Crossville Celebrates the Tile Backsplash


The purpose of the humble backsplash was once purely functional; tiled areas behind stoves and sinks in the kitchen and vanity areas in bathrooms were installed to protect walls from grease, stains, moisture and–what else?–splashes. But with the wide array of tile materials and finishes available today, the once-utilitarian backsplash has also become a design statement and artistic focal point. A perfect way to inject color, pattern, and texture into your kitchen or bath, a beautiful backsplash answers designers’ love of form and function. Here’s a look at some statement-making backsplashes for inspiration.

GLASS TILE BACKSPLASHES: Subtle color variations of translucent glass mosaic tiles offer a rich, shimmery look with light-reflecting sparkle. The effect is a fitting touch for modern settings. Our Glass Blox color options range from gleaming jewel-tones to softly glowing neutrals, and every hue offers eye-catching light and life for backsplashes.

Glass Blox in Blue Haze, Ocean Air, North Sea

Glass Blox mosaics in Blue Haze, Ocean Air and North Sea

This stunning, texture-rich backsplash is composed of our Origins glass tile, earthy Vista Americana porcelain stone and Mixology metal trim for look that’s at once Old-World, and earthy, yet brilliantly modern.

Origins in Wildwood, Mixology in Bronze and and Vista Americana in Plateau

NATURAL STONE BACKSPLASHES: Design trends are embracing textured and tactile materials, and we’re seeing this manifesting in kitchen and bath surfaces, including backsplashes. The rich textures and earthen nuances of this natural stone, split face mosaic with braid border from our Modern Mythology collection provide balance and visual interest.

Modern Mythology  in Labyrinth  and Centaur Braid Border

Modern Mythology in Labyrinth and Centaur Braid Border

METALLIC BACKSPLASHES: Metallic hues are transcending design trends to serve as staples in surfacing styles. The richly faceted metallic hues of our Sideview Glass collection are a great example. The look is bold and glamorous–a reflection (literally) of the more ambitious, adventurous design schemes we’re seeing in both commercial and residential interiors. Here, Sideview Glass is juxtaposed with our elegant, marble-look Virtue porcelain tile collection.

Sideview Glass and Virtue Porcelain Stone

Sideview Glass in Silver and Virtue Porcelain Stone

Exquisitely wrought metal tiles create a visually striking backsplash, enhancing the rich, elegant feel of this handsome bathroom. Sustainably recast cast-metal sculptural pieces from our Mixology collection add hand-crafted style, without the hand-crafted price.

Mixology - Nickel Variegated

Mixology in Nickel Variegated

BEYOND THE BACKSPLASH: To envelope more walls space in tile style, we’re seeing designers extend tile installations beyond the backsplash. Today, tiled areas in kitchens and baths may be taller and wider, becoming the backdrop for the entire room.  Our Color by Numbers collection captures a sophisticated look with lasting appeal. 

Color by Numbers Tea for Two and Listello

Color by Numbers in Tea for Two and Listello

Spanning the entire wall, this backsplash comprised of stone and glass mosaic tiles, is a study in nature. Our Ebb and Flow collection echoes the the complex rhythms of nature with the illusion of three-dimensional patterning rendered in a smooth, “tromp l’oeil” surface.

Ebb and Flow in Flor and Fauna

Ebb and Flow in Flora and Fauna

BATHROOM BACKSPLASHES: Bathrooms are ideal for the performance and appearance of tile. This earthy, yet iridescent backsplash from our Glass Blox collection infuses this bathroom with a soft glow and a sense of serenity.

Glass Blox in Dessert Dawn

Glass Blox in Dessert Dawn

 Get more ongoing tile inspiration by following our Pinterest and Instagram accounts!

Crossville Moves with the Groove at NeoCon 2015

Crossville NeoCon 2015 booth 9086 7th floor

For Neocon 2015, we’re unveiling hip and transformational products inspired by the grit and glam of urban spaces. We’re turning the spotlight on new Laminam offerings, an edgy new porcelain tile collection, and—the star of our show—a trend-setting glass tile line that has inspired the creative theme of our NeoCon 2015 booth. In celebration of all that’s new, we’re inviting customers and colleagues joining us in Chicago to “Move with the Groove.”

The “Move with the Groove” campaign and booth design centers around the pending launch of Groove Glass, a new glass tile collection getting its first official reveal this week in Chicago and slated to hit the market later this summer.

Mikeal Jensen of Crossville Our Director of Design Mikeal Jensen gives a little insight on the fun theme for Crossville’s NeoCon 2015 theme.

