Inspiring Materials: Slate Tile
Texture, Color and Strength Makes Slate a Go-To Material for Inside and Out
Natural slate tile brings rich color and earthy texture to interior and exterior spaces, from entry floors and patios to kitchen backsplashes, fireplace surrounds, shower walls and more. Slate's a metamorphic rock which started as shale, and after undergoing low heat and pressure underground, became the distinctively layered stone we know today. Its colors range from gray, blue, green, gold and rust to black, and its beauty, strength and slip-resistant texture make it ideal for many settings. Here are 14 great ways to use it:
Bath feature wall. Natural light streaming in through the angled skylights shows off the texture, or clefting, and depth of the green, gray and gold tones in these slate wall tiles. Notice the smaller coordinating tiles on the floor. This bath has the feel of an outside space.
Shower and bath floor. The naturally rough texture of slate makes it slip-resistant and a great option for wet areas like the bath. The slate blue glass mosaic tile on the tub face, the artwork and orange towels bring out the beautiful blue-gray and rust tones of the stone.
Shower wall. A neutral blend of mesh-mounted tile adds visual and tactual texture to these shower walls, and it extends onto the floor, continuing the look. This one is a staggered random stone tile called Falling Water, named after Frank Lloyd Wright's masterpiece built over a waterfall. From Stone and Pewter Accents, it can be purchased at Artistic Tile and Stone. Larger coordinating tile covers the rest of the floor.
Dressing area. 12" x 12" gray and honey-toned slate tiles were installed in an offset pattern here. It looks striking with the cabinetry.
Kitchen floor. It makes sense to use slate in the kitchen, where slip resistance and durability are important. This floor tile in grays, reddish brown, and a touch of gold provides the color palette for this stylish kitchen.
Kitchen backsplash. Adding a bit of the rustic with 4" x 4" tumbled slate tiles on the splash breaks up the smooth finish of the cabinets and brings in a natural element.
The multiple colors found in some slate give the surface a quilt-like appearance. If you are going for this effect, it may be best to keep the rest of the finishes simple. In this kitchen, the backplash provides a decorative pattern and coordinating mosaic tile creates an interesting accent strip and frame for the niche above the stove.
Dining area. Spills are a cinch to clean on a slate floor. However, as for all natural stone, do have it sealed well, and use a ph-neutral stone cleaner for worry-free maintenance.
This slate, in soft grays and tans, looks sophisticated in a contemporary living space.
Entry area. Slate tile is sensible in an entry area. It will help trap any water or dirt that you may track in, and its dark colors are very forgiving.
Stairs. The natural slip-resistance quality makes slate a smart choice for stairs. If you prefer a monochromatic look with very little color variation, you might like this dark, almost black slate ...
... or a consistent gray-green tone.
Indoor-outdoor. Use the same material inside and out for a seamless look. I love how it seems the tile was laid before the windows were installed.
Patio. Because slate is a strong material that will withstand the elements, it is a popular choice for patios and other outdoor areas like porches and walkways. This patio was created with various sizes of tiles to make a pleasing pattern.
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