Is Tile Trendy or Timeless: Why Not Both?

Feras Irikat, Director of Design & Marketing, Lunada Bay Tile, does not believe in trends. "Transitioning, Transforming and Transmitting—not trendy. That's tile," Irikat says.

"More than ever, people are looking for personal expression in their homes, and tile design can help achieve this," he says. Tile helps to make a design cohesive and complete -- in every room in the home. No longer confined to the kitchen backsplash or shower wall, tile can be used artfully to create accent walls in living and dining rooms, as a decorative frame for a doorway or on ceilings, and of course more prominently in outdoor spaces. Tile projects a luxurious, high-end feel while remaining practical and functional.

What makes something "trendy", offers Irikat, is the misuse of the material or style or color, and if you use tile properly in the right room then it glitters like a perfect starlit night on the French Riviera.

Tile is a Long-term Investment

According to Irikat, the first thing people should do is define the duration they think they need to maximize their investment. "The rule of thumb is at least seven to 10 years, so the idea of creating something and having it remain relevant over a decade is a myth. Functionality and lifestyles are evolving and changing constantly."

Irikat offers this advice: "If you have good quality products, installed well, they will look good forever even if they're no longer in style -- as long as they fit your own personal style. You must live with it--yours is the only opinion that matters. Someone once told me, 'If you're renovating with future buyers in mind, then you're basically renting because you've lost the freedom to customize your space'."

When Trends Are Timeless

Incorporating a specific trend requires understanding what really contributes to a space. The most important thing is the overall environment; it's not just about one aspect of it, or one element. Consider, Irikat says, Japanese style. "This is a great example of how trends can have longevity because you're taking something that has a deep historic relevance and updating it with livable colors and textures. This is a perfect process of fusion--fusing a trend with something a little bit more traditional, so that it resonates stronger and longer."

Lunada Bay Tile's Shinju ceramic collections demonstrate this. Shinju, which means "pearl" in Japanese, translates the shimmer of pearls, the ridges of oyster shells, the surrounding reefs, and the movement of the ocean into a handcrafted ceramic tile series. Just as time and place affects an oyster's appearance, and the pearls they create, the texture and color of Shinju reflects the light and style of its surroundings and brings a new updated twist to Japanese style. Or consider Graphite, a handcrafted ceramic series offering an expanding variety of options for personal expression. From subtly textured charcoal surfaces to metallic bronze, and colorful artistic pigments -- the juxtaposition of color, light, and shadow evokes emotion, drama, and contemplation.

Rather than follow the latest erstwhile trend, think about mixing and matching colors, patterns, or materials, the more unique and enduring your space will be. Wood, stone, and ceramics can work together to achieve a truly bespoke design: a space that is simple and sophisticated yet highly personalized. Vesuvio is a mixed media mosaic series that combines glimmering glass with natural white marble. Elegant yet durable, the natural stone creates a beauty only achieved after millions of years of nature working her magic. The glass is evocative of semi-precious stone found in volcanic formations. In concert, the simple geometric patterns become the timeless foundation for many interior styles.

Neutrals and colors that are inspired by nature form a perfect backdrop for more trendy accessories and accompaniments. These can be greens, blues, or calming neutrals. They are colors that reignite our passion to nature....what is surprising, and unique and soothing. People want to interact with their environment more than we have in the past. It is nature as designer: Biophilic design seeks to connect building occupants more closely to nature by incorporating things like natural lighting and ventilation, natural landscape features and other elements for creating a more productive and healthier built environment for people. People desire natural and organic textures for added interest and design value.

"A sometimes overlooked aspect of designing a space is texture, especially when it comes to tiles," says Irikat. "Texture in tiles delivers depth and interest, and this tactile quality adds a touch of personality." The Linen collection is distinct and concise with its representation of a traditional linen material. Consider the unique interplay of texture and color: textured tiles can either emphasize or soften the vibrancy of hues in a room, depending on the surrounding interior elements.