“We are most excited to share our Move with the Groove campaign with Neocon attendees,” Mikeal shares. “The booth and creative campaign was designed to literally amplify the excitement surrounding Groove Glass in a memorable way worthy of this truly unique tile.”

crossville moves with the groove at neocon 2015


Here’s just how we’re moving with the groove at booth 9086, 7th floor at NeoCon 2015.

  • Gorgeous, adventurous booth design: We’ve interpreted our theme with a bold look for the NeoCon booth space. Pop art graphics enhance the grit and glam of our new product lines to create an ambience that is eye-catching and a stand-out for the show.
  • Crossville Neocon 2015 boothProduct debuts: Booth guests will see, touch, and experience the new Groove Glass collection, Laminam’s I Metalli line, and the Gotham porcelain tile collection, as well. These products will be officially launching in the months to come.
  • sneak peek at crossville groove glass Fun giveaway: To support the Groove Glass campaign, we have specialty branded Eco-Amps available at our booth #9086, 7th Floor. These amps, made of recycled paper, are eco-friendly, fold-together speakers that work with iPhones.
  • crossville move with the groove neoconMove with the Groove playlist: To really inspire folks to move with the groove and give them something to play on those cool Eco-Amps, Crossville’s own Kendell Idema, a 17-year employee currently in the Retail Samples department and a talented, accomplished musician, created original tunes that align with each color in the Groove Glass line. Listen here:
crossville's kendell idea created the move with the groove playlist

Learn more about Kendell in an upcoming blog post

Even if you’re watching all the NeoCon happenings from afar, we invite you to listen in, move with the groove, and keep track of all our social media to see the sights and excitement from the show.

Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter  View on Instagram  Follow us on Twitter  Find us on Google+  Find us on Pinterest View our videos on YouTube

Crossville Tile in Texas Ale Project :: Tapping Into Great Commercial Design

Crossville Tile in the Texas Ale Project Design

Raise a glass! The phenomenal Crossville tile installation in Texas Ale Project, a popular craft brewery in Dallas’s bustling design district, deserves our cheers. Floors and walls of this urban chic facility are covered in our collections, including gorgeous use of innovative Laminam porcelain tile panels. Texas Ale Project is a prime example of just how sophisticated, visually appealing, and doggedly high performance our products are for commercial environments.

Tile’s role in the Texas Ale Project is quite integral to the overall design. The facility is multi-purpose, housing a laboratory, 30-barrel brewing system, raw material storage, wholesale keg sales, office space, high capacity coolers, and a tasting room, all within 14,500 square feet of new construction near Dallas’ downtown area. Crossville tile provides durable surfacing for high traffic and ‘workhorse’ areas, and it offers a sleek look that veers to industrial in style–enhancing the visual experience of this high functioning brewery. From reception/tasting rooms and bathrooms to manufacturing and brewing spaces, Crossville’s porcelain tile is on the job!

Crossville Tile in Texas Ale Project Dalls Screenshot 2015-06-05 08.17.18

Crossville Tile in Texas Ale Project
Screenshot 2015-06-04 11.48.36

Unlike many multi-use spaces where manufacturing and back of the house operations are hidden from patrons, Texas Ale Project is experiential. The design of the facility ensures the brewing process is in plain sight with full views of the manufacturing floor from the tasting room, appropriately referred to as the “T.A.P. Room,” an abbreviation of the business’ name.

Screenshot 2015-06-04 11.48.47 Screenshot 2015-06-04 11.46.40 Crossville Tile in Texas Ale Project

Staying true to the industrial feel of the space while offering a sophisticated, stylish aesthetic, the team of Dallas-based design firm The Orion Collection turned to us for tile collections to finish the tasting room in the appropriate style. Dark, textural Laminam Oxide 3 Grigio was specified for the T.A.P. room walls, while Laminam Oxide 3 Nero was selected for columnar walls. On the floors, product specifiers opted for Crossville’s Basalt porcelain tile collection in the Bedrock color—a great complement to the Laminam-skinned walls.

The restrooms are also finished with Crossville porcelain. Basalt in Bedrock was specified for use on the floors, and the walls were clad with Basalt in the Caldera color option. Designers brought in Laminam Oxide 3 Grigio for application on the wall of the brewery space that leads to the office area, and Basalt Bedrock porcelain was used on the CEO’s office walls.

Crossville Tile in Texas Ale Project Screenshot 2015-06-04 11.47.06 Screenshot 2015-06-04 11.47.18 Screenshot 2015-06-04 11.47.32 Crossville Tile in Texas Ale Project

The team with The Orion Collection shares that Crossville’s Laminam and Basalt porcelain tile collection hit all the right marks. The Laminam porcelain tile panels, as well as Basalt’s distinctive field tiles, captured the look and rich, urban color palette, and the team liked the novelty of using Laminam, a material that is relatively new to the market, as a match to their client’s innovative style and approach to the otherwise tried and true business of brewing ale.

