Learning to Love Vinyl Tile: 4 Ways to Make it Work

Learning to Love Vinyl Tile: 4 Ways to Make it Work

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Eleanor Büsing
Aug 20, 2015

So, your new home comes complete with vinyl floor tiles, and you hate them. Or maybe you're considering installing them for budget or practicality's sake, but can't quite fathom how you'll live with the stuff, aesthetically. Never fear, there are ways to love the vinyl tile you've got, and new products and methods of installing which suddenly make vinyl seem like a chic option.

You Can Paint It

The simplest way to cover up unsightly vinyl tile is with good old paint. Whether you go for a bold pattern, a bright shade, or a basic neutral, nothing's faster or cheaper. As long as you use the right techniques and products, it should be pretty durable, too— check out View Along The Way for a tutorial.

(Image credit: DIY Show Off)

Grout is Good

Did you know you don't have to install vinyl tiles edge-to-edge? You can grout it just like regular tile, so the finish will look more like ceramic tile or stone. It's a relatively easy DIY, even for those with no experience— check out DIY Show Off for a how-to (and after photos).

(Image credit: John Lewis)

The New Vinyl's Got Style

This isn't your parents' tile: many of the new vinyl tiles out there feel fresh and modern. Instead of half-heartedly mimicking other materials like wood and stone, they take cues from trendy encaustic tiles and turn to color and pattern. The above tile, by British textile designer Neisha Crosland for Harvey Maria, comes in several neutral greys and a bright turquoise, too.

Even the comparatively plain Armstrong Classic Black Imperial Texture VCT tiles in The Brick House (lead image) feel modern and fabulous.

Trad is Rad, Too

On the other hand, there's nothing wrong with a traditional look. Karen Bertelesen's kitchen, with its classic black-and-white floor, has long been a favorite of mine. And as a lover of mid-century architecture, it always strikes me how at-home vinyl tile looks in those spaces; I think the key is solid colors and minimal patterns, if any.

Do you have vinyl tile and love it? Have you installed it and and lived to tell the tale (with joy)? Share below!

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