Different types and styles of shower niches

Completed simple shower niche

Completed simple shower niche

Here is a photo of the niche I’ve used for these posts and these series of photos. If you simply want a regular hole in the wall the exact size of one tile this is all you need. If you don’t have any idea what the hell I’m talking typing about, start at the beginning here: Building a Shower Niche Part 1. More likely you’ll want to bling that bad boy out in order to make the neighbors and in-laws jealous, no?

That is what I will cover in this post. Hopefully you are reading this before you’ve cut a hole in your wall or anything else. The size, shape, location, just about everything depends on what you want your niche to look like.  I will only be able to cover some very general examples since there are, literally, endless possibilities for a shower niche.

If you have any questions pertaining to your particular installation you can always leave a comment below. I do answer every one of them – I’m just super-cool like that. :cool:

Porcelain niche with shelf and glass / travertine liner

Photo 1

You can click on any of these photos for a ridiculously large very detailed view of my lack of photography skills.

Every (except one) niche on this page was built in exactly the same way as I’ve described with these posts with only small variations in sizing, placement, etc. Small changes just to enable the design elements.

The first (photo 1) is simply a taller niche with a shelf in it (for your rubber ducky). The elements that make this niche stand out are the glass and travertine liner that run into the sides of the niche and the same liner on the back wall of the niche turned 90 degrees. Other than those it is built exactly the same as the one above.

To create a shelf in this niche I’ve used two of the bullnose tiles, the same tile used for the sides of the niche, and placed them back to back. You can use an epoxy or just regular thinset to sandwich them together. That’s it – that is your shelf.

Porcelain niche with shelf and glass / travertine liner

Photo 2

To install it just place it into the niche and figure out exactly where you want it to be. Measure from the bottom of it to the bottom of your niche and that is the size to cut the first two side pieces of your niche. They are the two pieces below the shelf supporting it.

The order of the pieces for the interior of the niche are back wall first, bottom piece, two short side pieces – the ones you just cut, shelf pieces – the two that you just sandwiched, top piece of bullnose, then the two remaining side pieces cut and installed after everything else. This ensures an exact fit for all your pieces.

In photo 2 is the niche in the other side of the same shower. Both niches are the same size. Due to framing they are not placed in the same spot in the field tile, though. In photo 2 the sides do not line up with grout lines. And you probably never would have noticed it. :D

That is exactly what I mean when I say type that it is not always possible to lay out the niche where you want it. Framing dictates everything you attempt to build into the wall. if it is a supporting (load-bearing) wall you don’t have many choices without major reconstruction. So either move the niche four inches or rebuild the side of your house. You choose.

Niche in subway tile shower with listello above

Photo 3

Photo 3 is another simple niche like the one at the top except it is built into a subway-style shower. The big thing about getting these to look right is ensuring the pattern follows through in the back of the niche.

The order of installation is the same – back, bottom, top, sides. However, the side pieces are twice as long as the height of the field tile, make sure you line up the grout lines or it won’t look right. It will look ‘busy’ (that’s what designers say, I have no idea what it means. I guess you don’t want your tile to look like it has a job.)

You can always offset the grout lines in the sides of the niche with the field tile, however, in doing that you must also offset the back of the niche with those grout lines. That will break the flow of your horizontal grout lines. You don’t want that, keep the horizontal grout lines flowing consistently.

Travertine niche in subway style shower with glass liner above

Photo 4

Photo 4 is another subway style shower with a shelf in the niche. The order of installation is the same, however, you need to find a larger tile to use for your shelf. The subway tile in the field will not work, they are too small. Your rubber ducky will fall down.

In this case I cut down some of the same tile in a larger size for the top, bottom, and shelf of the niche. Notice, though, how the pattern still flows all the way through the niche. Keep it consistent.

In both subway showers the liner is running above the niche rather than through it. You can do it however you want – its your shower. Whatever looks best to you is the right way. If you do run the liner through the niche, run it all the way through. Don’t stop the liner on the sides, have regular bullnose all the way around the niche, then continue the liner across the back of the niche. It breaks up the liner and looks like an afterthought.

I’ll send Guedo after your ass! :guedo: So don’t do that.

