The go-to guide for Victorian Floor Tiles
Tuesday 7 April 2020, Written by Laura Tompkins Tags: Victorian Floor Tiles
A brief history
With these geometric floor tiles dating back to the 1800’s, it’s fair to say that the Victorians knew a thing or two about enduring style, as this trend has truly stood the test of time!
For many years Victorian floor tiles were found mainly in castles, palaces, churches and pubs but from around 1860, many British homes began being built with tiled front paths, porches and hallways. Favoured for their durability and hard-wearing properties, as well as beauty and charm, Victorian floor tiles have been growing in popularity ever since, especially for homeowners today who are renovating period properties but wanting to stay true to their original features such as geometric tiled floors.
Areas of use
Although often found in hallways and pathways, Victorian floor tiles are also brilliant for kitchens, bathrooms and living spaces. There durability makes them a great choice for high traffic areas and means they can withstand the tread of everyday life – whilst still looking fantastic! Our Victorian Floor Tile collection is produced using similar production techniques to their original counterparts, which adds to their authentic charm and means they will last for generations to come.
As the patterns are made up of individual pieces, it means tricky areas like corners can be tiled to perfection and you don’t need to worry about things looking uneven or unfinished. When compared mesh-mounted (i.e. mosaic) alternatives, individual tiles allow for greater flexibility upon installation and provide a more aesthetic and authentic finish. Back in the Victorian era, this is how these tiles were installed – it’s a true craft and takes more time than your average tiling project but the finished result is worth it.
While Victorian floor tiles are often associated with grandeur and large rooms, they also look fantastic in smaller areas, especially for adding a touch of luxury and style. These spaces typically include fireplace hearths and small porches.
Colours, patterns and borders
Our Victorian floor tiles are made of clay and powdered glazes, then fired in a kiln, giving them a matt finish in many colour options. As individual pieces create the patterns and borders, there are a wealth of design options to choose from, or you could even create your own bespoke pattern, the opportunities really are endless!
Starting with the simple checkerboard, in either classic black and white, buff and red or even contemporary greys. These patterns are known to us as Cambridge (a square checkerboard) and Oxford (a checkerboard where the square is on its point to create a diamond effect). The same patterns can also be created using smaller square tiles, known as the Wellington and Dorchester patterns.
For something with a little more detail, there are patterns such as Nottingham and Falkirk. Again you can use a number of colourways, from cool greys and monochromes to greens, blues and browns.
For larger areas we love the look of more complex patterns, such as Blenheim and Hexham
Borders are great for framing an area and provide the perfect finishing touch, there are many borders to choose from, the Kingsley border pictured right is a popular choice.
Take a look at our decorative options too, the popular Salisbury tile in tones of grey is wonderfully detailed. There’s also tile set options for those looking to make a statement.
If you fancy creating your own bespoke pattern, you can view all the colour and shape options in our brochure here. Once you’ve got something in mind, we offer a CAD (Computer Aided Design) service to help you visualise pattern and bring your project to life.
We always recommend using a professional tiler when installing Victorian floor tiles in order to achieve the best possible finish. This type of tiling is a true craft and takes skill and experience to produce a quality finish that will stand the test of time.
Much of the work when tiling is in the preparation, from levelling floors to working out how best to lay the chosen pattern. Your local retailer will be able to assist in helping you find a tiler. Our CAD service is also available for tile quantity guidance as well as to help you see your chosen pattern in your home – whether that’s bespoke or one of our existing patterns.
If you’re considering Victorian Floor Tiles, we recommend doing your research and getting samples to try at home. Some of the best places to get inspiration are Pinterest and Instagram, as well as in our very own Victorian Floor Tile brochure which you can read here. Here’s a bit of inspiration to get started.