With the approach of summer comes the close of another trade show “season.” And while we are in an economic recession, the final results of these stone and tile exhibitions were not all doom and gloom. While in many cases traffic was slower than usual, and there was a noticeable downsize of many exhibition booths, some optimism remained among those in attendance.
This past February, I had the opportunity to be a guest of Tile of Spain on a press tour to Cevisama - the International Ceramic Tile and Bathroom Furnishings Show - in Valencia, Spain. A division of the Trade Commission of Spain, the organization promotes Tile of Spain-branded manufacturers, and the primary purpose of this trip was to create awareness of these products.
the holiday season is over, many people are busy making their New Year’s
resolutions.â€¯ One suggestion for architects and
designers in 2009 would be to take advantage of the diverse continuing
educational opportunities that are available -- particularly those offered by
professionals in the stone and tile industries.
Back in March, I was fortunate enough to be a part of a guided quarry tour in Texas, which was hosted by the Marble Institute of America (MIA). This was the third MIA-hosted trip I have taken in the past year, and at the conclusion of each tour, I always walk away with a sense of awe.
In recent years, the word "green" has become an increasingly popular word in our vocabulary -- both personally and professionally. Many associations are working to conceive new ideas that will help in preserving our environment. In particular, one way to accomplish this is by promoting the use of environmentally friendly products.
I know that this has been said before, but the quality and aesthetics of the stone and tile products on the market today have reached a new level. While stone remains timeless, and its appearance and technical qualities haven't necessarily changed, new finishes and format sizes offer more diversity. Suppliers are also going to great lengths to continually introduce exotic materials that are being newly extracted in countries around the world. Meanwhile, in the tile sector, we are witnessing an explosion of new colors, sizes and textures. Glass mosaics, metallic pieces -- and even porcelain designed to resemble hardwood or fabrics -- all contribute to inspiring designs.
While glass tile has been around for many decades, it seems that its popularity has enjoyed a growth spurt in recent years -- especially glass mosaics. These shimmering tiles are being utilized for a range of applications in both residential and commercial settings, and their reflective quality is bringing depth and interest to all design styles.