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Porcelain stoneware in the kitchen: where you can use large or small sizes

There are numerous advantages of choosing porcelain stoneware for the kitchen. It represents the ideal worktop for the kitchen, and represents the best choice for walls.

Porcelain stoneware is an extremely versatile material, in fact it can be created by recreating various effects, from stone to wood, from concrete to resin. In general, it adapts to being positioned both inside and outside the house in the outdoor version.

Tiles from "Supreme" collection by Flaviker
Tiles from “Supreme” collection by Flaviker

It is perfect to be placed even in more particular environments that require greater attention such as the kitchen.

The kitchen worktop is generally made using large format slabs. It must be made of resistant, water-repellent materials that can be cleaned easily, all characteristics of porcelain stoneware. This material also allows for high durability, its colours are not altered over time, but remain vivid and brilliant.

Tiles by 41zero42
Tiles by 41zero42

Porcelain stoneware is the result of firing particular clays at very high temperatures, whether it is full body or simple porcelain stoneware is the ideal solution because it has high resistance to temperatures, it is not a porous material, a fundamental characteristic for kitchen environments , as the absence of porosity makes it impermeable to water and stains, resistant to acids and solvents. Stoneware is a durable material that is resistant to the action of any chemical substances and to the formation of humidity.

Being a versatile material, it allows you to obtain multiple effects, depending on the style of the settings. It presents a plurality of finishes and finishes that are able to satisfy even the most particular and refined tastes. From wood effect, to marble and even terracotta or concrete, it is possible to imitate any type of material to obtain the desired style, up to the effect of traditional ceramics with ad hoc created dyschromia to imitate the natural product.

Tiles by Elios Ceramiche
Tiles by Elios Ceramiche

The versatility of porcelain stoneware is emphasised by small sized tiles, various companies offer reduced modules, ideal for decorating kitchen walls.

Small sized tiles are once again the protagonists of the collections of many companies, which link tradition and contemporary design. The porcelain stoneware used to cover the backsplash is the ideal choice for the kitchen, in fact the absence of alterations over time is a fundamental characteristic. Whether it is with a geometric pattern or collections inspired by the elegance of stone or marble, with warm and enveloping colours, for contemporary and modern atmospheres, stoneware faithfully reproduces any type of material. Stoneware tiles are easy to clean, resistant to stains and together with the antibacterial treatment, available on request, it is able to remove 99% of bacteria.

Tiles from "Rebel" collection by Flaviker
Tiles from “Rebel” collection by Flaviker

For a refined and elegant style, it is always good to think ahead of the general kitchen project by defining the style and the selected color shades and matching the covering to the worktop, to the tone of the walls and to the finish of the doors, in contrast or tone on tone, in order not to make mistakes.

Whatever style is chosen for the kitchen, stoneware is able to satisfy any need.

Tiles from "Supreme Evo" collection by Flaviker
Tiles from “Supreme Evo” collection by Flaviker

In our Gallery, you can find inspiration on styles and combinations in the kitchen, always using porcelain stoneware coverings.

Matching colours in Interior Design.

Part 2

The combination of colours in interior design requires technical knowledge and a strong aesthetic sense.

The choice of materials and the related colour and texture palettes should not be neglected in the early stages of the project but is made in the initial design phase, so that the final result is coherent in all its aspects.

The pros rely on the Chromatic Circle, which we have already mentioned in the previous post (Go to the post “Match the colours in Interior Design part 1”). It is a device that was developed by Johannes Itten. It helps us to match colours which are divided into primary, secondary and tertiary. The primary colours are yellow, blue and red. By mixing them, you will have the secondary colours, green, orange and purple. At the outermost part of the circle we have the tertiary colours, which are the sum of the secondary and tertiary colours.

Tiles on the moodboard: "One" collection by 41zero42
Tiles on the moodboard: “One” collection by 41zero42

In this post we talk about how you can describe colour through the attributes of hue, brightness and saturation.

In color theory, the hue is the “pure” color perceived by the human visual system, or linked to a narrow spectrum or single emission line within the visible spectrum called optical spectrum. Red, green and yellow are examples of tints. The hues are sorted in the color wheel. In the moodboards presented, there is an example of different colours and different hues and of different colours and the same hue.