Porcelain niches with offset colored back and insert

Photo 5

Number 5 is a double niche with shelves in the center. There are several aspects of these that really make them stand out.

First, obviously, is the fact that the backs of them are a different color – the same as the liner. Really makes them stand out.

I normally do not place the shelves in the center of the niche, no real reason to have four identically sized shelves. On these, though, I decided to line them up with the diamond I placed between them. Flow Baby! Yeah! :dance:

You will notice, however, that the layout and everything else is exactly the same as the rest – top and bottom line up with a grout line and the design and consistency flows through the niches. Make it look like it fits! That is the secret and the difference between a professionally designed and installed niche and a hole in the wall.

Porcelin niche with shelf and on-point row running throughout

Photo 6

Photo 6 is the same as all the others with a shelf in them. Noticing a theme here? :shades: There are a couple of differences.

You will notice the diagonal (on-point) row flowing through it. You want to keep the pattern consistent so that if you look at the niche straight on the grout lines do not jump, break, or move. They are consistent.

The shelf is also lined up with a grout line. The flow is more important than a specific size or height for the shelf.

You will also notice (I hope by now) that the bottom of the niche does not line up with a grout line. Remember when I said typed that it wasn’t always possible or feasible? That is what I meant. In this case it wasn’t very feasible. If I did line it up on the top and bottom it would either be 17″ tall with a shelf – that’s small, or 30″ tall – that is ridiculously huge. It actually looks better with the L-cuts. If you choose a grout that matches your tile you will never notice it. Or, you know, if you haven’t read any of my posts – ever – you would probably never notice it.

It’s all right to break the rules! Well, the design rules, anyway. There is nothing set in stone (that’s a pun, in case you missed it. A tile guy pun.) If it looks good to you do it. I’m just giving you guidelines to have a more professional looking installation.

Double niche with solid-surface bottom below accent row

Photo 7

Number 7 is another rule breaker. A couple of ways. By now you should be able to spot them. Pay attention, there will be a quiz later.

The only grout line that matches is the top. Neither the sides nor bottom match. Looks like hell, huh? Or at least doesn’t look right. It’s because I did not build the niche spaces, the framer, homeowner, and drywaller did. Please do not do that then expect your tile guy to create perfection. Perfection does not start with the tile guy, it starts with the plan. Plan first! Whether you are the tile guy (or girl) or not.

I do have it there for a reason, though. Notice the vertical grout lines in the niche sides? Those are six inches deep. That’s great if you have the space in the wall. But, if you don’t you do not want that back piece to be 1/2″ wide, that looks like hell.

I’ll get guedo again :guedo: so don’t do that.

The bottom of those niches is also a solid surface material rather than bullnose tile. These are products such as corian, surrell, granite slab, etc. If you use something like that it allows you to extend the niche shelf out from the wall a bit.

Marble shower over-under niches in on-point shower

Photo 8

Photo 8 is (an awesome shower!) a marble shower. All of the shower walls, as well as the ceiling, are on-point (installed diagonally). I want to apologize ( I don’t do that often, by the way :shades: ) because this is the best photo I have of the niches themselves. I was so happy with the outcome of that shower I nearly pissed myself with joy and forgot to get good photos of the niches. So I’ll just have to describe how awesome they are.

The wall the niches are installed into is a diagonal wall and, as such, I was able to make the niches a foot deep. Talk about rubber ducky storage!

The most difficult thing about placing niches in an on-point shower is that you will not be able to line up the grout lines. No big deal, it doesn’t make a difference in this application. The hard part is making the cuts in the field tile up to the niche look right. They have to be perfect. Install your entire niche and hold up your tile to the sides of it exactly in the right spot to mark them. Then take your time cutting them. If you slip or make a small mistake – start over. Just take your time, it’s worth it.

All the sides and top and bottom of these niches are full tiles which I bullnosed on the edge. Doing this eliminates any grout lines inside the niche. Nice and clean. The secret to this application is to install the entire niche then cut the field tile to it rather than the other way around.

Marble shower niche with arched top

Photo 9

Photo 9 is another marble shower (I like marble). This particular niche has a solid piece of marble slab on the bottom for the shelf, which allows it to stick out a bit, and a small arch in the top.

