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Ceramic Tiles a Timeless Elegance for your home

Discover the world of ceramic and natural stone tile. The timeless beauty and infinite variety of colors, styles, and textures will amaze you. And because of tile’s durability and easy maintenance, you will never find a better or less expensive material for your kitchen, bath, patio and flooring needs.

Ceramic & Porcelain Tiles

Ceramic & Porcelain tiles are hard, brittle, heat-resistant products that are manufactured by firing clay and other materials. Porcelain tile is a type of ceramic tile fired from pure white clay to generate a translucent effect.

The patterns of these products attempt to emulate the look of natural stone products; the prices are typically less expensive; and the color range is very consistent due to the man-made nature of the product. Ceramic tiles are an excellent alternative for the value-oriented buyer. Primary applications include floor and wall tiles, along with trim and transition (corner, wall to floor, etc.) pieces.

Ceramic tiles exhibit a versatility of colored glazes and decoration, and they range from the plainest terra cotta tiles to highly decorated individual ceramic tiles and elaborately patterned tile floors.

Ceramic floor tiles can generally be divided into two types: unglazed and glazed. Unglazed tiles include: quarry tiles, encaustic and geometric tiles, and ceramic mosaic tiles, which can be either glazed or unglazed. Most other ceramic floor tiles are glazed.

While unglazed tiles derive their color solely from the clay, or from oxides, dyes or pigments added to the clay, the color of glazed tiles is provided by the glaze, either shiny or matte. Some potteries specialized in certain kinds of glazes and were famous for them. The earliest and most common method of clay tile decoration made use of tin-glazes which were essentially transparent lead glazes.

The thickness of historic ceramic tiles varied considerably according to their intended use and when they were made. Floor tiles were generally thicker and harder than wall or ceiling tiles. Colors included blue derived from cobalt, green from copper, purple from manganese, yellow from antimony and lead, and reds and browns from iron. An opaque glaze was created by adding tin oxide.

What Is Slate?

Slate is a fine-grained metamorphic rock that splits readily into thin, smooth-surfaced layers or slabs. As a result, slate has the great capability of extension which adds to its strength and durability.

The most common building applications for this material are floor, wall and roof tiles as well as fireplace surrounds. Tiles can be split and cut-to-size with only the natural cleft surface, or manufacturers will add value by calibrating the material to ensure a consistent thickness throughout the piece.

The original material was fine clay, sometimes of sand or volcanic dust, and the bedding of the sediment as originally laid down may be indicated by alternating bands, differing in color or in litho logical character, sometimes to be seen on the cleavage faces of the slates. Cleavage is a super induced structure, the result of pressure acting on the rock at the time when it was buried deep beneath the earth’s surface.

On this account slates are found chiefly among rocks of the older geological systems, although some occur in regions where comparatively recent rocks have been folded and compressed as a result of mountain building movements in the earths crust.

Slates may be black, blue, purple, red green or grey; dark slates usually owe their color to carbonaceous material or to finely divided sulfide of iron, reddish and purple varieties to the presence of oxide of iron in the form of hematite and green varieties to the presence of much chlorite.

Marble

The Look. The Feel. Marble is a perfect choice for visible surfaces as it really stands out with its unique patterns.

Marble is:
BEAUTIFUL… marble comes in different colors and patters and its unique veins attract attention and adoration

DURABLE… marble is a natural rock and is an excellent choice for many surfaces as it stays radiant looking year after year

EASY TO MAINTAIN… with protective and safe sealers, marble looks shiny and luxurious with just a cloth wipe and regular soap

AFFORDABLE… marble is an affordable choice and a valuable material. Marble is gorgeous material and no man-made materials come close to its beauty.

Marble is categorized as a metamorphic rock. Some of the minerals it contains are calcite and/or dolomite.

Metamorphic rock is actually limestone that for some time has been exposed to high temperature and pressure. Such circumstances caused these rocks to go through a process of change known as metamorphoses, the reason they are called metamorphic rocks.

Due to changes in the environment, minerals found in these rocks go through a molten phase, which causes the appearance of swirls or bands that we see in marbles.

Granite

Granite is the most popular choice for kitchen counter-tops.

And for very good reasons:
DURABILITY… as one of the hardest materials found on earth granite is scratch-resistant, and stain-resistant

EASY TO MAINTAIN… with protective and safe sealers, granite looks shiny and luxurious with just a cloth wipe and regular soap

LONGEVITY… granite doesn’t tear down; it stays beautiful year after year

BEAUTY… nature made granite, and it is available in numerous unique colors and appearances that surely with match your taste and preference

AFFORDABILITY… with more of supply available today granite is an affordable choice and a great investment. In comparison with other man made surface materials, granite averages out to be the same price, or in some cases even less expensive.

Natural stones are categorized into three groups known as igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary rocks. Granite falls into a group of igneous rocks, which are comprised of about 45-66% of quartz making it hard and durable, thus the perfect choice for kitchen counter-tops. Granite is the most durable architectural building stone. The increasing popularity of this stone is a testament to its beauty, versatility and consistency. Used in a wide array of commercial and residential applications, granite is ideal for tile floors, walls and counter-tops, as well as exterior applications such as pavers and wall cladding.

This igneous rock is comprised mainly of quartz, graphite, mica and other minerals. At the quarries, the stone is cut into huge blocks, and then into required thickness, usually with one surface honed or polished. Tiles and panels are cut to size in factories, and then packed for further shipment to stone retailers all over the world. Granite is quarried worldwide, with the most exotic colors coming from Brazil, India, Finland, North America, China and Southern Africa. New quarries are discovered each year further enhancing color choices and keeping prices in check.

Mosaic

Mosaics are any tiles, glazed or unglazed, that measure 2 inches square or less, although they don’t necessarily have to be square. Some of them, in fact, are hexagonal in shape and others are rectangles. It doesn’t matter what the tiles are made of, however most mosaics are made from porcelain, and most of them are left unglazed.

Mosaic tiles are used extensively in commercial applications. Walk into a commercial restroom, and you’ll probably notice porcelain mosaic tiles on the floor and possibly on the walls as well.

We often use mosaics to form residential shower floors. The small size makes it feasible to “dish” the shower floor so that water readily flows toward the drain. It is almost impossible to accomplish this with larger pieces and make the job look good. The numerous grout joints between the small tiles provide a great deal of “tooth,” and this translates to slip resistance on bare feet.

Mosaic tiles are always mounted on sheets of backing paper or netting — or they are joined together with small spots of synthetic rubber. It has been at least fifty years since they were delivered and installed individually.

With that being said, single, one-piece tiles are also fabricated to give the appearance of multiple mosaic pieces. This is achieved with a mold, which gives the appearance of recessed mortar joints separating individual “mosaics”.

Mosaic is the ultimate refinement of natural stone, which will provide an exquisite enhancement to a natural stone floor, both with the placing of a mosaic border and also with the use of Mosaic insets in a marble or natural stone floor setting.

This paper is intended for informational purposes only. Nothing contained herein constitutes legal, financial or other professional advice. Transmission of these materials is not intended to create, and receipt does not constitute, any relationship of any kind between the provider and the recipient. Some of these points may not apply in your area. Different term and conditions may vary from state to state and province to province. All articles, text and photographic material presented here is for the use and pleasure of the recipient only.

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