Simple Steps to Planning a Tile Bathroom
A little forward thinking can go a long way to make all the difference in organizing a smooth project timeline and executing a beautifully crafted bathroom.
|AVERAGE COST OF BATHROOM PROJECT|
|Toilet||$70 - 1,000|
|Tub||$99 - 2,600|
|Vanity with Top||$49 - 2,750|
|Fixtures||$150 - 1,000|
|Medicine Cabinet||$30 - 1,200|
|Handmade Tiles||$500 - 10,000|
Create a Vision for Your Tile Project
There are hundreds of tile designs, colors and concepts for you to choose from, so the process can sometimes feel overwhelming. When creating the vision of your tile project, we recommend researching projects that catch your eye in books, magazines and the Internet. Your local bookstores and libraries carry a great selection of magazines and home improvement books. Clay Squared to Infinity has a small library of historic and contemporary books to get ideas. We recommend utilizing Clay Squared, Pinterest, and Houzz websites. When you’re ready, bring in clippings or digital ideas and color schemes you like.
Ask yourself Questions
What style do you want to create in your space? Do you own a period home, i.e. Mid Century, Bungalow, Arts & Crafts, Tudor, Victorian, Rambler, or Contemporary? If so, working within a historic era can guide decisions and help narrow choices. Are you more eclectic and want to make room for art in the space? If so, working with themes and color ranges will help the design.
We recommend that you begin planning for your tile needs near the beginning of your remodel, before other things are installed that could limit your tile choices and design. Order time for tile can be anywhere from 2-8 weeks. (Clay Squared to Infinity handmade tile is complete in about 3-4 weeks.) You will also want to make sure that you have your tile when your tile installer is scheduled, unless you are installing the tile yourself.
DIY vs. Architect or Designer
Designers and architects are people who understand space, design, and color. They typically cost 15% of a project but, when you have large projects, their insights and knowledge can save you more than their fees. If you don’t have the budget for a designer and feel you need some help, Clay Squared will help you find your vision and pull it all together. Artist/owner Josh Blanc has been working with tile since 1995 and is the designer and maker of the handmade tiles at Clay Squared to Infinity.
Decide on Locations for Tile in the Bathroom
There are so many areas in the bathroom recommended for tiling that you’ll understand why 70-80% of it is often tiled. All shower and shower/tub surrounds should be tiled, and at least 6” above the shower head. Tubs that have no shower but do have a surround should still be tiled about 6” above the top of the tub. Behind the sink, install tile at least up to 4” above the sink. For a toilet next to the wall or with walls on both sides, we recommend tile all the way around for ease of cleaning and maintenance. Last, but certainly not least, tile the bathroom floor.
Find Plumbing and Other Obstacles
The bathroom is full of switches and electrical outlets. Switches for room lights, lights in the shower stall and the exhaust fan should be located close to their use. Outlets are generally located next to the vanity, high on the wall. A good location for many of these is above the tile, on the painted wall. If you plan to install a shower with multiple showerheads, body sprays or thermostatic controls, understand there are no standards for where these will be installed. You will need to consult with your plumber as to their location and then plan your tile design around them.
Allow Time to Design
Now that your have addressed concerns that might restrict your tile design, you can start playing with the tile! Your intuition can be an integral part of the design process. Contemplate colors and try new combinations; let the mood and personality of your home guide your choices. Come to the showroom and, at no cost, check out tile samples to help you determine color and size. If you are out of the area, you can order one of our sample packs on our website, or call us.
If you can figure out how much tile you need, great. If you have a tile setter installing the tile, they can determine the amounts and sizes for you. If you need assistance, we are happy to help.
Visit or call 612-781-6409 our studio/showroom in NE Minneapolis. We recommend bringing in a drawing with as many dimensions and details as possible. Digital pictures of the room or area are also helpful.
Or, order online without leaving the comfort of your home.
How to Calculate Square Footage
Create a thumbnail drawing (or if you have an architectural rendering, that will also work). Grid paper can be helpful, but not necessary.
Measure the length and width of each area in inches.
Multiply length x width to determine the total area.
Divide total area by 144 (the total number of inches per square foot) to derive how many square feet you need for each section.
Add the standard 10-15% for additional error and future replacement tile.
Determine how many tile are in a square foot: