Thursday, November 20, 2008

More about hex tiles... and tiles in general...


(This idea, but not this pattern, necessarily.)

So, 2 posts down, people are debating hex tiles in the kitchen... thought is that it's a nightmare to keep clean.

But one person suggested black tiles and black grout... will that work? Or just look filthy, too?

Thoughts, please.


42 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bad on all fronts. I have them in my bathrooms. They're a bitch to clean and they look too bathroomy.

KatinkaPinka said...

i love hex tiles all the way. i like white with a few black scattered throughout in a little rosette pattern with grey grout. white tile will show dirt faster than, say, tan or something, but with so many grout lines it really shows less than just plain big tiles.

in my opinion, black on black shows a ton of dusty footprints. ALL. THE. TIME.

Anonymous said...

We have white hex tiles in our bathroom. I love them and they are low maintenance. The grout is medium grey and it hides everything.

victoria thorne design said...

black on black could get awfully dusty, as katinka notes, and sort of sticky looking...it might be good if there were no children or dogs or sandwiches, as long as you had a live-in housekeeper...

how about a creamy white hexagonal with the right grey grout? Sort of dark, the grey, but not too...

An Aesthete's Lament said...

I think black tiles with black grout sounds pretty damned stylish. And not filthy at all. In fact, it likely will hide filth. I think. Then again, I had ebony-stained wood floors that showed every damned dog hair and dust particle.

Making it Lovely said...

They are a bit bathroomy. My hundred year old house has 'em in the bathroom with black grout. Or I hope it was always black grout – I think so. They're not hard to clean though, the tile is flush with the grout so it's all one smooth surface.

Sacheverelle said...

You see the tiny hex in apt building vestibules from 100 years ago & they still seem to look pretty good despite the dirt & wear. White grout is a pain to clean so I would say stay away from that. I have white hex with white grout in my bathroom & it's really just the grout that always needs cleaning. For a kitchen I would choose 12 x 12 or bigger tile with very thin, non-white grout.

Anonymous said...

I guess it is consistent with a 1929 Tudor, but to me it reads "Depression-era sanitarium."

Not for a kitchen, in any case.

Anonymous said...

Black tiles with black grout...in a kitchen? I think you'd regret it.

And if you did decide you couldn't stand it, what a mess that would be, tearing it all out.

Kristin said...

I have hex in my bathroom, and I clean the nasty white grout with an old electric toothbrush. It takes a while to do an entire floor (and my bathroom is tiny), but it gets the grout spotless with minimal arm movement. I'm pretty lazy. I'd get whatever color you want, keep the grout lines thin, and then pay the neighbor kid a few bucks to scrub the hell out of it every once in a while. Get black if you want black floors, but I think it will show dirt, too.

Anonymous said...

Are you thinking for kitchen? I wouldn't...it will immediately make it look like a bathroom floor. Not a good look for a kitchen/makes it seem toilet-y

Decorno said...

Ha! Ok, I thought it might look bistro-y, but depression-era sanitarium or "toilet-y" is not what I am after.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I'm gonna side with the crowd here. I think it may be more bathroom-y than bistro-esque. Plus you need to have a pathological aversion to dirt and a love of mopping to maintain it.

I did a black and white Bistro kitchen floor, and my mother howled. "Dirt will look black on the white tiles and white on the black tiles". And she was right (sigh) in that way that mothers are.

Plus, it can be hard on your back if you spend a lot of time there, (of course you could wear Crocs a la Mario Batali to obviate that...)

Maybe a mid-tone hardwood that only looks better the more worn it gets. And it's a nice counterpoint to all the white marble/white cabinets/tiled backsplash.

(Lordy, I'm bossy. Don't mean to be, i just hate to think of you doing all that tedious mopping when you could be blogging for us :)

Anonymous said...

I have white hex tiles w/black grout in my kitchen and bathrooms. I live in a 1890's gardeners cottage. I love them. They never look dirty. I mixed it up a bit in the bathrooms using the black tiles as a border but all the grout is black. The kitchen truly is a show-stopper. People love it, and so easy to clean.

