The Retro-Chic Appeal of Vintage Tiles for Kitchen

A guide to vintage tiles for Kitchen remodel project - including tips on finding and installing the perfect tiles for your home.

Love all things retro? There’s no need to scour antique stores and flea markets for that perfect addition to your kitchen. You can find vintage-inspired tiles that will give your kitchen the look you desire without any of the hassles. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll show you where to find the best vintage tiles for your kitchen so that you can get started on your next project.

Table of Contents

Vintage Tiles 101

There are two main things you need to know before you start shopping for vintage tiles: what material you want your tile to be made out of, and what size tile you need. The most popular materials for vintage kitchen tiles are ceramic and glass, but you can also find metal, stone, and even plastic tiles if you look hard enough. As far as size goes, the sky’s the limit—you can find everything from smaller mosaic tiles to large field tiles. It just depends on what look you’re going for.

Vintage Tile Resources

There are a number of different places where you can find vintage tiles for your kitchen backsplash or floors. The first place to start is at your local tile shop. Many tile shops now carry a line of vintage-inspired tiles. If they don’t have what you’re looking for in stock, they may be able to special order it for you. Another option is to search online. A quick Google search will reveal a number of websites that sell vintage tiles. Be sure to compare prices and shipping costs before making your purchase. Some sites may even offer free shipping if you spend a certain amount. Tile companies that specialize in reproduction Victorian, Edwardian, and Art Deco styles include Mercury Mosaics, Tile Heritage Foundation, Fireclay Tile, Mission Tile West, and Heath Ceramics


Choosing the Right Tile

Once you’ve decided on a style, it’s time to start narrowing down your choices. First, think about the size of the tile you want. Do you want small mosaic tiles or large subway tiles?

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Second, consider the color scheme of your kitchen. You’ll want to choose tiles that complement the existing colors in your kitchen.

Finally, think about the overall look you want to achieve. Are you going for a sleek and modern look or a more rustic vibe? Once you’ve answered these questions, you’ll be well on your way to finding the perfect vintage tile for your kitchen. 

vintage kitchen tiles2


Installing vintage tiles is much like installing any other type of tile. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when working with older tiles.

First, be sure to inspect each tile before installation to look for cracks or chips. These can occur over time and may weaken the structural integrity of the tile. If possible, try to find replacement tiles that match the originals as closely as possible.

Second, use care when cutting older tiles as they may be more brittle than newer ones and more susceptible to breakage.

 If you’ve never installed tiles before, don’t worry—it’s not as difficult as it looks. You’ll just need a few supplies like tile adhesive, grout, a rubber float, and a tile cutter (if you’re working with larger field tiles). Once you have everything gathered up, just follow these simple steps: 

1. Spread tile adhesive onto your surface using the rubber float. Start in one corner and work your way outward in small sections so that the adhesive doesn’t dry before you’re ready to lay down your tile. 

2. Lay your tile onto the adhesive bed, starting in the corner and working your way outward. Use spacers between each tile to ensure consistent spacing. 

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3. Once all of your tiles are laid, wait 24 hours for the adhesive to dry completely. 

4. Fill the joints between each tile with grout using the rubber float—again, start in one corner and work your way out. Be sure to wipe away any excess grout from the face of the tile with a damp sponge before it has a chance to dry. 

5. Allow the grout to dry for 24 hours before sealing (this step is optional but recommended). And that’s it—enjoy your new kitchen backsplash!

You might need to remove the old tiles before you can install the new ones. This is a project best left to a professional if you’re not confident in your DIY skills. Once the old tiles are out of the way, you can begin installing your new vintage tiles.

Vintage Tiles for Kitchen Floor

If your kitchen is in need of a facelift, one of the quickest and easiest ways to achieve it is by swapping out your tired old floor tiles for some brand-new ones. But instead of opting for boring, off-the-shelf options, why not give your kitchen some personality by choosing vintage floor tiles? Here are just a few reasons why vintage floor tiles are the perfect way to inject some style into your kitchen.

Unique and Eye-Catching Designs

When you choose vintage floor tiles for your kitchen, you can be sure that nobody else will have the same exact tile pattern. That’s because each individual tile is unique, with its own individual color, shape, and design. And when you put them all together, you’ll create a one-of-a-kind tile pattern that is guaranteed to turn heads.

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Endless Design Possibilities

Vintage floor tiles come in all sorts of different colors, shapes, and sizes, which means the possibilities are endless when it comes to designing your own unique tile pattern. Whether you want something subtle or something eye-catching, there’s sure to be a tile combination that’s perfect for you.

Easy to Clean and Maintain

Vintage floor tiles are also very easy to clean and maintain. Thanks to their smooth surface, they won’t trap dirt and dust as carpets or rugs can. And if they do get dirty, a quick mop or wipe down will have them looking good as new in no time. 

