Tiles are the go-to option for anyone looking for a practical flooring solution, with porcelain offering many benefits in terms of function as well as form. As a man-made material, porcelain is perfect for areas of the home such as the kitchen and bathroom due to its unrivalled durability and strength but also thanks to its many style options. How we use our homes has influenced design trends; the popularity of open-plan cooking, dining and living spaces; for example, has led to an increase in the use of tiled flooring. Porcelain tiles tick all the boxes from a practical perspective, but also from a style point too, being available in an array of sizes and in a wide range of colours and patterns to offer an extremely versatile flooring option.
The manufacturing process of porcelain, which uses a finer and denser clay combined with high temperature and high pressure, results in a material that is far stronger than other types of ceramic, making this a highly durable flooring option that offers a great deal of longevity, even in high-traffic areas of the home. Spaces such as the kitchen and bathroom can benefit; in particular, from the properties of porcelain, which, because of its density, is extremely resistant to water and a very practical choice for floors in wet areas of these rooms. This is a material that is chemical and stain resistant too, so any everyday spillages in the kitchen can be easily wiped clean.
Whichever finish is chosen, from non-slip floor tiles through to gloss and satin finish wall tiles, a regular sweep and mop will keep them looking as good as new with very little effort. Installation of the tiles themselves is also a straightforward process, with mega slabs from RAK Ceramics simplifying the process even further while minimising grout lines and creating a luxuriously seamless look. These mega slabs offer endless design possibilities that can be used across the home, creating a seamless finish for the ultimate luxurious finish while also producing an illusion of space. However, practicalities surrounding delivery, storage and even installation of such slabs can be a limiting factor to their use. Delivery can be made direct from the manufacturer to eradicate problems in that respect too, ensuring the slabs reach their intended destination in a pristine, ready-to-fit condition.
Style-wise, porcelain tiles are an extremely versatile flooring solution, due to the sheer variety of designs and colours available. Tiles can be printed or embossed in numerous ways, and solid floor tiles can be mixed and matched in patterns and colours in any number of ways. They can be chosen to match or contrast with wall tiling and splashbacks for a cohesive look and can be chosen to replicate the look of many hardwoods and natural stones for the ultimate luxe look.
With an extensive range of styles, sizes and finishes available, the options are endless. Classic white porcelain tiles are the ideal option for creating a timeless style in the bathroom, for instance. White can be easily adapted to the modern or classic interior and combined with an array of materials and colours to create something eclectic and personable.
In contrast, black porcelain floor tiles add a touch of glamour, particularly when chosen in a polished finish and paired with high-gloss furniture, for a sleek and stylish space. If unrivalled opulence is the goal, then black tiles give an interior a dramatic yet sophisticated look.
Nature-inspired tiles are also very much on-trend, and porcelain offers the perfect opportunity to bring this look into the home without compromising on function. Tiles with a subtle or a bold marble-effect pattern work well when teamed with materials such as wood, bringing nature indoors and creating a calming, timeless and high-end look that works well across rooms including the bathroom and the kitchen. Revised classy marble and granite-inspired patterns displaying elegant veins used on kitchen floors; for example, create a sophisticated ambience that is the epitome of luxury and sophistication.
Wood is another very popular material for creating a rustic style in the home, but it can be difficult to care for, yet wood-effect porcelain tiles provide an effective solution. Whether chosen in a vintage style with distressed wood-look tiles and a matt finish or a glossy finish that replicates polished wood, all the beauty of wood can be enjoyed with porcelain tiles that look the part and will last for years with very little maintenance.
Floor tiles can also be used very effectively as a visual aid – having continuity in styles between the different areas of an open-plan kitchen living space; for example, creates a seamless impression, while opting for large-format porcelain floor tiles creates the illusion of space. Smaller tiles and those with a pattern can make a compact space look quite busy, whereas larger tiles with fewer grout lines are easier on the eye.