The herringbone pattern is a classy form of arranging rectangular tiles in order to form a focal point, which has been around since the time of Ancient Rome. It was first used by the Romans to construct roads about 500 BC and the crisscrossing structure proved to be extremely stable and able to absorb compression and movement. Using crushed stone and this simple interlocking paving system they have constructed about 50,000 miles of roads over the years, most of which are still preserved today. It is believed that the name herringbone is derived from the resemblance of the pattern to fish (herring) bones.
Nowadays the herringbone pattern is still used for pavement but it is also very popular for floors, walls, backsplashes, in masonry and as a fashionable decoration of anything from pillows and clothes to cups and desktops wallpaper. There is no restriction to the colour or material you will use to create a herringbone pattern and in flooring, for example, the most popular are wood, brick and tiles of all sorts. Natural stone is a great option for rocking this pattern since you can play with the shades or veins of the separate tiles to make the design even more stunning. Be careful, though, because laying the tiles following the pattern is not such an easy task and if you are unsure better leave it to a professional.
Before proceeding with a few excellent examples of herringbone pattern it is good to have a look at the different types of this decoration.
Types of herringbone pattern
The illustration above shows three popular herringbone patterns that you can opt for. The single herringbone is the most common one and is mostly used for walls and backsplashes and you can change its direction for a more dramatic effect. On the floor or with an outdoor project you can play more with the pattern – you can stick to the traditional single herringbone of course, but natural stone tiles also look good arranged in a double or diagonal pattern.
There is another pattern that is often confused with herringbone or considered its variation – this is chevron. Surely, both look alike to the untrained eye but the main difference is in the zigzag and in the cutting of the material used to form them.
As you can see chevron is a continuous zigzag pattern that comes to a sharp point. It resembles the letter "V" repeated manifold. Chevron pattern is usually preferred for wooden floors and the pieces are cut at an angle so that they can form a true point. It is possible, of course, to do it with ceramic, porcelain or natural stone tiles as well. The herringbone pattern is formed by placing rectangular pieces at 90-degrees angle. Thus they form a kind of staggered "V". In this case the tiles are not cut at an angle, you simply need them to have rectangular shape.
Now, that you have an idea what herringbone pattern is, below we will present you with 7 ideas how and where you can use it in combination with natural stone tiles so that you can make the space unique, more distinctive and charming. The good thing about this design is that you can have your entire floor, wall or backsplash made only of herringbone but you can also combine the lovely zigzag with other patterns.
Herringbone tiles for a trendy kitchen design
You can use natural stone tiles laid in herringbone pattern to decorate your kitchen. This design is suitable for floors, walls and definitely very popular for backsplashes and you can combine it too. The pattern is suitable for all types and sizes of natural stone tiles – you can choose marble for your full height herringbone backsplash or opt to incorporate the original design in a panel to contrast with the rest of the tile layout. Installing dark granite or slate tiles on the floor in a herringbone pattern is also a wonderful décor idea.
Bathroom herringbone tiles
The bathroom is yet another room where the herringbone pattern is an often seen decoration for walls, floors, bathtub tiling or small wall accents or niches. It is an excellent choice no matter if you have a shower or tub in your bath and can be an interesting solution for making even a very boy's bath as seen in the first picture simply by choosing slate tiles instead of the more traditional marble or granite. The good thing is that herringbone pattern combines well with mosaics or subway tiles.
Laundry room herringbone tiles decoration
Herringbone tiles may be the answer to turning the otherwise dull laundry room into a cheerful place. Use them as an accent, backsplash or flooring to add character to the place.
Herringbone floors for a mudroom
If you have a suburban house featuring a special mudroom where you keep your muddy boots and wet clothing you should opt for a natural stone tile flooring. Granite, slate or limestone can be a smart solution since they can withstand the dirt and the wear and tear, and laying them in a herringbone pattern will make the place look bigger to the eye.
Entryway ideas with herringbone stone tiles
The foyer helps forming your impression when you first enter the house, so why don't you let the herringbone tiles direct your guests to the inner part of your home. You can lay natural stone tiles in this pattern all over the floor or you can combine it with wood, parquet or other tiles and patterns depending on the size and shape of your entryway.
Herringbone pattern for external projects
The herringbone pattern is equally popular for outdoor projects as well – at the end of the day it started as road paving in ancient Rome and still many streets and sidewalks are formed in such way. Limestone or slate tiles laid in herringbone pattern are an excellent flooring option for any patio, atrium or for a path through the garden.
Professional herringbone style for any office
No matter if you have an office at your house or in a big office building decorating it right is a key factor for feeling motivated to work and attracting more clients. An immaculate natural stone herringbone floor adds class to any room as you can see below.
All photos used to show the different usage of the herringbone pattern were taken from here and you can visit the site if you need more inspiration for your project.