This is only a small arch so it only had four pieces making up the top of it. If you click on it you can barely make out how they step around the arch.

You can do this with regular bullnose or, with natural stone, you can bullnose custom pieces to fit. Doing that also allows this niche to be five inches deep without vertical grout lines in the sides of the niche.

You will also notice that the sides extend past the vertical grout lines in the field tile. The grout lines follow through in the back of the niche – everything lines up.

Ceramic niche with arched top and frame. On-point tile throughout

Photo 10

Number 10 is another arch. In this case the arch is framed. That simply means that the bullnose pieces are placed on the outside of the niche to form a frame around it.

Notice, again, how the pattern follows through the niche. This is one way to do an arch with ceramic or porcelain and regular sized bullnose. Doing this you can also make the niche as deep as you want since the tiles inside are simply field tiles which are cut down to size.

Ceramic corner niche with arched top and frame. On-point tile throughout

Photo 11

There is another way to so an arch with regular ceramic or porcelain and standard bullnose. That is photo 11.

The bullnose is placed inside the niche as normal but the top pieces are cut into smaller (shorter) pieces to conform to the slope of the arch.

Install everything around and in the back of the niche first then do the top arch pieces. With the field tile already installed it helps guage the sizes you need for the arch. Try to work it out so that they are all the same size.

And follow your pattern through the niche, damnit! Oh, sorry, did I mention that before?

All of the niches except number 7 (that was already framed in and finished before I showed up) were built nearly identically. The same as the simple niche I’ve described in all these posts, the one at the top of the page.

They were all framed the same (except the arches) and cut and created after part of the field tile was installed. Doing it in that manner will ensure that your design flows and your niche is not an afterthought. I hate that!

Don’t do that! You know what happens. :guedo:

If you have any question pertaining to your specific niche installation just leave a comment below and I’ll get back with you as soon as elvenly possible. (That’s just like ‘humanly possible’ – but with elves.)

{ 245 comments… add one }

Leave a Comment

  • Sylva Leduc

    Hey Roger,

    I am so glad that I found your recommended ordering for the product(s) in the niche: back, then bottom, then sides. That’s what I’ve always thought was the right way to do it. We are putting small mother of pearl mosaic in the back, and a single piece of quartz in the bottom (bullnose butt edge). The sides and the top will be done in limestone. My new tilers are trying to convince me that the sides and top have to go in first and then the single piece of quartz will be fitted in last. I think that will make it look like an afterthought.

    I chuckled when I saw you using the same language.


    • Sylva Leduc

      Forgot to mention they said the reason the side pieces have to go in first is so that it’s water-tight. Shouldn’t it be water-tight if the proper pre-work is done regardless of the which goes in first?

      What does the Floor Elf have to say about that?

  • Ted Dewey II

    Thanks to Roger I was able to tile my bathroom. I put in a heated tiled floor, tiled the bathtub surround, and put in two niches. The how tos were very helpful and so were the questions and answers! If it wasn’t for Roger, I don’t think I would have taken on the task. Thank you so much Roger for sharing your knowledge, experiences, and humor. I now have an awesome bathroom and two locations for my bee….. rubber duckies. Thanks again!

  • Todd

    Hi there – love the site, always interesting stuff. I’m a general and do most of my own tile work. I noticed most of your niche corners are bullnose butt edged. Now I’ve always made 45 cuts but looking at your pix not only do I like the look better (softer) but I like not having to fk around with 45 cuts matching on a 5 degree slope with bullnose. Then in photo 6 I see you made 45s .. but only on the bottom. SO: what’s the story there, and what about 45 cuts vs just butt them together. Thanks!

    • Roger

      Hi Todd,

      Personal preference. I will sometimes vary it job to job, it depends on the particular situation, tile, preference, etc. No hard and fast rules behind it, either or any combination works just fine. If the niche is even 1/8″ larger than the length of your bullnose you will always have that amount of gap if you 45 them. Butting them allows you to shift one or the other if needed to get the desired spacing, 45’ing them demands everything be perfectly spaced before placing anything into the niche.

  • Dennis Ellingson

    Thanks for the informative humor. Enjoyed the information, insights and humor.

