If you want to make a design with tile or you need to lay tile around an object in a room, making a template for cutting the tile will make the task much easier to accomplish. Objects such as toilets or bathtubs that are not square require you to cut tile to fit around them, so creating a template ensures the tile is the right size and shape to fit the area without making multiple cuts or wasting tile.
Template to Fit Around Pipes, Outlets or Wall Switches
Place a tile on a piece of cardboard, and trace around it with a pencil. Remove the tile and cut along the lines with a pair of scissors.
Position the cardboard cutout on the right side of the pipe, outlet or switch, aligning the edges of the cardboard with the edges of the tiles surrounding the object. Mark the side of the cutout with a pencil where it meets the top and bottom of the object.
Place the cardboard cutout above the object, aligning the edges of the cutout with the edges of the surrounding tiles. Mark the cutout on both sides of the object.
Place a carpenter’s square on the lines drawn on the cutout, and draw lines to connect the lines and make a square. Skip the next step if the object is round.
Cut along the lines on the cardboard cutout to make a hole if the object is square or rectangular. Place the cardboard template on the tile and trace around the edges of the template with a pencil. Make cuts along the lines to cut the tile to the correct shape.
Measure the diameter of a round object with a ruler, and set the width on a compass to the diameter of the object. Place the point of the compass in the center of the square on the cardboard cutout and draw a circle. Cut along the lines on the cardboard cutout. Place the cardboard template on the tile and trace around the edges of the template with a pencil. Make cuts along the lines to cut the tile to the correct shape.
Template to Fit Around Toilets, Sinks and Other Rounded Objects
Place a piece of paper against the edge of the object, and crease the paper around the edges. Draw a line in the crease with a pencil.
Cut along the lines with a pair of scissors. Place the paper against the object to check the fit. Trim, if needed.
Place the paper on a piece of cardboard and trace along the curved edge. Cut along the lines to make the template. Place the template on the tile and trace the edge on the tile. Cut the tile on the line to cut it to the correct shape.