Liza Watermeyer, Retail Display Manager of Tile Africa, lets us in on the design and renovation trends showcased at the exclusive International Cersaie Exhibition
Every year, Tile Africa sends a team of experts to Cersaie, the international exhibition of ceramic tile and bathroom furnishings, which takes place in Bologna, Italy. It’s the perfect aesthetic setting after all, one of the first tiled floors, designed by a celebrated artist, was placed in the chapel of San Petronio in Bologna in 1487.
Cersaie offers industry leaders an insider preview of what to look forward to when it comes to new trends in tiles, bathroom and interior design. “For us, it ensures we’re always on top of those trends,” says Liza Watermeyer, Retail Display Manager of Tile Africa, who attended the exhibition. “Most exhibitors had beautiful lifestyle settings, transporting you into a space that would inspire anyone to start renovating,” says Liza.
Now back home in South Africa, Liza shares what’s in store when it comes to tiling and bathroom design.
It’s in the details!
When it comes to beautiful design, it’s all about the details. Well thought out, considered details are being used across décor and design, to truly transform the sensory experience. “Finer details appeal to the customer, because they allow you to create an individual, bespoke look in your home or workplace,” says Liza.
In the bathroom…
Bathrooms will be beautifully designed with practicality in mind. Look out for baths and basins made from materials that are resistant to stains, retain heat, have sustainable qualities and can be custom built. “We saw a lot of adaptable bathroom furniture that can fit together, the perfect solution for smaller bathrooms.” says Liza. “Mix a vanity with a shelf, for example. Whatever works for your space and lifestyle!”
When it comes to tiles, bathrooms are getting a lot of attention, with interesting combinations of field tiles (larger, usually floor tiles) being mixed with smaller tiles. If you’re looking for something a little more special, create patterns; the future of tiles will be all about texture. Go for a mosaic or branch out with 3D tiles, prints, patterns or metallic foil details. As for the colour? Go darker than neutral; brown and black featured across all styles.
In the kitchen… and living room
When it comes to design, we’re still seeing a lot of blurred lines between the living room and the kitchen. We love to eat, work, cook and live in the same space, and fittings and furnishings need to be agile to cater for different uses. Mixing looks and sizes provides interest when integrating these spaces.
Tiling your kitchen? Glazed ceramics like metro and brick-shaped tiles in interesting materials like glass, cement, wood and stone are perfect for your walls. This allows you to play with your kitchen aesthetics, whether it’s futuristic, vintage industrial or naturally beautiful.
Large format, rectangle porcelain tiles, in the 1200 x 600mm size, are the ultimate in trend forward floor applications. Others sizes to keep in mind are 600 x 600mm and 800 x 800mm. These formats are available in matt, gloss and lapatto surfaces. The looks include, marble, cement and stone. Soft wood look planks, mixed with these looks and forming part of the tilling layout, are also a key trend for the floor. Mixing looks and sizes provides interest and solutions when integrating these spaces.
In your outdoor area…
The big trend to look for when renovating your outdoor area is anything linked to nature. Natural stone, stone-look tiles and wood-look tiles would all work outdoors – and are very popular at the moment. But, again, we’re looking to practicality too. Porcelain products can withstand extreme weather conditions and slip-resistant tiles, in stone and cement, are a must – especially around a pool. “Mix stone and cement for an eclectic style, or use the cement look on its own, to create a no-fuss Modern Metro Style,” says Liza.
It’s clear that trends are moving in the direction of sustainable, agile spaces. We’re celebrating unique living spaces that work with our lifestyles. Keep your renovations bespoke, practical and environmentally sound. “Craftsmanship is valued, as is a need to conserve the resources we have left. These must be considered hand-in-hand with our style choices,” says Liza.
The greatest takeaway from Cersaie is to be bold, and not be afraid to experiment with colour, material and more. Eclectic beats uniform, and as long as you focus on the details, you can proudly make your own unique mark on your spaces.