How to Choose a Grout Color

Choosing the right color grout for your tile or mosaic project can be difficult. After all the time and expense that you put into creating your project that last thing you want to do is screw it up at the very end. Even though the spaces between tiles seem very small, the grout color that you choose will have a huge impact on the appearance of your piece. The good news is that you can experiment with different grout colors before grouting to get a better idea of how each color will look with your project. Here are some ideas on how to choose a grout color.

A lot of how grout colors affect the look of your project depends upon the colors of the tiles. For instance, if you have used mostly dark tile in your project and grout with a dark colored grout, the grout lines will be less obvious. Lighter grout with darker tile will make you grout lines very obvious and make them a larger design element of the piece. The opposite is true if you have used mostly light colored tiles. In that case a lighter colored grout will help your grout lines to fade away, while a darker colored grout will make them really stand out.

Generally, darker grouts intensify the colors or brightness of your tiles, while lighter colored grout tends to soften the look of the tiles and make them look more washed out. Unless you are using all white tiles, use caution when considering pure white grout. Often times white grout is too white and looks harsh and unnatural. Instead, if you want a very light grout color try opting for and antique white or cream instead which will make it look less harsh.

The easiest way to tell how a grout color is going to look with your project is to create a sample board and try grouting it in different colors. Narrow your choice in grout down to two or three selections. Then, take an old scrap board and glue down some tiles in the colors from your project. If you are trying 3 different grout colors you will want to make 3 small sections of tile on the sample board. Once the adhesive has dried, grout each section with one of your grout color selections and see how they look. You will be amazed at the insight that this relatively simple step gives you into what is going to look best with your project.

Another easy way to judge grout color is great for if your tiles are set on a clear backing such as contact paper or mesh. Just buy paper in the different colors or grout that you are interested, lay your piece flat on a tabletop and slide each piece of paper under the backing for your tiles to see how it looks.

Finally, if you have a project that can be easily flipped over, you can try sprinkling dry grout into your grout lines. Just lay the piece flat, sprinkle a bit of each color of grout that you are thinking about using into the grout lines, use a small brush to brush off any excess and pick the color that looks best. To remove the grout powder just flip your piece over and dump it out, and then use a brush to sweep off any leftover powder or residue. You can also try this method on a flat surface like a countertop and use a high powered vacuum to suck the dry grout back out of the grout lines.

Keep in mind that grout dust is bad for you, so always where a dust mask when working with grout to protect your lungs.

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