Gloss or Matt Tiles: You Decide

When the time comes to redecorate your bathroom there are several things you need to consider such as the flooring: will you choose tiles or vinyl, which will complement the look of your new bathroom?. What colour will the wall tiles be? Will you install a splash back? These are all very important questions but besides the astatic qualities of your new bathroom, it is also important to consider the practical ones. Instead of thinking purely about the colour and material of your wall tiles you need to also think about which finish they will have: either gloss or matt and how these finishes can affect not only the look of your bathroom but also the way you use it.

‘Tile Empire’ supplies their customers with only the highest grade ceramic and porcelain tiles in both matt and gloss finishes. But which of these finishes is more suitable for you?

Tiles with a gloss finish are often installed into smaller bathrooms as the gloss surface reflects light and this will help your bathroom look a lot bigger than it actually is. The pictures below demonstrate this perfectly. Smaller gloss tiles in bold, bright colours such as those from ‘Tile Empires’ ‘Metro’ collection, also make your bathroom look a lot more spacious than bigger tiles in much darker more muted tones.

On the other hand the ‘Vanilla Cream Marble’ tiles have a matt finish which will give your bathroom a much more traditional look than the gloss tiles which are altogether more modern. The matt finish paired with the marble veining in the ‘Vanilla Cream Tiles’ will give your new bathroom a stunning vintage look and feel.

Because gloss tiles have a light reflecting surface this means they need a lot more care and cleaning than matt tiles do. If they are not cleaned regularly they will become dull and as a result your already small bathroom will look even smaller, defeating the purpose of install light reflecting gloss tiles. All of that care and cleaning may pay off as your bathroom will stay looking newer for much longer than a bathroom with matt tiles that scratch and stain a lot more easily than their gloss counterparts. Which may be a disadvantage if you have small children, in this case matt tiles may be more beneficial to have in your bathroom as they have a lot more grip when wet and you do not have to spend as long cleaning them as you would with gloss tiles, leaving you more time to spend with your family.

‘Tile Empire’ provide many more gloss and matt tiles for both bathrooms and kitchens, as you know matt and gloss tiles have pros and cons that will impact the look and the functionality of your bathroom in many different ways. Now it is left to you to decide which finish: gloss or matt will be more beneficial for you current lifestyle.


Beautiful Bathroom Collections

‘Tile Empire provide their customers with versatility, unique styles, designs and colours schemes that will look beautiful in any home modern or traditional, these features are present in all of their taps and showers , not just their tiles.

The ‘Alnwick’ collection features two beautifully designed shower systems, the first of which is the Alnwick Thermostatic Bar Valve’ that features a built in anti-scald device and a ceramic disc which means there are no washers to ware away or become loose over time. The ‘Alnwick Complete Shower’ also features this technology as well as several other features one of which is an automatic shut off feature in the unlikely event of a leak. Both of these showers are beautifully designed and come complete with chrome finishes which will update any bathroom perfectly.



The ‘Arley’ collection features a shower mixer, a bath filler and a basin mixer, all three of these items come complete with a stunning chrome finish, all of ‘Tile Empire’s bathroom fittings are copper plated with a chrome covering , so they will not deposit lead, nickel and other harmful chemicals in your water supply. Both the ‘Arley’ bath filler and the basin mixer feature easy to use levers which are pushed up and pulled down to release water as opposed to the traditional valve type top found on pillar taps. All of the products in the ‘Arley’ range are just what you need to complete your stunning new bathroom.

The ‘Balmoral’ collection has the same three fittings as the ‘Aske’ collection and the ‘Arley’ collection and also has the stunning chrome finish. However the ‘Balmoral’ collection features a chunkier more rounded design that comes complete with a leveller, so you have more control over your water supply, its stunning rounded design will give any bathroom suite a stunning traditional look and feel.

‘Tile Empire’s ‘Bolton’ collection is another that features purely showers, they come in two different designs: a ‘round shower set’ and a ‘square shower set’ they each feature a ‘Thermostatic bar valve with fixed Rigid riser’ and ‘Dual control with separate flow and temperature controls’ , they both complete with the latest ceramic disc technology in a stunning chrome finish. Because the ‘Bolton’ collection features two different designs, the ‘Bolton’ collection has something to suite any bathroom, the ‘rounded shower set’ will give your bathroom a beautiful traditional look whilst the ‘square shower set’, with its bold angular design will inject a touch of modernity into your bathroom suite.


