A visual guide to tile patterns and layouts

PHOTO: Unsplash

One tile, so many options.

Running Bond

The standard tile pattern. Classic, traditional and always timeless.

PHOTO: The Merry Men Interiors, Three-D Conceptwerke

Horizontal Stack

A contemporary twist to the classic. Works best with slightly shorter tiles. If you don’t want to feel super modern with this layout, stick with organic-looking, “handmade” tiles.

PHOTO: Cozyspace, The Interior Lab

Vertical Stack

Lends a modern and really graphic element to a space. Great way to accentuate taller ceilings or to make your room seem taller.

PHOTO: Ethereall, Reimage Decor

Vertical Stack Offset

For something visually softer than the vertical stack, offset your tiles slightly. This tile layout also makes things look a little more traditional.

PHOTO: Collective Gen, Lunchbox Architect

Vertical Running Bond

A vertical alternative to the classic running bond pattern. Like vertical stack, it can also lengthen the height of your ceiling

PHOTO: Fuse Concept, Starry Homestead

Diagonal Running Bond

If you want something a little out there, this tile pattern is it. Tiles run similar to the running bond, but are laid out diagonally.

PHOTO: Starry Homestead, Opun

Classic Herringbone

A popular tile pattern that was trendy a couple of years back although it has transcended its hip status to become quite a classic.

Stick with simpler looking tiles. A contrasting grout will make the herringbone pattern pop.

PHOTO:  Fifth Avenue Interior, Archive Design , Meter Square

Straight Herringbone

A more modern take. Much easier to lay than the standard herringbone pattern. Tiles are set at 90-degree angles to one another.

PHOTO:  Icon Interior Design, Create/Enjoy

Sideways Herringbone

A refreshing way to enliven the classic herringbone pattern. Tiles are laid in a 45-degree angle, resulting in “arrows” that draw the eye either left or right.

PHOTO: The Local Inn.terior, Design 4 Space


Less conventional, but will be lovely for a country style or a more traditional setting. If you want to use it in a modern home, go with simple, neutral-toned tiles.

In this pattern, tiles are laid in alternating grids and look like weaves on a basket.

PHOTO: The Decorologist, Caitlin Wilson

This article was first published in Renonation.