Your House & Life said...

I did hex with a dark grey green grout. Its easy upkeep and I personally think its lost its bathroom stigma. I also like the little bit of shimmer that comes with it. Posted some pics recently on my blog if you want some visuals. Good luck.

Holly @ Maison James said...

I avoid tile and any colored grout on floors in all/any rooms and spec it for walls only. I have an original black-and-white basketweave 1930s floor that is gorgeous but I wouldn't want it in a kitchen or anywhere else.

Anonymous said...

A close friend of mine has black on gray tile in her kitchen. She also has two yellow labradors that tramp through her kitchen as they go in & out of the backyard.

Paw prints and dog hair is all you see on her black tile. She is ripping it out and going with hard wood as soon as she can afford it.

Ellen said...

its a bitch to clean and the black grout look dirty. im obsessed as well and had the same problem when we rehabbed our home. we went without. boo hoo

the quarter rat said...

3 words: fawn pug hair.

David said...

The shower floor in my master bath is white hex, I'm not a fan. That said, the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser really is magical for scrubbing grout.

I like the idea of black tile/grout, but dark floors show things just as badly.

A final thought: If you're doing marble counters, how about a coordinating honed marble or granite on the floor in a 8X16 size. Sort of an oversized subway to echo your backsplash (if you go with subway on the backsplash).

kelleyp said...

seriously, listen to the crowd. you do not want black tile--every dusty footprint you will see all the time. not once in awhile, but all the time.
yes, i agree with what was said above--spend your time blogging not mopping.

KatinkaPinka said...

adding one more note:

a friend of mine back in savannah lived in a turn-o-the-century mansion and it had a solarium/garden/fountain room with hex floors and it took my breath away every single time i set foot in there....it never once made me think of anything 'toilety' (ha!)...it just looked so lovely and old-house-ish (in the right way). i say if you love hex, go for it all the way.

lucitebox said...

You see the tiny hex in apt building vestibules from 100 years ago & they still seem to look pretty good despite the dirt & wear.

True, but I do think that hex tile can read as toilet room despite how lovely the tiles themselves are.

One of my favorite buildings (1920's ish) in my neighborhood has a foyer in hex tiles and it is gorgeous! It's a kind of deco lotus pattern the goes up to the chair rail area. (Or whatever you call that midway point on the hallway walls.) It's done with a five or six color palette and it just looks grand.


Don't get me wrong. I do LOVE hex tile. I do see why you want it but black is going to be your worst nightmare.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to sidebar here...but Holly. You've posted twice. Where would you get your bricks for flooring?

Richie Designs said...

yikes black floors are a nightmare to keep clean.

I think the hex is the way to go

Ivy Lane said...

Hex tiles usually spells bathroom... I am a Realtor, and cannot recall hex tiles that I have seen being used anywhere but in bathrooms...They are a nightmare to clean...and nooooo to the black grout...

CSS said...

We have a black patterned rug in our living room and it shows EVERYTHING, so I can only imagine that a black tile will be the same.

Just so you know, there is now a stain-proof grout that is manufactured with something that repels stains. As long as it is sealed well in the beginning, it really works (not perfect, but pretty damn good). We used it in our kitchen in a pale color (there are many to choose from) to match our light tile and have no real problems!

Anonymous said...

I have white hex in the bathroom with white grout. The grout was dirty in exactly one day. I can't stand it. But, this white tile grout cleaner actually works:

www.finazzle.com

Holly @ Maison James said...

Anon 9:24 - I stand corrected. I may have imagined I was told it was brick - here is what it actually is:

- Rectangular cobblestone-style-tile warm color, 3"X6" size
- earthy mushroom -colored grout
- Laid in brick pattern
- Unsealed so neither glossy nor slippery
- Would look great in herringbone pattern in rectangular size.

