13 places to find 4″ x 4″ ceramic bathroom tile in vintage colors

With Kate gathering ideas for her master bathroom design and remodel — including looking for four-inch by four-inch pink bathroom tiles — I got all Mother Hen and started sending her links to places that might have this very basic bathroom field tile in a not-so-basic color. But then, I thought, maybe it’s better if I just refresh my research and compile all my known sources for 4×4 ceramic bathroom tile in one story.  So, here is my list — I found 12 13 different companies that manufacture and/or are major distributors of basic 4″ x 4″ ceramic tile for bathroom walls and shower and tub surrounds — in white, neutrals, pastels and other colors, too:

I spotted these vintage aqua tiles at my Re-Store. Before you buy, make sure you know how much you’ll need. Because even though this looks like “a lot” of tile, I only count about 40 square feet. That won’t even do a three-wall bathtub surround.

  1. B&W Tile is our #1 go-to place for new 4×4 tile made today. Here’s their site –> B&W Tile has been making ceramic tile for more than 60 years — so they have authentic retro colors, including pink. B&W doesn’t have their tile colors online, however, crafty Pammy (that’s me) found B&W’s tile colors at Clay Squared — a company in Minneapolis that also sells the B&W line. Note, I called B&W for their price — it was $4.50/s.f. Clay Squared’s price is $12/s.f. I called Clay Squared to ask why the difference, and owner Josh said that his price (Clay Squared’s) includes all shipping and handling, while B&W’s does not. If you’re in the market, I guess you will want to crunch the numbers and see which formula — B&W’s or ClaySquared’s — would work out better for you.
  2. Classic Tile New York — Added Feb. 2015. Good retro colors, relatively inexpensive prices at Classic Tile New York. I talked to a salesperson there, he said many of these colors are from U.S. Ceramics — they must have a special deal, because I don’t see them elsewhere on the www.
  3. Daltile — Daltile is probably the largest brand name in tile in the U.S. — and the second place we’d look. If you can find a color you like, you might be able to buy it via your local big box or tile store — and not be charged shipping. They seem to have a number of collections that include 4×4 ceramic wall and counter tiles. The colors change regularly, so check them all, they include Semi-Gloss, which seems to be the #1 go-to collection for retro pastel colors… Semi-Gloss Color Trends has 1960s acid hues… also look at Festiva … and Natural Hues has a large palette as well.
  4. Re-Store— If you have the time and patience, the Retro Decorating Gods might send you a big stash of New Old Stock vintage tile delivered via your local Re-Store.
  5. Big Box stores — You can typically find white and bisquit colored 4×4 bathroom tiles at the Big Box stores for under 20 cents each. I was just at the Home Depot, and the tile they seem to be carrying as 4x4s is from U.S. Ceramic Tile Co. White was in-stock on the shelves…. and they had a sample board with other colors, the s.f. price was not listed — ask an associate. When I renovating my bathrooms several years ago, I found rose beige at the Home Depot, trimmed it with white bullnose, and it looks smashing.
  6. Longtime local tiles stores — Ask if they have any deadstock in their warehouse. Phyllis did — and scored a whole bathroom ‘o pink. 
  7. United States Ceramic Tile Co. — 4/8/14 UPDATE: US Ceramic Tile company seems to have merged with Roca Tile Group. As I mentioned above, Home Depot (at minimum) seems to carry this line, and it is likely to be as “affordable” as you can get unless you strike gold at the Re-Store or salvage. Colors are not particularly retro as of this story update. You can see 23 colors/finishes on the Roca Tile Group website.
  8. American-Olean — AO is owned by the same company as Daltile, and I think they have the same colors just with different names. But honestly, trying to compare sends me cross-eyed. Their collections with 4×4 squares include: Bright … and Matte.
  9. Olympia Tile — Olympia tile is a Canadian-based company, but they have some distribution in the U.S. (See their location map.) I used their heron blue tile in my blue bathroom renovation (although I think this color is now discontinued.) They now look to have one collection of 4x4s with a few possible retro colors, namely buttercup, tender gray and periwinkle.
  10. Florida Tile — This Kentucky company does not have “colors”, but it has a selection of neutrals.
  11. World of TileUpdate: World of Tile has now closed. See our story on the liquidation sale (now concluded) along with our archive here.
  12. American Universal Tile — The Brittany line looks to have some good pastel color choices.
  13. Ann Sacks — This high-end company’s Caliper collection boasts some 300 colors. However, this design does not appear to be “basic” — it has prominently beveled edges. The website says prices start at $20/s.f.
  14. Nemo tile — Nemo has this Anthologhia line with colors — Rebecca used these in her fabulous bathroom remodel. Nemo has another 4×4 line here, although no real colors, lotas greiged out.

So there’s my list.

Readers, do you know of any other manufacturers/retailers of any other lines of 4×4 tiles? If they are out there, we’d love to add them to this list.


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  1. Nate says

    Can you tell me the name of the website where you got the title image for this thread? I’m trying to match a tile and it looks like the closest color is in that color sample palette but I couldn’t find it in any of your links.

    Also, do we know if World of Tile is back in business and how to get in touch with them?


  2. Rosten Remodeling Inc says

    My remodeling company has been accumulating vintage building materials for 25 years. We have a large selection of discontinued DAL, American Olean & Florida tile in many pieces. We also have a good selection of much older tile from Pomona, Hermosa, Gladding McBean, Westminster, Crown & Huntington. We also have old sample boards to identify most brands. We are located in Sacramento California and ship worldwide. 916-451-8424

  3. Shelley Kindred says

    One of my favorite places to dream is missiontilewest.com. They have a collection called Revival Classics with some beautiful colors, including pastels. They also offer custom liners and borders in these colors – gorgeous! They don’t sell directly, if memory serves, you need to find a distributor in your region. I’m guessing their products are pricey – it just looks very high-end to me – but I don’t have any precise info. May skew a bit more art deco than post-war, but many of the styles are just very classic.

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