concept home. Mixing and matching different types of tiles can visually chop up your small space into even smaller parts.

tiles tricks
The same wood grain tiles were used throughout this open-plan HDB flat.

Design: Fifth Avenue Interior

2. Match the wall tiles with the floor tiles

Similarly, blending the wall tiles with the floor tiles in a small bathroom or kitchen can help to maximise the sense of depth and space. Consider using the same tiles for both the walls and flooring, but if that’s impractical, go for tiles with similar tones.

bathroom tile
Clad entirely in marble lookalike tiles, this bathroom is a picture of timeless elegance.

Design: Rockin Spaces


Speckled terrazzo tiles cover the walls and flooring in this kitchen.

Design: Habit

3. Stick to a same grout colour

To make things appear less cluttered and busy, match the grouting colour to your tile colour. An absence of contrast gives a more uniform look that will trick the eye into thinking your space is bigger.


If you don’t look closely enough, the white tiles and matching white grouting appear like a single, continuous surface.

Design: Jubilee Interior

4. Adopt bigger format tiles

In the same vein, going with bigger format tiles can help to reduce the amount of grout lines and the visual busyness of your home. For communal spaces like your living room, opt for ones that are at least 60cm x 60cm. For wet zones like the bathrooms, stick to 30cm x 60cm as those offer more traction and are safer. Tiles that are too big will also make it difficult to create a proper slope for drainage.


Large format tiles like the ones in this living room keep the grout lines to a minimum.

Design: Happe Design Atelier

5. Go gloss over matte

While matte tiles don’t necessarily make a small home feel smaller, the additional sheen in glossy floor tiles can help to bounce light around and make your small space look more spacious. Word of caution: Avoid using glossy floor tiles in areas prone to being wet like the bathroom, as they can be too slippery.


Glossy floor tiles together with a full-height mirrored door help to bounce light around this small condominium apartment.

Design: Ark-hitecture

6. Minimise the patterns and grains

Plain tiles are better for small spaces, since they help to cut down on visual clutter. But if those are too boring for you, pick patterned tiles that aren’t too busy e.g. those that feature strong geometric lines as opposed to Peranakan style patterned tiles for instance, or tiles that look like marble and wood but with less obvious grains.


The floor tiles in this home feature faint marble grains that add interest and visual texture without the busyness.

Design: Charlotte’s Carpentry

7. Consider a herringbone or diagonal layout

For places that need lengthening, you may wish to consider laying out your tiles in a herringbone or diagonal pattern. With herringbone, the eye is immediately drawn to the direction of the ‘V’ arrow as a result of this pattern. If you are using square tiles, laying them in a diagonal layout creates a diamond shape pattern with longer lines that run diagonally across the room to give the illusion of a longer and bigger space.


The herringbone patterned flooring draws the eye towards the service yard, elongating this kitchen.

Design: Arche

 

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