The Trendy Design Idea That's Set To Dethrone Subway Tile In Kitchens

Of all the trendy kitchen tiles to consider when renovating, it can be hard to settle on one that appeals to your current tastes but will also last through years of use, wear, and preference changes. Tile can make or break a cooking space. If it quickly dates itself, is hard to clean, or looks out of place in most kitchen styles, it will likely be a short-lived trend that doesn't deserve the effort, especially when it's such a permanent fixture. While decor and paint can be easily changed, it requires much more time, energy, and money to redo tile. 

That's why it's so pleasant to see a new shape surface this year — well, resurface again, actually. This one feels less "of the moment" and more ageless: square tiles. They're here to replace the long-standing subway configuration and take on the heavy lifting of creating functional and stylish backsplashes, walls, and floors around your kitchen. Although its shape isn't wildly different from its predecessor, there are a few reasons this style of tile is trending yet again and replacing subway versions.

Why square tile is becoming popular in kitchens

Fortunately, tile trends don't move as quickly as others do. While you'll see a few different options pop up every year, you'll also likely notice overlap or that one type of tile is still trending several years later. The right "trendy" tile may become a more timeless choice after all, which is the case with square tiles. Although it may be the shape du jour, it's a classic configuration that you won't get bored of quickly — likely the main reason it's shown face as a trend again this year, too. 

Square tile feels more modern and up-to-date than its elongated forebearer that had an extended revival in the early 2000s to 2010s. If your current cooking space feels stale, thanks to subway tile or otherwise, changing the backsplash or wall tile out for square versions will have a drastic visual impact on a kitchen despite the shapes being relatively similar. Aside from square tiles perfectly toeing the line between trendy and timeless and adding modern appeal to a kitchen, this type is also functional. They're easier to install than hexagonal or penny tile, and applying grout is not as convoluted. Their surface is easier to wipe down, too.

Change up the size, layout, and color of square kitchen tiles

The other great benefit of square tiles is that they're capable of meshing with nearly any design style. At first glance, square tiles feel ripe and ready for modern kitchens, but they're equally as fitting for cooking spaces with more retro-inspired components. If you opt for square tiles in your kitchen, you're not beholden to one look or color. Some of the best kitchen tile colors are white and gray, but if you want a show-stopping choice different from neutrals or standard picks, tiles in cobalt blue or a deep glossy green will stand out. If you're a fan of the checkered wall paint trend, you can create a checkerboard tiled pattern on your walls or floors as well.

The beauty of square tiles is that while they're the perfect pick for bold backsplashes, you can also rely on them for a finish that veers more toward the classic style subway tile offers. To create an aesthetic that's less flashy and will endure through trend cycles, increase the size of the squares for more coverage, choose neutral colors, and stick with an even alignment.