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Tile by Style: #Trending Contemporary Bathrooms

By Pearl

Fresh, imaginative, and on-trend, Contemporary Style is always the newest thing to step into the interior design scene. Beloved by revered designers and influential bloggers alike, contemporary style offers a refreshing mix of decor ideas that invite plenty of room for personality.

Contemporary vs. Modern

Although these styles often overlap, contemporary and modern style are two different design camps. Although modern and contemporary seem interchangeable, modern is technically rooted in a particular era of style that dictates very precise design rules and a controlled aesthetic (think minimalist decor, strong lines, open spaces). Contemporary style takes these central modern elements as a starting point, but branches out into new territory by encompassing a range of decor. The difference may seem minor, but it can make a big difference.

Here’s an example of a modern home:

Now, here's a contemporary home:

It's easy to see the difference. Both rooms feature open layouts and privilege natural light over window treatments. However, while modern room's restricted palette and decor can feel subdued and sophisticated, a contemporary home invites more room for playfulness and charm in terms of color and decor.

Tile for a Contemporary Bathroom

Tile can be a great way to insert a splash of personality into modern-day bathrooms. Keeping contemporary design concepts in mind like open layout, balanced asymmetry, and strong lines, it’s easy to incorporate your favorite tile.


Monotone mosaics have quickly become a new favorite in the world of interior design. A modern twist on an ancient tradition, the monotone mosaic makes a striking yet subtle statement.

The white rounds in this two-toned bathroom lend a graphic backdrop to its otherwise sleek surfaces.

The bright blue glass mosaic tile creates a striking transition from closet to bathroom.

Tile Shown: Glass, Straight Set

Despite the rise in monotone mosaics, multicolored palettes will always have a place among beloved design trends. We love the eclectic mix of cool hues sprinkled with touches of red in this square tile shower.

Tile shown: Recycled Clay Body, Straight Set Mosaic


Playing with contrast is also a great design solution in a contemporary space, especially if you can’t decide on just one color or pattern (trust us, we know how hard it can be!).

A wall of glass tile in Island Flower Matte may steal the show, but the ceramic tile in Powder Blue that surrounds the tub helps this bathroom strike just the right balance between striking and serene.

Tile shown: 2x6 Glass Tile in Island Flower Matte, 2x6 Tile in Powder Blue.

Tile color shown: Powder Blue

Glass Tile color shown: Island Flower Matte

Contrasting tile sizes can also bring attractive textural dimension to a bathroom. This white straight set tile is beautifully anchored by the black mosaic tile that frames the tub and recessed shelving.

Image: Apartment Therapy

Tile shown: EDGE Series in White Wash, Straight Set

Tile shown: Glass Tile in Licorice


A swath of pattern can be just what your contemporary bathroom needs to take it simple to stunning.

We love the Escher pattern on this bathroom floor. A cool green palette keeps it from overwhelming the space.

Tile shown: Glass Tile, Diamond Escher

A contemporary favorite, the honeycomb pattern adds a playful air to this bathroom’s sleek appliances.

Tile shown: Hexagons

Decorative Tile

If you love the artisanal character of Handpainted Tile, you’ll be sure to find a place for it in your contemporary bathroom.

Taking inspiration from nature and modern design, our Contemporary Handpainted Tile is striking in its simplicity. Our Diamond Contour design adds a graphic edge to this California home’s luxuriously renovated bathroom.

Tile shown: Diamond Contour Handpainted Tile

Tile shown: Diamond Contour Handpainted Tile in Neutral Motif

On a budget? An accent wall or backsplash could be just enough to make an unforgettable impact.

Tile shown: Kasbah Handpainted Tile in Cool Motif