Getting ready for a tiling project

Getting a porcelain tiling project underway can be an exciting time for any DIY enthusiast. But before you start getting ready to work, you will need to have cleared out the area where you wish to redecorate. The easiest way is to place items in a spare room, however, sometimes you might just not have the space so therefore putting your belongings in self-storage units is a simple way to keep the house less cluttered.

After this is done you can then start shopping. Check out our list of essential items for your project so you don’t have to suddenly rush out to the hardware shop for something you’ve forgotten. The exact shopping list will depend on the project you are doing, but you should definitely have these essentials:

  • Tile cutters – depending on the tiles you are working with, youtile cutter should be able to get specific tile cutters for that material. Don’t forget that you’ll need to protect your eyes and hands when cutting tiles, so add some goggles and gloves to your list too.
  • Tile nippers – The little brother of the tile cutter, these are essential for trimming the edges and finishing off a cut tile.
  • Tape measure – You probably have one already, but make sure it is an adequate length to measure all the dimensions of your project. Grab a notepad and pen too, as you’ll need it when calculating the number of tiles you need and the layout of your design.
  • Spirit level – Keeping the tiles straight is essential to a good finish, so don’t start without one.
  • Spacers – These are typically available in widths of 1 to 5mm.
  • Tile adhesive – Use the right type for your project, as there are different ones for inside, outside, for bathrooms and for floors. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.
  • Grout – To finish things off perfectly.
  • Adhesive spreader
  • Grouting squeegee
  • Sponges and cloths – To keep you, your equipment and most importantly your new tiles free from adhesive, grout and other unsightly marks.
  • A bucket – A small to medium sized bucket for measuring and mixing.


Without these critical essentials, your job will either be much more difficult than it should have been, or at worst it could end up being impossible. As well as these, you might find you need some of the following bits of kit too:

  • Saw – If you are cutting awkward shapes or need to cut around a complicated obstacle, a hacksaw can allow much greater freedom to shape the tiles than you can achieve with your tile cutter.
  • Trim – Depending on your project and your preferences, you might need a trim strip just to finish things off perfectly at the edges.
  • Bath sealing strip – Essential if you are tiling behind a bath
  • Primer – If the surface you are tiling is uneven or in poor condition, a primer is a good way to ensure a professional finish.
  • Sealant – Essential in bathroom projects.

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