The ‘Frogmore’ collection has a very vintage feel to it, unlike to ‘Balmoral’ or the ‘Arley’ collections it does not feature levellers instead it has the classic valve style handle which are commonly found on pillar taps. This will give your bathroom a more traditional look, but the ‘Bath and shower mixer’ features cream handles and a chrome system which have been crafted by ‘Bloomsbury’ to give your bathroom suite a timeless vintage look and feel.


These are just a few of the bathroom collections that are featured on the ‘Tile Empire’ website, there are many different designs, styles and finishes that will make a  stunning edition to your home and give you that perfect look and feel to complete your bathroom suite.

‘Tile Empire’: Glass Splash Backs

When it comes to redecorating your kitchen or bathroom most people think of laying vinyl flooring and slapping plain white tiles onto walls, not many people think of installing a bold and beautiful splash back that will give your bathroom or kitchen a much needed new lease of life.

‘Tile Empire’ provides a range of made to measure ‘Glass Splash Backs’ in many different colours, the ‘Chocolate Brownie Glass Splash Back’ provides a more natural, neutral look where as the ‘Lime Green, fiery red and orange glass splash backs gives your chosen room a brighter more modern look. The ‘Chocolate’, ‘Red’ and deep ‘Purple’ are on trend for 2014, they are the perfect deep, warm colours to make your kitchen or bathroom an inviting and relaxing room on those cold dark winter nights.

On the other hand more traditional colour scheme such as black will give your chosen room a sleek more modern look where as the black paired with the white flooring, furniture or even white counter tops will give your bathroom or kitchen a sophisticated monochrome look.

If the idea of having a ‘Splash Back’ in one bold solid colour is too much of a design statement for you, then you could try a clear glass splash back, which has the same properties only without the colour. Alternatively if you do not want a block colour but a clear glass splash back is a little too basic for your design needs then a mirrored splash back may be just what you’re looking for, granted mirrored splash backs taken a little more looking after than coloured or clear ones, but if it is taken care of correctly then your mirrored splash back will bring an air of modernity and a unique look to your kitchen for years to come.

Glass splash backs don’t only make your home look beautifully inviting; they also have several practical features as well. They help to protect your brick work from heat damage created by the constant use of your stove or oven. The glass splash backs provided by ‘Tile Empire’ are very well crafted and are therefore very durable meaning they with stand heat, moisture and force.

Regardless of the colour of your chosen splash back it will remain bold and bright, because the colour lies behind the glass it will not fade in direct sunlight as the glass helps to reflect the light which not only helps to preserve the colour of your splash back it also makes your room look bigger, brighter and more inviting. Also if the splash back happens to get scuffed or scratched which is unlikely, it will not affect the colour underneath.

Another advantage of having a glass splash back is, yes initially it may cost more than installing tiles but a well-made glass splash back lasts on average three times as long as the average ceramic or porcelain tile.

Glass splash backs are traditionally installed in kitchens and bathroom because they are immensely hygienic they do not attract dirt or bacteria and over time the splash back will not attract mould or mildew unlike most tiles, because of their highly polished glass finish they are incredibly quick and easy to wipe clean which means your will have a beautiful, hygienic kitchen and bathroom for years to come.

Not only can glass splash backs give your living space a bold, modern look they are also easy to clean, durable and hardwearing they will make a beautifully practical addition to the kitchen or bathroom of  any family home.


Mixer Taps: The Way Forward

Nowadays if you walk around any bath store or show room chances are that most of the bathroom suites will features bath and basin mixer taps which are more beneficial for a modern household than the traditional pillar taps that can be found in many older houses.

The problem with traditional pillar taps is for this day and age most of them look out dated, however ‘Tile Empire’ offer the ‘Frogmore ‘pillar style basin and ‘Long nose Bath Taps’ that still feature twist valves, but they have been given a modern makeover and are available in brass as opposed to copper in a variety of modernist chrome finishes with streamlined styles and designs.

Another problem with pillar taps is that they feature rubber washes which will wear away and become misshapen over time, this means your taps are more likely to leak. However with a mixer tap from ‘Tile Empire’,  you never have to worry about a leaky tap again as they feature ceramic discs which are more durable and hardwearing than rubber washers. So, not only will your bathroom be leak free, the ceramic discs last on average up to five times longer than rubber washers meaning they will not need to be replaced as often which saves you time and money.