Project Participants:

  • Distributor: Crossville Tile & Stone
  • Architect: John Carr, P.E.
  • Interior Architect: Shelly Stevens, The Orion Collection (Dallas, Texas)
  • General Contractor: Mitch Campbell
  • Installer: The Tile Gallery (Dallas, TX) & Upgraded Interiors (Dallas, TX)
  • Photos: Marty Perlman
  • Special Thanks: Juliana Gaume, Crossville Architectural Sales Representative

View the full case study and photo gallery on our website by clicking here.

Fabulous in Philadelphia: Laminam by Crossville Decks a Stunning Residence in Style

While Laminam by Crossville’s technologically advanced, aesthetically innovative large format porcelain tile panels are considered by many to be primarily a commercial product, we were thrilled to discover how a stunning range of Laminam by Crossville collections were used to their maximum–and most beautiful–potential in a hip, urban residence.

I Naturali Calacatta Oro in a polished finish the kitchen countertop.

With more than 50 designer-inspired colors and finishes to choose from, Valerie Popovich of Garden State Tile worked with homeowner Uri Tedgi of Millennium Builders to find unique, distinctly residential ways to use 933 square feet of our Laminam collections to transform his home’s kitchen, bathrooms, and even the fireplace surround, in his Philadelphia townhome.

Perhaps the most dynamic of the applications is the use of I Naturali Calacatta Oro in a polished finish for the kitchen countertop. Tedgi used only two panels to skin the entire twelve-foot long island countertop. With a look reminiscent of Calcutta marble, the material pairs beautifully with the kitchen’s contemporary and sleek design elements, lending a classic, sophisticated feel to the space.

I Naturali Calacatta Oro in a polished finish for the kitchen countertop

I Naturali Calacatta Oro in a polished finish the kitchen countertop

I Naturali Calacatta Oro in a polished finish the kitchen countertop

Tedgi found another distinctive application for Laminam, just beyond the kitchen in a seating area anchored by a fireplace. Here, Tedgi chose Laminam Fumo Collection Nero Oxide for the floating panel in front of the fireplace.

Laminam Fumo Collection Nero Oxide was used for the floating panel in front of the fireplace

 Laminam Fumo Collection Nero Oxide was used for the floating panel in front of the fireplace

For the walls of the townhome’s master bath, Tedgi selected two Laminam skins–Pietra Di Savoia and I Naturali Ossidiana Vena Scura. The creamy Pietra and the dark grey Ossidiana were used in tandem, including a nearly seamless installation on the walls of the shower stall, creating a striking and clean-lined look.

Laminam in Pietra Di Savoia and I Naturali Ossidiana Vena Scura in the master bath

Laminam in Pietra Di Savoia and I Naturali Ossidiana Vena Scura in the master bath Pietra Di Savoia and I Naturali Ossidiana Vena Scura in the master bath

For the children’s bathroom walls, Tedgi selected Oxide in Perla and Metrapolis in Fumo. 

Laminam Oxide in Perla and Metrapolis in Fumo for the childens' bath


Laminam Oxide in Perla and Metrapolis in Fumo for the childens' bath


With all the installations, the Tedgi family will enjoy Laminam’s beauty, minimal maintenance and lasting performance that will stand up to daily use, even in wet areas.

Launched in 2012, Crossville’s Laminam large-format, thin porcelain slabs (the largest and thinnest in the world, in fact!) offer countless design possibilities for both commercial and residential applications. Learn more about Laminam and see all the collections here. 

Crossville Color Talk: Tips for Using Mint Green in Your Interior Design

Origins glass tile mosaic

Pastel colors are popping up in home decor. Once a mainstay of 1950s interior design, pastels have ebbed and flowed in popularity over the years. Today, they’ve returned with decidedly modern twists. As with many interior design color trends, these light, inviting hues first resurged on the fashion runways before shifting into home fashion. One pastel hue that’s getting its day in the sun is the versatile and fresh mint green. A refreshing, calming color, mint green plays well with other hues–both light and dark shades, as well as metallics and other pastels. Here are some tips for complimenting your decor with mint green.

Coastal Color Palette
Mint is ideal for inclusion in  coastal color schemes. Combine soft mint with white or light washed woods to recreate a relaxed seaside cottage atmosphere anywhere. Pair with a range of blues–from cobalt to turquoise–to capture the colors of sun-dappled seascapes. The airy nature of mint green is a fitting homage to flora of coastal regions.

