Flooring and Tile Trends from Coverings 2014: Patchwork Tile

May 22nd 2014

In this business, we pay close attention to two major trade shows for tile and stone trend ideas: Surfaces and Coverings.

You discovered Surfaces in Flooring & Tile Trends From The International Surface Event 2014. Now, it's time to tell you about the Coverings Show and the flooring tile trends we discovered there!

What is the Coverings Show?

Coverings, which celebrated its 25th Anniversary in 2014, was held April 29 through May 2 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. It is considered the largest and most important ceramic tile and natural stone trade fair and expo in the United States.

Coverings is intensely international with exhibitors from more than 35 countries. Thousands of distributors, retailers, fabricators, contractors, specifiers, architectural and design professionals, builders and real estate developers, as well as journalists and bloggers who cover this vital and dynamic industry attend.

During Coverings, tile manufacturers and stone fabricators introduce some of the most innovative tile and stone products in the world. All come to meet, discover new tile trends, take part in continuing education, observe live demonstration sessions and generally become more knowledgeable about the industry and the products.

That's why the entire Tile Outlets of America executive management team -- Don Aronin, Warren Lampert, Michele Hoover, and myself -- attend. It's that important a source of tile trends, product ideas and relationship building.

What flooring and tile trends from Coverings 2014 to look forward to?

Oh, I have lots to share with you!

  • Flooring Tile Trends in Patchwork
  • New Trend in Flooring: Hexagon Tile
  • Oooh La La and then there is Glass Mosaic Tile!
  • Trending for Floors and Walls: Thin Tile
  • Wood Tile Trends: Longer Formats
  • Patio Tile Trends

There's just too much for one blog article, so I'll break these flooring and tile trends into several articles. I'll start with a visually exciting trend, that of Patchwork Tile.

Flooring Tile Trends in Patchwork:

One of the trends that has been very popular in Europe and that we noticed in several booths at Coverings 2014 is patchwork tiles. Think patterned tiles arranged in a patchwork quilt fashion.

From a flooring perspective, you can lay them out in a room to look like an area rug, but done in tiles. You can put them under a dining room table or lay them out on your outdoor patio instead of an outside area rug.

(Check out some of these really neat ideas of what to do with patchwork tiles on Houzz. )

Each factory and country had its own play on these marvelous designs -- in concrete colors, primary colors, kid colors as well as in ornate pieces and patterns.

As you see from the images here, the patchwork concept applies to traditional patterns as well as modern ones.

Of the two designs below, one used 8x8 tiles which looked like the original 4x4 designs that were used in Europe centuries ago. The tiles even have that look of being old and the colors are very traditional. Notice the difference between contrasting patterns vs. coordinated ones as with the classic compass sun design patchwork.

By the way, tiles meant for use in a patchwork design come randomly selected in a box with 25 different designs.

Just imagine all the installation ideas you can do with these designs:

These would make a beautiful backsplash in a kitchen.

Give your laundry room a pop of color with these tiles on the floor or as a backsplash.

So many fun ways you can add patchwork to your home design!

The Patchwork Tile Trend

The Patchwork Tile Trend was also highlighted in the Coverings 2014 post-show press release which states, under the category "Artisan Appeal":

"This year also saw a bevy of introductions inspired by the intricate shapes, detailed patterns and bright colors of old world artisans and hand-painted cement tiles. Using today’s inkjet and digital printing technology, the look and texture is more realistic than ever before. Aparici tapped the colorful aesthetic of the early 19th Century decorative artisans with Hydraulic, a series of porcelain tiles that comes in a variety colorful patterns, in natural, rectified and double fired formats."

For additional perspective on the patchwork tile trend, check out:

..Patterned Tiles are Power Play at Coverings 2014

..Patchwork Tiles: 10 Mix and Match Ideas by Sarah Lonsdale

Not just tile, but community, too, at Coverings 2014!

The tile business has a lot to do with community; perhaps it's because the product has such longevity which means that the relationships last over time, too. (In fact, you may have noticed it when we introduce you to Tile Outlets of America associates and vendors.) Or perhaps it has to do with bridging cultures and vast oceans once a year... Attending Coverings means an opportunity to renew friendships.

During Coverings 2014, the Tile Outlets of America team enjoyed meeting two terrific international resources:

1. The Sintesi factory from Italy with our local agent Rich Niddam, Rocco Bernini, US Area Manager, and Alessandro Ferrari, Export Manager.

2. The KerTiles group - pictured below.

From left to right: Zamir Amaya, National Accounts Manager Export Sales for Kertiles, Kate Spencer, Warren Lampert, Fernando Jimenez, President and owner of Kertiles, Michele Hoover, Don Aronin and Priscilla Del Nero, Logistics and Export sales for Kertiles

Thank you, Sintesi and Kertiles for a fabulous dinner, great friendship and terrific products for our customers.

Next in my report on flooring and tile trends from Coverings 2014 is a new trend in flooring: Hexagon Tile! Let me know what you think of patchwork tile as a flooring trend.