Choosing the right tile size for your wall or floor can make a huge impact on the overall look and feel of the space. The size of the tile is one of the most important decisions to make when selecting tiles, but with so many options available, it can be confusing to know where to start. This guide will provide tips on how to choose the best tile sizes for walls and floors in your home or commercial space.

What Factors To Consider When Selecting Tile Sizes

There are several key factors to take into account when choosing tile sizes:

Room Size and Layout

  • Smaller tiles tend to make spaces appear larger and more expansive. Larger tiles can make a small room feel even smaller.
  • For large, open floor plans, larger tiles help the space flow smoothly. Small tiles in a big room can feel busy or choppy.
  • Pay attention to the tile layout too. Grid or brick patterns with small tiles make spaces feel larger. Fewer grout lines in a large-format tile layout can elongate a room.

Type of Tile Material

  • Natural stone tiles with veining and color variations pair better with larger formats to appreciate the full design. Unglazed mosaic tiles look best in a smaller size.
  • Porcelain, ceramic, and glass tiles are available in a wide range of sizes from mosaics to extra-large slabs. Choose a size appropriate for the look you want.
  • Wood-look planks and some other specialty tiles are only manufactured in certain dimensions. Pay attention to these size constraints when planning the layout.

Installation Patterns and Joints

  • Smaller tiles allow for more creative laying patterns like herringbone designs. Larger tiles are usually simpler grid layouts.
  • Grout joint size should be proportional to the tile size. Skinny joints with large tiles can look odd and be difficult to install properly.
  • Smaller grout joints are more prone to staining and can be trickier to clean. Wider grout lines don’t show stains and dirt as much.

Traffic and Wear Patterns

  • Smaller tiles can better hide chips and cracks in high-traffic areas like kitchens. Larger tiles will show damage more over time.
  • Areas with more dirt, water, and wear demand smaller grout joints. Wide grout lines collect more gunk and can be hard to keep clean.
  • Mosaics and small tiles often require sealing to prevent staining and discoloring in wet areas. Some larger tiles are higher density and more stain-resistant.

Design, Style, and Aesthetics

  • Mosaic tiles lend a retro or vintage look. Large-format tiles create a sleek, seamless contemporary style.
  • Match tile sizes to the architectural style of a space. For example, wide planks suit farmhouse designs. Subway tiles complement traditional kitchens.
  • Mixing tile sizes can add visual interest. Using different sizes together takes more planning regarding layouts.
  • Smaller tiles allow for more ornate decorative borders and accents. Larger tiles make a simpler statement.

With all these considerations in mind, here is an overview of common tile sizes and where they are best used:

Wall Tile Sizes

Mosaic Tiles

Typical Size Range: 1/4″ to 3/4″

Where to Use: Mosaic tile sheets create a classic backsplash look. Individual tiny mosaics make great accents and medallions. An entire wall of small mosaic tiles evokes an artsy, retro vibe.

Pro Tip: Make sure grout joints are a proportional size to the miniscule tiles. The grout can overwhelm the design if too large.

1″ x 1″ to 2″ x 2″ Tiles

Typical Size Range: 1″ square, 2″ square, 1″x2″ subway

Where to Use: These smaller tiles allow for interesting patterns and decorative borders. Full wall installations provide a classic look in baths, showers, and kitchens.

Pro Tip: Offset subway layouts can make small bathrooms feel a little larger. Contrasting grout colors add interest.

4″ x 4″ Tiles

Typical Size Range: 4″ square

Where to Use: 4-inch tiles make up the bulk of wall tile sizes. They provide endless pattern options and look great in any room.

Pro Tip: Use these versatile tiles fields with decorative listellos, trims, inserts, and accents.

6″ x 6″ Tiles

Typical Size Range: 6″ square

Where to Use: Slightly larger 6-inch tiles reduce grout lines and have a more contemporary feel. They work well on walls in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, and entryways.

Pro Tip: Use larger tiles below the chair rail in a two-tone design. Accent with glass, stone, or metal tiles.

Floor Tile Sizes


Typical Size Range: 1/4″ to 1″ pieces

Where to Use: Mosaic sheets make artsy kitchen backsplashes. Individual tiny mosaics create formal decorative rugs or insert patterns into floors.

Pro Tip: Seal these tiles well with grout sealer and use a wider joint for easier cleaning.

12″ x 12″ Tiles

Typical Size Range: 12″ square

Where to Use: This smaller tile size works well in laundry rooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and entryways. The smaller scale allows for detail.

Pro Tip: Arrange in a brick pattern to make a small space feel larger. Contrasting grout color adds visual interest.

16″ x 16″ Tiles

Typical Size Range: 16″ square

Where to Use: 16-inch tile is a versatile size for any space. It balances pattern and flow with fewer grout lines. 16-inch wood-look planks are very popular now.

Pro Tip: Use rectangular versions like 12″x24″ and 16″x32″ tiles to elongate narrow spaces visually.

18″ x 18″ Tiles

Typical Size Range: 18″ square

Where to Use: The most common large-format tile. Makes a statement in open floor plans. Works well in living rooms, dining rooms, foyers.

Pro Tip: Install in a simple grid for minimal grout lines. Use rectangular plank tiles in entryways to elongate.

