Nov. 26, 2013
Image: Malcolm-Fearon Photography, Bliss Images; Color: White Gloss
Herringbone, the beloved pattern named after its resemblance to the skeleton of a herring, is undoubtedly a classic, spanning all the way back to the Roman Empire, where its conception stemmed from the construction of an enormous road system called the Viae Publicae. Standard rectangular bricks were placed in an alternating arrangement, creating a zig zag effect which broke at the point of reversal. With the weight load spread over a larger surface area, the grid of interlocking units made the paving system incredibly strong under compression.
Rather than falling with the Roman Empire, Herringbone resurfaced and became a desired architectural feature during the European Renaissance. Soon after, the pattern gained relevance and became a popular hardwood parquet flooring choice. Herringbone remains popular today and can be achieved in a variety of finish materials.
Color: White Gloss
Despite its historic roots, and classic rectangular shapes, this dynamic and distinctive pattern is still relevant even in today’s most contemporary designs. The pattern lends itself to customization, and with a little creativity, can be transformed into some pretty fun-loving designs. Achieve a Herringbone pattern with our rectangular 2x4 field tile by interlocking each tile at a 45 degree angle. For a custom look try experimenting with different colorways and sizes.
Image: Malcolm-Fearon Photography, Bliss Images; Color: Mica
Who said Herringbone is only appropriate as a flooring option? No one! With its visually striking geometric lines, herringbone has become a unique decorative feature, adding lively dimension to any kitchen backsplash.
Nov. 20, 2013
To show how we produced our 100% CRT Glass Tile featured in our Kickstarter project we have created the ultimte infographic to tell the tale of CRTs tranformation from TV to Tile.
Nov. 11, 2013
Our Kickstarter Video
We are very excited to announce the launch of our Kickstarter project! Our prouct is the first of its kind and we are very proud of what we have created – 100% post consumer CRT Glass Tile. CRT, also known as Cathode Ray Tube glass, was used to make the glass screens in old televisions and computer monitors. CRT has been an e-waste challenge in the recycling community for years. With the rise of LCD and Plasma this e-waste problem is growing at a rapid rate. CRT accounts for over 860 million pounds of e-waste in the US alone and we figured that was a lot of useful glass that we could make into tile.
This used to be your TV or computer; now it's beautiful tile! Color: Phosphor.
In order to make these special tiles, we need unique molds. The funding from this Kickstarter project will be used to purchase high quality molds that will guarantee consistency in the finished product. Each mold costs roughly $20 and an average size project will use around 360 molds, which is why we need every dime of the $10,000 we're trying to raise via Kickstarter.
From monitor to backsplash. Kickstarter backers will be eligible for a Phosphor backsplash for their next installation.
Phosphor CRT Tile 4x4 coasters. A rewards for some lucky Kickstarter backers...
Help us make CRT tile a success by backing our project and sharing with friends. C’mon, let’s make something cool together!
BIG THANK YOU to our local e-cyclers, ECS Refining, for all of our CRT glass!
Check out our infographic that tracks CRT from rise to decline, from waste to tile!
Fireclay Tile infographic of CRT from monitor to tile
Nov. 6, 2013
Here at Fireclay Tile, a surefire way to make our day is hearing from happy customers. This week we got an email from Megan in California who chose a Vitrail Series 3 x 6 in Topaz for the backsplash in her kitchen.
"We were remodelling our kitchen and came across Fireclay tile on a design blog. Looking into them more we appreciated their ethics and that the materials were locally made. We chose our tile and the custom color. As we were nearing the end of the job we realized we didn't have enough tile. I contacted Fireclay tile and fortunately they had made extra. I picked it up and we finished the job. Everyday I see our tile backsplash I love it. It is the signature piece in the kitchen. I couldn't be happier". Megan, CA.
Thanks Megan! We think your project turned out beautifully.
For more design inspiration check out our gallery. If you've got a story or photo you'd like to share, please send it to email@example.com. Happy tiling!
Oct. 31, 2013
The team here at Fireclay Tile wanted to share some of our finer moments in front of the camera.
Here we capture the team in the heat of a poker battle. Who wins we might ask? One may never know. But we do make great tile.
Charades is a word guessing game and a favorite pastime for children and adults alike. However, in order to play this game and be successful, the team will soon find that tile isn't everything.
Oct. 29, 2013
We are currently shooting our next round of Fireclay TIle Videos! We love video, as it's both a great way for us to highlight who we are as a company and also to educate our customers.
We work with Markwood Films out of Los Angeles, who have shot videos for us and our friends at New Ravenna. Eric, our CEO, also went to high school with Alex from Markwood, so that may have something to do with it! But honestly, they rock and do a great job of showing off the beauty of artisan companies.
Here are some awesome excerpts from Day 1 of filming!
Alex and Kat from Markwood Films getting the team ready
Emily and Mayra getting ready to dance!
Our Founder and Chief Ceramicist, Paul, getting down with Sabrina, Curtis, and Nolan
We can't wait to show you the full videos in another month. In the meantime, check out all the other Fireclay Tile videos on our website.
