No one wants a home or a room that feels small, cramped, or tight on space. So when you have a home with small rooms, you’ll want to do everything in your power to help open them up visually. This includes choosing the right flooring for the space. If you’re looking into tile for a kitchen, bathroom, or foyer and are worrying about what size tile to choose, think big to help make the whole room look bigger, too.
For a long time the rule of thumb was that small rooms needed small floor tiles. This coincided with a time when floor tiles were rarely found above 8- or 9-inches and never above 13-inches. Unfortunately, instead of making the room look bigger, small tiles merely emphasize the size of the floor. This is due to the grout lines; the more grout lines you have, the more obvious the grid effect on the floor. Therefore, the small tiles just make the space look smaller.
If you really want to open up a space visually, consider using the largest tiles you can fit into the room comfortably. Large-format tiles are available in sizes up to 36-inches square with many coming in 16-inches or 18-inches; perfect for small rooms.
Unlike smaller tiles, large tiles need less grout and have fewer grout lines. Not only does this make it easier for you to keep the floor clean, it helps visually enlarge the floor. Without that grid that the small tiles form, your eye gets tricked into thinking that the floor is bigger than it is. This in turn makes the entire room look larger.
The one exception to this rule is mosaic tiles of 1-inch or smaller. When tiles get this small, instead of forming a grid, they form a pattern on the floor. This pattern helps disguise the size of the floor, which has the same effect as larger tiles do; it tricks you into thinking the floor is bigger than it is.
So if you want your room to look larger, think big right from the floor up to achieve your goals.