How To Install Mosaic Tiles

While mosaic tiles may be tricky to work with, they look fantastic when they’re applied.

Mosaic tiles tend to be supplied as sheets already fixed to a soft mesh backing. Ordinarily, these sheets are 300mm square, enabling large areas to be tiled without worrying about spacers between the individual mosaics.

 bathroom

When you first discover these sheets, you’ll probably breathe a huge sigh of relief! However, just because you don’t have to juggle thousands of mosaic tile pieces all the time, it doesn’t mean that installing mosaic tiles is always a simple task.

There are advantages and disadvantages to applying mosaic tiles both individually and on a backed sheet.

One downside to applying mosaic tiles using a backed sheet is that it can be challenging to apply even pressure across the whole sheet. The result could be that some tiles sink too deeply into the adhesive, whilst others are falling away.

Professional tilers will, no doubt, have accumulated methods of avoiding this issue, however, that is not to say all tilers (no matter what their experience) shouldn’t bear potential issues with mosaic tiling projects in mind.

Some tips for overcoming a sinking backed sheet (aside from having enormous, flat and extremely steady hands!) may be to invest in some rigid mesh backing sheets. These sheets are usually self-adhesive and applied straight to the back of the sheet of tiles. They can then be handled like a larger tile and will have a flat, professional look.

Putting some time into the preparation of the walls, starting with a completely flat surface will save a lot of work and time as you start to apply the mosaics.

If you are not used to working with mosaic tiles, don’t be daunted or put off!

Here are some exclusive tips for mosaic tiling:

  • Turn the sheets over to cut them – if sheets of tiles need trimming, turn them over and trim with a sharp utility knife.
  • Avoid cutting tiles – think ahead and spread the gaps, or squeeze them, to ensure a full mosaic tile fits the final gap.
  • Use professional equipment – if tiles do need cutting then aim to use the best cutter you can afford to buy or hire.
  • Clean as you go – adhesive lumps protruding through the grout spaces may end up being visible. As the adhesive starts to harden it is worth going over the gaps with an old toothbrush before grouting.
  • Go easy on the grout – with potentially hundreds of edges to be cleaned after grouting, it is worth taking more time grouting the mosaics than might be the case with larger tiles.

Mosaic tiles are commonly found used as a decorative feature, often breaking up a wall of plain tiles in a bathroom. When planning a bathroom or kitchen it might also be worth considering a mosaic splashback.

Above a sink, behind a cooking hob or kitchen worktop, a mosaic splashback can transform a room. As well as boosting the aesthetics of a home, mosaic tiles create a washable surface where water or food could stain a plain wall.

It’s not just walls that would benefit from mosaics. Consider adding a glamorous touch to the bathroom by tiling the shower floor with glass mosaic tiles. Whilst large glass tiles might be too slippery for floors, the network of grout lines on a mosaic floor will provide substantial grip.

A bathroom designer could create endless patterns with mosaics by laying them individually, maybe have a sea life scene on your shower floor.

The challenges of tiling with mosaics are almost certainly out weighed by the potential impact on your home’s charisma.

If you’d like to master your skills when it comes to tiling with mosaics, UK Pro Tiling Training can help.

How To Tile Around Windows

Tiling around a window is no easy task and that’s why it is a job most often left to a tiling professional.

After all, if mistakes are made it can be costly to put right and, ultimately, without paying significant attention to detail and doing a decent job, the end result can look terrible, leading to leaks, mould and cracks in the tile.

A tiling professional, however, is trained to tile around challenging points in the wall and can apply tiles around a window flawlessly so they look elegant and sophisticated, while offering water resistance and durability.

At UK Pro Tiling Training, we train our tiling students to tile any project with accuracy and efficiency. We, of course, instruct our students on how to tile around windows.

windows

Here’s our step-by-step guide for how to tile around windows.

Before starting the job

  • Plan the project!

Make sure you plan out the tiles and grout lines on the surrounding wall and window to make sure they all match up before applying any tiles.

  • Collect the tools and materials you need, making sure they are accessible
  • Tape measure
  • Wall spacer
  • Sponge
  • Felt tip pen
  • Mitre Block
  • Grout spreader
  • Adhesive spreader (Notched trowel)
  • Adhesive (suitable for the room)
  • Grout
  • Tiles
  • Tile nipper
  • Tile trim
  • Tile cutter
  • Gloves
  • Safety Goggles

Tiling around a window

Measure the depth of the recess up to the edge of the window.

  1. Measure each tile gap using the tile spaces.
  2. Cut the tiles to fit using a tile cutter, you can use a tile cutting machine or tile nipper.
  3. To finish the corner tiles, use a tile trim and cut at a 45 degree angle.
  4. Starting from the bottom, spread the adhesive and apply the tiles.
  5. Work up the sides and finish at the top.
  6. Use a wooden support structure to hold the tiles (specifically the top tiles) in place.
  7. Leave the adhesive to dry for 24 hours. Once dry, the tiles will be fixed in place.
  8. Apply the grout.
  9. Wipe the tiles clean with a damp sponge.

After applying the tiles

Once applying the tiles and the grout and all has dried, it is a good idea to spray the tiles around the window with grout protector spray. This will protect the tiles from any moisture, damp, mould and general wear and tear.

More advice from UK Pro Tiling Training

Learn more about tiling with UK Pro Tiling Training.

