Going Far Beyond the Surface
Incorporating tile into your interior is one of the easiest ways to add instant style, whether in a kitchen backsplash, on a bathroom floor – or even on a living room wall. With high-quality materials and spectacular designs, AKDO is one of our go-to resources for tile and mosaics.
Since AKDO has ownership over their stone production, they have more freedom to use these materials in unique and innovative ways. Guided by an “organic” design process, Creative Director Kate Sterling develops AKDO’s impressive collections using stone, ceramic, glass, porcelain, mirror, shell, wood, laminated wood, and recently, even laminated backings for stone.
“We have been interested heavily in metallic and texture – playing with different techniques and observing how they capture light,” Ivana Bulic, residential and commercial account executive with AKDO, told us. “Clients are looking not only for how tile can make a space beautiful, but how people can interact with the tile in the space.”
AKDO is best known for their themed mosaic collections, particularly the popular Allure, Luminous, and Origami collections. Their Designer Collections, including the Impressions by Matthew Quinn line of ceramic tile and the minimalist stone mosaic collection Kaya by Clodagh, are also getting a lot of attention.
Natural stone is much studier than people think, Bulic added. While porcelain is known for its durability and performance, stone has been a mainstay for thousands of years – even in high traffic areas, like the churches, walkways, and coliseums you can still find in Europe.
“If you walk into an old Italian cottage, I guarantee you that the countertop is a hundred years old – and most likely a honed Carrara or Calacatta,” she noted.
Bringing a bit of the outside world to an interior design can provide a deeper connection with nature, adding “affordable luxury” to any environment. Still, Bulic said homeowners need to consider their lifestyle needs before they decide to include stone in a remodel.
“I try to pinpoint what is most significant to them in their design intention,” she explained. “For me, it’s important that my client’s experience is tailored to their personal needs, and that the tile I am recommending not only appeases them aesthetically, but will live up to their expectations.”
The versatility of stone also provides homeowners with a wealth of design options, Bulic said. While classic subway tiles might seem bland, a simple shift in pattern can completely change the way the tile looks and feels in a space. Her recommendation is that homeowners examine the different patterns and ways in which tile can be installed.
“Whether it be stacked, staggered, or more elaborately, herringbone, cross-hatch, linear vertical – the list goes on,” Bulic explained. “Before tossing an idea, consider all the possibilities.”
Grout is another way homeowners can change the look of a specific tile – and is a crucial element to consider. A matching grout will allow your tile to be the focal point of the installation, while using grout in a contrasting shade may complement the design.
“Grout can pretty much make or break an installation,” added Bulic. “My suggestion when choosing grout colors is to order a sheet or a couple of tiles from your manufacturer and fixate them on a piece of cardboard. Get some grout samples and see what works best.”
With original lines and impressive attention to detail, AKDO is a fantastic resource for homeowners looking to take their interior design up a few notches. We love how they work with clients to make the entire renovation experience easier and more enjoyable, and we’re always looking forward to the unveiling of their next collection.