When it comes to bathroom flooring, some people may simply decide on tiles without giving it a second thought. However, like with any design element, creating an immaculate and impactful environment takes 360-degree approach, where everything is important.
Your bathroom floors are blank canvas which could instantly change the feeling of your home, giving it an additional edge. Whether you are remodeling, renovating or building a new home, consider venturing into original directions to give your living space a special feel.
- One consideration you should always keep in mind when choosing your bathroom flooring is that it will become wet and needs to be non-slippery, to prevent potential accidents.
- Flooring should be designed in a way to allow for easy collection of splashed water.
- Remember that showers and any other areas that could have a spill of water should be painted with a waterproof paint prior to installation of tiles or other floor coverings. In some US states it may have to be done by a licensed professional and certified.
One of the simplest ways you can add another dimension to your bathroom flooring is the use of levels. Normally, the whole bathroom would be tiled straight through. Today you can make the room more interesting and usable at the same time by adding a step down to the shower or bath. It will help to contain water in case of a spill or overflow, and at the same time add depth to this important space.
Levels are usually added by concreting part of the room on a higher level than the rest, usually the space where you are planning to locate your shower. If the overall height and dimensions allow, you can even introduce one or more stairs. If you are utilizing a bathtub, building steps for easy access would also be a great thought.
This design idea came from Japan and Korea, where homes had warm flooring for decades. It makes perfect sense to have warm floors in bathrooms, which would make showering or bathing more enjoyable during colder months of the year.
Using in the shower small round boulders instead of tiles would provide wonderful foot massage on regular basis. A similar effect on a smaller scale could be achieved by using marble mosaics, as small pieces of stone would provide interesting tactile sensations. You wouldn’t want to use it to the whole floor but picking an area where you are likely to walk barefoot and making it a feature would generate both design and health benefits.
You could, for example, create a path of stones that weaves around the bath (if you are using one) and match it with shower flooring, or simply add an asymmetric strike to the room by adding a stone feature on the floor. It could round up an otherwise strict space, give it some playful flavor.
Today you can get grout not only in standard colors but also in a palette of interesting shades. By using different shades of grouting you can differentiate spaces or create marvelous contrasts. Traditionally grouting was not thought of as a design element, but play around with different shades and results may surprise you.
The recent design craze is the use of polished concrete in high traffic areas. It’s especially popular for commercial constructions, some people also use it in guest bathrooms at private US homes. The main advantage of this type of floor coverings is its low maintenance and availability of options, however, the costs are comparable with traditional floor coverings, and both in new and old constructions it requires professional preparation and installation. Polished concrete flooring may look similar to high gloss marble floors or be painted to look like tiles or giant mosaics.
When you played around with all the exciting design ideas, eventually you may still decide to stick with tiles. Today’s tiles come in a great variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, which could change the room in an instant. Remember that all tiles used in the bathroom should be slip resistant. If in doubt, consult your tiling specialist prior to purchase whether a certain type will be usable for this purpose.
Types of tiles usually used in bathrooms:
- Finger and pencil tiles.
Your bathroom flooring may compliment the wall tiles or contrast it. A contrasting border may create a strong visual impact. You can also mark places for bathroom or shower mats by using a contrasting shade of tiles there, visually creating a place where to position your textiles.
Natural stone tiles today come in laminated versions, which allows to make them much thinner. Not only such tiles will last longer, they also weight less, which can be important for some constructions.
Mosaics on bathroom floors look powerful, whether used in showers or throughout the whole room. There are pre-cut large mosaic patterns that are very dramatic and have the potential of turning your regular bathroom floor into a masterpiece.
If using natural stone, remember than palettes could have slightly different shades, which will be visible on installation. It’s a good practice to lay down all the stone tiles prior to starting installation to smooth transitions between colors. If some tiles are slightly different in shade, they could be positioned in corners or other areas of less significant visibility. You can also use a chequered pattern for laying.
- Ensure the concrete flooring is designed to allow for spilled water to escape towards drainage points.
- Check shades and tone of all tiles prior to installation.
- Ensure you have sufficient number of boxes for the area.
- Leave some spare tiles for repairs.