Adding warmth, light and charm to any room, a fireplace is a popular design feature in Madison WI homes. Using the latest textures, colors and designs in fireplace surround tile creates a natural focal point.
Traditional brick and stone fireplaces remain popular. However they are being rivaled by upscale, modern designs using tile to complement contemporary décor. There are dozens of options to consider. They range from standard porcelain and ceramic pieces to glass tiles and artisan creations for one-of-a-kind installation.
Texture is a building design element and tile fits the trend perfectly. Surface textures from wood grains to the look of linen are available. For the artistic, create a mosaic all your own.
Fireplace Surround Tile Options Galore
All the common tiles are available for use around a fireplace. When you consider tile, look for its PEI rating – Porcelain Enamel Institute rating from 1 to 5 note the hardness of tile. The higher the PEI number the more durable the tile. A PEI rating of 4 or 5 is ideal for the tile surrounding your fireplace and for use on a hearth.
Consider the various tile materials, including:
- Ceramic tile – available in a wide range of colors, textures and sizes. Ceramic tile is also installed as a hearth when rated as floor tile.
- Porcelain tile – more dense and durable than ceramic, porcelain is an outstanding choice for a fireplace surround. It too works as hearth tile as long as it has a PEI rating of 4 or 5. Porcelain may come in more color and design choices than any other option. New designs include texture to make porcelain fireplace surround tile look like brick or stone.
- Concrete tile – concrete is not a purely natural substance but it can be molded to look like stone or wood. These tiles are tough and easy to care for. Unique tiles offer a palette for artistic expression and creativity, making them ideal for contemporary to traditional installations.
- Glass tile – choose these unique creations for a splash of color. Glass tiles are fragile so are only candidates for use as fireplace surround tile. They are too fragile for the hearth. Glass subway tile is a popular, modern take on a traditional brick style.
- Vintage-look tile – for the look of aged, well-used fireplace brick there are tiles that offer a vintage look. They are brand new creations designed to appear as if they came out of an earlier era. They are often distressed – even appearing chipped, cracked and faded.
Natural Fireplace Surround Tile Choices
When you want a natural look but don’t want brick or stone there are attractive options. Consider:
Marble tile – they’re classic and high-end. To enhance a formal décor these tiles represent natural art work. Black, white and gray are most common selections but distinctive colors like green, red and pink really stand out. They can appear glossy or weathered – your choice.
- Granite tile – one of the strongest and most heat-resistant materials available. Scratch-proof and won’t crack or chip so it’s ideal as a hearth. Colors range from white to black and even a pink tone. Some have unique color flecks. Polished granite is sleek and exceptionally contemporary.
- Slate tile – ideal for a rustic yet elegant look. Available in many color variations from orange to black. Ideal for a truly natural look for a country or cabin feel.
Most fireplace surround tile need not be exceptionally rugged since tiles go well above the floor. Wall tile is commonly used. But when it is to become a part of the hearth as well, it has to have a floor tile rating.
Invest in Professional Installation
No matter if your fireplace burns wood or gas it is a prominent feature of any room. The total area of tile around it is relatively small. However, done right, this small space has a large impact. Adding new tile is a creative, inexpensive way to make a significant change.
Before the vast selection of available tiles overwhelms you, create a style and basic design on your own. What “look” do you envision? Do you want the new tile to enhance your current style and decorating theme? Or do you want to go a different direction? Be assured there are tiles to do whatever you want. Consider colors, styles, patterns and overall appearance before you decide on a material. It is easier to find what you need with these basics in mind. If you decide upon a tile material first, you may be limiting your choices.
The professionals at Molony Tile deal with the latest tile, grout and related tools every day. They know the trends and understand the pros and cons of all the tile options.
Molony Tile is Madison’s Number One source for unique, durable and elegant tile solutions. Call or email Molony Tile, 608-268-8453 to discuss fireplace surround tile options for your Madison WI home.