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Let’s face it overhauling your home can be a costly affair, especially where larger jobs such as kitchens or bathrooms are concerned. Sometimes money can be saved simply by purchasing a slightly cheaper bathroom suite or kitchen units and dressing them up with clever taps or accessories to give them a feeling of being much more expensive than they actually are. This theory can be easily transferred to bathroom tiles, if you cannot afford to splash the cash on designer tiles why not cover the expanse of the room in cheaper tiles that will still do the work as far as protecting your walls goes but can be interspersed with pretty decor strips.

Let me share the secrets that are used by many, the formula is this;

Large area = cheap tiles.

Small areas in between cheap tiles = small numbers of more expensive tiles to bring the wow factor!

Let’s get started!

When you say cheaper bathroom tiles, how much do they cost roughly?

Bathroom tiles vary greatly in price and in quality, as an integral part of your bathroom, especially in the shower or bath area they need to stand up to the job of keeping water away from your walls. In a nutshell so longs you are buying from a reputable supplier cheaper bathroom tiles are a cost effective way of furnishing your bathroom without compromising on functionality so longs they are fixed correctly.

Bumpy white or cream tiles (tiles with a slightly rippled surface to help bounce light around the room) usually start from around £12 – £15 per metre in 198 x 248 mm which is the most popular size for bathroom tiles. It might be tempting to look at the even cheaper 148 x 148 mm products, these can be lovely in a very large bathroom but in my opinion small tiles in a small bathroom are a bad idea as they create a busy space with so many grout lines. As a general rule of thumb, stick to 198 x 248 mm tiles or bigger for a bathroom, this size is easier to keep clean and works well alongside the decor products.

If you are looking for other coloured tiles such as beiges or browns check out online sales, sometimes you can save a great amount, from time to time tile retailers might also have a surplus stock of tiles all in one batch (this sometimes happens when a tile is discontinued or if they only have a few boxes left in a batch), look out in these clearance areas to see if you can bag a bargain. When purchasing from clearance areas be sure that you can purchase enough tiles to complete your job and have some left over for spares, check out this blog for more detail and top tips.

What do I add to my cheap tiles to make them look expensive?

Here the possibilities are endless, there are so many pretty strips, glass mosaics, faux mosaics and insert tiles available on the market to really get your bathroom tiles to pack a punch. One of my favourites is to add glass mosaic sheets to your bathroom design, these clever products incorporate stunning coloured glass square pieces onto a flexible mesh backing that can be cut into strips to be used at dado height around the room to break up the expanse of tiling, these pretty little glass mosaics bring colour, light and of course glamour into the room beautifully. If you can afford to buy a few more of these sheets they also work really well to create a feature wall with your ceramic wall tiles either side. The image below shows an example of what one of the sheets looks like, these particular sheets cost around £9 each and cover an area of 310 x 310 mm. If you use these cut into strips you would not need too many to finish the room off and you can experiment on how many rows of mosaic you need.

Newark Glass Mosaics.

Newark Glass Mosaics by Cheston Ceramics. Use as strips or feature tiles to add the wow factor.

Another good way to add an expensive touch to cheaper bathroom tiles is to use some marble strips, it is a lovely way to add some natural stone products without the expense of using the entire range, this allows you to create your own design. Use these beige marble strips as a continuous line mid way up the wall to add something extra! Natural stone products are more costly by their very nature but I think they are worth it. The product image below shows the Dartmoor Naturals Beige Marble Strips, these cost around £18.42 for a pack of 6.

Dartmoor Beige Marble Strips

Dartmoor Beige Marble Strips, add an expensive touch to your bathroom.

If you are not a fan of using strips you could use simple feature tiles to compliment your bathroom tiles. For this look it is a good idea to use plain tiles and feature tiles from the same range to ensure the style, size and shade matches flawlessly, the image below shows the Laura Ashley Marchmont range, a simple panel of ‘French Blue’ alongside the plain white tiles in the range looks incredible and it is a very cost effective way of bringing designer luxury as these tiles (both feature and plain) retail at around £15.60 per metre.

Laura Ashley Marchmont

Laura Ashley Marchmont, this lovely range is not too expensive but the feature tile really looks glamourous alongside the plain tiles.


Using tiles cleverly you are able to create a design that not only saves cash in your pocket but also looks fab on your bathroom wall, remember even if you cannot afford all top end products simple additions can add that something extra that really does speak volumes.