As part of the second module it was required of us to begin a collection of different materials, materials relevant to our design course of course. We can collect these from anywhere and however we like for example, we can visit stores such as Tops Tiles and B&Q for scrap materials, or we can order sample materials from suggested websites such as Architonic.
Familiarising ourselves early on with the attributes and uses for different materials gives us an advantage when we come to work on live projects in the future, and it is also fun just to see how many different materials there are to work with, some of which we may even choose to place in our own homes.
I decided firstly to see what samples companies had to offer through their websites, it actually seems that companies are quite generous with the samples they distribute so i was able to collect quite a good, varied amount in a short space of time, here are the materials i have huddled so far:
Company: Tile Mountain LTD
Tile Mountain LTD are a company whom specialise in distributing and fitting a wide range of high quality tiles. They supply tiles for areas such as bathrooms, kitchens, floors, walls, etc. and also have many different colours and styles i.e. mosaic tiles, quartz tiles, natural stone, marble tiles, the list goes on. Specialising in one specific area gives a business the advantage of having a real USP and therefor they can focus all their attention and energy into this one profession. I ordered five different sample types as this way i had a good example of a range of different materials and finishes.
Tile 1: The Skyros Delft Blue Wall and Floor tile. The Skyros tile is a Spanish Porcelain floor and wall tile with a vintage pattern and a matte finish, perfect for hallways, entrances, kitchens, bathrooms, inside and outside. When juxtaposed the tiles create beautiful patterns for the home interior. Tiles are completely waterproof making them perfect for uses inside and outside of the building.
Tile 2: The Skyros Blanco Wall and Floor Tile. Again this type of tile is also a Spanish Porcelain floor and/or wall tile with a vintage effect. The tile has all of the same properties as the Skyros Delft wall and floor tile with the matte finish and uses. ‘Blanco’ meaning Plain, is a perfect description for the tile, it is minimal but beautiful and the simple engraved line would create continuous repetitiveness throughout the interior.
Tile 3: Ribera Slate Effect Wall Tile. This tile takes the appearance of a natural split face mosaic.The tile has interlocking panels which replicates a natural stone wall when placed together, used best for bathroom walls however the tile can be used for uses in any desired rooms. The tiles would not be appropriate for floors as the panel cuts have a depth of 45mm, which would cause a tripping hazard. The tiles can be used internally and externally depending on the space and needs of the client.
Tile 4: Super White Polished Porcelain. This type of tile is a super high gloss off white design with a mirror finish and extremely polished nano-seal. When placed together the tiles have a very small grout joint giving an almost seamless finish across the wall. The polished finish of the tile will allow a room to seem bigger, cleaner, and more spacious making it especially perfect for bathrooms and kitchens. The off white means that the tile will match near enough every interior colour scheme, perfect for the minimalists. The tile can be used on floors if necessary, however it wouldn’t be advised as there is minimal grip due to the polished finish.
Tile 5: Inverno Grey Marble Wall and Floor tile. This specific tile type is glazed porcelain with a matte finish. The properties of the tile make it slip resistant, making it perfect for kitchen, hallway and bathroom floors. The tile replicates matte marble, and the natural simplistic appearance makes the tile appropriate for almost any interior design. The tile has the same unfinished texture as the Skyros Blanco wall and floor tile, the matte finish gives both tiles grip and durability.
Company: The Tile Depot
For a wider variety of differing tiles I found the tile depot website, the site allows you to order a maximum of 3 free sample bathroom, kitchen, wall and floor tiles in materials such as porcelain, slate, quartz etc.
One of the good things about installing tiles in a home is that it in fact increases the resale value, and also adds beauty and charisma to any space. Tiles are timeless especially when earthy tones are used, and once installed you can be almost certain you will never have to replace them. Tiles require very little maintenance, just requiring occasional vacuuming and a wipe over every now and again, perfect for a busy space.
One of the cons, however, of installing tiled floors is that unless an efficient heating system is installed underneath the tiles they can be very cold to walk on especially in the winter. Tile also has no insulation properties meaning that it can echo noise throughout the room, this can however be used to its advantage depending on the space e.g. to improve your singing in the bathroom.
Here are some of the tiles I decided to sample:
Tile 1: Active Arena. The Active arena creamy beige tile has a slightly textured matte finish with hints of silver glitter which would be best brought out under bright white lighting. This particular tile is perfect for flooring in any room especially a bathroom.
Tile 2: The cappuccino Marble tile, one of my personal favourites due to its super smooth and glossy finish. The tile is made up of a mixture of natural browns and cream tones of tan, biscuit and sand. The tile can be perfectly used on both walls and floors making a room appear much more spacious, glamorous and clean.
Tile 3: The Breto cream porcelain tile. This is a smooth but slightly textured mottled beige tile perfect for bathroom walls and floors and of course any other rooms or living spaces if desired. The earthy tone of the tile is endless meaning it will match any colour scheme and is highly durable and easy to maintain.