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Adding tiles to any space

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04 Nov 2011

Whether you want to zhoosh up your patio for those warm summer nights, or add pizzazz to a dull kitchen, tiles are the perfect solution.


Elegant and stylish, tiles are extremely durable and easy to maintain, adding value to your home. Here are two top tile tips to help you choose the right tiles that will remain fashionable for years to come:

1. Choose the right tiles: It’s important to remember that different tiles suit specific areas of the home. For instance, ceramic and porcelain tiles are ideal for high-traffic living areas, thanks to their winning combination of beauty and durability. With their natural, classic look, you can count on a stylish, hard-wearing and easily maintained surface for years to come.


2. Go au naturel: “You can’t go wrong with a colour palette in neutral tones,” says Tile Africa marketing manager, Kate van Niekerk. Neutral tiles make a room appear more spacious and complement most decor styles and colour schemes. To create a calming ambience that won’t date, opt for porcelain and ceramic tiles with a natural stone effect, and cement-tones of blues and greys.

Now let’s take a look at what you can play with in other areas of the home.

Kitchen confidential

The kitchen is the heart of the home, so give it the makeover it deserves with slip-resistant, durable nano tiles. Not only does it look fabulous thanks to its increased shine and enhanced colours, the nano-technology finish of polished porcelain tiles offers a bacteria and dirt-resistant tile, giving you complete peace of mind in this area of the home where hygiene is important.


Patio pleasures

Super-tough and able to withstand our country’s harsh weather conditions, natural tiles will beautify any outdoor area, thanks to the distinctive character of each tile, making dining under the stars even more pleasurable.

“Slate’s striking colour and pattern variations will transform a plain floor or wall into a design statement,” says Kate. Resilient and extremely hard-wearing, slate tiles guarantee you a lifetime of pleasure. As slate is porous and also less slippery, it’s perfect for poolside areas. So all you have to do is sit back, relax and enjoy that bottle of bubbly with friends in your stylish outdoor haven.Sandstone cladding and mosaic designs in sandstone create eye-catching textured walls and are a popular choice due to their natural look.


Wall wonderful

Don’t forget your home’s walls. Glam up dreary a bathroom, kitchen, entrance hall and patio walls with stylish borders or create a tiled feature wall. Wide or narrow, horizontal or vertical, borders can be created with colourful mosaics, classy listelli or tiles cut into narrow strips. “Borders add interesting texture to your walls and the creative possibilities are endless,” says Kate.

Mosaics allow you to introduce colour and texture to your walls. Mixing materials is bang on-trend, so take your pick from the wide selection of mosaic sheets, incorporating glass, marble and metallic finishes. Continue your home’s earthy theme with mosaics made of natural stone and glazed porcelains that resemble real stone.


A mosaic feature wall behind a bath or in the shower creates a dramatic effect and gives an instant design lift. These small tiles work just as well behind the basin and toilet or laid out in a horizontal or vertical line. “When used as a backdrop, mosaics draw the eye towards a design feature,” says Kate.

An easy way of calculating how much grout you will need

When you are doing regular DIY jobs around your home, it is helpful to have a tool that will assist you in making the job easier. TAL has a handy grout calculator to help you determine how much grout you will need when tiling.


The calculator can be found on the TAL website under the DIY section. To calculate the amount of grout required, insert the width, length and thickness of your tiles. You will also need to add the joint thickness you desire, the total square metres of tiles required in the room as well as the packaging size of the grout in kilograms. “The grout calculator enables you to determine the exact amount of grout you’ll require to get the tilling job done and will save you from buying excessive grout,” says Sharon Hill, technical adviser for TAL.

Once you have inputted the required fields, the tool will calculate the packaging sizes and number of bags needed to complete the job. The calculator is quick and easy to use and a helpful tool that will assist you in buying the correct amount of material for the job and cutting costs. – Antonella Desi

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