Why Subway Tile Still Reigns Supreme in Kitchens and Baths

Why Subway Tile Still Reigns Supreme in Kitchens and Baths

Subway tile. The name itself evokes images of bustling underground trains and historic cityscapes. But in the world of interior design, subway tile takes on a whole new meaning – a symbol of timeless style and enduring elegance.

For over a century, subway tile has graced the walls of kitchens and bathrooms, and for good reason. Its clean lines, simple format, and versatility make it a perfect choice for a variety of design aesthetics, from classic and traditional to modern and minimalist.

Here's what makes subway tile a perennial favorite:

  • Versatility: Available in an array of colors, from crisp white to dramatic black and even playful blues or greens, subway tile can seamlessly integrate with any color scheme. It also pairs beautifully with other design elements, like patterned floors or bold hardware.
  • Timeless Appeal: Unlike trendy design elements that come and go, subway tile boasts a classic look that never goes out of style. This makes it a safe investment that won't feel dated years down the road.
  • Easy Maintenance: The smooth, glazed surface of subway tile makes it incredibly easy to clean and maintain. Soap and water are all you need to keep your subway tile backsplash looking fresh for years to come.
  • Affordability: Compared to other tile options, subway tile is a budget-friendly choice. This makes it a great option for homeowners looking for a stylish and cost-effective way to elevate their kitchen or bathroom.
  • Reflectivity: Subway tile, particularly in lighter shades, reflects light beautifully, making even small kitchens and bathrooms appear brighter and more spacious.

Beyond the Basics: Creative Applications of Subway Tile

While the classic horizontal stack is a tried-and-true favorite, subway tile's versatility extends far beyond. Here are a few creative ways to incorporate it into your design:

  • Vertical Stack: Running the tiles vertically can draw the eye upwards, creating the illusion of higher ceilings in a bathroom or kitchen with limited square footage.
  • Herringbone Pattern: For a touch of sophistication, consider laying the tiles in a herringbone pattern. This adds a touch of visual interest without overwhelming the space.
  • Shower Surround: Subway tile makes a fantastic shower surround, offering a clean and polished look that's easy to maintain and resistant to moisture.


Subway tile's enduring popularity is a testament to its timeless design and functionality. Whether you're a homeowner embarking on a renovation project or simply looking for ways to refresh your space, subway tile offers a perfect blend of style, practicality, and affordability. So, don't be afraid to embrace this classic design element and create a kitchen or bathroom that will look beautiful for years to come.

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.