The history of these beautiful tiles is quite a vivid one. While they can be found worldwide, the initial creation was initiated by William Boulton in 1863, where he originally used dust clay. Since then, you've been able to see these tiles everywhere, from France to Vietnam. They are found as a staple flooring in luxurious homes to chic and trending bars.
In addition, you can find them in New York, London, and Paris, as well as in a myriad of other countries. Places where the art form and style continue to be preserved and influenced by numerous regions and cultural inclusions from the Mediterranean areas, such as Spain and Italy, all the way out to Turkey. In many countries, the practice is still hand-making them in the original and traditional patterns to help provide that classic and timeless look.
How are encaustic tiles made?
The term itself hints at how these are made, which is the art of burning a glazed pattern on top of a tile. But, of course, it's also possible to do this with compression and cement tiles in more modern and manufactured ways. Yet even in this manufactured form, the pigments themselves are still poured by hand.
Benefits of choosing encaustic tiles?
These are an incredibly versatile and stylish product that works with nearly everything. It can be used beyond just flooring and as splashbacks or bathroom and kitchen walls. Whenever you see these encaustic tiles, you will notice that pop of style. Besides the style and history, using these tiles is a much more eco-friendly approach due to how they're formed since they're primarily made with natural components from clay pigments, and the process consumes less energy.
The best areas to use encaustic tiles?
Keep in mind that these are a bit heavier than other tile options. You should be fine if you've got the proper sub-base built in, whether the floor or wall. They are a porous material, so if they get wet (say, using them in a bathroom), they may fade a bit. You can reduce this fading with proper maintenance mentioned below. In the end, though, these tiles are actually meant to age as it will make them look even better!
What preparation do I need before installing encaustic tiles?
Keep these tiles dry. You always want to make sure they are also level and clean. Then you'll need to use a specialized sealant that will help seal them in from staining and eliminate their porous nature. A few coats of sealant later, with a drying time of around a couple of hours in between, should be enough to have them set properly. Always seal at least once before grouting!
What kind of maintenance do encaustic tiles need?
Clean with mild soap and water, and don't use harsh cleaning chemicals, such as bleach. You can consider adding more sealant or liquid-based wax if they lose their lustre. Keep in mind you'll need to polish them after. Every couple of years, you'll need to reseal them as you did during preparation due to them being a porous material. If you need to use grout, use cement-based grout and stick with darker colours
Any more questions?
If you have any more questions about encaustic cement tiles you can view our selection here. Also, please don't hesitate to get in touch with our expert and friendly design team by visiting our contact page!