Category Archives: My Emilceramica

Chinese tiles: do they really cost less than ours?

Piastrelle cinesi

Hi,
I must make it clear at the outset that I’m not going to say anything new, but I want to find out directly from you why Chinese ceramic floor and wall tiles are so cheap, especially when the freight costs are obviously higher than the ones we pay from Italy.

Thanks and best regards,
Enrico

Dear Enrico,
this is a tricky topic, especially when we are all aware that consumers’ spending power has fallen and this sometimes leads them to choose cheaper materials.
Today everyone is talking about quality, and people often devalue the whole question by stating that porcelain tiles are the same whether they are produced in Italy or China.
Nothing could be more mistaken!
And I am saying this without being irrationally nationalistic or mentioning commonplaces such as “Ceramic tiles are not the most important part of the home, they just have to be tough and a nice colour”.

The arguments supporting Italian tiles are valid and can be documented, so we would like to provide a few notes and comments:

- Italian tiles undergo quality controls on both their technical properties and their appearance, guaranteeing uniform standards across all output, with methodical checks on every single tile.
Chinese tiles are inspected by sampling. The only priority is to produce as many tiles as possible, at the expense of quality and consumer protection.

- the origin and quality of the raw materials used in Italian tiles are thoroughly controlled. We do not know about the materials used in Chinese tiles and they may release toxic substances into the rooms where we live every day.

- Italian tiles are produced in compliance with legal environmental protection parameters, thinking about our future and that of the planet. Chinese tiles are produced with coal as energy source and with no controls on industrial waste. Naturally, this involves pollution peaks that are completely out of control.

- Italian tiles are the outcome of constantly evolving experimentation and design, following and shaping trends. Chinese tiles survive by mimicking, copying what is done in Italy, with no creative input. They are poor copies, without a soul.

For this and other reasons, we are convinced that a few euro more per square metre, in the context of the cost of renovating or buying a house, is not a deterrent to the purchase of Italian tiles, which is the choice we must all make, for our own well-being and our future.

Replacing ceramic floors: which format is best?

piccole_grandi

The decision has been made! It’s time to change the bathroom tiles and all the indoor floors. After almost 15 years, we have made up our minds and we really can”t take it anymore.
Moreover, after going to different furniture stores to choose new furniture and we realised that the colours and trends no longer apply only to sofas and bookshelves, but also to tiles.

We began be visiting some retailers to see what kind of tiles are available…Incredible! We thought there were still square, white tiles, and instead there are thousands of possibilities.
Besides the incredible number of colours and decorations, we saw tiles that are absolutely realistic reproductions of wood, stone, and marble…

What I would like to ask about is the format of the tile, given that we have small rooms (it is a house in the country). Some retailers have said that a small format is better, like 20×20 or 30×30, while others say that larger formats leave fewer joints. What do you suggest?

Thank you.
Giovanna

Dear Giovanna,
your doubts are valid and quite common, and, for this reason, we would like to give you a point of view in favour of large formats.
In “small” rooms it was thought that small tiles were better as they reflected the proportions of the room. Today things have changed and we are convinced that large format tiles can enhance “small” rooms because there are fewer joints, resulting in the continuity of the floor or wall covering.

So we would certainly advise tiles in a format of 30×60 and larger. If you want some suggestions, take a look our some of our collections, like:
Anthology Marble: a perfect reproduction of marble
W-age: impossible wood
Stone Project: the excellence of stone
Lava: minimalism in its purest state.