Almost every residential installer has heard the phrase uttered from a surprised customer at five minutes after five o’clock, something like “That is not what I picked,” or “My floor doesn’t look anything like the sample board.” This gut-wrenching feeling can happen when the client is not fully aware of shade variation that can occur with ceramic and porcelain tiles. Hopefully, it wasn’t your customer and you gained this valuable lesson from someone else’s mistake or oversight, but it could happen to you if you are not careful.
Consumers selecting tile without the assistance of a knowledgeable installer or salesperson can sometimes lead to unhappy outcomes. If the tile selection is made from a single piece of tile or from a small cut piece on a sample board, the results can be painful. Consumers should be informed the tile they receive most likely will not look exactly like the piece on the sample board and that a variation in shade, some very subtle and some widely varied, is possible.