What Are Chequered Tiles Used For?

Cozy kitchen with beige cabinetry, a sleek marble countertop, and light grey and white chequered tiles, complemented by rustic wooden accents

Chequered tiles, a timeless design element, have graced floors and walls for centuries. Their enduring popularity stems from their versatility and ability to enhance a variety of spaces. This article explores the diverse applications of chequered tiles, from practical flooring solutions to decorative accents.


Luxurious black and white marble look chequered tiles in an elegant interior, reflecting natural light from a large window


Advantages of Chequered Tiles

From their exceptional durability to their surprising ease of maintenance, these versatile tiles enhance any space. Discover how chequered tiles can transform your home, offering both practicality and timeless aesthetics.


Chequered tiles, particularly those crafted from high-quality materials like porcelain or ceramic, are renowned for their exceptional longevity. These materials boast a dense, vitrified structure, making them highly resistant to wear and tear. Even in busy areas like entryways, kitchens, and hallways, these chequered tiles can withstand daily use for years to come. Their inherent strength makes them impervious to scratches, scuffs, and dents, ensuring a pristine appearance for extended periods. Furthermore, porcelain and ceramic tiles exhibit excellent moisture resistance. This quality makes them ideal for areas prone to spills and splashes, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms. Water won't penetrate the tile's surface, preventing warping, cracking, or mold growth. With proper care and maintenance, chequered tiles can grace your space for decades, offering a timeless and resilient flooring solution.


The true beauty of chequered tiles lies in their remarkable adaptability. They effortlessly blend with a wide spectrum of design styles, from the timeless elegance of classic black and white to the bold vibrancy of contemporary color palettes. For a touch of sophistication, opt for larger chequered patterns in neutral tones like cream and grey. This creates a clean and modern aesthetic, perfect for minimalist or Scandinavian-inspired spaces. If you crave a touch of tradition, smaller chequered patterns in contrasting colors like black and white or red and cream evoke a nostalgic charm, reminiscent of Parisian bistros or farmhouse kitchens. Chequered tiles also cater to diverse cultural influences. Moroccan zellige tiles, with their vibrant colors and handcrafted imperfections, add a touch of exotic flair. Similarly, the intricate geometric patterns of Victorian-era encaustic tiles lend a touch of historical grandeur to any space.

Low Maintenance

Maintaining the beauty of chequered tiles, particularly those crafted from ceramic or porcelain, is surprisingly effortless. Their smooth, non-porous surface makes them incredibly easy to clean. Regular sweeping or mopping with a mild detergent is all that's required to remove dirt, dust, and debris. Unlike carpets or other porous materials, these chequered tiles won't trap allergens or harbor bacteria, making them a hygienic choice for homes with pets or allergies. Their resistance to stains is another advantage. Spills can be easily wiped up without leaving permanent marks, ensuring a spotless appearance. Additionally, chequered patterns can cleverly camouflage minor imperfections or dirt thanks to the contrasting colors. This makes them a forgiving choice for busy households where maintaining a perfectly pristine floor can be a challenge. Overall, ceramic or porcelain chequered tiles offer a low-maintenance solution for creating a beautiful and functional space.


Modern dining room featuring large grey and white chequered tiles, a sleek black table with brown chairs, and ample natural light from tall windows


Applications of Chequered Tiles

Chequered tiles transcend mere flooring, serving as a versatile design element in a wide array of applications. Discover their diverse uses, from practical flooring solutions for busy areas to decorative accents that infuse any space with personality and flair. Experience this versatility firsthand by using our cutting-edge Augmented Reality (AR) tool to visualize these tiles in your own space.


Underfoot and full of charm, chequered tiles offer a practical and stylish solution for floors throughout your home. Explore the possibilities, from hardworking entryways to light-filled sunrooms, and discover how chequered patterns can add visual interest and functionality to every step.

