Selecting the Right Subway Tile

petoskeyplastics DIY Advice, Remodel


Although it isn’t the focal point that granite countertops or stainless steel appliances may be, subway tile placed in the correct manner can upgrade the atmosphere of a room. One thing is for sure though, nothing could have prepared me for how many options there are when selecting how to outfit a backsplash.


There are many options when it comes to tones of the tile being placed in your home. From the classic white to metallic hues, the spectrum is endless. One facet that must be taken into account though is the grout. What type of accent would you like to achieve? For example, if you choose to have a simple look with white tile in a straight pattern, do you want the tile to blend into the background with a white grout attaining a clean design or would you rather achieve a level of contrast with a dark grey? Each has its own unique flavor.

Size and Shape:

This aspect could determine a lot about your layout. Subway tiles come in more shapes and sizes than you can imagine: squares, rectangles, octagons, hexagons. They’re all available if you desire them!


Your choice for size and shape will help determine your pattern. I was absolutely blown away with the patterns that can be used when creating the backdrop for a room. Check out this picture from that shows 9 of the most popular patterns.

The last thing I wanted to touch on has less to do with the tiles themselves and more with the overall layout of your kitchen. If you decide to use subway tile, do me one favor. Think about the tile would look taking up the area between your counter top and cabinets, which is the more familiar layout and then also think about what it would look like if it extended all the way to your ceiling. Depending on the patterns and colors chosen, this may cause the room to get a bit busy. However, trying something like this could create an incredible aesthetic completely different from what was originally planned.

Once you’ve made the decision to makeover your backsplash make sure you’re prepared for the demo process. If you’re removing previously placed tile or another substance designate a location to place that discarded material. When adding the new tile, you’ll also need to protect any areas in danger of a possible grout mess. Steelcoat® offers both contractor bags and plastic sheeting for these types of situations. Check out our product flyer page for more information on these products!