Interior Design: Bathroom Shower Tile Decorating Ideas

Dressing up the tile in your bathroom shower is an easy and fun way to make your bathroom zing with style; here's how.

Many people do not spend a great deal of effort on decorating the bathroom. For most of us, coordinating the paint, the towels, and the curtains is the best we can do. Yet, all of us will spend a significant amount of time in the bathroom each day. Why shouldn't this room receive a decorating touch as well?

One quick and easy way to add some style to your bathroom is to address the shower tile. Generally, most households live with shower areas that are finished with the standard square shaped tile. The tiles are most often a light solid color, which makes a perfect palate for some eye-catching designs.

The great thing about shower tiles is the consumer may purchase decorative tiles that can easily be substituted for a section of the tiles already present in your shower. The custom decorative tiles are not inexpensive, and the work involved to get them in place can take some time. However, there are other ways to enhance the existing tile that are far more cost and time efficient.

Before beginning any decorating project with your shower tiles, it is important to make sure the tiles have been cleaned thoroughly. Any lingering traces of soap scum or cleaning chemicals left on the surface of the tiles will only serve to make your decorating project harder. Clean the tiles thoroughly and then make sure to dry the area you wish to work with using a clean absorbent cloth.

One effective way of introducing additional colors to the tile in your shower is to pick out random tiles that you will paint a color other than the primary color of your tiles. Depending on your overall color scheme in the bathroom, this may be one additional color, or it may be several.

To prepare your tiles for this technique, identify random tiles throughout the shower area. Remember, there is no right or wrong way to pick which tiles to paint. The goal is for the finished product to be appealing for you, so choose as many or as few as you wish. Next, use sandpaper to dull the finish on the tiles. It is important that the tile be as dull as possible. Paint will not stick to a shiny surface as well as a dull surface.

Your last step is to apply the paint or paints you have selected. In selecting the type of paint to be used, consult with your local paint store. Generally speaking, epoxy enamels work very well with tile, and have a high tolerance for the humidity and temperature changes that are common to bathrooms. Your local paint store can also help you in selecting paints that match the colors you want to add. Be sure to read all the instructions related to applying the paint chosen. Failure to do so can lead to an effect far less desirable than your original vision.

An alternative to the random solid colors would be to use a stencil for the tiles instead. The stencil could be hand-made or bought at a crafts store. Following the same general instructions, use the stencil to create an image on different tiles, creating different pockets of interest for the eye to catch.

Stencils will be less work than painting whole tiles. They also allow you to use a variety of shapes or lettering to create an overall theme in your shower area. As an example, if you want to introduce an element of the beach in your bathroom, consider stencils that have a beach theme, such as waves, beach balls and sunglasses.

Creating an effect using both techniques is another alternative. Scatter in among the plain solid tiles a few bold colors and still other tiles with images or letters.

For those who are of a more linear persuasion in their decorating, replace the random tile selection with horizontal or vertical rows of tiles that have been transformed by colors or stenciling.

Outlining your tiles can also spice up an otherwise dull looking wall. Purchase a paint pen from your local crafts store and fill in the grouted area around your tiles with a contrasting color. Keep in mind that this technique can be overwhelming in a small shower space, especially if bold colors are used.

Each area of your home should be not only functional, but also pleasing to the eye. By including some artistic detail on the tiles in your bathroom shower, you can extend the general theme of your home decorating into the bathroom.

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