| Date: 18.10.2021

Looking to add interest and character to your floor or wall? Then herringbone tiles might be the choice for you. This interior design trend is perfect for making an eye-catching statement to completely transform your space and work well in both traditional and contemporary homes.

You might think that herringbone tiles are just for floors, but there has been a massive demand for herringbone on other surfaces such as feature walls and fireplaces. Wherever you choose to use them, herringbone tiles will make an impact as you walk through the door.

Herringbone tiling is back with a vengeance and this luxurious aesthetic is guaranteed to give your home decor a luxurious touch in your bathroom, bedroom, or living room. Whether you want a herringbone tile to spruce up your kitchen or a quirky design to jazz up the floors, there are a variety of colours, sizes, and finishes available for you to choose from, in both ceramic and porcelain.

Laying tiles in a herringbone pattern has become more popular than ever for many reasons:

  • You can take a plain design tile and create interest
  • There’s a choice of different layouts
  • A herringbone pattern will add movement to your space
  • There are different designs, colours and styles to choose from when it comes to choosing herringbone tiles.

So if you want to update your interiors with something a little different that’s still practical, you’re in the right place, as we can help inspire you to add some “Zig-a-zig ahhhhh” with a herringbone pattern.

What are herringbone tiles?

Laid at diagonals, the pattern created with herringbone tiles resembles the skeleton of a herring, hence the name. Herringbone tiles need to be in a thin rectangular shape in order to be laid in the signature pattern and the quirky designs they are laid in give lots of interest to any space. The angular layout is often confused with chevron tiling, but this involves diagonally cut tile edges, whereas herringbone tiles use the whole tile as part of the pattern.

Herringbone Tile Layout Guide


Why choose herringbone tiles?

Bags of character

Top of the list has to be the character and interest herringbone tiles can bring to any room in your home. The beauty of herringbone tiles is that whatever tile you choose, you can elevate it with the way that it’s laid. Go for patterned or colourful tiles for extra impact, but even a plain tile will reach new heights of interior design perfection in a herringbone pattern.

A practical choice

The great news is that herringbone tiling is very easy to maintain, giving you a stylish interior design with minimal maintenance. Tiles are so easy to clean, requiring just a wipe over with a cleaning agent, and darker grout is a godsend when it comes to hiding any dirt!

Water resistance

If you’re looking to redecorate your kitchen, bathroom or wet room, then tiles are the perfect choice as they have incredible resistance to water. Ceramic or porcelain, they are built to put up with even the longest showers and the splashiest washing up. One less thing to worry about!


Tiles can take a fair bit of abuse, as they are scratch resistance and not hampered by stains. That means that even in busy areas they will look great for years to come.

Endless choice

Whether you want to opt for a funky metro tile for your wall or recreate the feel of real wood or a parquet floor with wood-effect tiles, there is so much choice when it comes to herringbone tiles. From bright whites to reflect light, deep colours for a glamorous space, and marble effect for a chic look, there are more and more designs available in a huge range of sizes and shapes. And of course, there are a variety of ways to lay them. This leads us nicely on to…

Herringbone Tile Patterns

One of the great things about herringbone tiles is that there is a variety of ways to lay them. You can start with a tile you love and work out which pattern to use, or have a look at the patterns available to inspire your tile choice.

45 degrees

Tiles are laid at a 45-degree angle, giving you a wavy zig-zag from left to right.

90 degrees

For a different look, lay the tiles at 90 degrees for a more vertical appearance. This style looks lovely with longer metro tiles.


Similar to the 45-degree option, this look creates a bolder ‘chevron’ style.

Double herringbone

For a unique look, double up the tiles for a more unusual design.

Customer bathroom with Apennines marble metro tiles in a herringbone design

Top tips for choosing herringbone tiles


The tile’s height should be divisible by its width (eg 30cm x 10cm or 20cm x 10cm) This is very important, or your design won’t work.


Think of the style of herringbone pattern you want to use, with the help of our handy guide above!

Dry laying

Have a practice with the tiles before laying to see if you’re happy with the pattern. If you can try and do this in the space where they will be laid, it will help you to see if your design will work.

Laying the tiles

We would rank herringbone tiling as having quite a high difficulty level. As a complex pattern, the last thing you want is an off-centre line ruining the luxury look. If you’re braving it yourself, there are plenty of tutorials out there to get prepared.


Tiling to the top of the ceiling is fairly straightforward, but if you’re going for a splashback or feature, decide if you want to cut the tiles across or have exposed edges for extra interest.

Herringbone tile style inspiration

If you’ve got this far, then we hope you’ll be keen to have a look at some tile ideas for your next project! So without further ado, here are our favourite herringbone design ideas to inspire you, for all spaces, rooms and areas.  

Herringbone floor tiles

Bathrooms and kitchens may be growing in popularity when it comes to herringbone tiles, but a herringbone pattern in your living area will inject character into a functional room.

Flooring is the obvious choice, but you could also highlight a particular area, such as framing a fireplace or introducing a feature wall. If you’re going wall-to-wall herringbone, a colourful rug is an ideal accessory to bring in colour and warmth for a cosy effect.

Opera Wood Effect Tiles in a Herringbone pattern from Direct Tile Waerehouse

Herringbone wood effect tiles

Wood effect tiles will add flair to your floor and are available in a variety of shades to mimic many types of wood. The advantage of using tiles as an alternative to wood means you get the look of timber at less cost and with hassle-free upkeep. A winning combination!

Bricola Chocolate Tiles

Alternative to parquet floors

Did you know that the history of parquet floors dates back to 16th century France, where artisans created elaborate designs by fitting small blocks of wood in geometric patterns? If like us you’re a fan of parquet floors, Herringbone tiles and give you the appearance of an authentic parquet floor with more durability and at a fraction of the price.

Brown Floor Tiles

Herringbone wall tiles

Not just resigned to floors, herringbone tiles will give your walls the wow factor, whether you go top to bottom or just tile a section to make a feature. Inject colour with a wonderful feature wall, create a herringbone hearth for your fireplace or make a practical choice with a kitchen splashback in a herringbone design.

Madrid Black Gloss Wall Tiles

Madrid Black Gloss Wall Tiles

Herringbone tile kitchen

The perfect place for herringbone tiles is a kitchen splashback, where not only will a quirky tile pattern bring extra interest, they will also make a very practical choice. Tiles are easy to clean and maintain, so they’re perfect to catch all the splatter from soup without ruining wallpaper or paint. Go for gloss to reflect more light, super chic matt, and a darker grout is easier to look after than white.

Artistic Light Cream Tiles - 1200x628

Herringbone bathroom tiles

if you’re looking to transform your bathroom into a blissful haven, herringbone tiles will bring texture and depth to this functional space. Tiles are the perfect choice as they’re waterproof and easy to clean, and the wide choice of styles and colours will give you the perfect starting point for your herringbone inspiration.

Herringbone coloured tiles

For a really striking look, choose coloured herringbone tiles. Create a beautiful bathroom with blues and greens, from calming baby blue to rich emerald green. Or try pastel metros in the kitchen for a soft, fresh and chic look in pinks, peaches and greys. Whichever colour you opt for you’ll have a gorgeous sanctuary to relax or be creative in.

Monochrome magic

Black and white is always a chic choice for any room, and herringbone tiles will elevate this look with movement in amongst the monochrome for a winning combination of style and practicality. Complement this striking look with natural furnishings and accessories to soften the effect, or introduce plants, artwork, towels and bathmats for a pop of colour.

Black and white metro Vital tiles

If you have been inspired to use herringbone tiles in your next project, then take a browse through our tiles, order some free samples, or contact our friendly team for advice.