Tile Tales


The extravagant, gorgeous tile work I have encountered in my travels, particularly in Spain and Portugal, is truly inspiring. If the style of a kitchen is suitable, I enjoy adding special touches with tile.

In this kitchen, my client’s non-negotiables were a light-coloured-but-not-white kitchen, and granite countertops. Although the granite we chose was subtle, it was still busier than the simple countertops I usually specify, so backsplash tiles were an issue. The countertops dictated a simple backsplash treatment, but my client rejected the idea of subway tiles as being too plain.

The solution came in the form of off-white arabesque tiles, which added a subtle interest without clashing with the granite. Because the cooktop was the focal point of the room, I wanted to add more drama to the area; I organized tiles of the same shape, but in colours pulled from the granite to form a larger arabesque. The result is like a little piece of art and a reminder of the potential of tiles to enhance a space.