Brightness specifies the amount of white or black in the color. The most important brightness scale is the grey axis, that is the chromatic scale. In the moodboards you can find examples of different colours and the same brightness.

Tiles in the moodboard: "Buildtech 2.0" collection by Floorgres
Tiles in the moodboard: “Buildtech 2.0” collection by Floorgres

The third attribute of color is Saturation which is defined as the intensity of a color. A highly saturated tint has a bright, vivid color. As the saturation decreases, the color becomes more muted, dull, and greyish.

In the images we have some examples of creations using porcelain stoneware floors and walls by choosing different colours but the same tint.

We’ll still talk about color on our Blog and we’ll tackle other topics related to chromatic choices in interior design.

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Wood-effect porcelain stoneware and original parquet, which one to choose?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of both solutions and examples of realisations.

Choosing a wood-effect tile, or the original parquet, can sometimes be difficult. Let’s analyse the pros and cons of both solutions.

The advantages of porcelain stoneware, compared to classic parquet, are many. The first feature that distinguishes it is resistance to abrasion, chemical and atmospheric agents and stains. Being an industrial product, it is subjected to laboratory tests to guarantee total efficiency from the point of view of technical performance.

Tiles from "Ekho" collection by Supergres
Tiles from “Ekho” collection by Supergres
Tiles from "Ekho" collection by Supergres
Tiles from “Ekho” collection by Supergres

On the other hand, natural parquet undergoes the wear and tear of time and this aspect makes it lived-in and original. Parquet tells the story of those who live there and those who love it.

On an aesthetic level, we can say that, thanks to new technologies, the atmosphere of real wood is perfectly recreated. However, it is undeniable that porcelain stoneware follows a graphic pattern which, although differentiated, repeats itself.

Tiles from "Ekho" collection by Supergres
Tiles from “Ekho” collection by Supergres

Instead, the original parquet presents the characteristic of the uniqueness of each single plank, made possible by the mere fact of being a natural product.

Another disadvantage of porcelain stoneware is the lack of heat to the touch and trampling on bare feet that wood has. This last aspect can be partially overcome thanks to the use of underfloor heating, which brings the temperature of the tile to a pleasant thermal level in the winter months.

Tiles from "Ekho" collection by Supergres
Tiles from “Ekho” collection by Supergres

Another not negligible difference is the cost. If we compare good stoneware to good parquet, it goes without saying that the tile has a decidedly lower cost per square meter than the natural material.

Another element in favour of porcelain stoneware is that it can also be installed outdoors, when you want to give continuity to the flooring from inside to outside.

Obviously, traditional parquet cannot be used for outdoor flooring and you should instead choose a wood suitable for outdoor use which differs from the classic indoor parquet flooring.

Tiles from "Ekho" collection by Supergres
Tiles from “Ekho” collection by Supergres
Tiles from "Ekho" collection by Supergres
Tiles from “Ekho” collection by Supergres

To the advantage of wood-effect porcelain stoneware, there is the possibility of choosing, in the same essence and format, important thicknesses such as 2 and 3 cm, where the need arises, such as in walkways and gardens, also suitable for vehicles.

Large porcelain stoneware slabs with minimum thicknesses.

In recent years, the ceramic market has increasingly offered large porcelain stoneware slabs instead of the common tile. This trend began a few years ago with the tendency to offer increasingly large tiles, maintaining the classic 1 cm thickness, up to today the large slabs of two meters or more, which however have incredibly low thicknesses of 2/3/6 mm.

Slabs from "Grande" collections by Marazzi
Slabs from “Grande” collections by Marazzi

Once the choice has been made by the architect, the problem of handling and installing these slabs arises. The slabs are packed in wooden crates which contain several pieces.
If it is a small quantity, the handling can be done manually by inserting the fit edge guards and using a pair of suction cups to lift. Two people handle the slabs. Using a lifting kit it is possible to use a trolley to move the slabs once they have been removed from the packaging.

Slabs from "Grande" collections by Marazzi
Slabs from “Grande” collections by Marazzi

When the installation phase begins, it is often necessary to drill holes. The circular holes must be practical no more than 5 cm from the edge and the incision must take place at an angle of 75 degrees. Then a flared drill is used to make the edges more homogeneous.
Even the cut-outs for power sockets should not be traced beyond 5 cm from the outer edge. Four small holes must be made in each corner and then cut along the track with a diamond disc grinder. The edges must be finished using Velcro diamond backers.

