Patterned Tiles: A Modern Mosaic
Tiled floors and walls are a distinguished, durable design choice and modern tiles are available in many exciting styles, colors and patterns. Tiled floors have long been popular for use in high-traffic areas such as kitchens, bathrooms and entryways due to their resistance to water, dirt, stains and scratches. However, tiled floors and walls have now expanded to every corner of the home, with many new patterns that provide unusual modern choices or traditional designs. The freshest, most current tile designs incorporate patterned tiles which offer the luxurious look of intricate Mediterranean mosaics with a modern twist. The colors of Spain, Portugal and Morocco will warm the home and give it that exotic touch of elegance that will fondly remind guests of their European travels.
Traditional Patterned Tiles
Patterned tiled floors were quite common over a hundred years ago as the ornate Victorian style yielded to the earthy Craftsman style. Bathrooms were a typical location for patterned tile floors. Small hexagon-shaped floor tiles were commonly seen in white but could be combined with other colors – often black – to create simple mosaics, borders and patterned floors. Many of these practical tiled floors have survived through the years despite heavy use and exposure to water.
Encaustic tiles are traditional tiles that have been used in European churches and homes for thousands of years, and they were also very popular during the Victorian era. Encaustic tiles are artistically patterned tiles made of inlaid, colored ceramic or concrete; the patterns are not simply painted or glazed on the surface of the tile. This gives these tiles a rich look and solid durability for use as flooring.
Patterned Tiles as a Modern Design Element
These historic, traditional tiles are now made modern and stylish with bright colors, new patterns and rustic character. No longer just for bathrooms, entryways and kitchens, patterned tile is a fashionable addition to any room of the home. When combined with modern design elements, traditional patterns offer an unexpected environment of nostalgic elegance and character.
Tile manufacturers are also producing patterned tiles in modern and geometric designs along with tiles with three-dimensional effects. These patterns will give an unmistakable modern edge to any room. Care should be taken when installing tiles with busy patterns or three-dimensional effects; on a staircase, for example, they could create an optical illusion that makes it difficult to visually understand where the next step falls.
These beautifully patterned tile designs may be most effective as smaller design elements such as a tiled floor “rug” surrounded by natural wood or on a small accent wall. Patterned tile elements will look their best when surrounded by simple, modern clean lines that don’t compete with the patterns and textures of the tile. White walls allow the eye to rest and appreciate the contrast of the richly colored patterned tile designs as part of a streamlined and modern home decor. The mix of traditional patterned designs and modern simplicity help make each room of a home unique and interesting.