Encaustic porcelain tiles are, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful variants of tile on the market. With its patterned body, square format, and unique identity, it can instantly uplift even the simplest of designs. That is why it has a special place in our hearts and why our central focus is on several cement tile looks we offer here at TileBar that will churn out beautiful results in your next project.
First things first, let’s discuss exactly what encaustic tile is, since many of you may be unfamiliar.
Origins and History
While you can read the deep dive history on encaustic tile here, we want to give a quick summary of it so that you can appreciate it even more as you browse the selection we provide below.
Traditional encaustic cement tiles, meaning not ones with a porcelain body, were created by skilled artisans in the mid-1800s. They were made with a mix of cement, sand, pigment, and mineral powders. After, this mix would be poured into a metal mold that held a pattern design, and was set. Before the cement style existed, encaustic tiles were primarily made from clay that was inlaid together in a pattern then fired in a kiln. As you can imagine, creating the tile was a labor intensive process that took a lot of time. The results were no-doubt gorgeous, but the price tag was often high. These tiles were reserved for the wealthiest of society. While times have changed, in terms of equipment, traditional encaustic styles still remain expensive on the market. For that reason, encaustic porcelain tiles have become popular.
Encaustic porcelain tiles offer a durability that the original just simply can’t. Since it is fired and sealed, with the pattern printed atop it, it is a more contemporary way to have the beauty without the price. Additionally, traditional encaustic tiles are very porous and as such, need to be sealed on a semi-consistent basis. This means, it could be a monthly job to keep up with the maintenance of the tile. For most people, this isn’t cost effective, and even if it were, it is a time investment.
Why Is Encaustic Porcelain Tile So Popular?
Most encaustic porcelain tiles can be laid in several ways to create a pattern that is of personal preference. The ability to switch up the placement of the tiles give way to unique or traditional designs. This freedom allows you to create a space true to yourself, or your client.
Not one to shy away from outdoor or indoor placement, this tile can be used in basically any area you can dream. It creates a striking visual for any patio or deck just as much as it does for a kitchen backsplash.
There is a limitless amount of patterns and colors at your disposal when it comes to encaustic tile. Whether you want cooler tones like blue, green, or purple, or warmer tones like red, pink, orange, you can get a complementary tile for every room you’re designing.
Where Can It Be Used?
Now that you’ve been briefed on the history of encaustic tile, allow us to familiarize you with its many use cases. After all, its gorgeousness can be used in a motley of settings within any home or any commercial space.
One area that has become a main focus of encaustic tile use is in the kitchen. With the onset of backsplashes that carry from the counter to the ceiling, encaustic has found its home as the star. It has the ability to tie a space together or be an element that makes it stand out.
Another area that is ripe with opportunity for encaustic tile is the bathroom where it can be used on the floors. Due to its body having a textural feel, it is great for traction, which works out since it’s a region of anyone’s space that needs it most.
Patios and Decks
Encaustic works well for outdoors, since it ages extremely well. Most of the encaustic tiles already have a worn-in feel to them, which works in their favor when battling out the elements of the outdoors.
Pro Tip: Go for red or orange tones since when they start to fade, it looks even more natural than blues or greens.
Fireplaces with tile has become a very creative and unique use case in recent times. It not only adds more of a characteristic to the area, but captivates alongside the fire. The application of encaustic works well to create a stunning, beautiful design.
Explore Some of TileBar’s Encaustic Porcelain Tiles
We hope that this post has provided you some information on what encaustic is, what encaustic porcelain tile can do for you, and some inspiration on using this beautiful tile type in your next design. Comment below and let us know what you thought!
See some encaustic style tiles that you like? Take advantage of our sample program. We offer you 4 tile samples of your choice for $10. What’s more, you get to enjoy free shipping.