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Tile School: How to Take on Bathroom Tile Trim

Posted by: Kali • May 3

Tile School: How to Take on Bathroom Tile Trim

Image: Open Homes Photography

You’ve finally found the perfect tile for your bathroom. Congratulations! But now, you need to calculate how much tile you’ll need. Before you start doing the math, don’t forget about tile trim.  Because our tile has unglazed edges, it’s important to consider how your tile will look when it meets the wall, where the tile’s mud setting might also be exposed. And since your bathroom will most likely be surrounded by tile in a variety of colors and sizes, it’s important to have all your edges and corners covered.

For a seamless transition throughout your bathroom, we recommend finishing off your bathroom project with trim. Read on for the tile trims Fireclay offers so you can get everything you need to finish your bathroom design flawlessly.

Popular Tile Trim Options for the Bathroom

Bullnose

Bullnose trim features a rounded, glazed edge, hiding the regular tile’s unglazed edge and providing an effortless transition between the tile and your wall. We also offer corner bullnose, which is rounded on both sides. Be sure to always specify which sides and or corners you need rounded.

Quarter Round

Quarter round trim is a thin tile that will also hide tile’s unglazed edge and is used to turn a corner or to finish edge of installation.

Flatliner

A flatliner piece is primarily decorative.  It can be used on the edges of your backsplash or as a decorative accent within the tile layout.

Cove Base

A cove base tile has a curved bottom edge that can be used as a transition from floor to wall, wall to tub edge, and countertop to backsplash.

Molding

Our moldings offer a decorative trim to achieve a traditional aesthetic. Inspired by classical architecture, molding gives your space a distinctive finishing touch that feels elegant and luxurious.

Shower and Tub Tile Trim

The trim you’ll need for your shower and tub will depend on how far the tile will extend into the rest of your bathroom space. Account for when your tile will need to wrap around corners, where it will meet the tub, and/or when it will meet the floor.  When your tile meets the wall or when it’s wrapping around another wall that’s perpendicular to it, we recommend using a bullnose or quarter round trim.

This shower has a quarter round trim where it meets the wall:

Tile shown: 2 x 8 in Sand Dune; Image: Malcolm Fearon Photography

A contrasting corner bullnose trim features a smooth transition between shower wall’s exterior and interior walls.

Shower tile niches are very popular in today’s design. The following showers are treated with bullnose trim:

Tile shown: 3 x 6 in Shell; Image: Malcolm Fearon Photography

This shower tile niche is bordered by a contrasting quarter round trim:

Tile color shown: Turquoise; Glass shown: Dew Drop, Forget Me Not, Dusty Olve, Island Flower, and Plankton; Image: Malcolm Fearon Photography

Make sure you consider how to treat your tile once it meets the floor. Although not necessarily a must, a cove base trim, where one edge is slightly curved outward, can accommodate where the tile meets the floor for a smooth transition.

Cove base trim outside a shower tile installation:

Tile shown: 4 x 4 in Tuolumne Meadows; Image: Malcolm Fearon Photography

Cove base trim in a tiled shower floor:

Tile shown: 2 x 2 and 4 x 4 in Prussian Blue; Image: Malcolm Fearon Photography

This shower floor features bullnose and cove base trim, as well as a rounded corner trim to wrap around the exterior of the shower wall.

Although bullnose and quarter round trims can give you a seamless look, it’s not the only option. If your aesthetic is classic and sophisticated, decorative molding can lend architectural distinction to your space.

Shower with decorative Molding:

Vanity and Sink Tile

Some tile installations will extend from the back of your sink all the way up to the ceiling. However, it will mostly only extend half the length of the wall. In order to create a seamless tile-to-wall transition, we recommend using a bullnose or quarter round trim.

The tile behind this sink is topped with a curved bullnose trim.

This bathroom features a quarter round trim that also wraps around the perimeter of the shower.

Sink with a contrasting flatliner trim, which serves a purely decorative purpose and has no rounded edging.

Image: Open Homes Photography

You can also wrap decorating molding around your bathroom to add a unified architectural element to your space.

Tile shown: Star & Cross in Turquoise, 3 x 6 in White Wash; Image: Malcolm Fearon Photography

Tile Trim Installation Tips

Trim measurements are taken by linear foot instead of square foot. To calculate how much tile trim you’ll need, simply add the length of each side of your wall and/or floor that needs trim coverage and divide by 12 (don’t forget to order 10% overage).

If you’re going to use decorative trim, go for it! You will never get a more custom look than with Fireclay Tile.  If you need help choosing the right trim for your bathroom project, simply call, chat, or fill out our Design Assistance Form and one of our talented Design Consultants will get back to you shortly.

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