Walls that Wow

Walls that Wow

Unique accent walls and backsplashes are a natural fit for some flooring stores

I wasn’t looking for tile, mosaics or recycled glass when I went to the flooring store. But there was something magnetic about the eye-catching colors and textures on display.

This is a flooring store, I thought, but look at all of the options they offer for backsplashes and walls! And virtually every manufacturer offers something with recycled glass or recycled content , and tile is indoor-air friendly, too.

Okay, walls and floors must complement each other, so it makes sense to sell them together, particularly for bathrooms. But when there are so many cool options, how do you choose?



That’s one of the reasons most stores have design consultants.

Ceramic and porcelain tile generally have always had a fairly green record in that they do not emit VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds), they are low maintenance and they have a long life cycle. Most manufacturers — Daltile, Crossville and Marazzi are just a few — also offer tiles, mosaics and decorative accents that contain recycled glass and metal.

And to satisfy “green” architects specifying these products for sustainable building projects, many put their products through tests to verify the contents.

The key in using decorative mosaics is to add them in





sparingly to your 4-inch or 6-inch square field tile.

Using decorative accents in odd numbers looks the best. And 12-inch square mosaic sheets can be cut down to two or three rows to get the perfect lineal accent.

Backsplashes also are a great way to create a ‘wow’ in the kitchen. Glass, metal and other decorative tiles are like adding jewelry to the kitchen. It only makes design sense. We use beautiful hardware on cabinets. Why not put it on the wall?

A horizontal line of mosaics or other accent at eye level, when working with bathroom walls, is a consistent recommendation of some designers. To create the most unique looks, selection is key. It is not uncommon for customers to spend days or weeks, narrowing in on their selection.

Glass, stone and metal mosaics  are sold a lot for full walls, backsplashes and trim.

Moving upward in price, you will also find products from Fanfare, Porcelanosa and Vogue Bay, which also offers a unique glass floor tile, though it is not made of recycled glass because, the company says, recycled glass contains too much color variation to achieve the Vogue Bay look. Instead, the primary ingredient is sand — one of the most abundant materials on Earth.

Using these products, you’ll be able to make any room truly unique.©


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