Tiles are a type of furnishing material that is frequently used to cover internal walls, ceilings, and floors during construction. Tiles can range from simple and functional designs to decorative and elaborate ones, like mosaics. Tiles can be made from various materials, including hard substances such as ceramic, porcelain, stone, marble, clay, slate, and glass, as well as soft materials like timber, vinyl, and cork.

Tiles are commonly utilized as an interior furnishing in areas where water may be present, such as bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms. They serve as a protective barrier against moisture damage to surfaces. Tiles have the ability to enhance the acoustics of a room by increasing its sound-absorbing capabilities. As a result, they are frequently included in the design of venues such as theatres and recording studios.

Types of Tiles

  1. Ceramic tile
  2. ceramic tile

    Traditional ceramic tiles are made by blending different types of clays, which are then pressed into various shapes. The shaped tiles are then dried, glazed, and finally kiln-fired to produce the finished product. Unglazed ceramic tiles are available, too. Some materials are not suitable for use on floors as they are too soft and porous, which can result in cracking, chipping, and staining. It is important to note that certain products may require sealing both before and after installation in order to prevent staining. Therefore, it is recommended that you conduct thorough research prior to making a purchase.

    Ceramic tiles are highly sought after due to their wide variety of colors and patterns, making them an excellent option for a statement kitchen backsplash. Additionally, they are affordable, making them an attractive choice for many homeowners. Ceramic tiles are lightweight and have a thickness of approximately 6mm, which makes them effortless to install. Ceramic tiles have a downside in that they are not very durable. As a result, they may not be the best choice for flooring as they can easily crack under high pressure and force.

  3. Porcelain tile
  4. Porcelain tiles are crafted by blending fine clay with quartz and feldspar, and then firing the mixture at a temperature of 1,200ºC/2,200ºF. The clay undergoes a transformation at high kiln temperatures, resulting in a significantly harder and nearly non-porous texture that is highly resistant to scratches and stains. Porcelain tiles typically exhibit a water absorption rate of less than 0.1%.

    Porcelain is a great option for high-traffic areas, such as a kitchen floor, due to its durability. Additionally, it does not require sealing and typically only needs minimal maintenance.

    Porcelain tiles typically have a thickness of 10 to 12mm, although there are now thinner options available that measure as little as 3mm in thickness. Think of them as similar to laminate.The true advantage lies in their ability to fix things. You can quickly lay them over an existing tiled floor without incurring the nightmare and cost of removing the original tiles. Additionally, you can preserve any existing underfloor heating. In addition, these tiles are highly convenient to cut and drill into. They are particularly suitable for spaces with underfloor heating due to their thinness. Moreover, they offer a significant ecological advantage as they require only a quarter of the material used in standard tiles, which makes them much lighter to transport.

    Recent advancements in porcelain tile manufacturing, specifically in digital inkjet technology, have opened up exciting possibilities for new designs. It is possible to create tiles that are individually unique and resemble the look of marble, limestone, and wood. Inkjet technology is capable of producing high-quality prints on textured surfaces, which enhances the authenticity of the final product. Additionally, this technology can be utilized to create patterned tiles with a patchwork of styles.

  5. Terracotta tile
  6. terracotta Flooring

    The timeless material, with its charming and warm appearance, is ideal for achieving a rustic aesthetic in various areas of a home such as the kitchen, bathroom, hallway, or living room. The process of creating these earthy-red tiles involves molding soft clay into frames that are shaped like tiles. The frames are then dried and kiln-fired to achieve the desired result. The reclaimed tiles are highly durable and have a long lifespan. They are readily available in the market, but it is advisable to purchase them from a trustworthy supplier who can procure high-quality pieces on your behalf. Terracotta tiles are compatible with underfloor heating, just like other types of stone flooring.

    Terracotta tiles can be crafted by hand to achieve a natural look and texture, or manufactured by machine for a more uniform appearance. Terracotta that has not been treated is porous and requires sealing. The traditional method involves using a mixture of half linseed oil and half white spirit, followed by a coat of beeswax. Choosing pre-sealed terracotta tiles can help you avoid maintenance problems, and they are suitable for use in wet areas like bathrooms.

    Although 8-inch and 12-inch square tiles remain popular formats, tiles are also available in sizes larger than 18 inches. However, it is important to note that larger tiles may be thicker and therefore more challenging to install. Joss Thomas, the managing director of Indigenous, suggests using rectangular terracotta tiles that can be arranged in a herringbone pattern.

  7. Quarry tile
  8. Quarry tiles, similar to terracotta tiles, are crafted from clay. However, they are less porous as they undergo firing at a higher temperature. These flooring options are highly resilient and long-lasting, making them an ideal choice for high-traffic areas such as hallways, kitchens, living rooms, and even outdoor spaces. However, it is important to note that they will need to be sealed.

