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Tile School: Commercial Custom Process

By Kali |

Working on a commercial project and interested in creating something custom? We've got you covered. From commercial grade finishes to a custom color or shape, we're walking you through our commercial capabilities on today's blog. 


Tile Shown: Our Glazed Thin Brick in a blend of standard and custom glazes. Design: David Baker Architects  // Image: Patricia Chang 

Handmade to Order
All of our tile is handmade to order and we have a breadth of styles, materials and finishes that meet commercial demands. We think of customization in five tiers. No matter which tier you are starting at, it's important that we have a clear understanding of your goal, as we know that this is an investment to a main focal point in your design and want to help you bring your vision to life. 

First, here's a peak inside our innovation lab, where the custom magic happens. You can read more about the lab here. 


Tier One: 
We consider all of our tile as custom, as it is handmade to order. Tier One is selecting from any of our standard offering of Tile, Brick, Handpainted or Glass. We do offer complimentary design services that include 3D renderings that can be incredibly helpful, as well as our Color-It Tool where you can customize any of our handpainted tiles. 

This hotel bathroom features one of our standard glazes: 

This serene hotel spa features our Pickets tiles in Celadon.

Tile Shown: Pickets in Celadon // Design: Arcsine // Image: Paul Dyer

These tiled stairs were customized using our online Color-It Tool

Use our online Color-It Tool to make any of our hand painted tiles all your own. These tiled stairs feature our 6x6 Avila and Vigo.

Tile Shown: Handpainted VigoAvila // Design: Sara Combs and Rich Combs // Image: Margaret Austin

Tier Two: Standard Glaze on an alternate material 
The next level of customization is where we put a standard glaze on an alternate material. For example, we'll often get requests for one of our Tile colors to be placed on our Glazed Thin Brick. Or one of our Recycle Body colors to be placed on our White Clay Body. The kitchen below features Recycle Body colors on our White Clay: 

A blend of three contrasting tile colors make a bold statement in this San Francisco sushi spot.

Tile Shown: Pickets in Basalt and two white clay glazes on our White Clay Body // Design: Adam Tortosa// Image: Patricia Chang

Tier Three: Mosaics
We can sheet custom mosaics for both residential and commercial space, but the commercial ones tend to be a bit more complex and involve a lot more mapping and strategy. 

With over 5000SF of 2x2 tiles in a rainbow of custom colors, Salesforce East in San Francisco was an incredible project where we worked closely with the designers at Gensler, along with Salesforce and our incredible mosaic and production teams to bring their vision to life

2x2 tile mosaics in a custom sheeted pattern.

Tile Shown: 2x2 Mosaic Tiles in a custom pattern // Design: Gensler // Artist: Shinji Murakami // Image: Patricia Chang

Tier Four: Custom Development
This tier includes both changing the finish or a glaze or the creation of a custom hand painted pattern. 

For the restaurant below, we changed some of our existing gloss glazes to a matte finish and added abrasive to meet high traffic commercial floor standards: 

Conceived by design studio DUST & Co., Da Kikokiko restuarant serves up a fresh twist on island style with custom Triangle tiles across the floor and bar.

Tile Shown: 6" Triangles in custom colors // Design: DUST & Co. // Image: Bethany Nauert

The Perennial's owners chose our elegant Wave pattern for the entryway, collaborating with our designers to develop a rustic custom color blend:

The Perennial's owners chose our elegant Wave pattern for the entryway, collaborating with our designers to develop a rustic custom color blend.

Tile Shown: Wave in a custom glaze in a San Francisco restaurant's entryway

Tier Five: Custom Development, Part II
This level of customization includes developing a brand new glaze color or a new shape.For color development, this usually begins with a pantone color reference that our glaze master will work to get the closest match. 

For Jayde's Market, we worked with the designers to develop a custom green: 

2x8 tiles straight set in a custom green glaze developed for Jayde's Market

Custom green tiles in Jayde's Market

Tile Shown: 2x8 tiles in a custom green // Design + Images: Project M Plus

With custom color development, we have to talk about Salesforce East again. This spectrum of colors was developed by in colorist in partnership with our glaze master: 


Tile Shown: 2x2 Mosaic Tiles in a custom pattern // Design: Gensler // Artist: Shinji Murakami // Image: Patricia Chang

We can also work on creating a custom shape for your project. This involves creating a new cutter for the shape. For this Arthur Mac's, we created this custom chevron shape for their floor tile: 


Tile Shown: Custom Chevron shape in custom colors // Design: Bcooperative

Working on a commercial project that requires some customization? Get in touch, we're here to help! 

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