Posted on June 15, 2017
Whether you’re involved in the renovation of a home, corporate office, retail space, healthcare facility, or other commercial setting, the whole process can seem daunting. There are so many things to consider, and the list of selections can seem endless. Often, the choice of surfacing materials is one of the most important decisions specifiers must make.
Porcelain tile has continuously proven itself as a surfacing product of choice by designers, architects, and homeowners alike. Tile may not only be cost effective, but its long lifecycle and low-maintenance qualities further increase its viability. It can serve as a foundational element in overall aesthetics as well as in the end-user experience.
Here are some things to consider when making your tile selections for remodeling in residential and commercial environments.
When it comes to renovating or remodeling, decisions about what to keep and what to remove are not always easily made due to budget constraints, time limits, or even any historical value a particular element may have. And when it comes to removing existing flooring, the dreaded dust and debris that covers everything in sight is not something anyone looks forward to. Removing old flooring, especially existing tile, is not an inexpensive endeavor; but there are times when it’s clear that the best choice is to let it go.
You can, however, have a successful remodel by installing tile over existing tile floors. Our Laminam by Crossville gauged porcelain tile panels make this possible. This is a particularly great solution in commercial environments where it’s important to minimize disruption of “business as usual”. The tile-over-tile solution may be appropriate for historic renovation projects, too, as the avoidance of demolition of old tile may assist in keeping the architectural integrity of the building or home and helping to preserve other elements of the space.
Tile is an architectural element and often a more permanent material. Because of this, it’s imperative to make selections that will transcend the trends.This consideration is especially important for commercial projects for which budgets won’t allow for frequent updating or the size/scope of the spaces make it impractical to update often. Using unexpected tile patterns and contrasting grout colors are good examples of how to make a classic tile design (such as white subway tile) resonate with the times
While the design of a remodeled space should be able to stand the test of time in terms of aesthetics and basic performance, it should also answer the demands of lifestyles now and in the future. For example, tile is an ideal surfacing choice in bathrooms featuring universal design. Universal design ensures spaces are accessible to end-users in any stage and circumstance of life. Tile allows for barrier-free shower configurations, and provides the durability and performance needed to stand up to busy families, wheelchair wheels, or nearly any other device that might be used to accommodate the needs of those using the space.
While we prefer to go beyond the trends, we are aware of some movements in remodeling and design industries worth noting. Less is more, and bigger is better, they say. Making eco-conscious choices is no longer a trend; the green revolution has become a mainstream movement. While tile is an inherently green material, it’s important to note that every piece of tile we manufacture at our Tennessee plants contains recycled content (learn more about our sustainability efforts, including our Tile Take-Back and TOTO USA Partnership, here.)
It’s also time to embrace color. Even if being relatively conservative in a remodeling project, it’s not necessary to stick with white, gray, or beige tiles. Colorful tile in small doses (such a shower niche) or on a larger scale (such as a feature wall) can provide the right impact. In terms of approaches to tile installation, some designers have a preference for fewer or minimized grout joints—a look beautifully achieved with our Laminam by Crossville collections.
Tile selection is vital to the end-user experience of a commercial or residential space. While a specification process may start with a focus on a certain look, decision makers must also consider the long-term upkeep and maintenance. It’s important to carefully select the appropriate tile for each room by considering what the room will be used for and who will be using it. Crossville offers many creative solutions and special finishes with properties that address slip-resistance; scuffs, stains, and graffiti; dirt and pollution; and ventilation.
One of the most overlooked decorative options when installing tile is grout. It’s possible to achieve minimized grout lines with larger tile formats (18”x36” and above, including Laminam porcelain tile panels), or alter the look of the entire remodeling project by using colored grout. There are some exciting things happening with grout these days, such as matching to paint colors and glitter grout! With so many technological advancements in grout, it’s possible to further customize your installation.
Professional installation is essential to the success of any renovation project. Qualified installers who understand the products they are working with are essential to the success of remodeling projects. Our Laminam porcelain tile panels, for example, require special installation skills. In answer to that, Crossville offers Laminam installation training on a regular basis, and there are now a number of qualified Laminam installers across the country. Find qualified installers by clicking here. We can’t stress enough how fundamental the installer’s knowledge and skills are to the success of your tile project. You can check out our installation guides here.
Diversity in tile selection and understanding the product are keys to any successful, time-tested renovation effort. Our expansive tile range and finish options fulfill a wide range of decorative tastes and user requirements. We’re dedicated to bringing you more creative solutions to solve your design challenges beautifully.
For more remodeling and renovation insights, view this designer panel discussion video.