PART 2: Tile Formats, Layouts, Batches & Returns
There are a great many things to consider when it comes to selecting your new tiles, from colours and patterns to styles and layouts. Our Tile Talk series is a discussion on the terminology used in the tile industry to help you make a more informed decision with the help of our team of Interior Designers at Perini Tiles.
Following our last Tile Talk post which covered tile materials and finishes, this follow-up guide runs through common tile formats, popular layouts, the differences between batches, as well as how to handle tile returns.
Referring to the overall size of a tile, available tile formats are incredibly varied, from the smallest of mosaic tiles to extra-large porcelain tiles that can be used to clad an entire room with minimal joins. Small or large format tiles lend themselves well to particular uses; large format tiles are incredibly effective in all areas of the home as they use minimal grout, allowing for an incredibly easy to maintain surface finish on your floors and walls. Smaller sized tiles such as mosaics for example, can be used throughout the home to create stunning feature walls or floors.
In collaboration with the world renowned Greg Natale, these playful Bisazza mosaic tiles create the perfect feature wall in all areas of the home. Available in a multitude of designs and colours, the entire collection can be viewed here.
Your new tiles can be laid in a variety of different ways according to your preferences and your selected tile’s suitability to the various styles. The most popular tile layouts include: Stack bond, Basket Weave, Diagonal, Windmill, Herringbone and Brick Bond, as shown below in our quick reference chart:
While selecting your new tiles, you can speak with our knowledgeable staff about your selection’s best layout options. You will want to also discuss your preferred layout with your Tiler prior to any works commencing to ensure that everyone is on the same page. If you are working with a Builder or Designer, tile layouts can be discussed and agreed on during the design stage, once again ensuring that all involved in your project are in agreement, avoiding any costly errors down the track!
Once you’ve placed an order, your tiles will be part of a particular batch. As with most manufactured products, there can be slight variations between said batches in terms of colour, finish and even size, making it crucial to double check the exact amount of tiles your project will require prior to placing an order. You should also factor in an additional 10% (approx) to allow for any potential miscalculations or wastage, as well as a few spares to keep for future use. These additional tiles will become your safety net, ensuring your project has a consistent finish with all tiles coming from the same batch.
Any potential variations between batches of tiles are not always noticeable when viewed independent of each other however, if tiles from varying batches are laid side by side, these variations can be distinctly noticeable, making for an undesirable outcome in your finished project.
This is where your extra tiles come in! Should you be a little short on your measurements, these extras will have been ordered from the same batch as the rest of your tiles, ensuring consistency in your project.
Tiles that feature a matching pattern will usually require some extra time to prepare prior to laying to ensure the pattern isn’t cut off in an aesthetically displeasing way. This can lead to more wastage as not all cuts can be reused. Our Formtech porcelain tiles as pictured above are available in a variety of patterns and solid colours to create a harmonious look.
Should you have extra tiles after your project has been completed, these can be stored away in case of any accidents down the track. Tracking down a replacement tile later on to match your existing tiles can be near impossible due to different batches having being produced in the meantime. A broken tile can easily be replaced with a piece from the same batch and will blend in seamlessly!).
Ordering 10 to 15% extra tiles for your project will ensure you have all your bases covered, avoiding running into any trouble down the track when trying to source the same batch of tiles. (Tiles that have a directional pattern may require more than 15% wastage)
Pictured: Concrete inspired porcelain tiles included in our Windmill Collection.
Returning Tiles to your Store
If on the other hand, you are considering returning your excess tiles, you will want to contact us immediately to ensure that this is still a possibility. As discussed above, tiles vary between manufactured batches meaning that any returned tiles cannot be simply added back into a tile store’s inventory and sold on to future clients. Due to the inevitable variations between batches, tiles from the one lot cannot be mixed with another lot to fulfil a future client’s order as this will affect the outcome of their project.
Should the same batch still be in stock however, we may be able to accept returns (handling fee also applies). Our staff at Perini Tiles will be able to confirm if a return is possible, which is why it is absolutely crucial to contact the store immediately to see if this is an option in your situation. We do however, recommend that any excess tiles be stored away for future replacements or renovations where areas of your existing flooring need to be repaired or replaced.
As you can see, there’s a lot more to it than simply selecting a favourite colour or pattern. There are a multitude of things to consider when making your project’s tile selection and our team is here to guide you through each step of the process.