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Anything But Tile: 8 Creative Alternatives

From bottle caps to cork, tile your walls and tables with these out-of-the-ordinary materials

Must Have Imagination

It's time for you crafters to go crazy. Out with conventional tile and in with materials you may never have considered. Spice up a surface in your home with color or shine using coins, bottle caps, dominoes, and more.

DIY That Makes Cents

Photo by Courtesy of

Put your money where your desk is, literally. Line your desk, or any other surface, with pennies, glue them down, and cover with bar-top epoxy. It's a fun way to give an item a nice sheen, plus, it just makes, well, sense. See how Jen makes her pennies count on her blog Epbot.

Caps Off to You

Photo by Courtesy of Windfarm

Learn how to top your table with bottle caps in this blogger's how-to. Mix caps to bring in different colors randomly or create a design. Once covered with clear gloss, the surface will be flat, smooth, and ready to use. Find DIY instructions for this cool project on the Windfarm blog.

Some Chips With That Wall

Photo by Courtesy of Poppytalk

Turn your wall into a rainbow with samples from your local paint store. Place the samples randomly or design a pattern for the space. Cover the whole surface or just create a stripe around the room. The project may be time consuming, but if you use your creativity and think bright thoughts, you will be pleased with the results! For more details, visit Jan and Earl's blog, Poppytalk.

Stick a Cork On It

Photo by Courtesy of Modwalls

Corkdotz tile, made from recycled cork, can be used on various surfaces, from floors to backsplashes. If you follow the instructions to seal them properly, they are water resistant, making them safe for even the kitchen and the bathroom. Purchase sheets of Corkdotz tile at Modwalls.

Domino Effect

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Do you want to immortalize that winning dominoes game forever? Repurpose the tiles as a covering for a tabletop or wall. Place the tiles, working from the outside edges inward to ensure the layout before gluing them down with construction adhesive. One user shared a domino table on the DIY website

Buttoned Up Design

Photo by Courtesy of London Design Museum

Designer Paul Smith decided to cover an entire wall in buttons at his exhibit in the London Design museum. To achieve this vibrant look, pick up an assortment of buttons from your local crafts store. It would make a fun accent wall, especially in a kids' room or a crafts room. See more about Paul Smith's exhibit here.

Sea What You Can Do

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Cover a table with sea-glass scraps and set with grout for this fun beachy look. The sea glass acts just like mosaic tile but with imperfect color and texture. You can even include a few seashells as a focal point to keep with the ocean-inspired theme. User creativesocialworker shared her table design on Instructables.

All Cracked Up

Photo by Courtesy of Design Sponge

Get china from a thrift store and break it into pieces, or use an item at home that's already broken. Recycle the flat pieces as mosaic tile and set with grout. What a great way to recycle miscellaneous or broken tableware. See how this backsplash project transformed Marisa's kitchen at Design Sponge.