While some homeowners may want to dig deeper into the nuts and bolts of tile – others will be more interested in the aesthetic revolution that has taken the tile world by storm. Tile that looks like wood has become a big part of that revolution.
Wood-look tile flooring has become the “go-to” product for homeowners and there is no end in sight. This look combines the practicality of tile and the design options of wood. Check back for a more in-depth article about wood plank flooring.
Size is another major change in the tile industry. In the past, 8×8 and 12×12 tiles were standard fare. With advances in technology and customers seeking less grout, manufacturers tested the waters with 18×18 and 24×24 tiles, sizes which are common in the marble industry. Over time, those larger sizes caught on.
Now manufacturers are rolling out ever larger and larger tiles. Just recently, a 30×30 tile was considered cutting edge. But then came the 32×32 followed by the 36×36 and now tiles are even available as large as 48×48.
As long as there is a demand for bigger, manufacturers will probably find ways to fill that demand.
Tile that’s out of the Box
When I think of tile, I think of a square that is flat. Perhaps, if I’m living on the edge, I might picture a rectangle – again it would be flat.
But there is so much more available. Let’s start with shapes. Tile now comes in hexagons and triangles and other shapes. Some is even waterjet fabricated, like marble, to create intricate patterns and designs.
Then there is texture. Tile is not necessarily flat anymore. In an ever increasing effort to think outside the box, tile is now available in everything from minimal texture to 3d textures.
A minimal texture may mimic real wood – giving not just a visual illusion of grain, but adding the textile illusion as well. Or the effect might mimic a rough surface one would expect to find on a piece of flamed granite. But the 3d textures are some of the most dramatic.
Predominately used on walls, these textures can add depth and flare to an otherwise flat space.
Colors and Styles
Advances in technology have also brought a realism that has paved the way for tiles that fit just about any décor. Everything from industrial to cottage is now available in a tile format.