When it comes to running a bath with pillar taps because your hot and cold water supplies have separate pipes, you tend to run both taps at the same time to get your desired temperature, however depending on your water pressure the cold tap will run more strongly than the hot which means your bath will often be much colder than what you originally intended. On the other hand running your bath with a mixer tap is so much easier as most of them have a built in thermostat that means you can set your water temperature exactly how you want it. Which is not only more convenient, it also makes bah time much safer for your children as this way of maintaining your perfect balance of hot and cold helps to reduce the risk of burns and scalds.

‘Tile Empire’s mixer taps are becoming more and more popular in modern households not only because they look good, but because they come complete with a built in flow limiter that reduces the amount of water released from your mixer tap at an given time. This aspect of the mixer tap not only makes it environmentally friend but it will also save you money on your water bills. As opposed to pillar taps which do not have this built in feature and therefore your house hold water wastage maybe more than double the wastage produced by a mixer tap.

Overall mixer taps seem to be the way forward, they not only look beautifully modern with their chrome finish and sleek designs, they are also practical, convenient, long lasting and will save you some much more on your water bills, So installing mixer taps will ultimately benefit you and your family a lot more than a traditional pillar tap would.


‘Tile Empire’: Mosaics

Mosaic tiles have always been a big part of interior design, they can be used anywhere in the house to give a unique or personal look and feel to a room of your choice. Mosaic tiles were traditionally used by the rich and affluent to express their wealth and power. Recently mosaic tiles have been appearing in more and more homes, and they quickly becoming a fashion statement for autumn/ winter of 2013.

‘Tile Empire’ provides a range of mosaic tiles in many different colours and styles that are perfect for the coming season. The ‘Hammered Glass’ tiles are beautifully designed; they have a mix of rustic reds which are complimented by vibrant oranges and subtle browns.  Personally I feel these glass tiles would make a beautiful addition to a kitchen or a bathroom to give it a warm and homely look and feel.

There are also the ‘Ripple And Glass Brick Mosaics’ which are featured on their website, unlike traditional mosaic tiles, such as the ones pictured above, the Ripple and Glass’ tiles have a ‘rippled’ or ‘bubble’ effect tile placed at intervals around the tradition solid tiles. These tiles come in a variety of colours including earthy reds and blacks which will make a bold autumn statement. They are also available in more neutral tones such as beige and cream. Given the colour scheme and the effect of the tiles, they would compliment a kitchen perfectly, either to jazz up a neutral feature wall, or to use as a boarder to emphasize an already beautiful piece of interior design.



‘Tile Empire’ also offers a range of floor mosaic tiles, so your entire room can have a tastefully done, beautifully warm and inviting look and feel. The ‘Hexagon Mosaic’ floor tiles are, as you’ve probably guessed by the name shaped, unlike tradition mosaic tiles. I think it is the unique shape that makes these tiles so versatile. They are available in mainly neutral colours such as blacks and whites which will create a nice contrast when coupled with a very bold autumn mosaic wall tile, ultimately giving your chosen room a very modern and fashionable look.

‘Tile Empire: Art Deco

The ‘Art Deco’ movement was predominant in the 1920s, it has become a very famous and recognizable style of design appearing in architecture all over the world within buildings such as the infamous ‘Chrysler’ and ‘Empire State’ buildings of Manhattan, New York, the ‘Hoover Factory’ in London and the ‘Mercury building’ of Hobart, Tasmania. Art Deco has become a timeless style which has inspired many interior design features such as furniture, flooring and tiles.

With stunning art deco designs from ‘Tile Empire’ you too can have a glamorous, timelessly designed home inspired by an era of wealth, prosperity and some of the greatest architects who ever lived. The first of these designs comes in the form of a rather stunning floor tile. It is called the ‘1900 Florentina Tile’ and is characterised by its eye catching mix of both curved, angular and spherical patterns surrounded by bold, streamlined gold boarders which segregate each separate pattern. These floor tiles are crafted from porcelain and have a gloss finish which adds to the overall glamorous regal look these tiles produce, because of the intricate design of these tiles they would work well in an entrance hall or an area where they can be easily admired by all who see them.

‘Tile Empire’ also offer an array of different corner floor tiles in the art deco style, so you can create your own beautiful design the way you want it. The first of which is also part of the ‘1900s’ collection and features a stunning closed floral design in blue, light grey and pink tones. Another corner floor tile from the same collection is a little more intricate, it features a stunning swirl design with incorporates beautiful floral elements, in shades of light grey, black and white. Another corner floo tile features a more angular design than the previous two do, it is made up of square detailing which is outlined by the same streamlined gold boarders that are found in the ‘1900 Florentina Tiles’.

