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a clé classics tile

clé classics are our affordable staples and are a great tile for first time home buyers, those on a budget or those looking for a high-low look. we like to refer to them as the ‘jeans and t-shirt’ of tiles.

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sample

$3.00/piece

full tile order

start your project

$7.25/sqft

the versatile utilitarian tile staple

photo: laurie frankel

the building blocks of a solid design

it’s impossible to find a more ubiquitous tile than white subway tiles. they have been a favorite around the world since before any of us can remember. we offer our collection in multiple sizes, both glossy and matte: perfect for making your design your own, from traditional subway looks, to those with a more european feel, to larger, more modern takes on this classic. that's what keeps subway so timeless, so now.

design / photo: adam bechtold interiors

why we love subway tile

it’s hard to find a tile as classic, versatile, affordable, and pristine as white subway tile. and because of these attributes, it’s also the ideal tile to use in a DIY project. we love their utter practicality and encourage an exploration of the use of subway tiles to dress up a space... to the extreme. for instance, tile your entire kitchen splash in white subway tiles - counter to ceiling INCLUDING the range hood, too. or what about an entire dining room tiled floor to ceiling in white subway tiles? it’s our take on an artful salute to an unwaveringly uniform tile.

start with the basics

clé refers to white subway tiles as the “white tee and jeans” of the tile world, for a reason. you can dress them up or down and it doesn’t matter if it’s your kitchen or bath - they effortlessly add a crisp white finish to any walls that require protection as well as a clean and classic appeal. not to mention, their affordability makes them a no-brainer for budget-conscious design.

design / photo: adam bechtold interiors

product specifications

technical specifications

non freeze thaw resistant icon

non freeze thaw resistant

radiant heating compatible icon

radiant heating compatible

uv resistant icon

uv resistant

heat resistant icon

heat resistant

stove backsplash icon

stove backsplash

sink backsplash icon

sink backsplash

interior wall icon

interior wall

fireplace surround icon

fireplace surround

fountain waterline icon

fountain waterline

pool waterline icon

pool waterline

shower wall icon

shower wall

steam shower wall icon

steam shower wall

* see material guidelines guide for specific requirements

description
rating
surface type
glazed

finish type
gloss

level 1: low

level 1: smooth

level 1: slight

level 1: will occur

dimensions
" x  " x  "
water absorption
avg. 10-15%; non-vitreous

dcof
dcof testing is not performed as this is strictly a wall tile

Pieces per sqft
4.5 pcs/sqft

Weight per sqft
2.48 lbs

Pieces per box
50 pcs/box

read before you buy this tile

do i need to seal ceramic subway tiles?

if the subway tile you have selected has visible crazing we recommend applying a grout release or sealant prior to grouting.

IMPORTANT: if this subway tile is being grouted with a contrasting grout color vs. a matching one, then you should also seal before grouting because many tiles may have crazing without it being visible to the eye and would only come out with the grouting of the tiles as the invisible crazing absorbs the dye from the contrasting grout.
dry applications do not need to be sealed as the final step of installation.
in wet areas (backsplashes, showers, steam showers, pool & fountain water lines) grout lines and areas of visible crazing must be sealed as the final step of installation.

for all sealing and protecting, clé recommends stonetech stone, tile, and grout sealer from laticrete.

for more information about sealing please see our ceramic subway tile material guidelines.

do you offer trim for your ceramic subway tile?

at clé we follow the international model of no trim and highly recommend our clients to do the same. below are the trim alternatives we recommend for this collection.

- if your project needs to turn a corner either inwardly or outwardly, mitering the tiles to meet seamlessly in a corner gives it the cleanest, crafted finish.

- another way to complete your tiling is to run a bead of caulk or grout along the exposed brick edge.

- like with any of our tiles, you can also build out the sheetrock so that the surface of the finished sheetrock is flush with the surface of the tile.

for more detailed recommendations about trim, please see our trim guide.

how do i take care of my ceramic subway tile?

mild, pH neutral soaps should be sufficient for most cleaning. grout lines can be cleaned with warm water and a soft bristled cleaning brush. subway tiles can withstand common cleaners like bleach, soft scrub cleansers, and multipurpose cleaners. cleaners should be tested before use, as all tiles (glazed or otherwise) can be damaged through rigorous cleaning processes utilizing harsh cleansers or scrub pads. for all other maintenance, clé recommends laticrete cleaning products.

 see our ceramic subway material guidelines for more information.

what type of finish should i expect with this collection?

there are two different glazed finishes in our ceramic subway tile collection, glossy and matte. they both have a smooth surface texture.

how much variation should i expect?

subway tiles have low color and shade variation but it is still very important to blend the tiles from all boxes once they arrive and place them in their installation area to ensure you have the layout you want before installing. do not install without blending tiles from all boxes. our tiles are subject to variations in color, texture, size and finish.

what's crazing, and should this be expected with ceramic subway tiles?

subway tiles are made by hand and can show visible crazing. crazing refers to the hairline cracks which may occur in the glaze surface of tile after firing and is common in handcrafted tile.

variation and imperfection ratings:

subway tiles are rated 'level 1 low' for color variation, 'level 1 smooth' for texture variation, 'level 1 slight' for size variation, and 'level 1 light' for crazing.

see illustrations in the technical specifications section above, and read more about the ratings in our tile variation & imperfections guide.

why do you suggest i order at least 15% more than my measurements?

industry standard suggests adding at least 15% overage due to tile cuts, potential breakage, or future repairs.
for more information related to ordering and shipping, please be sure to visit our shipping and returns and delivery information resource pages.

grout

clé recommends the use of mapei ultracolor plus fa grout for gloss subway and mapei flexcolor cq for matte subway and a 1/16" grout joint with this collection.

important: if clé ceramic subway tiles are being grouted with a contrasting grout color vs. a matching one, then you must also apply a penetrating sealant or grout release prior to grouting in order to minimize the possibility of the contrasting grout curing in the inherent hairline cracks.


grout color selection is always up to our client and/or their design professional. however, clé is often asked for our opinion on best grout selections for our tiles. and due to the large array of grout colors that are now available, clé would like to offer this general guideline on a foolproof grout color selection for any of your clé tiles.

first, have your professional tile contractor complete your tile installation, except for the grout portion.
next, when ready to grout, ask your contractor to bring ALL grout color charts from his preferred grout manufacturers, for your review.
lastly, choose a time of day when you are most pleased with the lighting in your space (either natural lighting, installed lighting or a blend of both). during that lighting and time of day, select the grout color that best matches your tile selection.
note that the full mapei ultracolor plus fa & flexcolor cq color catalogue contains 40 colors to choose from. visit the mapei website to view.

 for more information about grouting please see our ceramic subway tile installation & maintenance guide.

collection dimensions

square subway - 6"x6"x1/4"
subway - 3"x6"x1/4"
subway - 2"x8"x1/4"
subway - 4"x8"x1/4"
subway - 3"x12"x1/4"
subway - 4"x12"x1/4"

disclaimer: please note all dimensions are nominal. additionally, dimensions between tiles can vary +/- 1/8 inch.

material guidelines