Classic Mint Combos
Rich chocolate brown paired with mint is a timeless color combination that always looks fresh (think mint chocolate chip ice cream!).  And don’t forget the classic combo of black and white with mint – once a 1950’s bathroom favorite, this mix can gave any room a classically sophisticated, vibrant look.

Mint and Metallics
Create a striking and bold effect by combining metallics with mint, and look to the kitchen to really make a statement. When paired with metallic shining elements in a kitchen, mint looks cool and fresh. Combine antique gold with mint for an elegant, luxurious look or partner with brushed nickel fixtures to create a decidedly cool-toned space. Mint is a suitable accompaniment to stainless steel appliances, or it may even be used as a designer color for select appliances, large or small, in the space–as more makers join in the trend.

Mint Background
Sometimes a little hint of color is all a dull room needs to brighten it up and give it some life. Painting one wall in mint can make the color stand out without taking over the whole room.

Mint and Lighting
Mint works especially well in rooms with a good lighting, whether natural or ambient. With proper illumination, mint can energize and brighten up a space, evoking associations with a breezy spring season and making it an ideal area for meditation and relaxation.

Get Creative with Mint
They are many uncommon color combinations you can use with mint green to make your space more interesting. Try raspberry, orange, olive green, gray or even navy blue. Get creative with mint green to reflect your unique style!

Here are some of our favorite minty green tile applications!

Our new Ready to Wear Porcelain tile is patterned with classic warp and weft texture to bring touchable, everyday style to your designs. It’s available in full line of smart-casual shades, including mint!

Ready to wear AV315

Crossville’s Ready to Wear in “Decked Out.”

 Our Glass Blox collection delivers pure, prismatic color to walls. These minty hues in sparkling glass will bring eye-catching light and life to your residential or commercial designs.

Gal_GlassBlox_7_LO Gal_GlassBlox_3_LOClick on the photos to view the collections.

 We’ve dedicated an entire Pinterest board to this yummy hue. Click here to see more of “Magnificent Mint!”

Q&A With Cookbook Author and TV Chef Jaden Hair

KA-post-7888-smallRenowned cookbook author, blogger and TV Chef Jaden Hair recently worked with equally renowned kitchen designer Susan Serra of Susan Serra Associates, Inc. to renovate the kitchen of her family home – and Crossville’s SpeakEasy collection was the flooring of choice for this high profile project! We enjoyed reading about the kitchen remodel on Jaden’s Steamy Kitchen blog and while we loved every inch of her gorgeous new kitchen, we had a few questions for Jaden, who kindly shared her insights with us on our own blog!

Were sure living with a home renovation, especially a kitchen remodel, cant be easy. Can you offer a few tips on how to manage living without a kitchen for several months?

We have a large, covered lanai with a BBQ grill. For a couple of months, we grilled a lot! Also, I bought a portable camping stove that uses butane canisters which are really inexpensive. I was able to do most of my cooking on that little stove!

A toaster oven and microwave set up on TV trays helped us with the all the other cooking tasks.

With a tiny bar-sink to use, we ended up using paper plates and compostable bamboo utensils. All of that went into our giant compost bin after each day.

Though induction technology has been around for a while, why do you think its just now becoming popular in the US and how did you decide to go with an induction cooktop over gas?

I’ve just been so used to cooking over flame all these years. I like seeing the fire, and feeling the heat!

Induction actually wasn’t my first choice in the beginning, but with no gas going into our home, we really didn’t have a choice with induction or electric.

Boy, was I surprised when we first turned on the induction stovetop! It was zippy fast and cleanup after cooking took seconds, not a half hour. I love the efficiency and quickness of the induction.

This may be a tough question. Is there any one aspect of your new kitchen that you love the most?

Our favorite part of the kitchen are the little things that make our lives so much easier and healthier. The built-in compost bucket is used several times a day for vegetable and fruit scraps. We’re big gardeners, so we reap the benefits of our composting through healthy, all-natural, homemade fertilizer.

Another little item is the built-in, retractable power strip that disappears into the countertop when not in use. It pops up when needed and stays hidden the rest of the time, keeping the island neat and tidy.

I’m a big tea drinker, so having a instant-hot at the sink is so convenient. In less than 2 seconds, I have very hot water that’s the perfect temperature for teas any time of the day.

We might be partial to the tile on your kitchen floor. Just curiousWhats been the response to the wood-look tile? Have any house guest been surprised to learn that the floor is actually porcelain tile?

