A variety of new and exciting tile and bathroom trends will soon make an appearance in SA. So says Kate van Niekerk, marketing manager for Tile Africa who recently attended the International Exhibition of Ceramic Tile and Bathroom Furnishings in Bologna, Italy.
Referred to as ‘Cersaie’, the event featured over 900 exhibitors who showcased all things tile and bathroom related ranging from ceramic tiles and bathroom furnishings to raw materials, ceramic equipment and displays for ceramic products. Over 75 000 visitors including architects, interior designers, building contractors, tile layers and retailers from around the world attended the event which is widely regarded as the most prestigious of its kind by the tile and bathroom industry.
Arguably one of the most interesting trends to hit the stands were 3D tiles says Van Niekerk. This new style of tile was showcased through the use of bold, “carved” and contemporary designs which really stood out she says. Metallic style feature walls also proved a hit at Cersaie. Paired with mirrors and crystals, Van Niekerk explains that these combinations made for glitzy, glamorous bathrooms which would suit those seeking statement bathrooms down to the ground.
![tiles](/ftpupload/UserImages/images/3D tiles.jpg "")
A number of new tiles and bathroom décor trends made possible by improved inkjet technology proved a hit at Cersaie. Thanks to advances made in this arena, all manner of imagery can now be printed on tiles including floral prints, funky and colourful graphics and geometric shapes. The new inkjet technology has also brought about the creation of stone-look ceramic tiles. The technology even creates tiles that imitate weathered wood caused by the sun and sea.
In terms of colour trends, Van Niekerk says that black and white was still very much in vogue at Cersaie but that bright colours such as citrus yellows, tangerine, lime, raspberry and red were also seen at most of the exhibition stands. ‘Metro’ or contemporary styles (which are great for bachelor pads or masculine bathrooms) were reportedly achieved through the use of shades of grey combined with crisp white.
In terms of bathroom ware, Van Niekerk noted that the use of wood is becoming increasingly popular. In some case she says wood was combined with ceramics and steel to create a sleek, modern and sophisticated look. Such combinations were put to particularly good use in baths and vanities.
Van Niekerk points out that while forward thinking, not all the trends seen at Cersaie are suitable for South African homes as they don’t necessarily appeal to local tastes and styles. That said, she says South African customers can look forward to more patterns on tiles, the use of bright colours, textures, combined materials and very modern looks in the near future.