How to install Zellige tiles – our tips for the best finish
Zellige tiles have become a popular choice for many of our clients thanks to their irregularity, colour variation and rustic characteristics.
Handmade in Morocco, these tiles are supplied in a wide range of bright to muted tones and are commonly used for kitchen splashbacks, in bathrooms and also for feature walls both inside and outside.
Due to the history behind these tiles, which are often bought to create a specific type of finish, and also the uneven surface of these tiles, we often get asked for tips on the best way of installing them to ensure the optimum look is achieved.
Below are our tips to consider when installing Zellige tiles:
- Due to the colour variation that exists in each product, all boxes should be worked from and the tiles randomly mixed to ensure all varying tones and textures of the tiles are distributed throughout the space they will cover.
- The wall should be clean and level before installation.
- White, flexible tile adhesive should be evenly applied on the wall surface and also to the back of the tiles. They can also be fixed using silicon.
- The tiles should be positioned by hand, leaving no joint or gap between them – you do not have to use tile spacers. If you would prefer a clear joint we would recommend no more than 1-2mm.
- Once the adhesive is dry and the tiles are firmly fixed, a liquid grout mixture should be spread over the whole surface using a rubber spatula ensuring all the spaces between the tiles are completely filled.
- Excess grout can then be wiped off with a damp sponge or cloth, taking care around the edge of the tiles.
- If any tiles need to be cut to fit the space, this can be completed using a diamond disc or tile cutter.
Our grout recommendations
We highly recommend Kerakoll Fugabella grouts as these are suitable for all manner of tiles.
The grout used should not draw attention away from the tiles themselves so a neutral choice that is slightly paler than the tiles themselves would be a good choice.
More information about Kerakoll Fugabella grouts, including a colour chart, can be found here.
Maintenance & cleaning of Zellige tiles
Everyday household cleaners such as bleach and kitchen/bathroom sprays should not be used on natural stone or Zellige tiles as they can be corrosive.
In most cases, some warm soapy water should be sufficient to clean stone tiles. However, if your tiles are in need of a deeper clean, a PH neutral / non-acidic product should be used.
~ Read more: Zellige tiles hand-made in Morocco from natural clay ~