Don’t get me wrong, I love to use classic subway tiles here and there as they can give a space a clean, polished look. However, over the last year or so the traditional subway tile has slowly lost its spotlight and evolved to the unparalleled and artisan appearance of Zellige tiles.
Zellige tile might be hot right now, but they’ve been glistening throughout history as well, with origins in Morocco. This type of tile is handmade out of clay, thus being a glazed terracotta that can be made in various colors and shapes. We primarily see these tiles in a square or subway shape, but they can also be seen in a hexagon or diamond shape.
Zellige tile is known for its whimsical and organic feel; bringing beautiful texture, shine, and dimension to a space. This tile is meant to have imperfections; as a matter of fact, it’s meant to embrace them. Since this is a natural material, expect to see some variations in the color and texture.
This type of tile can be used just about anywhere, as long as it’s not a high-traffic area (such as on the floor in a kitchen, foyer, or great room) as they can damage under a lot of pressure. If you’d like to use Zellige for flooring, I suggest doing it for a guest bathroom, powder bathroom, or an outdoor living area. Zellige is most commonly seen as a backsplash tile or in a shower, as they are less prone to cracking there.
If you’re not the biggest fan of selecting grout, then Zellige might just be your new best friend. These tiles are crafted to be installed as tight together as possible with a thin layer of cement holding them in place, so grout can hardly ever be seen.
So, is Zellige one of the new classics or could they just be a trend? It’s hard to say; organic modern designs have been very popular in the last year, which has definitely influenced the use of Zellige. But, I think that these beauties are here to stay, as they bring a unique element to a simply designed tile.