Tile Layout Options from GEMINI Tiles
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Tile Layout Options

Selecting the right tile layout can have a huge impact on your overall scheme. Certain layouts have the ability to heighten ceilings, create width or lead your eye in a particular direction. Whether you need a cohesive design that fits with the room, or a bold statement that stands out from the rest; there are plenty of options for you to choose from. Don’t forget, that with all these options, the size of your tile and grout colour will also affect the final look.

There are many common layout types, many of which are now being reimagined for a more modern aesthetic. So we’ve grouped these together so you can see how various tile sizes, and directional choices can add further dimension to your design.

Below you will also find advice on when to use each layout, whether additional wastage is required and how the complexity of your design will impact tiling costs.

Brick Bond & Offset Layouts

Tile Type: Subway Tiles / Metro Tiles / Brick Tiles / Square tiles

Tiling Costs: £ £ £

Typical Wastage: 10%

There are many options for brick style layouts. First originating from subway tiles in the Victorian period, this tile layout is a classic. It never dates, and with the addition of bolder tile colours and contrasting grouts this layout is increasing in popularity. When tiling a brick bond or offset pattern, we recommend an additional 10% extra for cuts and breakages. Typically brick bond is laid 50:50 whereas offset layouts are laid at 70:30. Choosing the right ratio for an offset layout really depends on the tile size, so be sure to plan the final design with your tiler before. They will make you aware of any awkward cuts and help you avoid them by switching things up.

Horizontal Brick Bond

A 50:50 horizontal brick bond layout is the most traditional. Using tiles with a height and width ratio of 1:2 will give you a perfectly equal layout. Longer tiles will also work in this layout and will emphasize the width of any given space. However, stick to smaller tiles (nothing over 600mm) to avoid the appearance of bowing and keep that classic look. Consider the finish of your tile too, matt or gloss? Bevelled, flat, curved or textured? Our Metro Tiles fit the bill for this traditional wall design but why not switch it up with a contrasting grout colour or browse our Poitiers Tiles for added texture...

Titan Tiles

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Vertical Brick Bond

Simply flipping this horizontal brick bond on its head can give you a completely different look. This alternative layout can give you a stepladder-like design but can also accentuate the ceiling height of the room. Great used as a splashback behind your cooker or the full height of a shower. Try to use this anywhere you have plenty of wall space to make the most of this linear tile design.

Carrara Brick Tiles

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Stacked Bond

Same approach, different look. Choosing to stack tiles on their long or short edge can give alternative looks which really push the boundaries of traditional brick layouts. Avoid bevelled tiles when choosing something alternative so not to distract from the layout. Instead choose a simple tile with a contrasting grout colour to draw attention to the line pattern created.

Poitiers Tiles

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Diagonal Brick Bond

Cast your eye in a different direction with a diagonal layout. Placing tiles on a 45-degree angle can add an additional layer of interest. Effective on both walls and floors this can give a stunning point of difference. Used in the right place it can make things feel much wider and could be a great solution for narrow spaces such as a galley kitchen. Cutting tiles at an angle like this is much more time consuming and will add additional costs involving your tiler. We would also recommend an extra 15% for tile wastage allowing for those angled cuts.

Arles Tiles

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Horizontal Offset

A great option for larger tiles on walls and floors. This offset effect laid at 70:30 helps to prevent the appearance of bowing on larger tiles. Avoid long thin tiles as the bowing effect can become more noticeable if they are too narrow. We recommend tiles approximately 600x300mm, such as Imperial Grey Polished Tile to recreate this look.

Imperial Tiles

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Vertical Offset

Similar to the vertical brick bond layout this will also exaggerate length and height. Try using on a floor, such as hallway, or the height of a bathroom ceiling. This staggered effect can lead your eye in a specific direction, which can guide people into a space - another great reason for using on floors. Using a larger tile means less grout lines which is great for kitchens, bathrooms or high traffic areas.

Aspenwood Tiles

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Square Brick Bond

Square designs are incredibly versatile especially when you play with scale. Large format tiles can allow for a seamless end result. Whereas smaller tiles can add detailing around splashbacks, in mosaics or creative trims. A square bond layout has added interest giving the appearance of more lines (in comparison to a stacked layout), which is a wonderful option if you’re considering a contrasting grout. To see how you can make the most of square tiles check out the blog.

Stow Tiles

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Staggered Square

Almost giving an optical illusion this staggered square layout uses a ratio that’s anything over 70:30. Each tile just nudges over to the next, giving the illusion of waves and movement in the design. Great for a feature wall!

Diagonal Square Brick Bond

Similar to the diagonal brick bond, but this layout creates diamond shapes. A fun alternative for a square tile and can give some quite interesting results if used with a patterned tile. You may be able to create some wonderful open spaces with these angles. With tiles being laid at a 45-degree angle we would also suggest an extra 15% to allow for cuts and breakages.

Offset Mixed Brick Bond

Often seen on mosaic patterns, various sizes mixed together can create some great patterns. You could recreate this at a small or large scale and consider mixing tile colours too.

