The shower tile in my bathrooms is plain white builder-grade tile. It’s okay, but since I had to take most of the tile over one tub off to fix the walls, I think I want to find some better-quality white tile. I know there is such a thing, because I saw it in somebody else’s house, and saw at a glance that it was better than
what’s here.

But where/how do I find it? Went to a flooring place, but all they had were samples stuck to a board. Not sure I could tell even if I could handle one. Looking at/handling one tile isn’t really going to give me an idea whether they would look good all over the wall, I don’t think… Anybody know of a “brand” to look for, and why exactly?

As far as ‘brand’ goes – there are many. My suggestion is to find what you want in ‘type’ of tile. Such as porcelain, marble, stone, ceramic, etc. You can go to Lowe’s, Home Depot (both have samples showing all types as well as pattern suggestions), look up tile stores in your area (generally more expensive products). I have gone to Big Bob’s (you can check online for store locations at http://www.bigbobsoutlet.com/ ) and found tile for great prices. You can also check for Habitat for Humanity Restores in your community

I have always had luck with these folks, they had a store near my last house… http://www.daltile.com/home.cfm?s=1 I am sure there are others, check them out, and remember that regular glazed tile is not as strong as porcelain, and the color does come off regular tile a lot easier.

Really beautiful high end tile from these vendors; you might want to look at their websites; when I worked at Expo Design Center, I would drool over the tile displays. Oceandside glass tile: www.glasstile.com Bisazza: bisazzausa.com Porcelanosa: www.porcelanosa-usa.com You can look these over and if you see something you like that is too pricey, try to find similar look and feel in a less expensive option.