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Backsplash tile with a contrasting grout color

How to Choose Grout Color: Tips from a Design Expert

When determining how to choose grout color, grout should be considered as a partner to your tile. A lot of people forget about grout when they’re selecting tile for a space, and it’s just as important as the tile.

You can make vast changes in the look of your space by changing the color of the grout that you use with different tiles. For example, you can pick a tile that has a lot of pattern and texture to it on its own, with a matching grout. Alternatively, you can pick a geometric tile that has a lot of movement in it and use a contrasting grout to enhance that look. Then of course you can have wood-look tiles which can be paired with complimentary grout tones. That can really bring out the wood-look and let the grout take a back seat. 

In this guide, you’re going to learn how you can change the look of a space using grout color with different kinds of tiles.

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How to Choose Grout for Geometric Tiles

How to choose grout color: Geometric tile with contrasting grout

First, we’ll consider grout for patterned tile. For my example, I’m using a geometric tile. Geometrics are really popular for this year. They can be used in lots of different spaces, such as bathrooms and kitchens. 

In this sample, the geometric tile is grouted in a contrasting grout color. This enhances the pattern that the tile is set in. If you have tile with a bold pattern that you want to bring out, you can use a contrasting grout color to make it stand out.

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How to Choose Grout for Monochromatic Tile

How to choose grout color: Monochromatic tile with matching grout

This next example is a large format tile with a patterned texture, but it is all one color. It has some texture and pattern to it on its own without the grout. A tile like this is something you can use on a floor or on a shower wall, or even in a kitchen. 

A tile like this has got a lot going on already. My recommendation for something like this would be to use a matching grout color to let the pattern stand alone.

For example, a taupe-colored grout blends right in when you put it up to the tile. So now what you’re seeing is the repeat of the pattern and the texture of the tile, and you’re not getting distracted by the grout.  

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How to Choose Grout for Wood-Look Tile

How to choose grout color: Use a grout deck to compare sample colors

Finally let’s look at how to choose grout color for a wood-look tile. One of the most popular things in home design lately has been wood-look tile. They’re a great way to incorporate that warm feel of natural wood into your home. Additionally, you don’t have to deal with the maintenance of a hardwood.

One of the challenges with wood-look tile is selecting the right grout color so that you get a really nice seamless look. What I like to do is take a look at the tile to see the highs and lows I have in the tile. I’ll determine what kind of contrasting shades I have. Then I pick out one of those tones and incorporate that into my grout.

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How to choose grout color: Grout color for a wood-look tile

For example, in this tile, there is some gray, some really light ash colors, and even some taupey beiges. When I look at my grout deck, I can pull out each color sample to hold up against the tile. What I’m looking for is something that’s going to fade into the background and blend in.

Looking at the grout sample color against the whole tile, you can see if it matches the overall look of the tile. That’s going to give you a more seamless look, and less of a grid-like look on the floor.

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Backsplash tile with a contrasting grout color

Thanks for joining us today as we talked about grout colors. You should now have a better understanding of how to choose grout to complement your space and accentuate your tiles. If you have any more grout color questions, please feel free to reach out. We are happy to help!


About Cynthia Flottmann

Cynthia Flottmann

Cynthia Flottmann is an interior designer in Tempe, Arizona. She studied interior design and business at Arizona State University. As a designer for the past 8 years, Cynthia has had the pleasure of designing and collaborating on spaces and homes throughout the country.

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