Ashby Mosaic

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Chevron & Herringbone Layouts

Tile Type: Arrow Tiles / Parallelogram Tiles / Rectangle Tiles / Brick Tiles

Tiling Costs: £ £ £

Typical Wastage: 15%

Chevron and herringbone have become increasingly popular over the years and the size and length of your tile can totally change the look and feel of the design. Smaller, more narrow tiles give a contemporary and detailed look. Where shorter wider tiles lean towards a more traditional brick style. Choosing the right style for you will depend on your scheme. For example, a shaker kitchen will most definitely suit a herringbone style splashback but the longer the tile the more contemporary it feels. Chevron is an extension of herringbone giving a further modern twist mimicking arrowhead shapes.

Don’t feel limited to just wall designs though. Herringbone and chevron layouts can be a stunning flooring solution. Our wood tiles in a herringbone layout would be a stunning seamless layout for open plan living and suits both traditional and contemporary schemes.

Chevron Tile

To create this look you will need use tiles shaped as a parallelogram, these ‘angled rectangles’ need to be laid in a stacked format. The two tiles side-by-side creates a striking arrow shape. Alternatively, you maybe be able to source or cut full chevron shapes. Using alternating coloured tiles can create wonderful zig-zag patterns too!

Even when using a chevron tile you are not limited in layout options - there’s no reason why you can’t get creative. Simply following the lines of the tile can give stunning diagonal line patterns, or mix it up to create intricate weaves and hexagons.

Vertical Herringbone

Herringbone is traditionally laid in a vertically. Whatever the space you’re considering for this layout it will automatically draw the eye up, elevating your ceiling and giving you the sense of added height. To get this look many of the tiles have to be cut at a 45-degree angle so remember to account for increased tiling costs and budget for an extra 15% wastage.

Alba Tiles

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Horizontal Herringbone

Herringbone is typically laid in a vertical layout but we’re seeing more horizontal layouts taking centre stage. Horizontal stretches the space making rooms appear wider, whereas laid vertically it guides the eyes upwards elevating ceilings. To get this look many of the tiles have to be cut at a 45-degree angle so remember to account for increased tiling costs and budget for an extra 15% wastage.

Double Vertical Herringbone

Why not switch things up and add your herringbone in groups of 2 or 3. It will create a type of fabric weave effect once complete and adds a level of complexity that adds texture and depth. As with all angled layouts be prepared to pay a few extra pennies but it will be worth it.

Diagonal Herringbone

A slightly easier task for your tiler but visually - just as complex. The tiles are laid at a 90-degree angle which positions the herringbone effect on a diagonal. Using a longer tile will draw your eye to the diagonal design more, but if you’re wanting to celebrate the brick bond here choose a shorter tile.

Linear & Stacked Layouts

Tile Type: Rectangle Tiles / Brick Tiles

Tiling Costs: £ £ £

Typical Wastage: 10%

Crisp clean lines are a sought after aesthetic in the modern home. Linear layouts require almost perfect fits to showcase their full effect. It’s much easier to plan for once all the other components of a room renovation are in place. This way you can choose a tile exactly fits your space. Don’t be afraid to get creative though, creating borders or edges to get the perfect fit can be highly effective epically used in smaller areas, such as splashbacks and feature walls.

When planning a linear design avoid tiles larger than 600x300 on the walls. This designs certainly lends itself to smaller tiles and is easier to plan for cuts. A positive to planning a perfect fit means there is usually less wastage and usually doesn’t incur additional tiling costs.

Horizontal Linear Brick

A fun retro take on brick tiles that’s making its way into more modern schemes. Equally effective in bathrooms and kitchens. This style can be used with both matt and gloss, flat or bevelled. Texture can be a great addition to a stacked design too. Tiles with a handmade quality can give a rustic feel to this regimented layout.

Alba Tiles

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Vertical Linear Brick

It’s all about the symmetry with this vertical tile layout. When considering a kitchen or bathroom splashback make sure you can stack at least 2 tiles (ideally 3) above one another to get the full effect. Full tiles with no cuts show a ‘perfect fit’ around the walls of your kitchen, so tile size is key here. If you’re considering a full wall you have a little more flexibility but aim for a full tile at the top and bottom of your design or edging with a horizontal tile instead. Our Dyroy Tiles are a wonderful choice when considering this type of design.

Dyroy Tiles

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Stacked Square

Reminiscent of 50’s diners this stacked square is becoming a kitchen and bathroom staple in modern houses. Contrasting black grout and white tiles is a modern look and practical too. Why not try our reflections range when recreating this in your home? The range of colours available will allow you to add stripes and patterns for further interest.

Colour Palette Tiles

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A great floor layout for kitchens and hallways. Typically seen in Victorian and Edwardian homes but can also add character to any. Checkerboard layouts don’t need to stick to a black and white theme either; mix colours or interchange different tile patterns for a truly unique wall or floor tile design.

Reflections Tiles

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Diagonal Stacked Square

Need a diamond? Use a square! Placing your tiles down on a 45-degree angle can elevate your design, give the illusion of space and also add another level of quality to your end result. Impressive on both walls and floors the diamond shape can give a feeling of quality and luxury when paired with rich deep tones and matching grout.

