Design advice: Which kitchen floor tile goes with hardwood floor?

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Topic: Design advice: Which kitchen floor tile goes with hardwood floor?

Flooring November 25, 2011 at 2:58 pm

Design advice: Which kitchen floor tile goes with hardwood floor?

This is my first posting

I hope to get some helpful advice from renovation veteran. I am renovating a unit in a traditional brownstone in the Slope.

Problem:

The apartment has a very small kitchen that is open to the living room. – The new kitchen used to have terracotta tiles (which won’t go with the new kitchen, see below).-The new kitchen is high-gloss white with black granite countertops.-������The living room has nice, medium-to-dark brown hardwood floors.

Problem:1)������Goes well with the hardwood floor (either provides nice contrast or smooth transition)2) – Goes with the high-gloss white of the kitchen3)������Goes with black granite countertops.I am really at a loss. I don���������t know much about tile, and anything I could come up with so far either provides too stark a contrast to the hardwood floor (e.g., white tile) or doesn’t match the kitchen (e.g., porcelain tile with slate-like look). Any suggestions?

TIA!

7 Replies Add Reply

I’m faced with a similar dilemna.  My kitchen is at the corner at one end and fully open to the living room.  Right now it has kind of a launch pad look – the living room has original narrow 1″ strip oak or maple floors and the kitchen is this black 2″ tile, flanked by a hallway of conventional 2 “1/4″ maple floor that also runs into the closets and the bedroom beyond .  I hate it.  Too much contrast, huge transition strips….  I am thinking of using a sealed penny round cork tile, which I can color match to the wood floor.  That was the closest thing I could find that would be good in a possibly wet area, would provide a non-contrast finish and wouldn’t break the bank.

Here is what I’ve done in the same situation. I get some tile color swatches or samples that match or near match the LIGHTEST tones of the hardwood, which you have said is medium brown, Im thinking that is like a caramel color. I used this approach in my study, where I had to match the tones of the hardwood, which was heart pine, with another surface. Good luck with your project, sounds like fun.

I was thinking the same as Historicsigns, but take a photo of your floor and print it to take to the tile store.  If the printed photo is a poor match, see if you can adjust your color settings.  Seems like you are headed for porcelain.  It is very practical and comes in many textures, colors and sizes.
Try to think comparatively and an overwhelming choice may be more easily narrowed down to just the right tile in the store.  I am guessing you are replacing brick red (too red) quarry tile, not terracotta, which is generally too porous and too fragile for a kitchen floor.   Is your floor a warmer brown than a particular tile, or cooler?  Are the variations courser or finer than a particular tile?
And, as a tile setter, don’t forget the technical details.  Be sure your substrate is sound, or your tiles could crack or come loose.  Since you only have small tiled area it won’t expand or contract much, but what about the wood floor?  Are there enough spaces between wood strips, or will they expand in warm, wet weather and put pressure on the tile?  You many want to ask your tile setter to leave a little space between the tile and wood and neatly fill it in with a rubbery caulk, of the right color.  You can also buy an expansion joint for that application.
Good luck.  I am in the BN directory.

I had the same problem with a bathroom. I wanted to create a subtle transition from wide-plank wood to the tiled area. Found a great tile from Porcelanosa:

http://www.porcelanosa-usa.com/home/products/tile/floor.aspx

get a dark grey/black slate.

its a really underutilised material here in the USA for some reason.

we had it in both kitchen and laundy areas of our home in Australia and loved it.

Maybe continue the wood floor into the kitchen?  That would solve your transition problem, and since it’s such a small area it would feel more like a continuation of the LR.  It might not be what you think of for a kitchen floor but it looks great.  You will have to take some precautions during installation to minimize water infiltration, but I would give it a thought.

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