Slabs from "Grande" collections by Marazzi
Slabs from "Grande" collections by Marazzi

For the processing of the edges it is necessary to use a device equipped with a diamond cutter.
To make a straight manual cut, you need to make the incision without pausing and at a constant cutting speed and pressure and detach the scored part at both ends with a cutting pliers.
To make a rectangular cut instead, you need to trace the edges using a drill or grinder with a 6-8 mm diamond tip or cutter and then cut along the track with a diamond disc grinder and use equipment equipped with a diamond disc to work the edges.

Slabs from "Grande" collections by Marazzi
Slabs from “Grande” collections by Marazzi

We now come to the part of the actual installation.
First of all, the planarity of the laying surface must be checked using a spirit level. Prepare a suitable adhesive and spread it on the substrate using a trowel with 6-9 mm teeth and also spread the glue on the slab using the double spreading technique, which prevents the product from forming air bubbles or empty spaces between the slab and the substrate.
The expected joint is normally 2 mm and is marked using special spacers with a self-levelling system.

Once this operation has been completed, the joints must be grouted, usually with a tone-sur-tone grout with respect to the color of the chosen slabs. The excess grout must be removed using a sponge soaked in water and the first cleaning must be carried out with water in a diagonal direction.

Slabs from "Grande" collections by Marazzi
Slabs from "Grande" collections by Marazzi

The second cleaning, if necessary, can be done using an acid solution diluted in water to remove any grout residue. Once again the final wash will be with water.
The final effect will be minimal, clean and elegant.

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The antibacterial porcelain stoneware created with the use of titanium dioxide.

The health emergency of recent years has led people to pay greater attention to germs and bacteria. Even surfaces can contribute to the healthiness of environments. An important role in floor hygiene is certainly attributed to the materials used to cover the surfaces.
In this period, hygiene is a subject of extreme interest, and the market is looking for tiles that can be cleaned easily.

Marble Active collection by Iris Ceramica with Marble Active technology
Marble Active collection by Iris Ceramica with Marble Active technology

The floor is one of the surfaces highly exposed to potential contamination, through direct contact with shoes, animal paws and dirt of various kinds.
The flooring market has already been offering surfaces with a high antibacterial power for several years.
The antibacterial tiles have undergone chemical treatments that have the ability to neutralise microbes and bacteria, there are different types and brands.

Marble Active collection by Iris Ceramica with Marble Active technology
Marble Active collection by Iris Ceramica with Marble Active technology

Porcelain stoneware is a material that is hygienic by nature, because it is free of toxic substances, such as volatile organic compounds, formaldehyde or PVC. Porcelain stoneware, with the addition of titanium dioxide, represents a safer solution, because it provides complete hygiene and facilitates cleaning of the floor.

Particles of a mineral nature are added to the stoneware, which cause an effective antibacterial action. This action is capable of killing 99.9% of the main bacterial strains: Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The treatment carried out on stoneware also allows it not to be altered over time, it does not require particular light to activate and, in the presence of humidity, tends to increase the beneficial effects. The bacterial protection is distributed within the product during processing, and allows it to be active for a long period of time and cannot be removed. Titanium dioxide is a compound capable of degrading organic compounds.

Marmoker collection by Casalgrande Padana with Bios Antibacterial ®HYDROTECT technology
Marmoker collection by Casalgrande Padana with Bios Antibacterial ®HYDROTECT technology

The benefits of antibacterial porcelain stoneware are many: it is more effective than classic disinfectants, and it also represents the most suitable solution for the environment, as it guarantees sanitisation without necessarily resorting to the use of chemical agents.

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Decorating the house by elegantly inserting a laundry area

Very often, when designing a new home, we tend to focus on the aesthetic aspect rather than the practical one. It is always useful for the house to be made up of functional areas, while always keeping in mind the taste and desires of the owners in terms of style and aesthetics. Bringing the aesthetic aspect together with the practical one should be the soul of every project in order not to make mistakes to regret later.

During everyday life there are primary needs that transcend style and aesthetics, one of these is the laundry area, which must be designed intelligently to prevent the gestures to be performed in small spaces from becoming more difficult and harmful every day.