  • Ryan

    Hey Roger,

    I would thank you for all your posts and info on this site like everyone else has, but you already know you’re awesome.

    I have a question, that I don’t see anything about on your site (and it was a toss up whether I post this on the bench or niche shelf how-to as they have similar concepts). I have a standard 3×3 shower stall and I’m tiling the walls using the traditional waterproofing method with a fiberglass shower pan. I have about 5 extra inches of space on the side opposite the shower head which I was thinking of putting in a full-width shelf at about 5 feet up. When looking into the shower, the right side has the shower head, the left side would ideally have a shelf running the width (36″) of the stall at about 5 feet high (save for the outside 4 inches or so, where I would install a vertical “beam” to help keep the water in).

    The question I have is: should I take into account any special considerations for waterproofing the shelf? I’m thinking studs, 6mil plastic, hardiebacker (is it okay to screw into the studs on the flat surface here?) then thinset/tile. Any specific thoughts on outside corners or just treat this like the rest of the wall? As long as I have a small slope coming back into the shower are there any other concerns I should take into account? Here’s a pic in case anything is unclear.

    Thanks in advance,
    – Ryan

    • Roger

      Hi Ryan,

      Ideally you would topically waterproof the shelf with a liquid or kerdi. However, you can use the traditional method provided you have the proper slope on the shelf and put a dab of silicone on the horizontal surface of the backer before driving a screw through it. This will seal the hole as you drill the screw in. Other than that you’re good to go.

  • Rick

    Hello Roger,

    First, thank you so much for your time and effort to help us DIY-ers who only think we know what we’re doing. Your articles and photos are priceless.

    I’m planning on installing a Laticrete preformed niche which has a shelf already formed into the niche. Photos attached. I’ve read your articles and cannot figure out what to do with the center strip (shelf) without having an exposed edge.

    Can you offer any advice as to how you would tile this?

    Thank you sir, in advance, for any help with this issue.

    Best regards,

    • Roger

      Hi Rick,

      Bullnose on top, bullnose on the bottom and a strip of tile on the front face (bullnose overlapping the top and bottom of it).

  • Karen

    First of all, you are truly a talented and very generous man!
    I have read all four of your posts for a niche and no where did I see mentioned tile that is set directly on cement. Is this because my home was built in 1940 or rather because it is no longer done this way?
    All the original tile has been removed. There are lines (ridges) where the tile had been (4 1/4 X 4 1/4 square tiles) and my tile guy was just going to follow these “lines” when installing the new tile as I really like the look of a clean white 4 X 4 tile (4 1/4 X 4 1/4 actually). Obviously, I would like a niche (which my tile guy has never done AND he made me return the pre-fab one I had purchased stating it was an outrageously expensive piece of “bleep”!) and would like that niche to be in a decorative smaller type tile.
    1. Can a niche be created when you are tiling directly onto cement?
    2. The wall behind the area of the niche is a plaster wall over mesh & lathe – is that ok?
    3. My “chosen” size (based on the above mentioned “lines”) is 12″ high by 20″ wide – would this be appropriate or would you suggest something else?
    4. Any chance I could fly you to my home for a long weekend and a case of IPA? :-D
    Thank you, for all your posts and photos, as well as answers to my questions!

    • Roger

      Hi Karen,

      1. No, unless you frame a wall in front of it, then build a niche into it.
      2. I thought it was cement?
      3. Anything you want would be the appropriate size.
      4. I’ll have to ask my wife… :D

      • Karen

        Clarifying question number 2. All the walls in the home are plaster. Then a “wet bed” (is that the correct term ?) of cement was used to set the original tile. So, the wall that the niche would be set into is a plaster wall (one side being the master bedroom, the other side, the bathroom) covered in cement. Is that a better explanation?
        So, can a niche be set into this type of bathroom wall? Or is it more trouble (and expense) for a “tile guy” without YOUR experience?
        And, would you be able to give me a ballpark idea of how much additional I should expect to pay for a niche to be created and tiled? I realize pricing depends on many (many!) factors, I just don’t want to be “taken for a ride” if you will. :oops:
        Thank you (again) for all of your help, it is most appreciated!

