Oh, you know. It’s a full-scale, high end, spa-like bathroom, installed from the subfloor up in just a matter of days and with hundreds of people watching every move in real time. No biggie!
The Crossville-sponsored Installation Design Showcase, an opulent master bathroom envisioned by renowned Orlando interior designer Anne Rue, proved to be quite the big deal at Coverings 2015. This space was one of several vignettes built on site at the trade show to put a spotlight on the convergence of great interior design and skilled tile installation. Anne Rue’s stunning design was brought into being thanks to the talented, experienced installers of Frank Canto’s Canto Tile and Stone of Riverview, Florida. The result of the combined teams’ efforts: a premier example of Crossville products in finest, must luxurious form.
The Crossville master bath featured products in unique applications—from Laminam porcelain tile panels skinning shower stall walls to the sparkly Sideview glass mosaics creating a profusion of glamour throughout the “his and hers” design. The space was a head turner—dramatic, inviting, elegant, and just a little indulgent—and a dream for those of us who truly love tile.
Both Rue and the Canto team were relatively new to the use of large format porcelain tile panels, and thoughtful consideration went into the project to exemplify this unique product’s best applications and proper installation. Always committed to leading in installation education, Crossville’s team was present and accounted for throughout the project process to offer guindance, answer questions, and help to ensure all went well.
Thanks to this experience, Anne Rue became a fan of the large format porcelain tile panels. She often designs for hospitality and immediately appreciated the advantages this product category offers.
“Regular tile is 3/8 of an inch thick and stone is up to a half an inch thick. The Laminam collections are just 3 mm for walls, and floor tile is 5.6 mm thick,” Rue explains. “This means it can easily be installed over existing floors and existing wall tile!”
Rue states that she is seeing designer specify these collections in both commercial and residential settings. “It’s so versatile; I use on both walls and for flooring. I can create lots of designs using the material because of its large scale.”
She also loves the minimal grout lines that are innate in porcelain tile panel installations. “I don’t see any limitations with this product type.”
Certainly, the design possibilities were limitless for the Installation Design Showcase, thanks to the vision, talent, knowledge, and skills of the interior design and installation teams. When Crossville products land in the hands of true professionals, the results are spectacular.
The Brass Facts: The Modern Renaissance of a Longstanding Finish
Brass is back, and better than ever. Unlike the shiny, too-bright brass of the 1980s and early 1990s, today’s brass is more subdued and nuanced with patina, creating storied, sophisticated looks that are posh, polished, even opulent, without being ostentatious.
It’s no secret that interior design trends often follow in the footsteps of runway fashion, and brass certainly made its way down the catwalk before making its return to home finishes. As interior metallics continue to parallel looks from the apparel and accessories market, we’re seeing brass appear in decor throughout the home, from bath fixtures to lighting, fabrics, and, of course, tile.
Some design aficionados would say quality brass furnishings never truly went out of style, while those elements of lesser quality wore out their welcomes due to being more difficult to clean and maintain than the popular stainless steel, chrome, brushed silver and rubbed bronze of late. Often, in order to combat such maintenance issues, earlier brass was lacquered. This made it easy to clean, but kept the surface looking unnaturally shiny and perpetually new-minted. Modern designs are more focused on incorporating innately beautiful raw metals that develop unique patinas with age, growing more visually attractive over time.
Always a contrast to the cool tones of silver and aluminum finishes, brass’ warm metal appeal speaks to a multitude of cultures and international design styles—Moroccan, Italian, English—and offers a soft, glowing quality that helps a space feel more inviting. A tendency towards patina and aged metallics allows for a cohesive interplay of subtler and more natural tones, rather than strong pops of faux-gold yellow. The return to brass is less concerned with bling and perfect finishes and more interested in elegance and aged sophistication.
Even if you don’t want to part with the cooler, silver tones prevalent in decor over the last decade or more, you can easily blend in the brass. With their non-competing patinas, today’s brass interpretations readily complement other finishes, adding depth and interest even when used in simple accent pieces such as lamps, candlesticks, mirrors or picture frames. So whether you’re looking to add just a touch of polish, or make a grand, on-trend statement, look to modern brass for a gleam of go-anywhere warmth, glamour and elegance.