Spazio Time by Idea Group
Spazio Time by Idea Group

Creating a functional laundry area at home is a requirement that will allow you to experience domestic spaces in a more practical and tidy way. Whether large or small, the laundry area has only one imperative: perfect organisation to ensure maximum functionality.

An architect will be able to propose a project with attention to the smallest details, and will be able to obtain a laundry area, even from small spaces, in fact to insert a washing machine and a dryer, only 1.5 meters are needed. If space is limited, you can opt for a column unit, where the dryer and washing machine are placed one below the other. In this way the laundry area will develop vertically, in doing so the bathroom will be furnished in a refined but also practical way, in fact the tall unit allows you to obtain a laundry area, perfect for those who do not have much space and time available.

Spazio Time by Idea Group
Spazio Time by Idea Group

If, on the other hand, space permits, the washing machine and dryer can be placed side by side, optically creating perfect order and a support surface where you can also insert a sink, useful for pre-washing garments or for very delicate items. Today the sink is inserted more frequently and even if you have limited space and it is possible to insert it without neglecting the aesthetics, being able to choose between different captivating solutions, including marble, resin, ceramic or polypropylene. Generally the materials to choose from for the sink, the most elegant, as well as the most resistant remain ceramic, which also ensures excellent hygiene. The ceramic sink can also be combined with the remaining furniture, such as the laundry basket.

Spazio Time by Idea Group
Spazio Time by Idea Group

Ceramic and in particular porcelain stoneware is the most suitable choice for flooring and wall cladding in the laundry area. A porcelain stoneware tile, in addition to providing a resistant and stain-resistant support, can reproduce any surface, through the use of digital printing, and recreate an elegant marble, stone or parquet effect.

To save a little space, accessories such as shelves, wall units or columns should not be underestimated, which make the context more practical, allowing you to store detergents, soaps and sponges and hide them from view.

Even for the laundry room, the rule of choosing the most suitable materials applies, with stain-resistant surfaces and you can opt for PVC furniture that also provides a protective as well as aesthetic action.

Spazio Time by Idea Group
Spazio Time by Idea Group

The wooden furniture gives warmth to the laundry area and is suitable for containing the sink or for containing soaps and detergents. A wooden structure, whether treated, enamelled or lacquered, also ensures solidity to the piece of furniture.

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Nature inspires interior design. Biophilia as the main theme of the graphics, Jungle and foliage also on the tiles.

Contact with nature improves the quality and expectations of life, giving an immediate feeling of well-being. One suggestion to obtain this effect in a room is to include some elements in an interior design project, whether they are furnishings or finishes, which recall the feeling of being immersed in nature.

Hot Blue Wild tile from "Artwork" collection by Boxer Mosaics
Hot Blue Wild tile from “Artwork” collection by Boxer Mosaics

Speaking of porcelain stoneware tiles, digital printing has allowed the creation of graphics that take us directly to the most distant tropical forests, evoking the charm of exotic landscapes or in a flowery field or simply in a wood.

The decorative subjects are varied, with no limits to creativity and can also be personalised. This allows infinite design solutions even with stylised and more refined subjects.

Tiles from "Artwork" collection by Boxer Mosaics
Tiles from “Artwork” collection by Boxer Mosaics

Whether they are applied to a kitchen, a living room or a bathroom, they can only have a positive effect on mood.

A graphic that has currently found a lot of success among designers and architects is the Jungle effect. The wall will acquire depth and will be inhabited by tigers, lions and parrots, the existing prints are varied and also present many alternatives in terms of color palette.

There are various formats on the market, from the smallest tiles to the largest formats, designed to obtain the suitable covering for the design requirements.

Opting for an accent wall is also a good solution to give character to sophisticated environments such as restaurants and bars or relaxation corners inside offices.

Tiles from Alchimia collection by Marazzi
Tiles from Alchimia collection by Marazzi

Stoneware, as always, represents the most suitable solution, and is a very versatile material, which ensures residence and durability over time, and the various prints make it perfect also from an aesthetic point of view.

In fact, porcelain stoneware lends itself well to being used in any environment, it is waterproof and resistant, which makes it perfect for a bathroom or to cover the walls of the kitchen.

"Lyric" tile from Artistic Mosaic collection by Trend Group
“Lyric” tile from Artistic Mosaic collection by Trend Group

If you would like to learn more about the technical characteristics of porcelain stoneware, you will find several posts in our blog.

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