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Last year when we visited the 32nd edition of Cersaie it proved to be a wealth of inspiration, an exhibition of ceramic tiles and bathroom furnishings held in Bologna, Italy. Here are, our favourite trends from Cersaie.

FRAGMENTED PATTERNED TILES: With the idea of modularity in mind, Italian ceramic companies are designing fragmented patterns on rectangular and square tiles to produce large compositions. These tiles are a great way to bring life to smaller spaces, whether it’s a bathroom feature wall, kitchen splashback or flooring in wet areas. Shapes aren’t a newcomer to the design world – geometric shapes and patterns have been used to enhance the tone, mood and texture of a living space for centuries. Opting for a geometric tile is a contemporary design element but very much inspired by European bathroom styles. By mixing and matching geometric shapes, the tiles pop with vivid, kaleidoscopic effect, suitable for creating a subtle or bold feature within your chosen area. Patterned and fragmented tiles are set to take over floors and walls in a big way during 2016.

CHEVRON & HERRINGBONE CHIC: The popularity of herringbone and chevron designs have emerged in recent years and are still in full swing, especially with their elegant and retro characteristics. These sophisticated zigzag patterns have been making quite a mark, both in the interior design and fashion worlds. Drawing inspiration from an age-old pattern, designers dress up walls and floors with these porcelains, from rustic and painted wood looks to resin, brick and stone. Visually striking geometric lines, herringbone and chevron patterns are unique decorative features, adding a lively dimension to any space, Italian companies are producing chevron and herringbone tiles across all scales to create patterns that are easy to install but with maximum style impact.

GREYS: In bathrooms, kitchens and main living areas, a subdued palette of grey has been a ‘go-to’ option for a few years now and it is set to remain a big interior trend for the year to come. From wall paint and floor tiles, to furniture and upholstery, grey is very versatile colour. It can be used to complement different themes, such as, periods, contemporary, industrial or uber-glam settings. From the palest dove to deepest steel, these popular tonal colours can be found in Italian and Dutch tile manufacturer’s showrooms. These tiles prove that you don’t need colour to make a statement. At Material Plans we love the Greys range from Mosa which provides a palette of a total of twelve shades of grey. These shades are divided into three groups cool, warm and ‘moss’ grey.

3D TEXTURED WALLS: This year is all about adding three dimensional folds, raised geometry, wavy ridges, and asymmetrical profiles. Textured decorative, tiled wall panels are extravagant and a chic design trend that brings drama into modern interior design and creatively transforming living spaces. The texture gives major depth to your walls and adds some serious character to a room and the textures also casts shadows that change the way your room looks throughout the day. Fitting these tiles together creates a three dimensional wall with a seamless sculpted surface that draws the eye and walls that you have to touch.

SUPER SIZE: With recent technological advances in the tile world (extra-thin porcelain and extra-large kilns) this means that tiles have been growing in size. Tiles continue to get bigger every year, bringing new creative design possibilities. Large format floor tiles enhance a simple aesthetic, whilst minimal grout lines create a cleaner, sharper feel to any space. These tiles are now also being used to cover surfaces including work tops, splash backs, furniture and seamless wall installations.

METALLIC: This is one of 2016’s hottest trends, metallic tiles ooze old school glamour and pair very well with everything from neutrals to bright, bold colours. Companies showcased metallised tiles from weathered effects of rusted steel or oxidized copper for an industrial feel and the sheen of platinum and bronze for a glamorous vibe. Even grout has gone one step further with a variety of metallic options making it a more decorative, versatile piece of the tile installation.

MODERN MOSAICS: Mosaics have been trending for years, but some of the newer micro mosaics will be seen a lot more in 2016. Often only a few millimetres in size, these tiles are so small that the faceted effect of micro mosaics play with the light in a really endearing way and when used over an entire wall, can really increase the sense of space and scale within a room. New innovative shaped mosaics were everywhere at Cersaie introducing completely new formats such as, diamond, linear, scale and organic shaped tesserae.

CONCRETE NATION: Concrete look tiles create an incredibly realistic modern surface which complements the popular cool feel of varying shades of grey, black, beige and cream. Concrete creates not just a modern edge, but adds a natural warmth to an interior space. It is undoubtedly a practical and aesthetic option which can facilitate the work of both the users and architecture and interior design professionals. The advantages of these porcelain concrete look tiles is that they do not require any special treatment like a real concrete surface does. There is no sealing, grinding or polishing required and also it is a lot more scratch resistant and can be used in all weather conditions. One of our favourite ranges we supply which suits this style perfectly is District, inspired by modern urban settings, with their reconditioned industrial buildings, that have taken on a new lease of life, urban environments with an underground air. The result is a complex collection ideal for bringing a wealth of personal touches to residential settings, or for tiling commercial settings throughout in order to create up-to-the-minute atmospheres with a dynamic personality.