        • Roger

          Oh, okay. It ‘can’ be created in that, but you’ll end up paying quite a bit for it – if he knows how to do it. The mud would need to be carved out, then the niche created and mud replaced around it. Probably around $400 or so – seriously. It’s a full day process at least.

  • Daryle

    Re: Corian as Niche Bottom

    I am considering using Corian as the base of my niches. Reasons include being able to overhang them around an inch (perhaps in a shallow arc), have a finished edge with a little ridge at the lip to prevent things from slipping off (I think the forming shop can do this along with several drainage dimples), and to have them overshoot the sides perhaps an inch.

    Anyhow my question is how to set this piece? My instinct is just to put it down with the same thinset as for the tiles, this is a very tiny span/area, not being walked on or anything like that, nor is it subject to any substrate movement. However Corian is normally recommend for installation with silicone or similar adhesive. I would think that if I get the shop to cut in a bunch of shallow grooves in the bottom of the Corian piece it should be fine with thinset but I was looking for feedback.


    • Roger

      Hi Daryle,

      Thinset will work just fine. You don’t have to have the grooves in it, but they won’t hurt.

  • Pam

    Trying to trim a shower niche in quarter round, but having great difficulty. When you line up the edge of a tile with the edge of the quarter round and do the same thing with another tile and the other edge of the quarter round, you do not end up with a square corner. It’s just not making sense. Have seen many photos of this finished, but nowhere can I find out how to do it. Thank you!

  • Jill

    LOVE your site. Thank you for sharing your talent with us.

    So my problem. My husband is redoing our shower himself which he has never done before. He kept the pan but is putting up new cement board and tile (Our old house had greenboard which failed and now we are stuck with a rush job on a buget) He adamantly chose a wood plank style floor tile to do the whole thing in. Of course there are no bullnose tiles! But he is determined. Can tiles be wrapped around an exterior wall into the interior and a niche made and still look good? I love him and want him to be successful while also wanting to not step on his toes or have a hideous shower for all eternity. Your advice is greatly appreciated.

  • Frank


    Any trick to getting the back of the niche tile at the perfect depth when it’s a small format tile on mesh backing? I’m guessing the spotting method won’t work so well on that flexible mesh. Thanks!

    • Roger

      Hi Frank,

      I install it onto either 1/8″ wedi or 3/16″ kerdi board, let it cure, then set it like one big tile. You can also do that with 1/4″ backer and just about any other substrate as well.

  • Chad

    Hello Roger,

    Great website! Appreciate all the help it has given me so far.

    If the grout lines are not going to match up perfectly for a niche do you recommend putting a bullnose frame around it (like photo 10)? My niche is rather large 14×28 and i’m using 9×12 tiles

    Or should I try to match the wall tile grout to the tile grout that will be in the niche (like photo 6)? (I’m using the same tile in the niche as the walls.)


  • Shaun

    Roger, first let me say, “Thank You!”. Your site has been a tremendous help to me and I have almost completed our new bathroom addition. I have a question regarding the waterproofing of my niche. I framed out the niche following this article and thought that ever this was perfect. I’m using the traditional cement board and barrier method so, the niche had Redguard applied to it for waterproofing. As I went to install the tile I realized that I would need to add a 1/2 inch to the back of the niche in order to line up with the field tile. It was getting pretty late and my thinset was mixed and already starting to thicken so, I placed a piece of cement board over the back of the niche that already had Redguard applied and finished out the niche. Will this have any affect on the water retention or cause molding?

    • Roger

      Hi Shaun,

      Nope, you should be just fine.

  • Jason


    Great forum! What about silicone in the niche? I know that silicone is used at the inside corners of the shower but it is also nessecary to apply clear silicone over the grout joints in a properly waterproofed tile niche as well?


    • Roger

      Hi Jason,

      It’s not required, but I do it. Do not silicone over grout, use either grout or silicone, not both.

  • Travis Bernard

    Why don’t you miter you quorners in your shower nitchs for instance the one with the rubber ducky?

    • Roger

      Hi Travis,

      Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. It depends on the project.

      • Freddie

        Hi Roger,

        Second time coming to this site for project information and help. Was quite beneficial the first time. This is my first and probably only attempt at a shower niche. My project wall tiles do not come with a bullnose. I was just going to use the same wall tiles in the niche. You mention that sometimes you miter the corners and other times not. Can you elaborate on how / what you use to decide which way to go?

