Interior Design: Bathroom Wall Ceramic Tile Decorating Ideas

If you would like to add a new look to your old ceramic tiles, don't replace, decorate them instead.

Ceramic tiles can be beautiful when first installed, but after time, they have a tendency to fade or yellow. They can be decorated using different methods to give them an entirely look. You'll need only a few supplies, like tile cleaner, oil based paint, gloves, stencils and tape. Thoroughly clean tiles and grout with the tile cleaner. If there is any damage to the grout, do the grout work and wait at least 48 hours before beginning to paint tiles. After they are cleaned and dry, scuff them up somewhat with 220 grit sand paper. This is necessary to get the primer to adhere to the tiles. After sanding, rinse the tiles off again to remove any sand paper dust. Use a primer made especially for ceramic tile work. You can find the primer at home improvement or department stores.

Let primer dry overnight, then set your stencils where desired, using tape. Select an oil-based paint and use a sponge or brush to dab the paint inside of the stencils. It's best to choose a random pattern to stencil, rather than draw upon each tile if using a large pattern. A smaller pattern can be painted on every tile without looking too cluttered. After the first coat, let dry and apply a second coat, if necessary. Sealer spray can be purchased and sprayed onto the entire surface to protect it from future ruin. If this seems like too much effort, there are other ways that you can improve the look of the tiles.

Try hand painting different designs directly onto the tiles, if you're a good artist but if not, there are rubber stamps that you can buy which are dipped into the paint and then stamped onto the ceramic tiles. You can choose a design which enhances the look of your bathroom, like seashells, vines or even flowers. And, you can use two or more different stamps to create a unique look. You can first stamp a set of ivy leaves, then when dry, stamp on some morning glories, or ribbons.

For a quick and easy decorating pattern, dip a whisk broom into the paint and do an arch pattern here and there, across the tiles. A similar idea is to use a string mop to throw paint spatters onto the tiles. Be sure and protect entire floor and ceiling before selecting this method. You can use more than one color at the same time by setting two or three small pans of paint down, dipping the mop tips slightly in each one, and slinging the paint gently across the tiles.

Stickers are another option for decorating the tiles, but are not appropriate for shower stalls. A small floral bouquet on an occasional tile or an assortment of clamshells, starfish, and seahorses can be a cute pattern, if not used excessively. There are so many choices when it comes to decorating, whether you paint the entire ceramic tile wall, use rub-ons to enhance the tiles, or just outline the grout in a soft, coordinating color.

Leftover wallpaper or cut-outs from magazines can easily be decoupaged onto the tiles by spreading some of the decoupage on the backside of the picture, then affixing it to the desired area, and dabbing more of the decoupage over the top of the picture. Let dry and use a fine grade steel wool pad to buff slightly. For a really bold look, paint the grout with glitter, pearl or metallic paints. Or, draw patterns onto the ceramic tiles with these special paints. Of course, you can always paint the entire set of ceramic tiles a solid color, but choosing a color which is too dark might not give you the desired outcome. You can also combine several of these methods together, such as the grout glitter paint with the rub-ons, or the whisk broom pattern with an occasional stencil design. Whichever you choose, some overall tips are to take care not to smear paint when working in tight spaces, to select a pattern which isn't too large for the working area, and to allow ample drying time between each step.

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