All of these corner tiles are crafted from porcelain and have a beautiful gloss finish. They all have their own design but all have similar elements to them which means they will look beautiful either on their own, surrounding the ‘1900 Florentina Tile’ or mixed to create a unique art deco inspired floor space. These are only a few of the art deco style floor tiles that ‘Tile Empire’ offer go to the ‘Floor Tile’ section to see more from the ultra-glamorous ‘1900s’ collection.

‘Tile Empire’: Get Engraved.

For hundreds of years tiles have been used for decoration, the use of which started in Rome and morocco. This design feature has since been embraced by almost every country the world over and is still an incredibly way to decorate your home.

‘Tile Empire’ offer tiles in many different designs and patterns in contrasting colours as well as shapes and materials, which range from mosaic tiles crafted from porcelain in earthy green and calming sea blues, to ‘Kensington’ and ‘Bulevar’ tiles which are available in deep purples and bright reds with beautiful gloss and matt finishes. The ‘Padova’ and the ‘Rimini’ tiles are also available in more toned down, neutral shades such as cream and beige to incorporate into a room which has a more tradition design.

However ‘Tile Empire’ doesn’t stop at your run of the mill basic tiles, they also provide their customers with the most beautifully engraved tiles. The first of them is the ‘Engraved Silver Zebra Print’ tile, it is a stunning white tile engraved with a modern zebra print design. As the engraving on this tile is quite bold and eye-catching it is suggested that tiles would look good if they were applied to a feature wall, leaving the rest of the room tiled in  fairly neutral colours with little or no pattern, this way you will get the full effect of your ‘Engraved Silver Zebra Print ‘ tiles.

Not all of the engraved tiles that ‘Tile Empire’ have to offer are as eye catching and as loud as the ‘Engraved Silver Zebra Print’ tiles, they also stock the ‘Engraved flower design feature décor’ tiles which features a black ceramic background which is intricately engraved with a stunning sliver floral pattern. Because tiles have a floral engraving they would look right at home in a conservatory or at the same time they would suit an art deco style bathroom perfectly.

The ‘Engraved Contemporary Design Feature Décor’ is simply stunning; it features a very traditional design which is again made up of the black ceramic background with an intricate sliver engraved design that brings to mind a very ‘period drama’ feel, given the intricate detailing of the engraving these tiles deserve to be centre stage, because of the they would look beautiful as part of a fire surround.

Although these tiles have a very similar colour scheme, they are all incredibly beautiful in their own unique way. They can be used to make any room more tradition or they can help update a room by adding a very modern touch, the choice is up to you.


The ‘Empredor’ Of Tiles

There are plenty of advantages to having marble tiles throughout your home they not only look amazing but making the choice to decorate with marble wall and floor tiles can dramatically increase the market value of your house.

The ‘Dark Empredor Polished Marble’ tiles can be used to enhance and compliment certain aspects of your kitchen or bathroom, coupled with decor such as a traditional looking bath tub or modern style breakfast bar. They have a very rustic, earthy finish which will give your chosen room a look and feel that is perfect for you.

Yes marble tiles maybe slightly more expensive than tiles in more common materials such as ceramic or porcelain but because they are naturally very hardwearing as well as being stain and Damage Resistant, so these tiles only need to be laid once, whereas ceramic tiles are more delicate and may crack or break more easily which means they will have to be replaced over and over again.

Because the ‘Dark Empredor Polished Marble’ tiles are made of natural stone and have been sealed to the highest standards these tiles are not only resistant to scratches and scuffs but they are very easy to clean, all you need is a damp cloth or a mop with a little added detergent and they will come up looking as shiny and new as the day you had them installed.

‘Tile Empire’ provides marble tiles in a Mosaic style with an elegant gloss finish which can be used a long side other more colourful mosaic tiles to create a traditional look but with an added modern twist on the other hand they can be used on their own to create a more natural feel.

‘Tile Empire’ offer their customers a very large variety of marble tiles in many different styles and colours such as the ‘Vanilla Cream Marble’ which is sunning off white colour with this tile you get the glamorous clean and sleek look of white tiles but without the clinical feel.  The’ Silver Polished’ is simply stunning, because these tiles are sliver they will make your chosen room feel bigger and more open then it would if you had used black tile (because we all know that black makes things look smaller), they also give your room a modern feel that is not too full on. So, to own tiles in a stunning Mable finish to add that modern twist or traditional feel to your home, go to ‘Tile Empire’.


