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Covering tiles and stone

by Darren
Coverings Jnl 6 14

Coverings 2015 held in Las Vegas showcased some of the most innovative products and technologies relating to tiles and stone.

Celebrating its 25th Anniversary, Coverings 2014 was held at the Las Vegas Convention Center earlier this year. It is considered the largest and most significant tile and stone exhibition in North America.

Welcoming a new era for Coverings, the show opened with the introduction of its new creative campaign and logo during the annual ribbon-cutting ceremony. Keynote speaker Sheldon Yellen, CEO of Belfor, the nation’s leading disaster restoration company, presented on why companies that put employees first are most successful. He told the audience made up of tile and stone professionals that their work brings significant value to many homes and commercial buildings around the world.

Additionally, two Coverings sponsors, namely Ceramic Tile Distributors Association and Confindustria Ceramica, announced an exciting new programme to improve shipping procedures for tile and stone containers being transported to the US. The programme aims to save distributors money and improve the delivery of the products to customers, increasing the availability of beautiful tile and stone from around the world.

Coverings showcased what’s new in tile and stone and here are just a few of the several highlights:
41ZERO42 revealed U-Color, a bright spectrum of tile planks inspired by industrial wooden floors of the 1970s. By using a cold-glazing process, the product has a wide range of colour options, and the 3” x 12” porcelain tiles are available in 60 standard colours and thousands of customised options for unlimited design possibilities.

AlysEdwards Tile & Stone brought global flair with its Cape Town Collection. Inspired by traditional textiles from around the world, this collection offers ethnic flair in soft, muted colours that enable it to be incorporated into a variety of design styles. Cape Town is handmade in Tunisia, using ancient stone artistry that gives every piece a one-of-a-kind look, and is available in eight patterns and six subtle colourways.

American Olean exhibited Morello Glass and Metal Mosaics that feature eclectic mosaic blends exuding modern character. Morello’s multiple colours and finishes were cultivated to suit every design scheme and its on-trend palette reflects today’s sophisticated tastes, while the mix of glass and extruded aluminium provides both harmony and contrast.

Azuliber used digital technology to create Madison, a product that replicates fossilised, petrified wood from the Petrified Forest National Park in northeast Arizona that took nature over 200 million years to create.

Century placed the spotlight on Pantheon – a new collection of eco-friendly porcelain tiles inspired by ancient history and natural stone. The four colours (Ares, Jupiter, Mercury and Venus) feature intense colour variations and are suitable for both residential and commercial contemporary solutions as well as the restoration of historic spaces. The tiles are made with a minimum of 40 percent recycled content (which can contribute to LEED points) and come in a variety of sizes.

Ceramica Elias embraced the commercial audience with its new “Hospitality & Custom” collection, designed to meet the needs of architects and designers working on creative and commercial projects. The glazed terracotta tiles bring colour, glow and life to any space and use a traditional material in a contemporary and provocative way.

Cosentino showcased its new large-format, ultra-compact surface, Dekton, which is capable of seamless use both indoors and outdoors. By using Particle Sintering Technology, a proprietary technique that mimics the metamorphic change that rocks and stone undergo in nature, Dekton has unique technical properties, including UV and thermal shock resistance, superior strength, high resistance to impact, scratches and abrasion, and low water absorption, and is available in 10 white, grey, black, and natural stone hues and in three finishes: polished, matte, and slate.

Crossville premiered its Garden Collection of porcelain tile created specifically for outdoor applications. The collection replicates the appearance of natural stone by converging authentically nuanced colour and shading with richly textured surfaces, in a product that offers a natural stone-look option with superior technical advantages that meet the demands of exterior applications. This unique collection is globally sourced, resistant to chemicals, moisture and extreme temperatures regardless of the climate, and it offers a high Dynamic Coefficient of Friction (DCOF).

LEA CERAMICHE unveiled Type-32, the newest tactile project from Italian architect Diego Grandi. Part of the company’s brand-new Slimtech 5Plus series of laminated stoneware, the super-long (8” x 78”) and slim (0.2”) porcelain tiles feature a herringbone pattern overlaid onto a wood-look base to create a graphic and playful collection of surfacing. The new 0.2” (5mm) thickness allows the thin tiles to be used in heavy-traffic areas as well as new treatments not possible with 3mm tiles such as mirror-polishing and multi-level engraving.

ORNAMENTA found inspiration in Andy Warhol for its new Artwork collection of ceramic tiles that takes natural surfaces to a pop art level. The focus of the project is on the “return to ceramic decoration”, creating surfaces for tailored and unique projects.

Pamesa exhibited its Age collection, featuring inkjet technology to create and imitate the effects of wood and cement. The Blend format in this series combines the characteristic authenticity and warmth of wood with the modernity, luminosity and strength of cement.

SICIS premiered the Structura collection, featuring glass mosaic panels with shiny square tesserae in different sizes, thicknesses, shades and textures, for an intriguing multi-dimensional effect. The collection uses a vast palette from Sicis Colours, offering panels in soft, warm tones, made even more precious by copper explosions of light, or gold and platinum tesserae, or in a mix of silver tones combined with intense green or purple hints.

StoneImpressions introduced an affordable collection of patterned tiles called Artisan Stone Tile. Artisan Stone Tiles can be produced in larger batches, contributing to the line’s affordability. Manufactured the same way as StoneImpressions tiles, Artisan Stone Tile products are created using an exclusive artist-developed process for hand-printing on natural stone.

New tools and installation materials:
LATICRETE introduced its newly redesigned Floor HEAT Wire. The new track design makes wire installation incredibly fast and easy thanks to the Effortless Clip System, which features pre-bent clips at precise and consistent clip distances for easy-to-understand spacing. Offered on a spool, Floor HEAT Wire is the same professional-grade heating element contractors know from LATICRETE mat systems.

MAPEI Corporation spotlighted the introduction of Ultralite Mortar Pro, a professional-grade, lightweight, single-component mortar that can be used for medium-bed and non-sag applications, as well as for thin-set installations. Its thixotropic properties make this an excellent choice for large-format tile installations on floors and walls, and this polymer-modified mortar is formulated with Easy Glide Technology for ease of application. Its unique Ultralite Technology provides twice the coverage of a standard thin-set mortar per pound (0.46kg) and can contribute to LEED points with more than 20 percent recycled content.

TEC/H.B. Fuller Construction Products Inc. refreshed grout options with its Design FX grout, available in crystal, silver and bronze, that has a reflective effect and accentuates the natural beauty of glass, mosaic and metal tile, while also complementing ceramic, porcelain and natural stone tile. Approved for interior and exterior use, Design FX grout can bring a high-end aesthetic to residential and moderate commercial environments and, because it can be fully submerged, it can also provide a unique accent for water applications, including swimming pools.

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