Love it or Leave it: Subway Tile

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{House Beautiful}

We are about to remodel our kitchen- nothing too major, just new countertops, a new backsplash and a nice coat of paint on our maple cabinets. I’m thinking we’ll go with white or greige paint on the cabinets. I was really glad to see that you all still love white cabinetry. So, my next question is on subway tile. Is this another classic that just happens to have oversaturated the blog reader’s psyche or is it a trend that we need to move away from? What are your thoughts on subway tile- love it or leave it?

kitchens - Painted Cabinets Subway Tile backsplash Haskell Harris farmhouse sink  Haskell Harris kitchen  subway tiles, farmhouse sink, taupe

{Haskell Harris}

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{Tommy Smythe}

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{Meredith Heron}

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Tell Me What You Think! leave a comment...

  1. Love it! Without a doubt! It’s a classic! Investing in classic elements is always a smart choice. You save money because you don’t have to renovated any time soon.

    Have a wonderful day, Paloma.


    Luciane at

  2. Still love subway tiles! I think they’re classic.

    Is there a special kind of white paint that’s best to use when painting wood cabinets?

  3. Still love it. I want my backsplash and firplace in marble subway tiles – in a herringbone pattern. A classic.

  4. A classic that can be re-interpreted and freshened up in so many ways from the color, the texture, how it is installed to how it is grouted. Lots of staying power here…good luck with your remodel, can’t wait to follow along!


  5. I love it and plan to use it in my house real soon hopefully! This was one job that didn’t get done before we moved into our farmhouse and has been put on the back burner. I think it’s a classic!

  6. ADORE it. My sister just redid her kitchen and it looks strikingly similar to that last picture. A lil marble, a lil subway tile, clean lines, white…what’s not to love.

  7. I still love it! I’ve tried not to use it at all in my current little house because I know once I make my Husband install it, he’ll never want to do it again 😉

  8. i love subway tiles..a classic..and the nay-sayers will change their minds once they see these beautiful images! have a lovely day, check out an awww-inspiring post on my blog today! xx meenal

  9. I’m sorry, but I disagree!

    There’s got to be something not quite so overused. I feel like most things out there are just repeats of what we’ve seen OVER AND OVER and yes, I’m tired of the subway tile! Sorry to be the only nay-sayer…

  10. I would like to swap my tiny galley kitchen in my tiny London flat for one of these kitchens. In fact I would happily live in any of these kitchens especially the first one. Divine!

  11. Love it! Classic, clean, and a fabulous background for other design elements. Both of my bathrooms are white subway tile walls with white honeycomb tile floor.

  12. I love subway tiles- though none of the photos you posted really represented how good they can look. I think one of the most important things with subway tile is picking the right counter tops and making sure you down light it. Subway tiles can look fabulous and timeless you just have to do it right- and they get used poorly all the time because people think oh it’s timeless and classic how can I go wrong…well they can. White subway tiles with dark counter tops or white subway tiles with white counter tops(not gray marble but white) are a fabulous way to go…make sure to down light it- its all in the lighting.

  13. I love it and since it’s timeless, it’s great when you try to sell your home. Please keep us posted on the color you choose for your cabinets…

  14. Phew! So glad everyone still loves it, cause I just put them up in my own kitchen. Not only are they classic and pretty, they can be kind on the wallet if you don’t have a huge budget!!
    Nancy xo

  15. Ok, other than the one anonymous comment, I guess I’m the only one who is truly is and tired of it! I guess I’m tired of clients saying “do you know what subway tile is?” although these kitchens are all beautiful, I would have chosen different tile

  16. It’s safe. It’s basic. It’s a little boring.

    I don’t love it but I don’t not love it. I think it’s a lot better than doing some dinky little accent row, but not as great as a full expanse of handpainted tiles could be.

  17. Love it! There are other, beautiful options, obviously, but it’s a classic that will always be with us, with good reason!

  18. Love it love it love it!

    Subway tiles have been around since 1904 so I don’t think they’re going anywhere, but if you want to use them in a way that’s a bit more unique than what we’re seeing splashed all over the magazines and blog-o-sphere, feel free to look at my post on “10 different ways to use subway tile”…I sketched out some new patterns like a Herringbone or a Vertical Offset Joint that you might find interesting.