Shoe gazing? Or tile gazing?

Why I’m always looking down

I am addicted to tiles. Since I started writing En Brogue back in 2012, and as a result began obsessively taking pictures of my feet, tiles have become almost as big a part of my life as flat shoes. My husband arranged our 10th wedding anniversary holiday to a hotel in Sorrento specifically because it was famous for having over 30 different styles of blue and white tiles (he’s a keeper!). If I ever find myself in a public place with beautiful tiles, I have to take a shoefie. People even send me pictures on Instagram of their own feet standing on tiles they’ve spotted that they think I will like. And of course, I’ve incorporated bright patterned tiles into the interior design of my own house. They just give me so much joy!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Topps Tiles Victorian Flooring™ Newbury Terracotta Tile, £15.35 per tile (toppstiles.co.uk); TOP PICTURE Victorian Flooring™ Darlington Blue Tile, £28.74 per tile (toppstiles.co.uk)

My go-to for floor tiles has always been Topps Tiles. When we first started decorating our house I shopped around and was really impressed that Topps Tiles had so much on offer, from the Moroccan style we opted for in our bathroom, to the wood-effect parquet we used in the kitchen. Having had them in use for years I can’t fault the quality, and they were really affordable, too. I also particularly like that some of the patterned tiles, like the vintage Italian-inspired ones in our shower room, come in big blocks of four, making them really simple and fast to lay.

Speaking of easy, let me introduce you to the new Victorian Flooring™ range. Topps Tiles kindly lent me some samples to have a play around with myself (these have been returned to store though, so someone else can use them) and it really couldn’t be easier. Rather than coming as lots of tiny tiles, these large flexible blocks are attached to a webbing on the back, giving you a complicated interlocking pattern without any fuss. It also means you can easily mix and match your patterns – here, I’ve used the black and white on their own, but I’ve also mixed in terracotta and as you can see it’s a completely different look. Honestly, it’s hours of fun! Each sheet of tiles also features a predetermined grout width, making it really easy to be accurate, and the meshed back allows for multiple cuts to be achieved at a time. These would be perfect for a traditional hallway or front path, and I think the blue and white would be brilliant in a bathroom.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Topps Tiles Victorian Flooring™ Hinwick Grey Tile, £30.14 per box (toppstiles.co.uk)

As you can see, I have also managed to match my shoes and socks to the tiles! Another of my interesting hobbies. I particularly like the geometric patterns together, as seen in the top image.

Whilst Topps Tiles is undoubtedly great at the latest interiors and flooring trends, the products are still timeless and really great quality, so make a great long-term option. The brand tells me they see their tiles as investment pieces that you will love for years and that will last for years – which is certainly how I feel about my own tiles – and you can’t get more classic than classic Victorian design. The brand is also making changes to work in a more sustainable way as a business, including changing to efficient LED lighting across stores and warehouses, and using sustainable materials such as recycled glass in its mosaics, which is great news. 

We’ve just moved house and I can’t wait to start renovating. And what’s the first thing I checked about the new area we are moving to? Where’s the nearest Topps Tiles, of course!

This feature is sponsored by Topps Tiles. All the tiles in my own house were bought and paid for with no discounts.

Tagged with: