Tile 101: Ceramic Tile

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Tile and Natural Stone

Have you considered tile floors in your home? Ceramic tile offers the most variety in terms of color, shape, style and personality. International hand-painted ceramic tiles can liven up the border of a fireplace or the risers on a stairway. Some ceramic tiles mimic stone, while others use unusual glazes and embossing to create a sopecial and colorful floor.

Most ceramic tile is extremely low maintenance. Sealing the grout at installation keeps it from staining, and a damp mop keeps the floor at its best. Slip-resistant elements added to many glazes keep tiles safer for kitchens and baths. Ceramic floors are also long-lived, lasting for the life of the home.

One exception to the low-maintenance characteristic of ceramic tile is the unglazed option shown in this photo. This tile, known in the U.S. as Saltillo, is a handmade tile with a natural variety of color. This tile has to be sealed annually and does chip and crack. However, advocates enjoy the old world feel the tile creates. If you love this look but don’t want the maintenance, there are a number of glazed ceramic options that mimic this style.

Are you ready to tackle your tile options? With ceramic, whatever your taste you are likely to find a tile that works for you.

Flooring for Pets – Reader Question

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Reader Question, Tile and Natural Stone

Reader Question:

My dog is incontinent and as a result my floor has a urine smell. I thought that my ceramic tile floor would be easy to clean but the smell doesn’t go away. We are now moving and I want help with a flooring option in our new home that will not absorb the smell and will be easy to clean. Any help is welcome.

Sincerely, Melanie from Miami


Melanie,

Thanks for your question! There is a general misconception that ceramic tile is easy to clean and the ideal option in a home with pets. Unfortunately, ceramic tiles can be porous, and combined with unsealed grout will allow the urine smell to remain. Going over the offending areas with an enzyme cleaner – available at pet specialty stores, or a diluted white vinegar mix should help your current situation. Once clean, have your grout sealed to avoid a repeat problem.

Porcelain tiles are a good option for your next home. They are not porous like ceramic tiles and will not absorb liquids. Be sure to have the grout sealed to prevent it from absorbing urine or any other liquids. Avoid stone – this option also tends to be porous and much harder to deal with on this issue.

You may also want to consider picking up a few inexpensive machine-washable rugs such as those designed for bathrooms and place them where your dog likes to lay. Your dog will find them comfortable and they may help you by absorbing a good part of the urine before it hits your floors.

We hope this helps!

Your friends at Dolphin Carpet and Tile

Floor Styles for Different Home Styles

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Carpet, Design and Decorating, Hardwood, Tile and Natural Stone

The style of a home is reflected in its flooring. Whether you have a modern home style or a ranch home, a Tudor style home or the great American home style- the log home – you need a floor to match.

Traditional style homes look best with traditional style floors. Hard wood floors for the formal rooms of ranch homes or log homes lend a sense of elegance to the entire home. If your home is located in a warm place, composite or stone floors look just as good as hardwood floors and provide an easy-to-clean option. Hardwood floors with a lighter shade of wood also work well in traditional home styles in warm locations.

Modern home styles offer the opportunity for more flexible flooring options. New and sustainable flooring types such as cork, bamboo, tiles or linoleum that look good in a trendy modern environment may look out of place in a traditional home

Contemporary homes let you experiment with different types of flooring material in an array of patterns and styles. You can use flooring material to suit the needs of your family in a contemporary home style. Contemporary styles do not have specific themes and lend themselves to invention and innovation when choosing flooring.

If you let your floor serve as a strong reflection of your home style choice, you can achieve a cohesive and dramatic visual effect.

Inspirational Floor Patterns

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Carpet, Design and Decorating, Hardwood, Tile and Natural Stone

Your home décor says a lot about you. It’s no surprise that people often go all out when decorating their homes. One aspect of design that can make a big difference to the look you have in mind is the flooring. It connects the walls of your room and no matter how much hard work you put into selecting the best color for your walls and choosing the best display pieces, if the flooring is not in keeping with the design, it can be a disaster.
At the same time, flooring can serve as a canvas for self-expression and bring out the creative you. How so? You can choose to incorporate patterns into your flooring. Many people have done so with very satisfying results. The floor ceases to be just a background for the room’s design, instead becoming integrated in an aesthetic sense, lending the room a unique feel.
If you like the idea of a pattern on your floor, here are some inspirations you can turn to that would fit in just right with the rest of your design:
1. Gardens: Have you noticed the way pathways in gardens are laid out? Incorporate that idea into your home flooring by having different colors or some other design demarcation in your floor tile to indicate a pathway from one room to another.
2. Quilts: Quilts are treasure troves of patterns that can be reproduced on your floor, whether you choose tile, wood or carpet.
3. Religions and cultures: Religions and cultures have interesting symbols, and religious structures are often intricately patterned. Flip through culture magazines or look through images on the Internet to choose one that is perfect for what you have in mind for your house.
4. Manufacturer design ideas: Many manufacturers have developed specialized medallions or borders to enrich the look of your floors. Talk to one of our salespeople to see some of the possibilities.
Any of these design approaches can be adapted or simplified for flooring that would enrich the look of your home. Flooring is often taken for granted, but it can be a defining feature of your house, if you are willing to make it so, and using pattern is a bold step in that direction.

How to Choose a Grout Color

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating, Tile and Natural Stone

You’ve chosen the tile of your choice with care and are feeling as happy as a Georgia peach because you are sure it will fit in perfectly with the look and feel you have in mind. But, wait! Your tile-project is not over. Don’t overlook a small, but equally significant part of the tile process – the grout.


Functionally speaking, grout is used to protect tiles from chipping and breaking along the edges, but it plays an equally important aesthetic part. A carefully selected grout color can add to the overall look and feel of the floor while a bad choice can make your floor look completely different that what you had in mind.


So how do you go about making the right choice? Here are some pointers to help you along the way to a successful tile-project:


1. To blend or contrast? That is the question: If evenness and uniformity is your goal, try blending your grout color with color of your tile. If you are using a unique mosaic pattern, then contrasting the two is the way to go in order to bring out some of the colorful elements in the tile.


2. The light and dark of it: If you want the darker colors in your tile to stand out use a light grout and a dark one if it’s the light colors that you want to emphasize. However, bear in mind that drawing attention to this kind of contrast will enhance any imperfections in the tile or installation, so choose with care.


3. Accentuate: You can use grout to accentuate different components of the tile-project. The design of the tile, the border of the tile, if it is demarcated from the rest of the tile, the color of the wall, all of these can be highlighted by using grout of the same color. Just keep in mind that there are many, less permanent ways to use color accents in your home.


4. White = wise?
Hardly: Avoid using white as your grout color unless it is pure white tiles you are thinking of and you plan to seal the grout!


5. Dirt disguise
: Light colored grout can tend to look dirtier than dark colored ones after a short period of time.So, if you are planning on tiling an area prone to heavy traffic and dust and dirt, you’d do well to avoid light grout or be sure to seal the grout as soon as possible.


Hope these pointers help in your quest for the perfect grout color!