24″ x 24″ Tiles

Typical Size Range: 24″ square

Where to Use: Extra-large tiles like 24″x24″ make a dramatic impact. Best for expansive floors without obstructions. Works in living spaces, retail, etc.

Pro Tip: Take careful measurements and planning for perfectly spaced layouts. Use precision tile leveling systems.

Plank Tiles

Typical Size Range: 6″ x 24″, 8″ x 48″ or more

Where to Use: Plank tiles mimic wood flooring looks. Many wider longer proportions available to mimic true hardwoods.

Pro Tip: Mix direction and layout of planks for a custom appearance. Use mosaics or inlays to accent.

Small Accents

Typical Size Range: Varies

Where to Use: Dot floors with round or irregularly-shaped decorative tiles. Accent with narrow listellos or borders along walls.

Pro Tip: Softer natural stones like marble and limestone make great insets. Use diamond-cut stone for pops of sparkle.

Tips for Selecting Tile Sizes

Follow this checklist when choosing tile sizes:

  • Consider the room size and layout patterns.
  • Select a size suited for the tile’s material and visual characteristics.
  • Factor in the installation location and traffic patterns.
  • Decide on the grout joint width appropriate for the tile size.
  • Determine sizes needed for your overall design vision.
  • Choose tile types and sizes that fit within your budget.
  • Verify availability of your preferred sizes before purchasing.
  • Have professional tile installers review your tile selections.
  • Allow extra tiles for cuts, waste, and future repairs.

Common Questions about Tile Sizes

Still unsure about choosing the right tile size? Here are answers to some frequently asked questions:

What tile size makes a room look bigger?

Generally, smaller tiles like 12″x12″ or mosaics will make a room feel larger and more expansive. The grid layout draws the eye outward. Fewer grout lines and large solid tiles tend to make spaces appear smaller.

Can you mix tile sizes in a bathroom?

Definitely! Using an accent row or border of a contrasting tile size adds great character. Just be sure the proportions work well together. Many designers recommend sticking to multiples, like 1″, 2″, 4″ and 8″ sizes.

What tile size is best for small bathrooms?

For a small bathroom, stick with smaller tile sizes on walls and floors like mosaics, 4”x4” or 6”x6”. Subway tiles also work well. Minimizing grout lines helps the space feel bigger.

What tile size is easiest to clean?

Tile size doesn’t necessarily affect cleanability, but wider grout lines are always easier to keep clean. Larger tiles mean fewer grout lines overall. Mosaics take more effort to scrub completely clean.

Can you put 12-inch tiles in a small bathroom?

The 12″x12″ size can work in a small space, especially if laid in a diagonal or herringbone pattern to expand the look. Use care around toilet and fixtures to minimize difficult diagonal cuts.

What is the most popular kitchen tile size?

For kitchen floors, 12″x24″ rectangular tiles are very popular. 12″x12″ squares are also widely used. For kitchen backsplashes, subway tiles around 1”x4” or 3”x6” are classic choices.

What tile sizes go well together?

Sticking with even sizes like 2”, 4”, 8” or multiples of 12” typically looks best. Making sure grout joints are proportional is also key. Mixing very small and very large tiles in one space can be tricky.

Tile Size Options: The Complete Breakdown

Hopefully this gives you a better grasp of the many tile size options available and how to approach choosing the right size for your project. Here is a full summary of typical tile dimensions and characteristics:


  • Sizes: 1/4″ to 3/4″ square pieces
  • Features: Retro aesthetic, artsy accents, intricate patterns
  • Use: Backsplashes, decorative accents, borders, rugs

1″ x 1″ to 2″ x 2″:

  • Sizes: 1” square, 2” square, 1” x 2” subway
  • Features: Classic, versatile, patterned layouts
  • Use: Kitchens, baths, showers, backsplashes

4″ x 4″:

  • Size: 4” square
  • Features: Balance of size options and patterns
  • Use: Walls and floors in any room

6″ x 6″:

  • Size: 6” square
  • Features: Slightly contemporary scale
  • Use: Bathrooms, kitchens, entryways

12″ x 12″:

  • Size: 12” square
  • Features: Small-format floor tile
  • Use: Bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms

16″ x 16″:

  • Size: 16” square or plank
  • Features: Versatile medium-format floor tile
  • Use: Floors in any room

18″ x 18″:

  • Size: 18” square
  • Features: Large-format tile, fewer grout lines
  • Use: Open concept floor plans

24″ x 24″:

  • Size: 24” square
  • Features: Dramatic, seamless, sleek
  • Use: Expansive floors with minimal cuts


  • Sizes: 6”x24”, 8”x48”, 12”x48”
  • Features: Elongated wood-look boards
  • Use: Any floors as wood alternative


  • Sizes: Various shapes under 6”
  • Features: Circles, diamonds, stars, listellos
  • Use: Accents, insets, borders, patterns


Tile size has a big impact on the visual style and aesthetic of any home or commercial space. Carefully weighing factors like room sizes, layout patterns, tile materials, grout proportions, and overall design intent allows you to select the perfect sizes for your unique needs. With this tile sizing guide’s detailed overview, you are now equipped to confidently tackle your tile project and achieve the ideal wall or floor look. Reach out to tile experts for input and final verification before purchasing and installing your tile selections. Thinking through these tile sizing considerations will ensure you end up with a cohesive, well-executed space that matches your vision.