Speak with your tiler before considering a diamond layout, as considerations will need to be made when tiling through doorways, around walls and into adjoining rooms. Expect to pay a little extra too as cutting on an angle is time consuming and you’ll need a few extra tiles for those 45-degree cuts – plan for 15% wastage.

Reflections Tiles

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Basket Weave Layouts

Tile Type: Rectangle Tiles / Brick Tiles / Metro Tiles

Tiling Costs: £ £ £

Typical Wastage: 10-15%

Weave layouts use multiple tiles to create a square block. These blocks are then alternated in a stacked formation to create a woven look. When done correctly, it can give the illusion of tiles weaving under and over, much like traditional woven baskets.

Typically, 2 or 3 tiles are used in each block. However, you can choose as many tiles as you like. Just ensure that once stacked together they create a square.

This design works best with smaller tiles so stick to brick tiles for the best results.

Traditional Basket Weave

This 2 tile basket weave can look fabulous on a statement wall. Tile and grout colour should be carefully considered as you want to bring out the best in this design. Gloss and bevelled tiles will highlight the weave effect giving a more three dimensional look. A contrasting grout colour will give a more 2D appearance and will draw your attention to the grid layout. You will need tiles that have exactly half the width of their length (e.g. 100x200mm), such as our metro tiles.

Offset Basket Weave

Longer thinner tiles work great for this design. The longer your tile the more intricate your design will become. When working in 3’s you’ll need to source tiles that have 3 times the length of their width (e.g. 100x300mm).

Diagonal Triple Basket Weave

Alternative to the standard triple weave you could place the design on a 45-degree angle and create a diamond shaped layout. This is a stunning way to create a feature wall in a bathroom or shower area.

Modular Layouts

There are so many layouts to consider, the possibilities are endless, but modular layouts really allow for that feeling of randomisation. However, in practise these are quite the opposite. These layouts need to perfectly fit together and originally were used in flagstone flooring, where many of the pieces were cut for that particular spot. Today many modular tile designs come as a set that you can piece together without the need for working out which tile goes where.


This ‘spoke-like’ design is a popular layout that can give you varying colours and textures depending on your tile choices. It can add visual interest using the smaller tiles as beautiful decorative details. Adding these smaller tiles to the corners of a larger square will give you that rotational illusion, and the smaller the ‘spokes’ of your design the more obvious this effect will be. Try using contrasting colours for a really punchy design, or try a subtle approach, keeping the same tones but varying textures and finishes. Mixing matt and gloss can add an element of luxury to your tiling project.


This layout also uses two different tile sizes to achieve a windmill effect. The design consists on a square tile enclosed within 4 rectangular tiles, or brick tiles. Your square tile should be 50% of the size of the rectangular tiles to achieve that perfect square windmill effect. When done well you should see rotation in your design. To emphasize this use tiles with varying tonal shades. It will add to the movement of your layout. Additionally, choose a square tile that is slightly darker than your surrounding rectangular tiles to add depth to your final look.


A traditional French pattern wonderful in cottages, farmhouses and barn conversions. Tiles suitable for a Versailles pattern usually come in kits with set sizes to make it easier for you to piece this complex modular layout together. This combination of small and large tiles gives the illusion of randomly laid tiles, but is in fact a predetermined pattern that needs prior planning in groups of approximately 12 tiles. Use an experienced tiler, familiar with this layout to ensure that your Versailles design is done efficiently and correctly.

Sandstone Tiles

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Shaped Tile Layouts

Not only are the layouts becoming more creative. the tiles themselves are also becoming more elaborate. You no longer need to stick to your typical squares and rectangles, so why not try a few of these…


Diamond shaped tiles give you surprising flexibility when it comes to layout. Diamond shaped tiles can give you, star patterns, 3D cubed illusions and opportunities to blend with hexagon shaped tiles too! This ultra-modern tile shape can give you that geometric splashback or focal shower wall to showcase in your next room renovation. Don’t be afraid of colour and texture here either. There is some great diamond shaped tiles to work into your next design.


Hexagons are a playful shape that come in many sizes, from tiny mosaics to large floor tiles. You can mix and match sizes or really draw emphasis to their geometric shape with contrasting grouts for a stunning contemporary look. Hexagonal tiles are becoming more and more popular by those willing to experiment. Try using multiple colours or blending into another wall or floor covering to create a graduated design that slowly uses less tiles for a random effect that moves across your room.

Varadero Tiles

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Fishscale or Fan

Depending on which way up you choose this tile shape, you’ll see scales or fans. This tile shape is nothing new but is seeing renewed interest as more interior enthusiasts are trying to recreate those 1920 art deco inspired schemes. Not only do they suit this trend but they are also in keeping with Mediterranean and Moroccan interiors too. The flexibility to fit with multiple schemes makes them a wonderful addition to any home. Together with contemporary colours and finishes, this shape can be a wonderful modern tile that add interest and a splash of fun to your space.

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