Shopping for Vintage Tiles for Kitchen Floors

Here are a few things to keep in mind when shopping for vintage floor tiles for your kitchen.

Choose the Right Size Tile

One of the most important things to consider when shopping for vintage floor tiles is size. You’ll want to make sure that the tiles you choose are in proportion to the rest of the room; too small and they’ll look out of place, too large and they’ll overwhelm the space. Fortunately, there are plenty of options to choose from, so you should be able to find something that fits your taste and your kitchen’s size.

Consider the Pattern

When it comes to vintage floor tiles, there are two main types of patterns: geometric and floral. Geometric patterns are more common in Art Deco styles while Floral patterns are more often seen in Victorian-style homes. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule, so if you see a tile you love that doesn’t fit into either category, don’t rule it out! Ultimately, the pattern you choose should be one that you love and that fits with the overall style of your home. 

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Pick The Perfect Color Scheme

 Once you’ve narrowed down your choices by size and pattern, it’s time to start thinking about color. When choosing vintage floor tiles, it’s important to keep in mind that darker colors will show dirt and stains more easily than light colors. If you’re set on a dark tile, consider using it as an accent tile rather than covering your entire floor in it. You could also use light-colored grout to help offset some of the darkness. 

Types of Vintage Floor Tiles

If you’re going for a vintage vibe, there are plenty of beautiful options to choose from. Here are six of our favorite vintage floor tiles for your kitchen makeover.

1. Terrazzo Floor Tiles

Terrazzo floor tiles are made by embedding small pieces of stone or marble in concrete, then polishing the surface until it’s smooth. This results in a tile that’s both beautiful and durable—perfect for high-traffic areas like kitchens. Terrazzo tiles come in a wide range of colors and patterns, so you’re sure to find one that fits your style. And bonus—terrazzo is easy to clean and maintain, so you’ll be able to enjoy your new floors for years to come.

Terrazzo Floor Tiles

2. Encaustic Tiles

Encaustic tiles are made by pressing colored clay into molds, then firing them in a kiln. The result is a tile that’s rich in color and pattern. Encaustic tiles were popular in Victorian-era homes, so if you’re going for a classic look, these are a perfect choice. They can also add a touch of whimsy and personality to more modern spaces. Just beware—encaustic tiles can be delicate, so they may not be the best choice for high-traffic areas or homes with young children or pets. 

Encaustic Tiles

3. Hexagon Tiles

Hexagon tiles are a timeless option that can work in any style of kitchen. They come in many different colors and materials, so you can find an option that fits both your budget and your aesthetic. Hexagon tiles can be used on floors or walls, so if you want to continue the vintage look throughout your kitchen, they’re a great choice. 

Hexagon Tiles Kitchen

4. Penny Tiles

Penny tiles are small round tiles that were popular in the early 1900s. They get their name from their penny-sized diameter (usually between 1/2″ and 3/4″). While they were originally made of ceramic, today you can find penny tiles made from glass, metal, stone, and even plastic. They’re a great way to add visual interest to your kitchen without overwhelming the space. And since they come in so many different colors and materials, you’re sure to find an option that fits your style perfectly. 

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5. Moroccan Tiles

Moroccan tiles are characterized by their intricate patterns and vibrant colors. They’re often used as accent pieces, but they can also be used on floors or walls to create a bold statement in your kitchen. If you want to add some international flair to your space, Moroccan tiles are the way to go! Just keep in mind that they require more upkeep than other tile options—the grout lines need to be sealed regularly to prevent staining, and the tiles themselves must be cleaned with gentle products to avoid damaging them. 

6. Glass Tiles

Glass tiles add depth and dimension to any space—and they’re especially well-suited for kitchens because they’re so easy to clean (just wipe them down with soap and water). They come in clear or frosted glass, as well as a wide range of colors, so you’re sure to find an option that fit’s your style perfectly. Glass tiles can be used on floors or walls, but if you choose to use them on the latter, make sure they’re properly sealed so they don’t absorb grease and dirt from cooking splatters!

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re looking for a quick and easy weekend project or a more comprehensive kitchen makeover, vintage tiles are a great option! They come in a wide variety of colors and styles to suit any taste, and they’re easy enough for even novice DIYers to install.

Vintage tiles are a great way to add personality and character to your kitchen backsplash or floors. With so many different styles and colors to choose from, there’s sure to be an option that’s perfect for your home. Thanks for reading! We hope this guide has been helpful in beginning your search for vintage tiles for your kitchen project.


Hello! I'm Nikita, the creator of Abodenation, a blog dedicated to home improvement, troubleshooting, advice, and decor. With years of hands-on experience and a keen eye for detail, I love sharing my passion for creating functional, beautiful, and comfortable living spaces with others. Join me on my journey to transform houses into homes, one project at a time.

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