There has been a shift in home interiors in the past few years with New Zealanders moving towards more organic looks that represent their natural surroundings and create a relaxed, down-to-earth feeling. This can be achieved through simplistic design, earthy colours and natural materials. When it comes to flooring, timber is a common theme. While natural wooden floors bring a relaxed and warm feel to the space they do require care and maintenance especially in wet areas. Porcelain timber look tiles are the perfect alternative! They give the best of both worlds, a hard-wearing surface that will look as good in 50 years as the day it was installed whilst being a low-maintenance option.
Tile technology has advanced leaps and bounds in the past 10 years and one of the major improvements is in realistic ink jet printing on porcelain tiles, giving us incredible wood look tile design. Timber look tiles are created with a punch that creates indentations and grain in the tile for an ultra-realistic surface. You can tell a good quality timber look tile by the variation in punches over different pieces, essential for a rustic style tile such as Jacaranda Patina 200x1200 (below). Porcelain tile is a great medium for a distressed effect of faded paint or a burnt finish, you can achieve the look of recovered timber without the cost of sourcing and the worry of how it will degrade over time.
Practicality is key
Unlike real timber, porcelain tiles are impervious to water, hard wearing, won’t scratch and won’t fade or go yellow in the sun. They are easy to keep clean and don’t need special cleaning treatments and being porcelain, they also have an excellent fire rating. These practical attributes make them a great option for busy homes. Its the low maintenance and practicality of timber look tiles that sets them apart from natural wood, lino or other flooring options.
How do I care for my tiles?
Ceramic and porcelain tiles are one of the most easily maintained flooring materials. Generally, any household cleaner or even soap and warm water will do the job. You may also consider sealing the tiles to keep dirt off the pores of the tile and the grout. Check out our How To Clean Tiles guide.
How the tiles are laid will have a big influence on how the space is viewed and feels. The most common and simplest way to lay planks is Staggered lay or Brick, there are other popular patterns such as Herringbone and Stack Lay. To get the best out of any plank shaped tiles, it is recommended that the tile is laid in a third or quarter pattern to avoid lippage of the tiles. This pattern also gives a certain amount of continuity and is visually pleasing. We encourage the use of levelling systems when laying planks, check out Levolution system, a quick and efficient way to lay plank tiles.
Top Left: Herringbone, Top Right: Staggered lay, Bottom: Stack Lay.
Where to use timber look tiles
Unlike some other types of flooring, there are no rules as to where you can or cannot lay porcelain tiles. Porcelain tiles are highly durable, water resistant, frost resistant, stain resistant, easy to maintain and clean and suitable for interiors and exteriors. They can be installed in bathrooms, kitchens, hallways, and even outdoor patios and pool decks (grip finish), where humidity and dampness would make wooden flooring impractical. Porcelain tiles are a great option for areas with high UV and families with kids and pets, it really is just a matter of finding the right tile to suit the surrounding.
Spa like bathroom
Treverkage Beige 100x700 (Made in Italy)
Magnolia 200x1200 (Made in Brazil)
Fuss Free Kitchen
Etic Rovere Venice Matt 250x1500 (Made in Italy)
Entrance and Hallway
Koala Natural Matt 200x1200 (Made in Italy)
Breath White Matt 225x900 (Made in Italy)
Breath Natural Matt 225x900 (Made in Italy)
Breath Grey Matt 225x900 (Made in Italy)
Etic Rovere 225x900 (Made in Italy) Also available in outdoor grip finish.
Breath Cognac Matt 225x900 (Made in Italy)
At Tile Space we have a huge range of timber look tiles, in all sorts of colours and variations. Pop into your nearest store and one of our expert design consultants can show you all of the options, or browse our range of timber look tiles.