20 January 2016

Strata Tiles Collection Shortlisted for Innovation & Trail Awards 2016

Strata Tiles to exhibit for the second year running at Retail Design Expo, showcasing their recent collaboration with IVANKA concrete and Virgile + Partners for Harvey Nichols concept store in Birmingham. Strata Tiles were overwhelmed with the positive response to their stand at Retail Design Expo, last year; thrilled with the successes of the exhibitions launch, the team at Strata Tiles have signed up to take part for a second year running. Residing at stand F61, the event which takes place on 9th and 10th March 2016, will be home to designers and suppliers looking to showcase their projects and products to several high profile retail experts worldwide. This year, Strata Tiles will be showcasing their entry for the Innovation Trail & Awards 2016, Trinity, recently installed within Harvey Nichols Birmingham. The collection, which consists of bespoke trapezoids, rhombus and triangles is one of 16 products shortlisted for the award at this year’s exhibition. Harvey Nichols worked in collaboration with architect and retail design specialists, Virgile + Partners, to create an unusual environment through technology and an eclectic approach to materials inside their first concept store. With the design approved, Virgile + Partners enlisted the expertise and knowledge of Strata Tiles, to help source and produce custom-made IVANKA concrete and marble pieces for the 45,000 sqft store. Strata Tiles has seen concrete gain quite a following over the last three years; available in a number of finishes and bespoke formats, awareness and interest in concrete is only set to grow in popularity, as many high-end retailers, such as Harvey Nichols, adopt this material into their concept store designs. Strata Tiles has seen an evolution in production methods that have led to a noticeable interest towards materials and textures, previously associated only with the higher end of the market or bespoke projects. Due to a returned confidence to the UK, products such as stone, porcelain wood and polished concrete are now in high demand, as an understanding of quality and the prospect of a luxury finish begins to outweigh cost and budgets. Other emerging trends include:

Natural Stone

Specifications and designs incorporating natural stone, marble, basalt and limestone are now increasingly installed instead of porcelain tiles or vinyl. Despite the rise in composites, the depth of colour and tone in natural material, such as marble, are very hard to copy convincingly thus lacking an authentic feel. Larger formats and natural textures alongside square and hexagonal mosaics are appearing with increasing regularity as designers look to bring more traditional material into their contemporary design work

Composite Stone

The use of composite stone is a good alternative to natural stone, particularly in larger formats such as 1000x1000mm. The range of composites has widened over the past few years, with the production process becoming more refined month on month. Composites can be custom made, thus widening the range of colours and finishes available to the market. Take a honed finish for example: with a composite, this one range can come in a variety of slip resistances to suit a particular specification, meaning the client can obtain the particular look and feel desired. In addition, composites can be made to order and can be used to form basins or work tops, as seen in Broadgate, London.

Porcelain Wood

Porcelain impressions of good quality timber have been available for the last three years or so. High definition printing and a rise in the formats and thickness available, allow for true wood textures and grain to be seen in rectified dimensions of up to 1800mm in length. The time and attention to detail and evolution in software allows the product cost of porcelain wood to be nearly half of some hardwoods. Combined with the ease of installation and lack of cleaning maintenance required, porcelain wood is a popular choice for retailers such as Next.

Varied Formats

The standard large square and rectangular shapes have become the norm in recent years, however we have begun to see a rising interest in alternate formats such as hexagons, diamonds, trapezoids and mosaics. Over the past 6 months the use of geometric shapes has increased along with a desire to create movement through texture. This is a trend that will continue to grow through 2015/16, with many clients wishing to create a more organic feel through a combination of shapes and surface textures. Join Strata Tiles at stand F61, this March at Retail Design Expo. Retail Design Expo – 9th & 10th March 2016 – Olympia London.


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