I’ve been in love with metro tiles ever since they became fashionable about ten years ago. I suppose I quite liked them before then too, I just never thought about it as much. Now every time I take the tube I notice the different colours and styles all over the Underground, how some are new and polished; others are worn and cracked, and how each station is a little bit different from the one before.
I don’t know who first had the idea of pairing white metro tiles with dark grey grout but suddenly they were in every hip bar and restaurant in Hackney and I (along with everyone else) wanted them at home too.
It’s a brilliant look to recreate because the tiles are dirt cheap. They’re also readily available from pretty much every tile retailer in the country and there are so many ways to work the look as there are endless colour options for tiles and grout.
Over the years I’ve used metro tiles in more kitchens and bathrooms than I can remember. But this is 2016 and metro tiles have been around for years, so why are they still a thing?
I think it has a lot to do with authenticity. Metro tiles have always been central to the design of transportation systems in numerous major cities, and as public transport authorities never seem to have any cash they’re not going anywhere fast. Timeless and inexpensive: what's not to love?
(Credit for the thumbnail image goes to one of my favourite interior designers, Kali Kavanagh - check out Vintage House Daylesford)