Floor Tiles

7 Top Tile Trends And Styles For 2021

April 27,2022 by Jo Brown

This kitchen reflects three of the top seven tile trends -- oversized, stone look and blue hues! Techlam, Levantina – Tile of Spain

If you’re planning a kitchen or bath remodel, you probably have a budget for tile. If you’re planning an outdoor living space, you may have one too, as pavers are growing in popularity. In many Sunbelt states, tile is also popular for bedrooms and living areas for its coolness underfoot.

These are the leading tile trends for residential projects, according to the organizers of Coverings, the largest stone and tile show in the United States. The association that produces the event, scheduled to take place in person this coming July in Orlando, is comprised of the three organizations representing the North American, Italian and Spanish porcelain and ceramic exporters. This is what they’re seeing for the new year. Which styles will end up in your projects?

1. Biophilia

Biophilia incorporates the wood-look trend, creating a strong indoor-outdoor vibe. Berry, Argenta – Tile of Spain

Ceramic tile designs are moving to more natural and untreated wood looks, as the timber elements evoke calm environments and a sense of nature. These natural inspirations are part of an overall trend toward wellness design, a definite growth industry since the start of the pandemic.

2. Spa Style

Nature-inspired tones and textures designed to evoke, sand, sea and sky are trending. Metropoli, Vives – Tile of Spain

This trend ties into biophilia, as well, and is a way to bring the outdoors inside during 2021, when so many are still stuck at home. The soft blues and greens, the textured neutrals are meant to be relaxing and evoke sky, forest, sand and sea. The tones will be muted to create a spa-like feel.

3. Oversized

Oversized tiles can be massive slabs or geometrics like these floor and wall hexagons for adding ... [+] interest. Imperial Stone, Stonepeak Ceramics – Tile Council of North America

Extra-large ceramic tiles tie into wellness design, too, as they simplify home maintenance. Large-format tiles now come in sizes up to 5.25 feet by 10.5 feet, and thicknesses ranging from .14 inches to slightly thicker than three-quarters of an inch. These slabs are being used for countertops, shower walls, tables and other large designs.

Large hexagonal tiles also fit into the oversized trend, and add geometric interest to a space.

4. Stone Cold

Tiles that look like natural stone are still a strong trend. Ravena, Azulejos Benadresa – Tile of Spain

Many of these extra-large ceramic tile slabs are designed to look like marble and other precious stones. The printing technology is such that book-matching veins across a bank of cabinets or a suite of shower walls is achievable and realism is stronger than ever. Unlike natural marble and stone, though, the porcelain imitators are non-porous and low maintenance.

5. Retro Concrete Inspirations

These playful patterns evoke retro concrete tiles, and make personalization easier for designers and ... [+] clients. Soda, Ceramica Bardelli – Ceramics of Italy

Another set of imitators takes on the retro concrete tile trend. These low maintenance alternatives incorporate playful patterns that add creative flair to any space. With personalization such a strong wellness trend for 2021, concrete tiles are poised to play a strong role.

6. Updated Terrazzo

Terrazzo styles inspired the latest flecked tile looks. Loft, Porcelaingres by Fiandre – Tile Council of North America

This trend keeps reappearing, and offers a fun, energetic effect for indoor and outdoor rooms. From oversized to fine flecks, and small tiles to large slabs, the terrazzo effect offers unique, retro-inspired style options.

7. High Gloss

High gloss looks add dramatic glamour to a room. Lyon, Porcelanite Dos – Tile of Spain

High gloss is a trend likely to be embraced by those who crave glamor. Hopefully, they have household help, because unlike the trends listed above, this one needs upkeep. It’s also a surface to seriously consider applying a slip-resistant protective coat over to avoid painful falls, especially in wet environments like full bathrooms.

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