4 Tips for Choosing Grout Color

Posted July 2, 2020

Guest Post by KariAnne Wood of Thistlewood Farms

Your tile project is almost finished.

You’ve finished laying the tile.

Every piece is perfectly in place.

And now?

It’s time to add the grout.

But which grout color? What if you choose a grout color that’s too dark? What if you choose a grout color that’s too light? You stand in the middle of the tile aisle looking at all the grout color options, and you freeze. There are so many possibilities of grout colors to choose from.

No worries.

All you need are a few simple tips and ideas.

Here are four easy guidelines to help you pick the perfect grout color.

1. Consider the size of your space

When choosing a grout color, here’s a good rule of thumb: if you want your space to feel larger, then you want to choose a grout color that blends into your tile. 

For example, if you choose white tile for the bathroom, choosing a white grout will open up the space and make the room feel larger. If you are working with a floor tile, choosing a grout the color of the floor tile creates uninterrupted lines that feel expansive and open.

The seamless blend between your tile and your grout color creates uncluttered lines and helps the room to feel light and open.

2. Adding Patterns with Tile

Looking to layer in a pattern in your space? In general, adding a contrasting grout color will create an additional pattern to your space.

For example, if you’ve created a brick pattern with white tile and you want to visually add a pattern? Choose a dark gray grout. This highlights the tile pattern that you’ve laid and brings a geometric element into your design.

If you have a herringbone pattern in dark gray tile? Adding a white or light gray grout color to the tile will highlight the pattern you have created with the tile. 

ProTip: If you are looking for contrast, a good rule of thumb is to select a grout several shades lighter or darker than your tile color. The more of a contrast you choose with your grout color, the more pattern you add to your space.

Selecting a tile with a pattern, like a drawn stone or mosaic with mixed materials like natural stone and metallics? Your grout options should be that of the color of the natural stone. This helps so your designs don’t clash. 

3. Tile with Cool or Warm Undertones

When planning your design, this is one of the most important things to consider. Look at your tile and your overall room design and study the undertones. 

Does the design feature mostly cool undertones, such as blue-grays or frosty pinks or pastels?

Or does the design feature warmer undertones, such as orange-red or warm khaki or creamy whites?

This will help you determine which direction to go when choosing your grout color. For example, this gray slate tile has cool blue-gray undertones. It’s paired with a cool arctic gray to accent the color of the tile, rather than fight with it.

4. Other Surfaces in the Space for Consideration

It’s important to realize that tile isn’t grouted in a vacuum. There are other surfaces in a space that need to be taken into consideration. Here are a few things to note when choosing your grout color.

  • Does the room have any other grout colors that need to be considered in your design decision?
  • What other surfaces do you have in your space? For example, if you are tiling a backsplash, what is the flooring choice.
  • Are there existing design elements that dominate a space? For example, a large stone wall or countertops or built-in cabinetry?
  • Are the surfaces glossy or flat?

Answering these questions can help determine the design choices you want to make with your grout color. A few basic principles you want to use when planning out your design and your grout color:

  • If your tile is glossy, it has a tendency to catch the light. You may want to choose a lighter grout color than you originally planned.
  • If your tile edges are organic and uneven, you want to choose a grout color closer to the tile to hide imperfections.
  • If there are two different tiles in your space, make sure to choose a grout color that works with both.
  • If your tile has multiple colors, choosing one of the shades in the tile is always a great option.
  • If your tile has veins (as in a marble tile) you may want to choose a light-colored grout to make the marble pattern blend seamlessly from tile to tile.

And lastly, if all else fails. If you are standing in the tile aisle and don’t know where to turn? You can’t go wrong with a light gray tile. It blends in with most tiles and creates a classic, timeless look with your tile project.

Happy tiling!



1 Comment

Leave a Reply