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Tile Patterns We Considered... & Is Offset On the Way Out?


If you didn't already know, I'm an Interior Designer for a local builder... and one of my favorite ways to keep costs down but make a space unique, is by changing the way a tile is laid. It's such a simple thing to change or ask for, but it can really elevate a space. So, when we started our bathroom renovation, I knew that we could buy an affordable, plain tile - but that I would lay it in a way that would bring a "wow" factor... and I did just that!

But before we talk about the pattern we chose for our bathroom shower, let's talk about all the different ways you can lay tile to create a more unique space... and finish with the burning question (at least its a burning question in my mind) - "is offset tile on it's way out?" What do you think? Let's talk about it... here are the different tile patterns that are widely used in homes today.


Also known as "straight set", the stacked pattern is usually categorized as a modern option. It gives the look of clean, bold lines and must be done with a square or rectangle tile. I would say that this tile pattern is definitely trending right now and you can see it in many well-known interiors - some of my favorites are below.

This pattern was definitely a contender for our shower... but Nathan wasn't a fan, which honestly surprised me since he tends to lean more modern with his taste. Maybe I can convince him for a future bathroom renovation...


I usually refer to this as a "diamond" pattern - but it's more formally known as diagonal. This pattern must be done using square tiles only... so when turned on a diagonal, they look like diamonds. I love using this pattern in large Master Bathrooms, I think it makes a space feel more elegant or luxurious. Although, lately I have been seeing this pattern and idea used in mud rooms... with the idea of using two different colors to create a fun checkerboard pattern.


The herringbone pattern! This pattern is easily one of the most popular options right now, the problem? Tile laborers charge more to lay this pattern because of the precise angles and extra material waste it creates. This pattern is usually done with narrow, skinny tiles; like a 3"x12" or a 6"x36" but could also be created using a typical 3x6 subway tile. There are also two different ways to lay herringbone - 1. Stacked Herringbone 2. Regular Herringbone

Stacked herringbone is where the tiles are laid vertical and horizontal on a 90 degree angle. Regular herringbone is where the tiles are laid on center at a 45 degree angle - can you tell the difference?

Basket Weave

The basket weave (my favorite!) - it is also be referred to as the parquet pattern. This pattern needs to be completed with rectangular tiles where the width is divisible by the height. For example, you could use a 3"x12" tile because 12 is divisible by 3. You can also use a 3"x6", a 4"x12", or a 4"x16". The idea behind this pattern is that a number of tiles are laid in a vertical stack, creating a square; meaning if you were using 3"x12" tiles, you would lay four tile next to each other and they would create a perfect square since 12 divided by 3 equals 4. Then directly next to that square, you lay four more tiles but laid in a horizontal stack. This creates the illusion of the tiles weaving in and out of one another.

This is the pattern we chose for our bathroom because while it's not a "popular" pattern right now, I predict it will become popular in the coming years. I also pinned a lot of this pattern when searching for inspiration for our bathroom. I'm so happy we decided on this pattern because it really does bring a whole different, unique feel to our bathroom.


Last but not least, and arguably the most popular tile pattern, is the offset. This is a very classic look and although it can be done with any rectangle or square tile, you're more than likely to see it done with 3"x6" subway tile.

Here you see it done in a more unique way... vertical offset. This is a great way to take the classic pattern and bring a modern feel to it.

I call offset the safe choice and most of the clients I work with chose to lay their shower tile and floor tiles this way. It's also an inexpensive pattern for tile laborers to lay, it doesn't require a lot of material waste or special cuts. I mentioned that I thought this pattern may be on it's way out and while I do think that, I still have my doubts that it will ever really be labeled as "dated". While most of my clients always ask what the other options are (in terms of laying their tile), they always revert back to this classic pattern.

It's interesting to me because you do not see high end designers using this pattern nearly as much anymore... so I almost feel like it's being phased out in high end projects, but hasn't trickled down to the everyday household or DIY community yet - which is totally okay! I always find it interesting how certain trends, or changes in trend, take longer to appear than others. What are your thoughts? Does offset forever have your heart? Or are you feeling adventurous and want to try something new on your next project?

Talk soon, friends!


1 comment

1 Comment

Oct 22, 2020

There are charms in the holidays and all want to have these. I just take part in a ballot for the tilers Toowoomba for the help in the writing as well as in the understanding. Not important how work we do in the holidays it just matter we want the holidays.

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