  9. Zellige
  10. zellige

    These handmade terracotta tiles, also known as Zellij or Zillij, have their origins in the ancient Middle East and Morocco. These items are crafted from either wood-fired clay or pressed cement, and then coated with enamel chips in vibrant, jewel-toned hues. The intricate designs typically showcase conventional geometric patterns.

  11. Travertine
  12. Travertine is a cost-effective option for kitchen flooring among various types of stone. However, it is important to note that it has a porous surface. Some suppliers offer pre-honed and filled options for purchase. If you choose to lay the flooring yourself, you will need to fill it with a specific epoxy filler after installation. The filled holes are noticeable, resulting in a fascinating speckled appearance. As natural stone is porous in nature, it requires sealing.Fortunately, high-tech sealants are available with a guarantee of up to 15 years.

  13. Limestone
  14. Limestone is a highly sought-after option for stone flooring due to its versatility in terms of color, cut, and finish. This tile is a versatile option that performs well in both indoor and outdoor settings, making it an excellent choice for entranceways and open-plan areas.

    Limestone typically has a lighter, honey-colored appearance. Although it is less porous than sandstone, it still requires a robust sealant and regular maintenance to prevent early staining and scratches.

  15. Marble
  16. marble Flooring

    Marble has always been a favorite among natural stone enthusiasts due to its unique beauty and distinct veining. The lack of uniformity in each tile is one of the main attractions of natural marble tiles.

    This product is suitable for any room and can enhance the luxurious appearance of walls, floors, and countertops in a marble bathroom. Marble's cool shades, especially the lighter tones, can create an open and bright atmosphere in a room.

    For instance, granite is more durable than marble and can withstand wear and tear over time, whereas marble is prone to scratches and wear. The process will result in a softer appearance with a patina, but it may not be desirable if you prefer to maintain a pristine surface. It is also susceptible to staining, so any spills should be cleaned up immediately. In order to ensure the protection of marble, it is necessary to seal it during installation and then reapply the sealant annually.

  17. Slate
  18. Slate is renowned for its blend of rusty copper hues, as well as deep shades of charcoal and silver. These colors can be combined to achieve a rustic appearance that is ideal for period properties and charming cottages.

    Polishing and sealing slate is crucial in order to avoid chips or staining. To enhance the appearance of the seal, you may add a color intensifier that provides a glossy sheen, resulting in a more eye-catching finish.

  19. Reformed Stone
  20. Reclaimed stone tiles are a recent development in the industry and have remarkable eco-friendly features. Ca Pietra's new Reform range is crafted from 60% recycled stone materials and manufactured in a carbon-neutral facility. It is evident that opting for this alternative is advantageous when taking into account the environmental consequences of mining natural stone.

    The tiles come in three different sizes and are available in 12 unique colors. They offer a contemporary twist on a traditional, weathered appearance. Although they will need to be sealed, these tiles are highly versatile. They can be applied to both walls and floors, and are suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.

  21. Encaustic/Cement Tile
  22. Encaustic tiles are commonly utilized on entrance hall floors. These tiles showcase decorative designs that are either stamped or "burnt into" the clay body. During firing, the stamped impression is filled with liquid clay of a different color, and the clays meld together. The design on the tile will endure even as it wears down because it is not merely a superficial glaze, but rather colors that are inlaid into the body of the tile.

    In the past, encaustic tiles were commonly paired with more affordable natural clay quarry tiles and geometric unglazed tiles that were shaped with straight edges like triangles and lozenges. They are still one of the most expensive types of tiles to purchase.

  23. Mosaic
  24. mosaic tile

    Mosaic tiles can be crafted from a variety of materials such as glass, porcelain, glazed ceramics, natural stones, and even precious stones. The latest designs incorporate a blend of materials to generate visual appeal. Mosaics are often considered a luxurious option due to the extensive labor required to create them. However, they provide a distinctive texture and can be utilized to divide a vast flooring area, resulting in a remarkable visual impact.

    Mosaics are a great choice for bathrooms and kitchens because they are easy to clean and maintain their appearance over time. The non-porous surface of the material is highly resistant to stains, mold, mildew, and even harsh cleaning products.

    Mosaics are often sold with sheet backing that can be easily cut to the desired size for installation. Alternatively, the sheet can be cut into strips to create a border or feature. Due to their thinness, mosaic tiles have a tendency to accentuate any unevenness on the wall or subfloor. Therefore, it is important to ensure that the surface is perfectly flat before installation.

    When using mosaic tiles, it is important to keep in mind that they require more grouting. Therefore, we suggest opting for an epoxy grouting as it is more effective than the standard type when it comes to cleaning grout. This is especially important if you choose a lighter-colored grout.