Thursday, July 30, 2009

Artisan Spotlight: ModCraft, A Modern Craftworks

Another product of New York (see this week’s Splash of the Week)  and headed by David Clark, Modcraft started small in Brooklyn in 1999.  Now, from their headquarters in Beacon, New York, these folks are spitting out modern works of stoneware art the likes of which you’ve never seen……unless, of course you’ve been to the company website already. 

Not just tile, the ModCraft artisans create high-relief beauties with a contemporary slickness that makes them cool, not cold.  See for yourself:



Select from five styles and oodles of colors/finishes.  And yes,  you can go custom.  Use your imagination.  Think bathrooms………




……and lighting?!


Please continue to support the (tile) arts and visit ModCraft’s website.  All pictures courtesy and ModCraft’s Facebook page.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

A cool pool!

Tile edging on natural stone., originally uploaded by stileedge.

What a colorfully fun mix of natural sandstone and ceramic tile squares! Now, honey, I don't swim, but with a pool like this I'm awfully tempted to take a dip!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Splash of the Week: Fresh and Fabulous!

What a great way to wake up an otherwise non-descript kitchen space!  Fresh flowers always make a fabulous accessory, but these beauties won’t wilt!

DCF 1.0

 lori d poppies backsplash 2

This work of art was created by Lori Desormeaux, a multi-talented decorative artist straight out of Buffalo, New York!  By multi, I mean wall finishes, murals, frescoes, marbleizing, faux finishing, AND glass and tile mosaics.  This lady is good and Lori’s website is a must see!

Photos courtesy of Lori of Lori Desormeaux Decorative Arts.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sweet dreams!

Yes, you can use tile in the bedroom (and not just on the floor)! Love this installation using porcelain tile from GranitiFiandre S.p.A.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Artisan Spotlight: BonTon Handmade Ceramic Tile

Founded by Mary Anderson, a self described tile industry vet and Kurt Anderson, V. P. of Sales and Marketing, the master sculptors at BonTon Designs create handmade ceramic works of art.  More than unique, the finished installations are simply beautiful.  See for yourself.

BonTon Sig Diamond Veruca Red Men’s room featuring BonTon’s Signature Diamond in Veruca Red


BonTon Poppies Ladies’ room featuring BonTon’s Poppies

Select from the many “designs inspired by Art Nouveau, Art Deco, and the Arts and Crafts movements” or go custom!  Just imagine……

BonTon DisqueO BonTon Tivoli

……so many shapes, so many colors……


……and girls, they make handbags, too!  I saw some of these cuties at Coverings in Chicago.  Love ‘em!

Please support the (tile) arts and visit BonTon’s website.  All photos courtesy or BonTon’s Facebook page.

When you think tile, your mind may automatically go to the likes of American Olean, Florida Tile, Crossville, or Dal.  The well-known, super-manufacturers/importers of ceramics, porcelains, glass, stone, and more offer consumers a wealth of product options at affordable prices, while not sacrificing quality.   They have also done a fabulous job, over time, of building a reputation and marketing it to their target very well.  Although I often feature their products here, let’s face it, they don’t need any help from me!  Anybody that knows me knows that I am passionate about tile, so for my own selfish reasons, each week I will feature an artisan tile manufacturer to promote their business and recognize their labor for the love of tile!  

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Simply stunning!

Beautiful Glass Fireplace 2, originally uploaded by greg_fordham.

The fireplace is already the focal point of any space, so why not make it fabulous? Greg Fordham of Fordham Building and Design did just that with this clear glass running bond (or brick lay) installation on his client's woodburner! I love the lines of the mantle, and the slate hearth keeps the remodel from being too modern, while giving the design some weight.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Splash of the Week: A Knock-Out!

I thought it would be fun to start the week (and every week from now on) with a splash!  After watching HGTV’s Showdown, selecting the first “Splash of the Week” was easy!

You’ve seen the show, I’m sure.  It’s when  HGTV celebrity hosts (some of them really are designers and/or architects) compete in teams of two to create a successful makeover of a space for one lucky homeowner.  This all must be done on set within 4 hours, cameras rolling!  The homeowner(s) must  select the best design and their reward is to have the winning design completed in their home.  It is truly fun to watch!

This week: Vern Yip vs. Angelo Surmelis in the kitchen!  I knew that Vern was going to win.  Vern always wins.  His team created a clean transitional space with room for a family.  He listened to his client and added warmth with the color palette and the cabinetry, but made it funky with what?  You guessed it………the backsplash!


The client’s kitchen/mudroom space before.


Vern Yip’s winning design.


The black & white Italian mosaics that dealt the knock-out blow!

Click to see Angelo’s design and more on HGTV’s Showdown!  All photos courtesy of

Thursday, July 16, 2009

A model kitchen combo!

Don’t miss tonight’s episode of TVLand’s modeling competition for women over the age of 35!  With only six contestants left, the ladies battle it out in a “working mom” photo shoot featuring two kids, a dog, and a fun backsplash/floor tile combination!


I’m loving how the simple splash design was livened-up with a mix of bright color!  Bringing that same color into the floor with a few clipped corners keeps it from completely blending into the cabinetry without distracting too much attention from the real “star” of the show!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Bathing Beauty

Tiled Bathroom, originally uploaded by House Beautiful.

With a color combination that is both classic and contemporary, the Moroccan Cross and Star tiles by Ann Sacks make this bathroom timeless! Featured in the May 2009 issue of House Beautiful.

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Perfect Patio

I hope that everyone enjoyed the holiday weekend!  I certainly did. There simply is no better way to celebrate our independence than to gather with family and friends around a smoky BBQ pit under a warm July sun.  Between the pork steaks (it’s a Saint Louis thing………you wouldn’t understand), the water gun fights, and the many, many fireworks shows, I found myself daydreaming about the perfect patio.

Patios, I thought, are so often poorly designed.  Usually crafted by the outdoorsy DIYer limited by what he can find at the local big box!  Unsophisticated squares that hardly ever reflect the style of the homeowner and unable to stand the test of time!  The patio is key to a comfortable outdoor living space, so why not make it fabulous?  Here is some inspiration.

Quarry_Naturals_Desert American Olean, Quarry Naturals in Desert


ModM16_PatioGrillCrossville, WeatherStone in Summer Cloud with Modern Mythology


Kibak_rug   Ann Sacks, Kibak Rug


UnionSquare Daltile, Union Square

Whether you go casual or very formal, simple or decoratively detailed, find the porcelain tile to make it happen.  You have 363 days!