Floor tiles, wall tiles… I like tiles.

beautiful vintage green and white ceramic tile

I think this green and white ceramic wall tile – which I spotted in the entranceway of a c. 1920s building in Montreal, and which I expect is original to the building – is absolutely gorgeous. There has to be a place for something like this at the Manse.

Regular readers will probably have figured out by now that I am no – well, I was going to throw in the name of a famous home-design guru, but you know what? I don’t even know the names of any famous home-design gurus. Which is even more proof that I am not one of them.

So when it comes to thinking about the renovations that Raymond and I ought to be doing at the Manse in Queensborough, I am kind of at sea. Of course (as regular readers will also know) I do like midcentury modern furniture (probably primarily because it reminds me of the era of my childhood at the Manse, though I am convinced it was a golden age for design). And white-painted wainscotting. And turquoise plaster walls. But planning for the overall decor for a 21st-century renovation of a rural 19th-century rectory? People, I am all at sea.

But I think there need to be tiles. I like tiles. I like subway tile on walls, for instance; I think it would be awesome in the bathroom of my dreams, which, just for the record (I’ve shown this photo before) looks like this:

Bathroom in the home of Pilar Guzman

The bathroom of my dreams, in the Brooklyn home of Pilar Guzman, the editor in chief of Martha Stewart Living. And yes, I realize we’d probably want window blinds. (Photo from marthastewart.com)

And speaking of the bathroom of my dreams: I adore those small hexagonal black-and-white tiles that I remember from the floor of the bathroom in my maternal grandparents’ handsome early-20th-century home in Toronto’s Leaside neighbourhood. I found a floor that reminded me of that when Raymond and I took in a show at the venerable Ogunquit Playhouse on our summer vacation in Maine this year, and here it is:

hexagonal black-and-white bathroom floor tiles

Do you remember this style of bathroom floor? I do, and with great fondness. It’s time for a comeback. Or maybe (come to think of it) it never went away.

Also, on the very first day of that same vacation, we were in a restaurant whose floor tiles –  vinyl, I suppose – reminded me of the turquoise-and-white linoleum floor that was in the Manse’s kitchen in my family’s very earliest days there. Seeing this floor gave me hope that we might find something along the same lines for the Manse:

green and white square linoleum tiles

Boy, this floor sure did remind me of our old turquoise-and-white kitchen floor at the Manse, c. 1965. This is in a restaurant – as I suppose you might guess, given the stray French fry.

And then in a hospital corridor (of all places) I recently spotted this variation on the square-tiled floor, another nice colour combination:

red an white floor tiles

I think this tile floor is a happy colour combination. Of course, red is my favourite colour.

Retro look, doubtless very sturdy (hey, it’s a hospital corridor!), and I bet it’s not even all that expensive.

Home-design gurus, eat your heart out!

2 thoughts on “Floor tiles, wall tiles… I like tiles.

  1. Hey, Katherine, we have the same white tiles in our kitchen, they are called subway tiles, we remodeled the kitchen a few years back and kept the tiles as we love them. we also have the same tiles in seafoam green (I think that is the color) in the bathroom, absolutely love them, our house was built in 1940.

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