Top Five Tile Trends

Operae by Ornamenta, and Bold by Marca Corona.
Left: Operae by Ornamenta. Right: Bold by Marca Corona.

I am grateful to my colleagues at Novita in New York for this informed take on today’s top tile trends, which they have produced having synthesised the very best of the new ranges displayed by Italian manufacturers at Coverings.  While it is true that Cersaie remains the foremost tile showcase of the year, at Atlanta there was evidence that the top Italian manufacturers have completely recovered from any post-2008 torpor to innovate and launch new products throughout the year, particularly in advance of important North American trade shows like Coverings and ICFF.

Arkshade by Atlas Concorde. Le Tinte Unite by Fuoriformato
Left: Arkshade by Atlas Concorde. Right Le Tinte Unite by Fuoriformato

Colour Crush: Thanks to the design industry’s return to decoration, Italians’ predilection for colour is now more on-trend than ever!  Progressive pastels and soothing earth tones continue to be popular, while the use of cold glazing and inkjet printing allow for the creation of ultra vivid and saturated hues on large ceramic surfaces.

Artwork by Casa Dolce Casa. Acquerello by Made+39.
Left: Artwork by Casa Dolce Casa. Right: Acquerello by Made+39.

A good example of this is Atlas Concorde’s Arkshade collection, offering wall tiles in primary colors to create bold, colorful backgrounds.  Additional tiles in colourful palettes include: Operae by Ornamenta, Bold by Marca Corona, Le Tinte Unite by Fuoriformato, Acquerello by Made+39, and Artwork by Casa Dolce Casa.

Industrial look tiles
L-R clockwise: Metaline by Italgraniti, Concreto by Lea Ceramiche, Alloy by Naxos, Via Emilia by Ducati Winning Tiles, Seamless Project by Unicom Starker, and I Pinocchi by 14 Ora Italiana.

Industrial:  From concrete, asphalt and corten to large sheets of plywood and OSB, tile companies continue to experiment with the look of humble construction materials. Industrial is such a prevalent trend that Refin has introduced three different lines dedicated to the various states and peculiarities of concrete – from cinder block to formwork cement – brought together under the Master Plan collection. Other tiles with an industrial bend include: Metaline by Italgraniti, Concreto by Lea Ceramiche, Alloy by Naxos, Via Emilia by Ducati Winning Tiles, Seamless Project by Unicom Starker, and I Pinocchi by 14 Ora Italiana.

L to R: Sorrentina by Del Conca, New Deco by Sant’Agostino, and Wide and Style by ABK
L to R: Sorrentina by Del Conca, New Deco by Sant’Agostino, and Wide and Style by ABK

Heritage:  In a country where tradition is a cultural hallmark and companies are passed down through generations, it’s unsurprising that heritage plays a big role in tile design. From patterns inspired by centuries-old, handcrafted techniques such as intarsia, pietra dura and maiolica to styles with deep Italian roots such as terra cotta and terrazzo, brands are reinventing the past in new and interesting ways.

L to R: I Cocci by Ceramica Fioranese, Sequoia Century by Elois Ceramica, and Comfort C by Dom.
L to R: I Cocci by Ceramica Fioranese, Sequoia Century by Elios Ceramica, and Comfort C by Dom Ceramiche.

For Tuscany, Rondine was inspired by the recovery of an ancient floor from a Florentine residence in the 1400s. Additional heritage-inspired collections include: Sorrentina by Del Conca, New Deco by Sant’Agostino, Wide and Style by ABK, Comfort C by Dom Ceramiche, Sequoia Century by Elios Ceramica and I Cocci by Ceramica Fioranese.

Diamante by Tonalite, and Doodle by Refin
Diamante by Tonalite, and Doodle by Refin

High Contrast:  When it comes to black and white, Coco Chanel said it best: “Their beauty is absolute. It is the perfect harmony.” This may be the reason why companies are turning up the contrast, offering designs in the most classic of color palettes to create surfaces that pop.

To Be Marble by Cercom Ceramiche.  Byron by Ceramica Colli.
L: To Be Marble by Cercom Ceramiche. R: Byron by Ceramica Colli.

Some companies are inspired by the expressiveness of rich black marble with distinctive white veining such as Casamood Stones & More 2.0 in Sahara Noir, while others like Del Conca focus on graphic patterns in polar colors as seen in its Paris collection.

Vetro Cattedrale by Mosaico+.  Paris by Del Conca.
L: Vetro Cattedrale by Mosaico+. R: Paris by Del Conca.

Other contrasting tiles include: Diamante by Tonalite, Doodle by Refin, Byron by Ceramica Colli, Vetro Cattedrale by Mosaico+, and To Be Marble by Cercom Ceramiche.

Eureka by Provenza, Libra by Appiani, and Le Mans by Tonino Lamborghini
L to R: Eureka by Provenza, Libra by Appiani, and Le Mans by Tonino Lamborghini

Movement: It’s astounding how many different ways manufacturers can imbue static objects with life and personality. From three-dimensional surfaces and beveled edges to diaper patterns and op art, Italian tile offers a bevy of options to create movement in a space.

Sospiri by Vallelunga, Roma Diamond by Fap Ceramiche, and Stone Talk by Ergon.
L to R: Sospiri by Vallelunga, Roma Diamond by Fap Ceramiche, and Stone Talk by Ergon.

One such collection is Ultrapattern by Ornamenta – part of the brand’s new Operae line dedicated to large, customizable ceramic slabs – where strong, flat, multicolored patterns create the appearance of three-dimensional structural elements. Additional collections include: Eureka by Provenza, Libra by Appiani, Le Mans by Tonino Lamborghini, Stone Talk by Ergon, Roma Diamond by Fap Ceramiche and Sospiri by Vallelunga.

More at: https://www.ceramica.info/en/

A new post by Joe Simpson, Diary of a Tile Addict, June 2018

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