Whether you’re looking for an elegant addition to your floors, walls, countertops, or backsplashes, natural stone tile is a durable and eye-catching choice for any home. Here at Floor Coverings International Seminole, we recommend it because not only will it increase the value of your home, but it comes in such a wide variety of looks, colors, and textures that you could match nearly any existing aesthetic. Just a bit of natural stone can elevate your interior design without having to re-do your entire space!
Let’s take a look at some of the most popular and elegant natural stone tile materials on the market.
Marble tile is the ultimate in luxurious beauty. It has been used for centuries in the most opulent palaces and structures of the greatest civilizations on earth. Yet while marble is an excellent option for lavish flooring and stylish countertops, it does come with some drawbacks. Marble is a more delicate stone that requires some special maintenance considerations, can scratch easier than other stones, and can be slippery when wet. For this reason, we recommend it for bathroom counters or backsplashes rather than as tile flooring or kitchen countertops.
Slate tile tends to have a bluish-grey or brownish hue and can be cut to any desired size. It is a durable material with a classic look and very unique texture. It’s an excellent option for outdoor kitchens. While you can opt for slate tiles that are smooth to the touch, slate’s beauty stems from natural looking ridging.
Travertine is a form of limestone that usually comes in shades of beige, brown, rust, and tan. It is strong and long-lasting with a classic appearance that won’t go out of style. It’s a great option for both indoor and outdoor spaces since it’s incredibly durable. If you’re wondering where you’ve seen it, it’s the primary stone used to construct the Roman colosseum! However, be sure to know the difference between the finishes offered because some are more porous than others and require more upkeep.
Real Pebble Stone Tile
Last but not least, for something truly out of a storybook, consider real pebble “tiles.” Flooring manufacturers produce a variety of pebble tiles to choose from.
These tiles often come from the bedrock of islands like Bali in Indonesia. They are mined, then separated by style, height, and overall shape and size. From there, they are attached to square tile shapes, which can be installed just like traditional ceramic tiles. Each square of pebbles blends seamlessly with the rest, and grout is added to create a slightly textured but ultimately flat and all-natural surface.
Why Choose Natural Stone Tile for Your Project?
Of course, as with any material, there are certain drawbacks to be aware of. Certain stones will chip easily (and are, therefore, better for walls or backsplashes than flooring). Others can be quite porous, which means sealing may be necessary.
In general, however, you’ll find that as you shop for natural stone tile, there are guides and ratings that can help you select the ideal stone for your project. You’ll want to look at each stone’s:
- Quality grade
- Overall coefficient of friction (how slippery the stone is)
- Outdoor vs. indoor rating (the stone’s propensity to crack, expand, or be extremely slippery when wet — outdoors or indoors)
- Propensity for oxidation (this may occur in stone that is used outdoors)
- Absorption rating (how porous the stone is)
With an abundance of natural stone tile materials and varying factors to choose from, it’s often a good idea to speak with a professional about your best options. Taking the time to fully research your options will land you with an optimal result when it comes time for installation.
Contact the team at Floor Coverings International Seminole to schedule a free in-home design consultation and estimate! We will bring dozens of natural stone samples right to your home. Proudly serving the greater Clearwater and Largo areas.