Sorry - and glad you asked for more info.

Anonymous said...

Ok...have you ditched the hex tile Idea? hope so. Please update us on your thoughts.

Decorno said...

No, haven't abandoned it yet. I think because so many people are against it, it just makes me think I am on to something. I am already in danger of having the kitchen everyone else has with marble and subway tile, so maybe I need something different for the floors. Plus, we already have hardwoods in the adjacent rooms and I don’t want wood floors everywhere. Not in my kitchen and bath. We shall see. Still deciding. The input is very helpful.

PLUS, someone emailed me photos of her hex tile, newly installed in her kitchen and it’s TOTALLY great. I will post them later.

Anonymous said...

I have hex in my bathroom with a dark grey grout and I love them. However, they are a matte surface - so they tend to hold on to dirt more than glossy tile. They can also scuff or scratch easier and don't stay looking clean for very long. One of the reasons they work well in a bathroom is that the matte surface doesn't show water spots.
I have had a mostly white kitchen floor before - a bitch to keep clean and always looked dirty. I suggest a dark colored marmoleum - it is eco-friendly, can be applied as a sheet so that there are few seams, lasts forever and it could not be easier to maintain. They can do some great inlay designs for borders, etc.

Barbie said...

save the hex tiles for a guest bath unless you're an aspiring martha. (i just did it=awesomeness). i put in black 24x24 tiles in the kitchen (ergon mikado) with black grout and I love it. but i guess they're not jet black gloss so they don't get filthy. just make sure they put *enough* grout in, or you'll have crumbs and crap in there and you'll break your back bending over with the vacuum attachment.

Anonymous said...

just saw hexagons in a restaurant with black grout/white/black tiles...awful looking.
i have hardwood floors and LOVE them.

Anonymous said...

about linoleum? It's period appropriate and you can do some very cool designs, from a classic checkerboard to much more intricate ones, such as those replicating inlaid marble floors. This is from a few years ago, but it had so good ideas. http://www.herhome.com/magazine/articles/2004/spring/linoleum-is-back.asp

Mer said...

Decorno,

When we sold our last house with our depressing 50s era kitchen the hip couple who bought it installed this Fabrique tile from Daltile in black:
http://www.daltileproducts.com/series.cfm?series=228
It looks great. I think it would look good with marble and subway and its different.
I considered it for my 60s ranch but I have a galley kitchen that is small, so I worried about all that black. Since I can't afford a 30K kitchen redo (not to mention the cost of removing popcorn glitter ceilings in every room), I had to go with vinyl tile to keep it all retro. Yup. Couldn't even afford linoleum. Sigh.

Anonymous said...

Hey- what about grey marble hex tiles I've seen those in vestibules and grey is easier to keep clean than b/w. And v v chic. Thoughts?

Jennifer said...

my bathroom with 1920s tile has hex with black grout. i'm not a big fan of the black, looks dirty to me. we installed white hex with grey grout in the new kids bath. when the grout is wet it gets darker so it looks splotchy at bath time, but i'm hoping it will be easier to keep clean than white. too soon to tell.

anyway, personally i would not want that much grout in my kitchen...

DCKate said...

going against the grain, a little, so to speak... but I'm a huge fan of hardwood as kitchen flooring. as soon as we can afford it we're redoing the kitchen and I told the mister that hardwood floors are non-negotiable. I don't know how much time you spend in your kitchen, but they're much much easier on your feet and back. also, I love having the same flooring to tie the whole level of the house together, and the rest of that level in our home is already hardwood.

Jennifer said...

I'm behind, so yea on doing your kitchen! though I will miss the great stories your cabinet paint job generated.

I love hexagon tile, but not so much on a big expanse of floor. It starts to look a little trippy en masse, you know?

Anonymous said...

Late to the party, but I inherited black 1-inch square tile in my 1934 bathroom. The grout is gray. It really doesn't show dirt. If it gets dusty (like in the corners), it shows, but I mop it once a week and it's fine.

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