        Secondly, mitering is much harder when the walls are not perfectly square so if I just left the edge of the tile showing for the 4 pieces on the inside edge walls of the niche would that look ok and professional?

        Trying to figure out which is the best way for me to do the niche tiling, do I need to go find some kind of matching bullnose, etc..


        • Roger

          Hi Freddie,

          It depends on the tile and the job. If the edge of your tile looks finished (somewhat) it may look fine. If I don’t have bullnose I prefer to use schluter trim like this: https://www.facebook.com/TileArtCenter/photos/pcb.874794172561873/874794089228548/?

          • Freddie

            Thanks Roger.

            Looked all around the past couple of days. No one has any bullnosed tile. They tell me that no one uses it anymore. They all say to use the schluter trim. I was told to use either Rondec or Quadec. Any benefit of one over the other?

            Also, Would you attach the trim to the wall tiles and slide the niche tiles in and level to the schluter trim OR lay the wall tiles in line with the niche, then add the schulter trim to the niche tiles instead?


            • Roger

              Everyone still uses it, that’s bs. :D Either one is fine, no real advantage to one over the other. I install it under the tile in the niche.

  • Gary

    Hi Roger – I’m trying to figure out how I’m going to build my niche and this is very helpful, but as usual, I have a question :whistle: . You mention to not build the niche on an outside wall because there isn’t enough room for enough insulation to prevent freezing. But I think that statement assumed that you only had 3.5″ from the front of the studs to the outside wall. In my case I have 5″ (of wall depth) and it’s the only wall I could put a niche on. So, what’s your gut feel on how much space for insulation is enough so that I don’t have a cold shower or frozen shampoo? Is 2″ of space enough?

    • Roger

      Hi Gary,

      2″ is plenty. I wouldn’t have a problem putting a niche in that wall.

  • Jayna


    I am enquiring about doing a shower niche in the bathroom for a bath/ shower, for both options for the walls are only 9 inch deep and one is a load bearing wall.. can it be done?

    The other wall is also thin and would be where the shower will go.

    I think the load bearing wall is holding the roof rather than the first floor

    If it can be done what equipment will be needed if so?

    Many Thanks in Advance!

    • Roger

      Hi Jayna,

      I don’t understand your question. Building a niche into a wall only requires adding bracing between the existing studs, not cutting anything. Doesn’t matter if it’s a load bearing wall or not.

  • Ilana Dever

    I love everything about my newly tiled shower except one corner of the niche the diagonal cut stands out like a sore thumb. Tile guy did it over,same thing.He said can’t do anything more. What do you think? He’s coming back tomorrow to finish bullnose work on end of walls. Thanks

    • Roger

      Hi Ilana,

      I have no idea what I think, I can’t see it from my house. Why is there a diagonal cut in the corner of your niche?

  • Brad

    Hi Roger,

    I have a niche that is 17″ wide, and the only bullnose I can get is either 10″ or 14″. I could get a 20″ tile and cut it down, but was wondering if I could still mount the bullnose back-to-back, but just offset the tiles so the top only has one line and the bottom has 2? Will that work, or should I go with the one long tile? My concern with the tile was that if I do this back to back, it is a very thick shelf and the bottom of the tile wont really work for the bottom of the shelf.


    • Brad

      Sorry, one more thing. I am not sure what you mean when you say the shelf it supported by the tile on the back wall? Does the shelf actually sit on top of that tile or just butt up to it? I didnt think it could sit on it, or the shelf would have to be wider than the normal bull nose, correct?

      Thanks for your help.

      • Roger

        You install the tile in the niche, sides and back, up to where the bottom of your shelf will be. Then the shelf sits on top of all three sides. Larger is relative to how wide your bullnose are and how deep your niche is. You can also cut down a full tile for the bottom of your shelf and have bullnose as the top, with a piece in the back however wide you need it to be to reach the back of the niche.

    • Roger

      Hi Brad,

      That’s exactly how you do it. It works just fine.

  • Tony

    Hi Roger,

    Thank you for your wonderful website. I have a couple of detailed questions on niche shelf installation and support.