20 Bathroom Tile Patterns

Don’t be fooled into thinking that your bathroom tile patterns should be simple and plain (bland and boring…). There are huge variations of tiling options that can add a great zest of life to your bathroom.

Whether you are looking for tile ideas for small bathrooms or larger washrooms, take a look at the 20 Bathroom tile patterns below and open your mind to what tiles and tiling patterns may look good in your home.

  1. Natural stone tiles

Natural stone tiles are incredibly popular in contemporary homes for their neutral appearance and durable qualities.

Natural stone tiles can be bought in various sizes and can be used for walk-in showers too, something we teach in our natural stone tiling course.

  1. Rainbow coloured tiling pattern

If you want to add a little colour to your bathroom, why not opt for a multi-coloured tiling pattern?

Multi coloured tiles can be a good choice of colour for smaller bathrooms, and work particularly well to brighten up your additional toilet or shower room.

  1. Checkerboard tiling pattern

The checkerboard tiling pattern has been around for a number of years, however, has most recently been seen to be making a comeback!

Best installed by a professional tiler, the checkerboard tiling pattern offers a sleek and sophisticated finish.

  1. Laminate flooring

Laminate flooring is a safe bet for those on a budget as it is generally considered to be a cheaper bathroom floor option than tile.

While here at UK Pro Tiling Training we would always opt for tiles for their quality and long-lasting durability, we can understand the attraction to the lower initial cost that laminate provides.

  1. Marble tiles

Marble tiles most definitely have a luxurious edge that makes this type of tile stand out from the crowd.

Marble tiles work well in large bathrooms and kitchens.

  1. 3-layer tiling pattern

The 3-layer tiling pattern should be installed by a tiling professional and essentially features detailed ornamentation around the bath.

Another prestigious tiling pattern, the 3-layer tiling pattern can add a sense of supremity to your bathroom.

  1. Mosaic tiles

backgrounds-bathroom-blue-9082 (1)

Mosaic tiles are much smaller than standard tiles and can be applied in a straight-forward format, like in the image above, or can be applied in a more detailed, shaped design.

Professional tilers enjoy working with mosaic tiles as these tiles encourage creativity and variation.

  1. Chevron tiling pattern

The Chevron tiling pattern is a tiling pattern with a difference and will provide your bathroom with a retro feel.

The pattern will vary depending on the colours you choose. Bolder colours will result in a more obvious pattern.

  1. Porcelain tiles

Porcelain tiles are a type of ceramic tile and are incredibly popular for use in bathrooms and kitchens. The great thing about Porcelain tiles is the fact that they can be in a large format to fit in any size bathroom. Large porcelain tiles work exceptionally well for use on bathroom flooring.

  1. Straight lay tiling pattern

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The straight lay tiling pattern is the simplest tiling pattern of all, but it must be applied neatly to look chic and sophisticated.

The pattern consists of tiles (most often ceramic) applied in a straight horizontal pattern.

     11. Diagonal lay tiling pattern

The diagonal lay tiling pattern is similar to the tiling pattern above but, yes you guessed it, the tiles are applied on a diagonal slant.

      12.The Versailles pattern

The Versailles tiling pattern is a more complicated tiling pattern that looks effective in all areas of the home, including the bathroom, although is not recommended for very small bathrooms.

The Versailles pattern features four different tile sizes and, although, portrays a random look, requires meticulous planning. It is best installed by expert tilers.

   13. The basket weave tiling pattern

An intricate tiling pattern that portrays the weaved look, the basket weave pattern works well in bathrooms of all sizes.

   14. Herringbone tiling pattern

The Herringbone tiling pattern is another classic that can be complicated to apply and should be carried out by a professional tiler.

It is an excellent choice for making rooms look bigger and essentially consists of tiles, applied in V shapes by being placed at a 45-degree angle.

    15. Easy applicator tiles

Some tiling patterns are fused on larger tiles to make for an easier application, perfect for those looking to apply the tiles as a DIY task.

    16.The Brick Pattern

The brick pattern can make for another more retro bathroom wall tile design and is essentially made up of rectangular tiles applied in a brick wall format.

A good tiling pattern for smaller bathrooms or walls with an uneven surface, the slight misalignment of the tiles fools the eye into thinking the wall is bigger.

     17. The hexagon pattern

The hexagon pattern is made up of numerous hexagon shaped tiles applied to the wall or floor. It can be slightly more difficult to apply this shape of tile. Additionally, hexagon shaped tiles can be more difficult to come-by.

     18. Windmill tiling pattern

The windmill tiling pattern tends to be too busy a pattern for a whole wall or entire bathroom floor, however makes an affective border or feature area. It consists of four small rectangular tiles placed around a larger square tile. The windmill pattern is best applied by a professional tiler.

    19. English bond tiling pattern

The English bond tiling pattern consists of a combination of rectangular and square tiles applied in a horizontal format. This pattern makes a nice, yet similar, alternative to the brick tiling pattern.

     20. Vertical brick tiling pattern

The vertical brick tiling pattern is an alternative to the standard brick pattern and can be a popular option for contemporary homes.

White vertical brick offers the ultimate modern look for bathrooms.

More information on bathroom tile patterns from UK Pro Tiling Training

If you would like to expand your knowledge of tiling patterns with one of our professional tiling courses, then please do not hesitate to contact us at UK Pro Tiling Training.