Entrances and Mudrooms

Chequered tiles are a workhorse solution for entryways and mudrooms. The textured surfaces of ceramic or porcelain variants act as a natural scraper, trapping dirt and debris from shoes before it gets tracked further into the house. Moisture from rain or snow can also be easily contained and cleaned due to the water resistance of these chequered tiles. Popular choices for entryways include classic black and white chequered patterns, offering a timeless elegance that complements various architectural styles. Terracotta chequered tiles add a touch of warmth and rustic charm, particularly suited for country-inspired homes. Both options provide excellent durability and can withstand the constant wear and tear of busy areas.

Kitchens and Bathrooms 

The practicality of chequered tiles also shines in kitchens and bathrooms. Their water resistance makes them ideal for areas prone to spills and splashes. Ceramic or porcelain tiles are popular choices due to their ease of cleaning and inherent strength. For added safety in moisture-prone areas like showers and around bathtubs, consider chequered tiles with a matte finish that provides superior slip resistance.

Living Areas and Dining Rooms

Chequered tiles can breathe life into living areas and dining rooms, adding visual interest and creating a sense of spaciousness. Larger chequered patterns in neutral tones like beige, grey, or cream create a clean and modern aesthetic, particularly effective in expansive living areas. This design approach allows furniture and artwork to take center stage while maintaining a sense of visual balance. For a more traditional touch, smaller chequered patterns in contrasting colors like black and white or red and cream can be employed. These patterns evoke a sense of nostalgia and can add a touch of personality to dining rooms or cozy reading nooks. The chequered pattern itself can also create an illusion of depth, making a room appear larger than it actually is.

Sunrooms and Patios

The durability and weather resistance of chequered tiles make them a suitable choice for outdoor areas like sunrooms and patios. Porcelain tiles are particularly well-suited for these applications as they can withstand harsh sunlight, freezing temperatures, and occasional rain. Patterned chequered tiles in cool colors like blues or greens can create a refreshing ambiance, particularly in sunrooms with ample natural light. These cooler tones can help balance the warmth of the sun and create a more inviting atmosphere. For patios, consider incorporating chequered tiles in earthy tones like brown or terracotta to create a cohesive flow with the surrounding landscaping.

Basements and Laundry Rooms

In basements and laundry rooms, where practicality reigns supreme, chequered tiles offer a functional and budget-friendly flooring solution. These areas are often prone to moisture and occasional spills. Ceramic or porcelain chequered tiles provide a water-resistant and easy-to-clean surface at an affordable price point. The wide variety of colors and patterns available also allows for some design flexibility, even in these utilitarian spaces. A chequered pattern in a light color can help brighten up a basement, while darker tones can hide dirt more effectively in a laundry room.


Checkered tiles can transform your walls into statement pieces, adding playful patterns and introducing vibrant colors. Imagine a bold checkered accent wall in your bathroom or subtle pattern touches in your hallways. Even kitchen backsplashes benefit from the dynamic look of checkered tiles. Choose smaller patterns for intricate details or larger ones to make a bold statement. The color palette can complement your countertops and cabinets, creating a cohesive aesthetic.

Additionally, water-resistant ceramic tiles are perfect for shower walls, adding a unique design element to the space. Experiment with different grout colors to personalize your checkered wall or backsplash. Opt for contrasting grout to highlight the tiles, or select a matching tone for a more unified appearance. With endless possibilities, you can craft a space that perfectly reflects your personal style.

Other Applications

The versatility of chequered tiles extends beyond floors and walls. They can be used to add a touch of personality and visual interest to various surfaces in your home. Consider incorporating chequered tiles into countertops, particularly in butler's pantries or laundry rooms, for a touch of timeless elegance. Tabletops crafted from chequered tiles can add a playful touch to a breakfast nook or sunroom. 