Tile Empire’: For That Modern Vintage Look.

The idea of vintage being out dated and old fashioned has become a thing of the past. The vintage-modern look can be encountered in many different types of home from the apartment of the 20 something London based professional to the extravagant American fashionista looking to create that sort after, statement look.

‘Tile Empire’ offers a wide variety of tiles so you can get that beautiful vintage look with paying the antique dealers prices. The first selection of tiles that have that mid-century modern look to them are the ‘Napoli’ wall tiles that come in a range of neutral, soft pastel colours such as ‘Verde’ which is a very pale to mint green shade, ‘Lila’ is a light pink shade and ‘Azurro’ which is a light blue tone. On the ‘Tile Empire’ website it is suggested these tiles would go well in a kitchen, but the ‘Lila’ and ‘Verde’ shade will also work well in a conservatory and the ‘Azurro’ tile will give your bathroom a very pampering relaxed feel as it has the very beautiful powder blue under tone.

This range also includes tiles in ‘Blanco’ which is a bright white and ‘Perla’ which is more of an off white both of these shades are fantastic if you want to express your vintage taste in other ways, either through furniture or other possessions, But you still get the advantage of the a stunning textured gloss finish which will add that carefree whimsical feel to your chose without the pastel colour scheme.

Because of their size and overall design these tiles can be mixed to achieve the look of a mosaic but with a very vintage, unique colour scheme, that you can customize to your own interior design ideas.

Another product from ‘Tile Empire’ is the ‘Pizzara’ tile, these tiles have a slate effect finish and are made of porcelain so they can be used virtually anywhere in your home. Although these tiles have a more earthy tone than the ‘Napoli’ collection does, they will still compliment your vintage style beautifully. These tiles consist of several different tones such as charcoal blacks, greyish-greens, rich gold tones and muted creams, all of these colours complement each other perfectly, meaning they will never look dull or dated and will be very flattering in either a modern room or will bring a touch of nature to an already personalised and unique vintage setting.

‘Tile Empire ‘ offer many more  products in different styles and varieties that enable you to embrace both more modern and classic vintage styles, so you can have a stunning unique home no matter what your style, that you will love in years to come.



Tile Empire: Man vs Nature

Tile Empire’ provides a wide variety of tiles consisting of natural materials such as stone and marble and man-made materials such as ceramic, porcelain and glass. Each of these tiles has different properties and are available in different colours and styles so there is something that appeals to everyone.

The look and design is not the only thing that makes natural and man-made tiles so different. Limestone tiles are very hard wearing and durable, on the other hand ceramic tiles for example are more fragile meaning they can shatter more easily so they may not be ideal for certain areas of the house, where as Limestone tiles can be used practically anywhere you want.

An advantage of man-made tiles is their availability and range of styles and colours, ceramic or porcelain tiles are available from virtually any DIY or interior design store around, they also come in an unending array of colours from bright whites, beiges and chocolate tones that would suit a more traditional style or lime greens and fiery reds to suite a more modern setting. Whereas man-made tiles such as those crafted from ‘Limestone’ are much harder to come by, as they have to be exuviated from large quarries and then shipped their chosen destinations, which takes far more time and effort than locally producing a porcelain or ceramic tile. Also the colour range of ‘Limestone’ tiles is limited; because it is a natural material its colour cannot be implemented or controlled as easily. Any variation in colour that is present is a natural occurrence within the stone itself.


Another advantage of using natural stone tiles around the house is that no two tiles will ever be the same, because stone tiles are created from natural processes each tile will be slightly different, which is perfect if you want your home to have a very unique look and feel. These slight differences are not present within man-made tiles which can leave a room looking uniform and slightly boring if it is not designed correctly.

When embarking on any interior design project the cost is always something to consider. It is true that ‘Limestone’ stone tiles do cost more to install and keep than ceramic tiles do, but on the other hand are more fragile but at the same time are more resistant to stains and can be cleaned a lot more easily than natural stone tiles can.

Both man-made and natural tiles suit either a traditional setting or a more modern one and they can be equally as effective when it comes to creating your desired look and feel. After taking all of the above into consideration, the choice between man-made and natural stone tiles is up to you.