DIY (do-it-yourself) projects are becoming increasingly popular in Italy and around the world, but choosing materials that combine taste, affordability, and harmony with the furnishings can be quite challenging.
Unless you rely on an interior designer who can understand your expressive needs and create a project that combines different materials, geometric shapes, and finishes, while already knowing the technical limitations of each individual product.
"We have an old farmhouse in Tuscany and I need to update the look of the floors and bathroom tiles. What would you recommend?"
"The company has already purchased sandstone thresholds. Which type of tile would go well with gray tones?"
"Our architect advised us to look for low-thickness glazed products in a square shape. Can you send us samples and a catalog with tile dimensions?"
These are the most common questions we receive on a daily basis.
If you're also looking for the right material for your next project, below are some suggestions on which product, from our exclusive lines of glazed terracotta: Linea Preziosi and Linea Variopinti, might be perfect for you.
Choosing materials on your own: Mistakes to avoid
Natural materials such as handmade terracotta, stone, marble, and wood can be perfectly integrated with each other. They all have specific characteristics and different installation methods, but they can be chosen for customized combinations that suit the surrounding environment.
Of course, in a bathroom, the first priority is to choose materials that are easy to maintain and allow for effective surface cleaning and sanitization.
If you opt for glazed terracotta flooring, our Preziosi line has a soft, non-glazed surface that reduces the risk of slipping when walking barefoot outside the shower.
The best choice is to have a velvety touch surface without external cracks, to prevent dirt from getting trapped and making it difficult to clean during routine maintenance.
Lately, we have noticed that many people have chosen to incorporate hexagonal terracotta tiles with cuts on the wooden floor at a 60° angle, creating a seamless transition between the two products.
Although this involves adapting two very different products, in some cases, it represents an interesting solution that has a contemporary style and a lot of character.
Important attention should be paid to the type of adhesive and grout to use since terracotta is usually grouted with cementitious materials which are not suitable for use on wood because they are rigid and not elastic like silicone-based ones, which are available in various colors nowadays.
In this case, it is better to use a color that matches the grout of the terracotta to enhance the pattern of the floor and maximize its appeal.
Another trendy application is to choose a seamless floor covering such as resin or cocciopesto, and complement it with glazed terracotta tiles in simple geometric shapes, such as square tiles (e.g., 20x20).
This solution enhances the choice of handmade terracotta by showcasing its authentic features (structural variability, movement, craftsmanship).
HEIGHT OF WALL COVERINGS IN BATHROOMS
Ordering wall coverings in the bathroom remains a crucial design priority, preceding the choice of furnishings such as the shower tray and enclosure, towel warmers, sanitary fixtures, and cabinets, especially due to the long production times.
This challenging but necessary task can be simplified with choices that give identity to your bathroom, which essentially include low wall coverings, high wall coverings, or full-height coverings.
While it is true that in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, wall coverings extended all the way to the ceiling, nowadays, the trend is to use a single color without tiling by employing breathable resins or lime-based plasters (such as tadelakt or cocciopesto).
For all lovers of Italian artistic ceramics, we mainly recommend choosing the height of the wall coverings based on the nature of the spaces in which the bathrooms are located, in addition to considering your available budget.
There is a building regulation (Ministerial Decree of Health dated July 5, 1975), which is mandatory to comply with, apparently only in the case of public bathrooms, where each municipality establishes its own regulations based on the indications of the local health authority. However, for residential bathrooms, the choice of wall covering heights is free.
Let's analyze the solutions we can suggest:
· Low wall coverings:
o Wall coverings are applied at variable heights ranging from 1.20m to 1.50m, covering approximately half the height of the wall. The first "selective factor" can be determined by the available tile format and size, the use of any border that acts as a perimeter frame, and the choice to use multiple colors, combining different colors and shapes to create connections with other elements or accessories present in the environment. For example, the metallic glazing of the frames that matches all the faucets or the chrome showerhead. An exception to this type of wall covering is in the shower area, where the height must be covered at least up to the edge of the door frame, while the remaining wall can be painted with semi-washable white or colored paint, which ensures ease of cleaning and reduces the risk of mold formation.
· High wall coverings or full-height coverings:
Covering the bathroom walls up to 2-2.20 meters is the most common choice, as it provides adequate protection against mold and humidity, although it is not suitable for thermal bridges. However, this choice also depends on the type of environment. Imagine a small, narrow, and long bathroom; it would appear as if the fully tiled walls are closing in on you. Natural light plays a significant role in achieving harmonious wall coverings in such cases, and if natural light is insufficient, it can be supplemented with effective artificial lighting. With handmade terracotta, it is possible to address this situation by diversifying the covering bands, using a simple linear pattern for the lower part and a unified design for the upper part and inside the shower to lighten and enhance the space.
CHOOSING TILE FORMATS FOR WALL COVERINGS IN BATHROOMS
The most commonly used formats for floor tiles remain square ones, with the most popular sizes being 25x25, 20x20, and 15x15.
Although thickness is often seen as a disadvantage by handmade terracotta manufacturers, with a minimum thickness of 1.5 cm, our versatility in printing wood shapes, always handmade by carpenters, offers the advantage of creating exclusive geometric shapes even for small quantities.
For example, there is currently high appreciation for shapes inspired by the Middle East, such as the peacock tail, lozenge, cross, and star, which give an environment a refined and exclusive touch.
Alternatively, relief forms, compared to flat surfaces, bring harmony and expression to the decorative pattern of the walls.