The very first thing that everyone notices when they walk into the kitchen area for the very first time are the Crossville floors, “Oh, I love your hardwood floors!” They’re always surprised when I tell them it’s tile, and then bend down to touch it for proof. We love the durability, especially living on a homestead with lots of critters (and dirt!)

Share some insights on working with the talented Susan Serra. How did having a professional kitchen designer make a difference on your project?

Susan was absolutely amazing. I never fully appreciated having a design professional by my side until this kitchen remodel! Without her, I would have been swayed by the very pretty, but impractical for my family ideas found on Pinterest — and my design would have been such a mish-mash mess of everything that I had favorited!

Susan was able to pick out the common themes amongst all the ideas and nudge me towards a design that worked specifically for my family’s lifestyle and my cooking habits.

Head over to the Steamy Kitchen to get the whole scoop on this amazing kitchen renovation. Meanwhile, enjoy these pictures of Jaden’s dreamy, steamy kitchen! KA-post-2-smallKA-post-7678-smallSteamy-Kitchen-3270_small-smallKA-post-7787-small

Crossville Takes a Look at the Fascinating History of Glass Tile

The following blog post is inspired by Crossville’s Residential Design Director Mikeal Jensen’s presentation from the Surfaces Expo 2015. 

For more than four thousand years, glass tile has been part of the decor in homes, places of worship, and public spaces—proof that we have long been drawn to shiny, colorful things. Interestingly, some predicted that glass tile would be a short-lived trend when it was widely reintroduced to the modern marketplace in the late 20th century, after technology made the creation of glass tile more simple and affordable. Look around today, and it’s easy to see that those predictions were wrong. Glass tile is found everywhere in commercial and residential spaces, solidly in place as a beloved, stylish, and versatile surfacing material.

Here’s a quick look at glass tile’s fascinating history, to help you put your current specifications in perspective.

The history of glass tile is known to have origins in Egyptian mosaics around 2500 BC, but it wasn’t until the 3rd century BC that innovative artisans in Greece, Persia. and India began creating glass tiles. By 200 BC, the Romans had taken over Greece and elevated the art of mosaic by using glass tessera. Tessera is stone or glass cut in to cubes and arranged to create an artistic rendering.

Tessera moasic

In 500 BC, Byzantine artists developed the smalti technique to make glass tiles. Smalti is made by mixing molten glass with metal oxides for color, then fired at high temperature, cooled, and cut into small pieces. The resulting tiles are opaque with with a rough texture. Sometimes smalti is irregularly shaped with flecks of gold and silver. During the Byzantine era, Constantinople became the center of the mosaic craft, and the use of gold leaf glass mosaic reached perhaps its greatest artistic expression. The smalti technique has been passed down through generations and has been perfected predominantly by Italian artists. A classic example of the Byzantine smalti technique is St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice, consecrated in 1094 AD.

St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice

In the Middle Ages, glass tile was used primarily to create stained glass windows, a luxury for the elite. It wasn’t until the Victorian age hundreds of years later that the popularity of glass and tile surged as mass production introduced a product that was more uniform with a variety of color options. Glass tile saw its widest audience during the Art Nouveau and Art Deco movements. During this period, Louis Comfort Tiffany created his highly-renowned lamps, jewelry, and windows. The introduction of indoor plumbing brought the need to tile bathroom and kitchen surfaces, while fireplace surrounds and entry floors became the perfect location to show off the beauty of these artistic pieces.Stained Glass window

Stained glass stained glass

Tiffany Lamp

Post-war and mid-century eras brought automation and a desire toward modernity. Trends steered sharply into sleek man-made and space-age surface products, marking a major downturn in the use of glass and decorative tile.Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 5.39.38 PM

The early 1990s brought a renewed interest in glass tile as new manufacturing techniques were developed and access to post-consumer materials brought recycling to the forefront, making it possible to create new tile from recycled materials.

Today, new additives are still being developed to create more colors and finishes. Advances in manufacturing have increased uniformity and made an innumerable variety of sizes and shapes available. Likewise, innovations in setting materials have made wide use of glass tile possible in unexpected ways—in unique applications.

Glass tile manufacturingCrossville in The Christopher Kennedy Compound

Today, consumers have access to design ideas and products like never before. Market demand has driven an increase in production that has brought down consumer cost. The internet and social media have given us all peeks into the homes and lives of not just celebrities, but our neighbors as well. We can turn design dreams into reality more easily and quickly. This is an exciting time to be in design, and certainly, glass tile is a beautiful, creative, versatile part of it all.

Crossville's Ebb & Flowglass tile bath glass tile

Stay tuned for more on glass design in an upcoming guest post by the talented Michael R Golden, of Avenue Mosaic, designer of our beautiful Sideview Glass tile collection!