Oct. 23, 2013
There is a newly completed Moroccan-inspired haven here in San Jose. Brought to you by the creative minds of Jeffrey Gordon Smith Architecture, this private oasis beckons you to simply recline. Whether it is in the peacock mosaic hot tub, warming by the octagon fire pit or napping in the shaded lounge, this backyard transports you through time to a secret Marrakesh garden in Morocco itself. Intrigued? Let’s take the tour from the beginning…
To start, we begin with the design of the mosaic - can you find the peacock?
Once the design is finalized, it's time to color in the lines! Here we see how Jeffrey and his team begin to fill in the white with the chosen color composition. Try our color-it tool to design your own!
Photo courtesy of Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture
Now the heavy lifting begins with construction underway on the octagon fire pit and curved hot tub.
Photo courtesy of Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture
After a few months of labor, the final product is unveiled. This incredible custom project incorporates both handpainted Cuerda Seca tiles - the peacock mosaic, fire pit & Morrocan fountain in the lounge area - and Lapis field tile used in the hot tub.
Photo taken by Jim Everett Photography, courtesy of Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture
We are very excited to share this beautiful backyard with you and hope you find inspiration for your next work of art!
Oct. 17, 2013
Casting the Mold: Production of Crush Molds
Q & A with Nolan Johnson – Fireclay Tile's Glass Factory Manager
What’s the overarching approach of the glass factory?
NJ - In the crush factory we are constantly striving towards being a leader in the sustainable tile industry. We use as much recycled material in our glass tile production as possible, in an effort to reduce the amount of waste going to our local landfills.
Fireclay's glass tile is made out of 100% recycled content. What about the molds they're made from? Are they recycled material as well?
NJ - The process begins when we receive recycled window and solar tubing glass from our local vendors. We “crush” that recycled glass into a fine, medium and large frit. The next step is making the tile molds. Our molds are made out of pulverized recycled clay tile and other recycled components mixed together and placed in a casting form. After being in the form for 12 hours, the molds go into the kiln for another 12 hours to cure.
Once the molds have cured, what’s next?
NJ - The molds are brought to the factory floor where they’re filled with glass frit. Color is added to the glass frit by mixing in a powdered pigment to get the desired color. Next up is selecting the size of tile to make. The glass and pigment mixture is then poured into the molds and lightly shaken to create a nice even distribution of material. Once the molds are filled with pigment and glass mixture, it’s time to start loading them on the belt kiln. Each mold runs through the belt kiln for about an hour at 1630 degrees fahrenheit. The tiles are then moved to a cooling rack for about 30 minutes. After cooling, the order is matted or sheeted and ready to ship.
For more information about Crush, download the .pdf of Fireclay's Crush 100% Recycled Glass Tile Brochure.
Oct. 10, 2013
Parquetry, a wood inlay technique dating back to 17th century France, was first introduced at the Palace of Versailles in 1684. Originally, this technique of assembling geometric patterns of wood, was used to replace marble flooring in the palace which was prone to water seepage, resulting in the degradation of subfloor joists.
Palace of Versailles Entry Floor, Photo by: Greg Hume
Over the years Parquetry techniques became more and more elaborate. Craftsmen introduced contrasting wood tones and ornately detailed patterns to highlight their skill in what became a popular technique for furniture as well as flooring.
Parquet Flooring 18th Century, Photo by: Donar Reiskoffer
Parquet as we know it today has become a popular flooring option, especially for those who are looking for a style with vintage appeal or something a little outside of the box. Parquet patterns can be laid in many variations, the only rule is that they retain a rigid geometrical layout.
Wooden Parquet Floor in Library
One of the more popular Parquet patterns is created with rectangular shaped tile, laid in a simple block. Using rectangular tile with even dimensions (i.e. 2x4, 2x6, 2x8) every other block is set at a 90 degree turn (also known as a quarter turn). The resulting effect has a graphic punch that works well in both traditional and contemporary settings.
Fireclay Tile Vitrail Series: Parquet Patterns
Oct. 7, 2013
On Sunday, October 6th, 36 members of the Fireclay Team gathered on a crisp fall morning to race in the San Jose 1/2 Marathon / 5 mile Mini-Marathon. Sporting some fresh new "Tile to the People" athletic shirts, the team was looking smart as we hustled over from the San Jose Showroom to the start line.
Our fearless leader and CEO, Eric Edelson, donned a life-sized tile costume emblazoned with the Fireclay Logo and ran the lion's share of the 13.1 mile race with it on. Pausing only briefly for photos or to jump on stage to rock out with one of the bands scattered throughout course, Eric could be heard shouting words of encouragment to all the runners he passed on his mission to bring tile to the people!
Post-race we reconvened at Fireclay HQ, where we were joined by more of the team, family, and significant others for some delicious BBQ and cold drinks to talk over the race and relax in the sunshine. In spite of the sore muscles we all experienced this morning (I hope I wasn't the only one), sharing food and the feeling of accomplishment crossing the finish line made for a very special day indeed.