8 Tile and Bathroom Trends from the Cersaie 2021 Design Fair
The latest edition of the Italian fair showcased colourful florals, sumptuous textures and some cool mirror tech
The fair showcased lots of novelties that are sure to interest both homeowners and design professionals. These include increasingly colourful tiles and bathroom furnishings and fixtures, as well as ceramics in floral patterns and jungle effects, tile designs inspired by marble or wallpaper, earthy textures, extra-large tiles, and designs available in both indoor and outdoor versions. New bathroom tech also made a mark in the form of LED backlit mirrors with motion sensors to create a cosy ambience.
Hooray for colour
Following the success of bold tones in the recent edition of Supersalone in Milan, Cersaie also opened up to colour.
Bathroom fixtures, radiators and shower trays are no longer just white, but bring a colourful touch to the bathroom. In her keynote lecture, Cristina Faedi, head of promotions for ceramics association Confindustria Ceramica, suggested that we now feel the need to ‘escape’ even within the home, and colourful ceramics can help us do that.
There’s now room for serene pale blue, comforting pastels and warm earth tones that bring us into contact with nature.
Another trend seen throughout the fair were ceramic finishes, worktops and cabinet doors incorporating 3D effects with strong tactile sensations.
Massimo Nadalini, designer of the Cut-Up finish for Mosaico+ (pictured), described his work as an experiment to study the interplay of smooth and textured surfaces. Inspired by the cut-up technique in literature – in which a text is cut up and rearranged – Nadalini has reworked tiles created by Cardo and Marianna Costi to produce a surface made up of alternating designs.
“We dissected the slabs into portions that incorporated only small details of the finished work, and then generated modules with a selection of these fragments. Those who install the material are unconsciously writing a new story, generated by the random composition of the modules,” Nadalini says in its press release.
Ceramic dressed up as marble
This year, the trend for ceramics inspired by natural materials was reflected above all in tiles with colours and vein patterns imitating marble. Everything from the most expensive to the most colourful varieties were recreated in ceramic. Various shades of onyx and Carrara, Calacatta and Verona red marble were among the most sought-after imitations.
The tiles on display also ranged from classic sizes to large, nearly 3m sq tiles.
Natural materials such as wood and marble weren’t the only finishes imitated in ceramic. Collections inspired by wallpaper were in the spotlight at the fair, showcasing patterns and textures that we’re used to seeing on fabric.
Thin tiles can be used to decorate walls while retaining the functional benefits of ceramic.
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A jungle in the bathroom
Nature has come through to the bathroom: small flowers for romantic settings; jungle-style décor for creative spaces, and 3D finishes that reflect light on leaves and flowers.
This dovetails with two other trends we’ve already mentioned: surfaces recalling raw textures and bold palettes. These are expressed in floral tiles with tactile surfaces and bright colours.
Same style indoors and out
Beyond the bathroom, at Cersaie we saw tiles that could be used both inside and out to create continuity, with indoor and outdoor versions of the same design. From a technical standpoint, this means producing tiles with the same appearance at different slip ratings: R9 for indoor tiles and R10/R11 for their outdoor counterparts.
One of the most important manufacturing innovations we saw at the fair were large tiles reaching up to 3m sq. This means that tiles originally intended for the bathroom can be used as a second skin in ventilated building façades.
Technology makes the bathroom environment more functional and comfortable as well. At Cersaie, we saw mirrors equipped with motion sensors that light up automatically when someone walks past. The built-in LED lights are dimmable and can change from cold to warm light temperatures depending on the time of day.
Which of these trends has inspired you? Share your thoughts in the Comments.