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Tiling is a skilled job – but if you take special care, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t get great results doing it yourself. To start with, make sure the wall that you are tiling is clean, dry and flat. Make sure you strip your wallpaper back to the plaster, removing any crumbling plaster and filling any holes with a recommended filler. If you are tiling on top of fresh, new plaster then remember to let your new plaster dry out completely (it takes at least two months) and prime any porous surfaces with a PVA-based adhesive.

Then you are ready to start…

Do your calculations

The best way to do this is to measure the height and width of the area you want to tile, then multiply the figures to get the area in square meters.

We would recommend allowing 5-10% extra, in case of any cuts or breakages. To account for any doors, windows or fixed cupboards, simply work out their area and subtract it from your total.

Starting point

You may think that the best starting point for your first tile is in your bottom corner, however this isn’t the case. The corner might not be vertical and you could end up having to cut the tiles and lay them wonky. We would suggest starting by centring your grid on the wall.

Don’t get ahead of yourself

The corners between walls are very rarely straight, so don’t storm ahead and cut all edge tiles the same size. Tedious as it may be, each need to measured separately.

How to deal with the awkward elements

To navigate around obstacles such as doors, windows and cupboards, start from the horizontal centre. This is the horizontal middle centre line between the obstacle and the wall it is next to. For double windows, use the centre of the space between them.


For all your materials, check out our Bedford Timber branches in Bedford and St Neots. Good luck!


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