June 4th, 2012

This is part of an ongoing series to help educate both consumers and trade professionals with real answers to every day challenges in the tile industry.

Q: I just had tile installed in my bathroom and noticed that the bullnose does not match the field. Why is this?

A: This is a common issue in the tile industry. We have never viewed bullnose as anything that “matches” as much as it “coordinates” with your tile. There are some specific reasons for this. Frequently, when a manufacturer creates their field tile, their bullnose is created at a different time, sometimes even in a different factory. Since clay, glazes and kilns all have their own natural and therefore volatile nature, it is impossible to re-create the exact same finish each time.

If you are unsatisfied with the way the bullnose coordinates (or maybe the tile does not have one), you can always use another piece of material, say a marble pencil or chair rail or maybe a thick glass tile or even a cut strip of the material you are using (you can always paint the edge.) Another alternative is to check out the edge finishing strips made by Schluter. Schluter makes a variety of metal edges finishes for both wall and floor applications that come in an array of colors from stainless to bronze.