Fireplace surrounds are another excellent opportunity to showcase chequered tiles. Here, a combination of chequered tiles and solid-colored tiles can create a visually striking focal point. For example, a black and white chequered pattern surrounding the fireplace opening can be paired with a border of terracotta tiles, adding a touch of warmth and rustic charm. Ultimately, chequered tiles offer a design element with endless possibilities, allowing you to create a unique and stylish statement in any setting.


Grand entryway featuring glossy black and white chequered tiles, arched windows, and a large chandelier, creating a luxurious and elegant ambiance


Design Considerations with Chequered Tiles

Understanding how scale, color, and style interplay with these patterns is key to translating your chequered dreams into a stunning reality. This section equips you with the knowledge needed to create a harmonious and visually pleasing space using the timeless appeal of chequered tiles. To further enhance your vision, consider Edward Martin’s expert design services, which can help tailor these elements to perfectly fit your unique space and style preferences.

Scale and Proportion

The size of your chequered pattern relative to the space it occupies plays a crucial role in achieving a balanced and aesthetically pleasing design. In smaller spaces, opting for larger chequered patterns can create an overwhelming and visually busy atmosphere. The bold lines and contrasting colors can overpower the room, making it feel cramped and closed-in. A better approach for smaller spaces is to utilize smaller chequered patterns. These create a sense of visual interest without overwhelming the eye. They can even create an illusion of spaciousness by drawing the viewer's gaze around the room. Conversely, in large, expansive areas, employing excessively small chequered patterns can result in a disconnected and fragmented look. The intricate details of the pattern might get lost in the vastness of the space. For larger areas, larger chequered patterns are more suitable. They provide a strong visual foundation and help to define the space.

Color and Contrast

The color palette of your chequered tiles significantly impacts the overall feel of the space. High-contrast patterns featuring bold colors like black and white or red and cream create a dramatic statement. They instantly draw the eye and become a focal point in the room. This approach is ideal for creating a bold and contemporary aesthetic. However, if a more subtle and timeless look is desired, opt for low-contrast patterns. These utilize colors within the same tonal range, such as beige and cream or light gray and charcoal. Low-contrast chequered patterns create a sense of visual harmony and can seamlessly blend with various design styles.

Style and Theme

The versatility of chequered tiles allows them to complement a wide range of design styles. For a touch of classic elegance, consider the iconic black and white chequered pattern. This timeless combination evokes Parisian bistros and vintage cafes, adding a touch of sophistication to kitchens, hallways, or even bathrooms. Earthy tones like terracotta or brown chequered tiles lend a rustic charm, perfectly suited for farmhouse kitchens or Tuscan-inspired sunrooms. Embrace a touch of the exotic with Moroccan zellige tiles. These handcrafted tiles come in a vibrant array of colors and boast a unique, slightly uneven surface, adding a touch of cultural flair to your space. For a modern and minimalist aesthetic, explore chequered patterns in cool greys or blues. These contemporary color palettes create a sleek and sophisticated ambiance.

Grout Color

While often overlooked, grout color plays a subtle yet significant role in enhancing or detracting from your chequered pattern. Matching the grout color to one of the tile colors creates a unified and seamless look. This approach allows the chequered pattern to take center stage without introducing a distracting element. Alternatively, for a bolder statement, consider using a contrasting grout color. This can help to define the individual tiles and create a more pronounced chequered effect. However, it's important to ensure the contrasting grout color complements the overall color scheme of the space.


Chequered tiles transcend trends, offering a timeless design element that imbues spaces with both practicality and personality. Their enduring appeal lies in their versatility. From classic black and white to vibrant Moroccan zellige, chequered tiles cater to diverse design styles. Their functionality makes them a favorite for busy areas like entryways and kitchens, while their decorative potential adds a touch of whimsy to walls and backsplashes. The ease of maintenance and inherent durability of chequered tiles solidify their position as a smart choice for busy households. Ultimately, chequered tiles offer a design solution brimming with creative potential, allowing you to craft a space that reflects your unique style and personality.

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