Tile & Natural Stone Flooring
Contemporary, elegant, and durable
Ceramic tile is a beautiful option for any home. It presents almost endless design possibilities, available in numerous shapes, colors, patterns and glazes. Ceramic tiles are made of clay, which is fired at high temperatures within a clay oven or kiln to dry and harden the material.
The process by which tiles are manufactured results in two basic types: glazed and unglazed tile. After tile is fired within a kiln, a coating, or glaze similar to glass can be applied to the tile’s surface, at which point the tile is fired in the kiln again. The product of this process is a glazed tile. Unglazed tiles have no additional coating added to them and are simply fired one time. The addition of glaze to a tile presents the opportunity for the variety of colors and patterns you see on the market. Unglazed tiles are limited in appearance to the natural colors of clay.
Front Door Color
Pale colors like dusty lavender, ballet pink and sky blue are comfortable and easy to live with.
Ceramic tile is made from clay, superheated under pressure into a rigid material of which there are two distinct types:
- Traditional ceramic tile is typically made up of a combination of white, red and brown clays.
- Porcelain tile contains feldspar in addition to clay, which transforms into a glasslike material when heated and pressurized. It has an extreme hardness and durability that exceeds traditional tiles.
Both types come in glazed and unglazed forms. Glazed tile is re-fired with glaze that hardens into a glass-like surface coating. This opens up the possibility for a huge array of color and pattern options while simultaneously giving the tile an added resistance to stains, scratches and moisture.
Natural Stone Tile
Natural stone tile can be produced from any number of natural minerals, including granite, marble, limestone, travertine, slate and others.
- Granite is a volcanic rock. It’s very dense, with a dark and speckled appearance. It naturally resists scratching, making it perfect for high-traffic rooms including kitchens.
- Marble is a metamorphic stone with a famous elegant appearance that has long been popular in decorative, luxurious designs.
- Limestone is a porous, sedimentary rock, not as dense or durable as other types of stone. One advantage it has is its ability to hold colorful stains.
- Slate is one of the densest options available. Highly durable and usually very dark, it’s perfect for areas that often deal with heavy foot traffic.
Where to install tile
Because tile is so versatile, it’s well-suited for use in designing a variety of areas in the home. Commonly found in bathrooms, kitchens and outdoor areas, it is also frequently used on walls and in decorative backsplashes.
The best place to install your tile will depend largely on the type of tile you’re working with – to that end, we recommend laying out your design first, then choosing a type of tile to match your needs. For example, you’ll find that glazed porcelain or ceramic tile is typically more durable than most types of stone – especially porous rocks such as limestone. The latter is not ideal for areas that commonly experience moisture, humidity or liquid spills – such as bathrooms, kitchens and basements.
If you want to use tile outdoors for your patio or other area, keep the same considerations in mind. Avoid slippery surfaces and porous materials that would be more susceptible to weather damage.