Guest Post by Heather Cayford from Naturally Tiles in Christchurch
Are you looking at choosing tiles for your new home build in Canterbury? Many in the market for tiles today, whether building new or renovating, are becoming more astute and knowledgeable about the product and their options. No longer are they accepting the mediocre and are looking for individual looks relevant to their lifestyle and visions.
There are however a few rules that still need to be adhered to for a successful venture into tiles and common mistakes are still made.
The catch phrase “big is better” does not always apply to tiles. Today there is a definite preference for larger tile formats and for large living spaces they are a great option. However, they can be a challenge to make work in bathrooms and smaller areas. For example trying to make a 1200 x 600 work in a 900 square shower space will leave a half cut tile and thus loose impact of using large format. Optically this makes the space look smaller as the eye sees just one and a half tiles. The rule of thumb is if you can’t get three full tiles across the floor space the tile is too big, and five full tiles is optimum. So consider your space before choosing size of tile!
Choose the finish appropriate to usage of space. Non slip or grip tiles should only be used externally unless required for commercial or disability requirements. There is a misconception non slip is to be used in domestic wet areas but anyone who has done this will know what a nightmare they are to clean. So a natural or matt finish is preferable. Again, there is the option of natural/matt and polished. Some prefer the opulent look of the polished porcelain and this is a personal choice. Some people will accommodate the slip factor, others will be afraid to lay, but the production of polished porcelains has improved so that the polish surfaces are not as slippery as old. So don’t rule it out till trialed.
However, the polished finish in wet areas can be high maintenance as mirror every water mark. Easy to wipe and remove but if this marking annoys you, you will be cleaning it everyday. Therefore the matt finish is the one for you! Check with your supplier that the tiles have been sealed at factory production, otherwise there will be ongoing maintenance issues.
Choose your tiler carefully just as you would your builder. Get a recommendation off your tile supplier and also ask to see some work previously done. It is crucial to get a quality tiler as even the most expensive tiles can look rubbish if not laid correctly. And there are some cowboys out there. It is not as easy to lay the new high quality porcelains and a tiler needs to have high quality gear and skills to match.
In our next article we’ll cover current trends and styles. Some exciting designs coming out of Europe which offer endless opportunities for individual expression!!
Naturally Tiles are a Christchurch-based, boutique company importing directly from exclusive Italian sources. Heather, the owner, has forged strong professional relationships with a preferential selection from suppliers, and exclusivity with their product. Tiles found at Naturally Tiles are unique to this store. To talk to Heather or view their fabulous range, visit their website now!