    1. Do you support the shelf only with the bottom side pieces or the bottom back piece as well? My shelf is 18″ wide and 6″ deep (~5lbs) so I am thinking the more support the better.

    2. Do you set the shelf directly on the bottom pieces or do you leave a gap for grout under the shelf. That means the shelf is really supported by the grout – is that a bad idea?

    3. Do you use any thinset on the shelf side/back edges before setting it in place?



    • Roger

      Hi Tony,

      1. All three.
      2. I place it directly on the tile and shim the back about 1/32″ for slope. I also place thinset along the back of the shelf so it’s actually supported along the back with thinset. But it isn’t a ladder rung, how much does it actually need to support? :D
      3. Oh, yes. (see above). :D

  • alex Outlaw

    We are building our first shower and let me tell you -your site has provided so much help to us in the whole process-from the kerdi to tile. Thanks so much for your awesome site. I do have one question I can’t seem to find the answer to. In your second picture from the top of this post–ie the one with the rubber ducky-we LOVE the way you wrapped the glass tile into (outside edge) the niche and would love to do the same. How did you achieve that? We could not figure how to do it without sharp glass edges. Any help you can give us would be greatly appreciated!!! Thanks again for your website and e-books. Alex

    • Roger

      Hi Alex,

      I interlock the rows. Once you cut the glass you can take a piece of sandpaper and smooth out the cut edge.

      • alex Outlaw

        Thank you so much for answering my question!! I love your site and have learned so much!! My tile job is much better thanks to your help.

  • Bob

    Hi Roger,
    I would like to put a shelf in my niche, but my tile doesn’t have a bullnose choice. I was going to use something like Rondec as edging for my tile in the rest of the shower. Do you think it would work to make a shelf of 2 pieces of tile with the Rondec on both, butted up against each other? Or do you have any other suggestions for edging the shelf, other than the bullnose tiles?

  • Mandy


    Your site is fantastic and has been our go-to for the remodel of our master shower and tub.

    Question regarding the niches:
    The wall we are installing our niches in has about a 7″ rough opening depth…too deep for one bullnose. You mentioned above (in reference to photo 8) using larger tiles and bullnosing the edges yourself to eliminate grout lines in the niche. Would you mind providing some tips/instruction for doing this? Thank you!

    • Mandy

      editing to correct the emoticon:

      “in reference to photo eight”

    • Roger

      Hi Mandy,

      The best way to do it (easiest) is to call around and find someone who does this. There are normally two or three guys everywhere that bullnose tile. To do it yourself requires nearly a thousand dollars in equipment and a lot of practice to get it to look correct.

  • Clinton

    I had a question that may or may not have been answered before, but when using a solid surface to make the shelves in a niche, should I just tile it in like you do when you put the two bull nose tiles together with the epoxy? The solid surface looks to be wider and I wasn’t sure if I would need to frame it a certain way in preparation for it. Thank you very much for your time, I’m sure it probably its tiring to answer all of these posts but I have learned a lot and greatly appreciate the knowledge.

    • Roger

      Hi Clinton,

      It is installed exactly the same way.

  • Sharon

    Hi Tile Guru!
    What a great series of posts – thank you so much for taking the time to ‘teach’ in this way. It is so helpful that I now have the confidence to tackle the trendy “open shower” on my own! I purchased two travertine soap dish inserts (I can’t figure out how to paste the pic I took). How do I install them? Do I need to let the tiles under them cure before inserting one? Will its weight push down the tiles below it?
    More questions, if I may be so bold, (I’d buy ya a beer if I could!); do you have any posts on how to slope a tiled shower floor? And you use silicone for where the floor meets the wall, right? Is it the same for where one wall meets another wall?
    I and my rubber ducky thank you,
    Bailieboro, Ontario

    • Roger

      Hi Sharon,

      You tile up to the row below the shelf, insert the shelf sitting on top of the tiles in the corner, then cut the next row around the shelf to lock it in. Yes, they will push the tiles below them down, but they should be supported anyway, or all of the tiles would push the ones below them down.

      Creating a shower floor for tile. Yes, silicone in any change of plane, that includes the wall/floor transition and all the corners.